The lies come out when it’s time to order food. I get so indecisive sometimes, I can’t make up my mind about anything, even the simplest of decisions, like last night, my girlfriend and I are trying to figure out dinner, she’s like, “What do you want?” and I lie, I’m like, “I don’t know, anything’s good I guess, whatever you want,” and she says, “Sushi?” and I’m like, “Sushi? Didn’t we just have sushi last week?” and I’m like, “Yeah, I guess, but it feels like we just had it,” and she says, “Yeah, well you had pizza for lunch and dinner yesterday, why can’t we have sushi separated by a whole week?”
And I can already tell that I’ve f’ed up, me being the one telling her we could order “whatever, anything she wanted,” but she doesn’t bring it up right away, I know she will, eventually, if I can’t decide on something, but she suggests, “Indian?” and I don’t know, I kind of just stare off into space, like thinking it over in my head, but it’s not even that I don’t want Indian, it’s that I don’t have any feelings for it whatsoever, like her saying the word Indian registered in my head, I heard her say it, but it didn’t spark anything inside me, neither good nor bad, and so I couldn’t respond with anything, I could only continue to stare, to zone out, maybe if I just completely ignored it she’d suggest something else.
“Michael? Indian?” and I need to respond, the best I can get out is, “Eh. I don’t know,” and now I know it’s coming, she’s going to get fed up, I’d be fed up, if I asked her what she wanted for dinner, and she pushed all onus of responsibility my way, of course I’d get a little annoyed if she started vetoing all of my decisions.
But I can’t commit. Do I want Indian? I don’t think so. Even sushi wouldn’t have been terrible, but I already issued a complaint, she interrupts my thought process, “OK, so no sushi, no Indian,” and here would have been a good time to let her in on what was going through my head, “Well,” I could have been like, “It’s not like I couldn’t eat sushi,” but I thought better of it, we were already too far into this that if I had backtracked on the sushi, that would have been it, sushi for dinner.
“Mexican?” and I love Mexican, but the Mexican place by us is so heavy, so at least I have something to say here, I tell her, “That Mexican place is so heavy …” and she rolls her eyes, I don’t want to put off her suggestion entirely, so I add, “But I like it. It’s a great Mexican place. Just really heavy. Do you really feel like eating something so heavy?” and again, I think I got too busy defending my initial reaction, because sure Mexican is heavy, but now that I thought about it, I wouldn’t mind eating something heavy.
“Actually, Mexican sounds pretty good,” but she’s already been swayed by my comment, “No, you’re right, I don’t really feel like eating anything that heavy,” which is my own fault, I set myself up for that one. But now I couldn’t get the taste of those tacos out of my head, “But what about those chorizo nachos?” I try to tempt her, and she pauses, but I can tell it’s going to be dismissed, “No, maybe next time. What about falafel?”
And now we’re swinging the other way, all because of my heavy comment. Note to self: unless I’m really set on not eating something for dinner, don’t describe it as heavy. I like falafel, but, “Honey, that’s not really a dinner,” which, I don’t even know what that means, but it’s the best I could have come up with without giving her a minute to collect her thoughts, a desperate move on my part to try and avoid what I knew was coming next, an exasperated, “OK, so you tell me that you’ll eat anything, that it’s whatever I choose, right?”
There it is. “Right,” I tell her, “So let’s just get Mexican, you said it, obviously because you want it, right? You want it, I want it, let’s get Mexican,” and there’s a pause, I think that she’s considering it, but I’m mistaken, that face isn’t one of consideration, it’s one of apprehension, “But,” and I know it’s not going to happen, “It’s just so … heavy.”
And then I think, well, sushi wouldn’t be terrible, I could eat sushi. So I go, “You know what? Let’s just have sushi. You wanted sushi, so let’s get it,” and she’s like, “Are you sure?” and I should just be a grown up here and be happy with the fact that after all of my indecisiveness we’ve actually come to an agreement, but I can’t help myself, there are selfless points to be earned here, I could use this in the future, I say, “Well, I mean, I’ll get it … if that’s what you want. I can eat sushi,” and she looks at me and smiles and says, “Thanks hun,” and I’m like, “No problem. I’m a nice guy.”
Today at work I overheard a conversation as someone made a cup of coffee:
Person A: “You drink coffee? You should rethink that, it’s really bad for you.”
Person B: “I’ve never heard that. I think you should recheck your facts about coffee. I’m not sure but I think it’s good for you.”
It got me thinking. I’ve heard my whole life coffee is bad for you. On my mission we would tell people about the tannic acid coffee contained, the same substance used to tan leather, and that drinking coffee had the effect of making your stomach leathery! (I have since learned that tannic acid is naturally occurring and a common thing; there is more tannic acid in a banana than in coffee.)
Even after leaving the Mormon church I’d always assumed the Word of Wisdom was probably a good guideline for health, encouraging you to eat good things, and stay away from unhealthy ones. For the most part this is probably true, but not entirely.
The Word of Wisdom encourages:
- A diet rich in grains and fruits
- A (nearly) vegetarian diet
- Drinking beer
The Word of Wisdom discourages:
- Liquor and wine (except for sacrament where wine must be used)
- Meat consumption
- Hot drinks (presumably coffee & tea)
So I did a little research on Coffee and found some surprising things:
- Caffeine potently blocks an inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain, leading to a net stimulant effect. Controlled trials show that caffeine improves both mood and brain function.
- Caffeine raises the metabolic rate and helps to mobilize fatty acids from the fat tissues. It can also enhance physical performance.
- Drinking coffee is associated with a drastically reduced risk of type II diabetes. People who drink several cups per day are the least likely to become diabetic.
- Drinking several cups of coffee daily appears to reduce the risk of suicide in men and women by about 50%
- Coffee is associated with a much lower risk of dementia and the neurodegenerative disorders Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
- Coffee appears to be protective against certain liver disorders, lowering the risk of liver cancer by 40% and cirrhosis by as much as 80%.
- Coffee consumption has been associated with a lower risk of death in prospective epidemiological studies, especially in type II diabetics.
- Coffee contains a decent amount of several vitamins and minerals. It is also the biggest source of antioxidants in the modern diet.
Of course, the Word of Wisdom also advocates moderation. Even though coffee in moderate amounts is good for you, drinking way too much of it can still be harmful. At the end of the day, it does seem quite clear that coffee is NOT the villain it was made out to be.
If anything, coffee may literally be the healthiest beverage on the planet.