When Tim & I married a decade ago, we quickly realized that, somewhat conveniently, neither of us function well before having a cup of coffee. During that first
naive blissful year of marriage, still using my old grad school drip coffee-maker and buying whole bean coffee from Sam’s club, we’d grind the coffee and fill the pot at night before bed, so Tim the first person up could just walk into the kitchen and hit the brew button. Once the first few sips were administered, we could coherently discuss plans for the day.
Many things have changed about our coffee-drinking habits. One year we graduated to a drip maker with a timer, so the coffee could brew before waking and we could sip within 30 seconds of morning consciousness. Then we upgraded to local coffee, splitting huge 5-pound bags, bought straight from the roaster, with friends. These days Tim roasts all of our coffee (yes, I drink the best coffee in the world, every single morning), and we’re quite attached to our Bodum stainless-steel french press.
But one thing that hasn’t changed? Our mugs.
This was not a conscious decision. We didn’t wake up one day and say, hey, let’s be really cute, and pick out a couple of mugs that we drink out of every day, just for fun(!). We simply, out of habit, began drinking out of the same mugs everyday. Tim’s choice was a thick, heavy mug from Krispy Kreme, gifted to me during grad school by a friend whose wedding program I had designed. My choice was a bit more petite, but also substantial, a restaurant-ware mug from a thrift store (go figure).
The mug love? It runs deep.
So deep, that on more than one occasion, when we’ve had guests in our house and I come downstairs to find one of them sipping coffee out of my mug, I first twitch a little, then wring my hands, try to keep quiet, start perspiring, reach for another perfectly-acceptable mug, and then break down. I confess my need for my mug. My guest might giggle or roll her eyes, then she realizes I’m serious, and graciously allows me to pour her half-cup of coffee into another (perfectly acceptable) mug.
About a year ago, Tim set his mug on top of his car, got the kids buckled into their carseats, and drove away. As you can imagine, Krispy Kreme was instantly krispy and creamed. He walked back into the house, with sadness on his face and the collected pieces in his hands, and somehow our world seemed to hang suspended in a haze of doubt.
What did this mean? I couldn’t help but wonder.
Thankfully, his snafu was not prophetic of any impending plague or demise, and Tim being Tim, he got over it quickly and just found a random mug to drink out of every morning.
But me? I couldn’t let it rest. I needed my husband to drink from the Krispy Kreme mug. It was our way.
So, enter a random holiday in which a gift was in order (Father’s Day? birthday? can’t remember). I did a quick search on ebay and found the exact same Krispy Kreme mug, which I bid on and won decisively (not a whole lot of bidding wars going on for coffee mugs). It arrived, Tim opened his gift, and responded with an overwhelming, “Um, okay, cool. Yeah, this is great, a new mug, just like my old one. Um, thanks, yeah, thanks a lot.”
Little did he realize how I had preserved our world.