Could I have a little more coffee in my coffee?
By now, you may have been wondering about the title of my weekly blog. Instant Coffee Wisdom seems counter intuitive but I chose that name for two reasons. First it’s a bit of a play on words. Have you ever observed someone make a painful mistake that had an instant penalty? Like for instance, missing the nail when you swung the hammer and hitting your finger instead? Or maybe pulling a prank that backfired? I could go on, but the point in doing something like that is you instantly realize the error of your ways and take steps to ‘never do that again’. Some people refer to that as a dose of instant wisdom, or instant karma. Take your pick. Pain is a teacher and painful lessons are rarely forgotten.
“The master has failed more times than the beginner has even tried.”
― Stephen McCranie
One thing I learned early on is that it’s much better to learn from the mistakes of others and avoid doing what they did. It was the driving force I used growing up poor that led to my current state of success. I’ve made a few mistakes along the way, and I’ve learned from them. I’ve also learned a lot by studying success experts, and their methods have helped me avoid many other errors. I’ve been poor and now I’m richer than everyone in my family, and most of my peers. Trust me, richer is better. Now I’m trying to distill what I’ve learned to help pass that knowledge unto you so that you too may grow and prosper. The reason it’s ‘lonely at the top’ is because so few strive to reach the peak of their potential. According to research by the University of Scranton, only 8% of people who set goals each year achieve them. 92% is a pretty large failure rate. Success takes work, and never happens instantly. So that covers the instant wisdom. Next up the instant coffee.
Two sugars, extra cream!
Coffee is the most traded food or drink commodity in the world. The first successful method of creating a stable, soluble instant coffee was invented in 1901 by Japanese-American chemist Satori Kato. Growing up, my mother loved Taster’s Choice. I think Folgers has a better catch-phrase though it’s still inaccurate. The best part of waking up is not the coffee, especially if it’s instant coffee. The best part of waking up is waking up! Have you ever drank instant coffee? No matter what anyone says, instant coffee is NOT good coffee. It’s cheap, and it’s fast. You don’t need any equipment to make it. All you need is hot water, a cup and a spoon to stir it with. My mother never even boiled the water, just ran the hot water tap for a minute. It’s NOT good coffee, but as far as I’m concerned, even bad coffee is better than no coffee and you can kill the aftertaste with copious amounts of cream and sugar.
All good things take time!
Better coffee requires better beans, better roasts, fresh grinds, and better brewing methods.
I’ve had many different kinds of coffee drinks in my life made by many different methods including the now popular cold brew method that’s sweeping the nation. One of my favorite methods for making coffee is campfire coffee, (also called cowboy coffee) which is boiled to perfection on an open flame. That’s one strong cup o’ joe that will put hair on your chest!
I’m not even going to acknowledge hyper expensive exotic refinements like Kopi luwak or Black Ivory. You want to throw away a day’s pay or more for a cup of ‘so-called coffee’, go right ahead.
That cup of coffee cost how much?
I had my first cup of espresso in the 90’s at a long defunct cafe called The Munk’s Tunic. Needless to say it was a wake up call to a kid raised on instant. Compared to most ordinary restaurant coffee at the time, it cost twice as much, was severed in a tiny demitasse on matching sized saucer, with a sliver of lemon zest. From there I sampled cappuccinos, lattes, iced coffee drinks. It became quite the expensive drinking habit. I quickly realized that if this was going to become my new life-long obsession, I would need to start learning to make these drinks at home. So I brought my first espresso machine. It paid for itself the first year.
Home espresso machines range in price from a $50 Mister Coffee, to certain Breville and De’Longhi models that run in the hundreds of dollars. Not one of them can hold a candle to a Nuova Simonelli Aurelia Semi-Auto Espresso Machine, but you’re not going to spend $9000 to buy one unless you are going into the cafe business. That’s why customers go to their favorite cafes, because you can’t get the same coffee at home. So the reason you actually buy lattes at cafes is because they have the specialized equipment, the training to operate it, and ‘hopefully’ the freshest beans available. And that’s why the coffee tastes so good. The very best coffee will never be instant coffee, and now you are wise to that.
So think of Instant Coffee Wisdom as an easy reminder that the best things in life never happen instantly. Happiness, success, and wealth all take time to ‘brew’. Don’t settle for instant. There are no shortcuts to success, and if you settle for ‘good enough’, you are cheating yourself, because ‘good enough’ is NEVER ‘good enough’. As always I wish you happiness and success!