Oct 172011
Authors: Libby Williams, Enily Kribs

Emily Kribs, freshman

Five in the morning is early under normal circumstances.

It goes without saying I’ll be having some coffee in the morning — and probably fall asleep on my bus regardless.

Coffee is frequently touted as an integral part of college culture. Given the four coffee shops on campus alone, plus the popularity of Mugs and the Alley Cat among others, it’s safe to say the stereotype is not entirely erroneous.

Hey, we’re busy. Sometimes sleep is not our highest priority. I know some people who pull all-nighters regularly. I don’t know how, and I couldn’t do it, but whatever works for them.

And then there are some people for whom sleep is the single highest priority, and will skip any and all classes — or, if they planned ahead, don’t even have classes — before lunch.

But for the rest of us, there’s coffee. Well, I guess some people drink it regardless of their sleep schedule, but again, I can’t relate. I like coffee, but the truth of the matter is that caffeine in general is something I prefer to avoid whenever possible.

There are benefits to coffee — productiveness and not falling asleep in class among them. Its consumption has also been correlated with reduced risk of Alzheimer’s, diabetes and gout.

Personally, though, I’m not a 40-year-old man, and I’m pretty sure my risk of getting gout is slim. Toss in high blood pressure, the risk of cancer, addiction and heightened anxiety, and my natural inclination to pass up on a cup of Joe seems like a reasonable one.

I’m not trying to dissuade anyone from drinking coffee.But it’s something I’d like to excise from my own morning routine.

A Mountain Dew (does anyone still drink those?) is more than enough to set me to tapping my fingers about a million times a minute. A regular coffee typically has about twice the caffeine content, and quadruple what I need in my system.

And yet…

I’m not going to go into some cliché rhapsody about how coffee is the nectar of the gods, and I don’t stand by the belief that nothing can be expected of me prior my morning caffeine trip.

But it is nice to know I have an alternative to skipping class, flunking a test or doing crack.

Libby Williams, senior

Honestly, I don’t even like coffee, and I’ll avoid it on most costs.

On another honest note, sometimes I get so worn out that caffeine is the only way I’ll get through the day. But for me, just looking at the glowing acidic-green liquid contained in a bottle of Mountain Dew suggests that I shouldn’t ingest something of that nature. So that leaves coffee.

Yet, even when caffeine seems to be the only outlet, I can’t bring myself to enjoy a cup of Joe. Not even six creamers and 18 sugar packets later. Even your standard, skinny, white-mocha caramel macchiato is too much for me. I just don’t like the taste.

But it is those invisible 150 milligrams of caffeine that keep me coming back.

Regardless, I have to say that culturally, alcohol and coffee are probably numbers one and two for college students. Isn’t it interesting that two of the most highly addictive substances are such a big deal on campus?

And if you haven’t noticed that wall lining Clark A, between it and the library is always loaded with smokers, and that brings nicotine into the picture as well.

Now we all know that college students are supposed to be poor. With that in mind, where do these students come up with the funds to buy things that speak to their addictions? I mean, really? I can’t afford Starbucks every morning. I probably can’t even afford it every week.

There is a more economical way. You could buy a giant bag of Maxwell House on a bimonthly basis and wake up early enough to brew it to your specialty. But I hardly ever see students carrying their own travel mugs. They’re always sporting that recyclable cardboard Sweet Sinsations cup.

With such a large percentage of students on campus getting by with loans, I have to assume that those loan refunds are getting used to energize students with a nice little caffeinated treat each morning.

Maybe that’s student financial services’ plan: to invigorate the student body by making coffee available. Perhaps student loan regulations state the following:

Loans can be used for:

  • Covering tuition
  • Covering student fee
  • Covering living expenses

How can CSU expect students to go to class at 8 a.m., get done at 3 p.m., do homework, use the recently upgraded, really expensive Rec Center, do their homework some more, go out to parties and then wake up and do it all over again without supporting them with any form of caffeine?

Like Emily said, there are days where only caffeine will do the trick –– caffeine or crack.

I’ve been called a “goody two-shoes” before, but my stimulant of choice is the $4.75 cup of coffee. After all, the crack market isn’t any less expensive, and it’s definitely more illegal.

 Posted by at 4:32 pm

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