We Don’t Brew Decaf!

I will not brew decafSleepy Monday, tired eyes, groggy body, grumpy people, slow subway, broken escalator, crowded new coffee shop with those welcome words “We Don’t Brew Decaf!”

The aroma of strong, fresh-brewed coffee permeates the shop and I think about how I love purists like this on a Monday morning. This recognition that only caffeinated has the strength to boost the mind and rev the body to an acceptable level of energy. The underlying assumption that decaf is a shadow of the real thing. That decaf is settling for less, not giving one hundred percent, acting as a substitute – all those things are present in those four words of a mission statement: We Don’t Brew Decaf! The older I get the more I appreciate purists like this – purists who have not bought into the value of hundreds of choices. They make caffeinated or nothing. There is no choice.

And being who I am, I contemplate this the rest of the way to work. Where do I need to be a purist? Where do I need to hold to my values and not budge from them, no matter what the masses may want me to say? When is it important to hold to something, and, although willing to listen to others, recognize that it is an area where you will not negotiate? What is my “We Don’t Brew Decaf”?

The unapologetic strong words on a coffee shop sign saying “We Don’t Brew Decaf” is the philosophical challenge I need this Monday morning. The challenge to be the real thing, not a shadow of who I am supposed to be. The challenge that some things are worth sticking to, there are some things that should never be watered down.  It’s a slippery slope down the dangerous path of the decaffeinated.

18 thoughts on “We Don’t Brew Decaf!

  1. Ahh, Marilyn, I hope you never get to the point where you have to eliminate the caffeine! Your Grandma K. was still drinking her regular coffee made in her little percolator right to the day she died at 89! But alas, I had to quit the coffee, and now even the regular tea has to be early in the day.
    As for the convictions not to be compromised, I think to know and stand firmly on the essentials of our faith, but keep an open heart and mind for those who hold to different convictions, to be able to love and deeply respect people who differ with us.


    1. Umm Marilyn I am sitting here this Tuesday morning in Kuwait, drinking my first cup of chai and reading your words and the first thing that I thought was how much you would enjoy it.
      Reading the second part of your comment made me so wish the world was full of people with your wisdom especially mothers. I am happy my parents taught me and my siblings the same things.


      1. Oh – so fun to know that just before midnight my time you were enjoying your cup of (caffeinated) chai! I echo your thoughts on parents, mothers and wisdom. Something I pray for daily! So now I am about to go get my fully caffeinated coffee – a little late today!


    2. Ah – I will aspire to be like Grandma K! Regarding the philosophical challenge – I love the way you worded your convictions. I will steal that. Thank you so much.


  2. I like the sentiments expressed in this blog regarding the “purist” within. There is nothing like the smell of fresh brewed, or perked coffee and for years I had to have my coffee. However, a few years ago caffeine had to be eliminated from my diet. So, for a long time Hu would brew decaf for breakfast for the both of us and get his “kick” later in the morning for the real stuff. Ultimately I decided it wasn’t worth the trouble. Decaf teas and coffee are still on my shelves and periodically I use them. Poor substitutes for the real thing. I might add that there is a very small amount of caffeine in decaffeinated coffees, but not enough for the purist!


    1. True about the caffeine in the decaf! And in the spirit of honesty, I can’t have caffeinated coffee much after 2 or 3 in the afternoon or I’ll feel it mightily when I’m trying to get to sleep. I love that Hu joined you in your decaf! True love.


  3. At our house decaf is called “psychological coffee”. We drink it when we need to stay awake, but then need to sleep. Like driving 60 miles home from Cambridge in the morning.

    That said, I’m almost immune to caffeine anyway, so I might as well drink it. Inspired.


  4. An American friend has come to stay she got me some really good coffee… Funny to read this post inspired by coffee today just a few hours after.
    Like I mentioned in a comment, I make my own world and it is purist all the way. :)
    I would like to know that when you say “The challenge that some things are worth sticking to, there are some things that should never be watered down. ” what thoughts are strongest in your mind?


    1. Pari – You are a great example of being a purist all the way. So – your question is wonderful and thought provoking. What won’t I negotiate….the first thing that comes to mind is watering down my faith. It is life sustaining and can’t be compromised – along with that are some other things that I’d love to sit down with you and talk about…!


  5. I like this philosophy. I will adopt it as soon as I go throw out all the decaf, lowfat, reduced sugar in the kitchen. Either do it of don’t. Drinking decaf is like drinking beer with no alcohol. What’s the point :)


    1. Right on – I am so happy to have some comrades on this Monday Morning journey :) Good luck with throwing out all the stuff …. We know of course that it will scream at you to not let go but be strong my friend! Be strong!


  6. This is just awesome! What a grand post! I read another blog with a similar message this morning about being who we are, and as you said, discovering the “purist” within. I have only recently come to realize that I have always been swayed to think as society would have me think. This usually meant NOT following my gut… my spirit. I proclaim today, not to buy into the path of the decaffeinated! What an inspiration this message is! Thank you!


    1. So so happy to have someone else that gets my philosophizing on a Monday morning. I totally agree with you about following your gut. I’m walking with you the path of the caffeinated and thanks most of all for totally “getting” this post!


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