Hello, world. My name's Stephen, and I am not a coffee drinker.
In fact, I have been known to HATE coffee — I once even wrote a post about it on this very website:
Now, some people who read my post totally agreed with me. But most of the comments went a little something like this:
I also offended some of my coffee-addicted loved ones — including my dear friend, former roommate, and fellow BuzzFeed writer Sam.
So Sam gave me a challenge: Drink a whole bunch of coffee for a week, and see if I can overcome my hatred of it. And, well, here's what happened:
1) Drink two coffees a day, every day.
2) Try a variety of coffee drinks from different coffee shops.
3) Eat a coffee-flavored snack every day, too.
Look. I'm not one to be dramatic,* but Day 1 of this challenge was the worst day of my life.
The day started okay. I ordered coffee for the first time ever and felt very proud of myself!!!
If you've never done it before, ordering coffee is actually pretty confusing. I thought I'd go up to the counter and just say, "I'd like one coffee, please." But then you get there, and the menu is full of nonsense words like "macchiato" and "flat white" and "Starbucks."
After a brief moment of panic, I finally settled on a simple black, iced coffee — because it was the only thing on the menu I understood.
But then, all hell broke loose.
It turns out I am pretty sensitive to the effects of caffeine.
I felt nauseous and sweaty. My heart was pounding. My anxiety was through the ROOF. You know that rush of adrenaline you get when you miss a step going down the stairs? I felt like that...for about eight hours straight.
People who saw me that day said I looked like I was on drugs. And I guess technically I was, ’cause caffeine IS a drug, y'all!
I started to seriously question if I could handle a week of this.
I went into Day 2 DETERMINED to turn this challenge around. Billions of people drink coffee every day. SURELY I CAN, TOO.
And the day was not without its victories: I enjoyed BOTH my drinks.
Overall, I still felt pretty gross from the caffeine.
I could barely focus at work. I was jittery, scatterbrained, and way more stressed out than usual. Isn't the whole point of coffee that it makes you productive? I could barely function.
At least I was done with Day 2. The worst was surely over.
The worst was not over.
Day 3 was the day I made a FATAL ERROR. I had my first drink in the morning (a regular hot black coffee, which was horrible), then my daily snack (a coffee-flavored yogurt, which was also horrible). AND THEN...
At 9 p.m., I realized I had FORGOTTEN to have my second cup of coffee.
And so, at 9:04 p.m., I drank a full cup of coffee. And I honestly thought I would never sleep again.
They say that the final stage of grief is acceptance. And by Day 4 of this challenge, I had finally accepted my fate.
After a sleepless night, I desperately needed coffee in the morning to keep myself awake.
The irony, of course, is that coffee was preventing me from falling asleep in the first place. Coffee addiction is a vicious cycle!!!
I had my first "fun" coffee on Day 4. You know, one of those drinks that's basically a half-melted ice cream sundae in a cup? It was good, but...a lot of sugar.
This was the first day I actually craved a cup of coffee.
It's funny, because I THOUGHT coffee was making me a normal, functioning human being that day. But watching back my vlog, I'm realizing I did look kinda...crazy.
Well, I guess this is the part of the post where I talk about poop.
I HAD started to pee like crazy.
I was an endless flow of pee. All day, every day. Pee pee pee. It started to get ridiculous. If I was aimed in the right direction, I could have put out a small forest fire.
So yeah, Day 6 was basically just spent peeing.
And on the seventh day, he made coffee.
It was the last day of the challenge, so I decided to attempt the impossible: figuring out how to use a coffee machine.
Here's me drinking coffee while I'm making coffee, because life is stupid:
Seven days, 14 coffees, and many coffee-flavored snacks later, I was finally done.
After finishing this challenge, my darling Samuel had one question for me: "Are you a coffee drinker now?"
And my answer is...sorry, but no.
Here are my five big takeaways:
1) Caffeine affects different people in different ways. Personally, it made me totally bonkers. I'm a pretty high-energy person without coffee, and caffeine just sent me over the edge. Maybe I should have tried decaf?
2) Coffee-flavored snacks are pretty good. Except for coffee yogurt, which should cease to exist immediately, thank you.
3) I actually liked the taste of coffee more than I thought I would. I had a few drinks I really liked, and that surprised me. Maybe saying "I hate coffee" was too broad. Coffee can be a bunch of different things!
4) Coffee is EXPENSIVE!!! I was lucky that BuzzFeed paid for my drinks this week, but, damn...those five-dollar lattes really add up.
5) At the end of the day, you like what you like. If you're a coffee addict, live your truth!!! I promise I still love you, even if I think you're a monster sometimes.