A lame post about Coffee and Chocolate

by Anita Menon

If someone asked me what my favorite things to eat and drink were, I wouldn’t blink an eyelid before responding, “Chocolate” and “Coffee”. Not a day goes by when I don’t have chocolate or coffee and sometimes both. It has become such an undeniable part of my life that it is definitely bordering on an unhealthy addiction. I call it unhealthy, not because I have it in large quantities or that I am worried about the detrimental effect it may have on my health. It is because I have to have atleast one block of my favorite Lindt Dark chocolate (70%) and a medium cup of black coffee without sugar to even start looking up at a world in the morning. I see a marked change in my energy levels the moment either or both of the elixir travels down my mouth, to my throat and infuses into my blood stream.

This morning as I sat at my desk in office, sipping  black coffee, feeling the warmth of the hot cup in my hands and savouring the strength of its flavour, I literally felt my vision clear and colours around me brighten up. It surprised me how every single swig that I took from my cup, felt like someone tuning my settings like one would for a Television to bring about a sharper, brighter and a clearer picture onscreen. This primeval ability of coffee should be given due credit, I reckon. Not all food has this talent. That was about coffee and what it does to me.

Now when I think of chocolates, the images that play peek-a- boo in my brain are of a brown, luxurious satin-ness, the warmth of a burning hearth, of celebrations and victory, of the ordinary joys of life, of being wrapped in soft, warm (faux) fur and of feeling safe and secure. Chocolates to me provide the easiest and surest way of changing the dreariest looking day into a carnival bursting with festoons, balloons and good cheer. It is said, that chocolates have the same effect as love and I wouldn’t doubt it. The very mention of chocolates takes me to a special place from where I feel very reluctant to come back to my real life. Chocolates make me feel this and a lot more. Even when it poses a danger of piling a few pounds, I stick to my chocolate regimen because I almost always preferred feeling good over looking good. Well, did I say almost? Yes I did.

Chocolates have been my obsession for as long as I can remember. But coffee is the new kid on the block that intends to give tough competition to chocolates. But to be fair to both, I do have both coffee and chocolate every single day. As far as chocolates are concerned, I haven’t met many who didn’t like chocolates. As a matter of fact I make better friends with people who are as addicted to chocolates as I am. Coffee has found its way into my life since the time I started working again and have made friends out of colleagues by bonding over cups of hot coffee. Conversation, laughter and instant connections happen over coffee, I have observed. The tantalizing aroma of strong coffee just melts barriers (if any) and provides the much needed soothing of nerves to let the other person in, into your space. It is that magical!

I asked a few friends and colleagues of mine about what images crossed their mind when they thought of coffee and chocolates.

The Coffee & chocolate responses were:

  • A close friend who doesn’t drink any coffee in his present day told me that a steaming, hot cup of coffee reminded him of dates in a coffee shop during his college days when time wasn’t a luxury like it was today. Sipping and immortalizing forever the happiness of sharing a cup of coffee with who he thought would be his soul mate for life would be the only image that he could associate with coffee.

As far as chocolates were concerned, he loved them but they gave him heat boils, so he avoids them for now. (I am re-considering my friendship with him)

  • Another junior from college said that both coffee and chocolates brought a smile on her face. Maybe they took her to that secret special place in time and space, like me.
  • My friend’s mother said, “Chocolate is drool, drool, luscious, sinful, temptation, no hands off there, weight can go take a toss!”

Coffee for her was all about her personal favorite filter coffee that was her comfort zone, her pacifier, her petrol, perk up drink and whole & soul addiction. She feels her brain vehemently refuses to function until she panders to its demand of this morning cup of addiction.  Together chocolate and coffee are a lethal combination that has the license to kill

  • There is nothing that bar of chocolate or a cup of coffee can’t solve, said my friend over the phone when I asked her about what she felt about them. Chocolate and coffee are the ones that first ensnare the olfactory senses before they completely take over the taste buds.
  • An artist friend didn’t respond immediately but sent me a sketch of a woman whom he imagined to be brown and shades of brown like chocolate and coffee. He said, he would fill them with colours and show it me, sometime in the future. Was he telling me, he wants his woman to be as addictive and luscious like coffee and chocolate?

To each of the people that I asked, chocolate and coffee meant something nice and indulgent. Something, that had the capacity to take them through the realms of time and put them in a happy place. And who doesn’t want to be in a happy place?

 I do for sure.

What does chocolate and coffee mean to you?