Reading very late inevitably sets up a kind of jet lag deficit that bends the following day into a pretzel-like experience that keeps bending back to that point where taking a nap seems more and more like the elusive Universal Good.

Strong, black darkroast coffee, while not making everything all better now, creates the illusion that life might take a turn for the better sometimes around the middle of the pot, if not later. It is an illusion, of course. The caffeine is real enough, but highly overrated in my opinion. For me, it’s the heat, the flavor, the conjuring of waking memories in pleasant times of morning commiseration.

Quite often, that first sip of infused arabica brings up thoughts of an old Louisiana friend, long taken by Alzheimers, standing over a little three cup French-Drip pot drizzling spoonfuls of boiling water over the grounds. He would serve small cups of this thick brew and we would sip appreciatively and hum satisfying notes in the morning light. The pot wouldn’t last long and if more was needed, more would be made. Even bad coffee is better if fresh. It’s the Cajun way. Small pots made often throughout the day

Cup number three and I think that maybe the caffeine is actually working. Not that I am charged with energy, but that I can actually begin to think about the remaining day and, of course, seeking out the elusive Universal Good.