If you've seen me lurching around Safeway and bouncing off the canned goods, then you know I've been a little bit more jittery than lately usual.
This is partly because I'm nervous about the sorry state of the global economy, but mostly because I'm jacked to the gills on caffeine.
Seriously, my eyes are bugging out, my body is vibrating like a hummingbird, and I am pretty sure I haven't slept since Christmas.
As you can imagine, I feel totally awesome.
I am in this intensely over-caffeinated state because, prior to Christmas, whenever a commercial for one of those fancy computerized single-cup home brewing systems popped up on the TV, regardless of who I was with, I would instantly shriek: "OOOOH! I WANT THAT! I WANT THAT!"
The end result was that not only did my wife, She Who Must Not Be Named, buy me one of these state-of-the-art single-cup coffeemakers for Christmas, but my kind and generous buddy, Bob, did too.
For readers who can count, this means that, when it comes to brewing any caffeinated beverage you can name, my house now has tactical superiority over yours. I am not bragging here; I am just stating a fact.
I keep one of these computerized coffee devices in the kitchen, whereas I place the second (the Emergency Backup Caffeine-Delivery Unit) in whichever random room I want, such as the main bathroom.
This allows me to start the morning with a latte in the kitchen, then wander down the hall to the bathroom and, just before hopping in the bathtub to read the newspaper, whip up a cappucino.
I am guessing most of you have either seen these things on TV or have one in your home. They are great because they're simple: Press a button and the scanner reads a barcode on a tiny pod filled with coffee or milk and -- WHAMMO! -- the machine spits out the kind of caffeinated beverage you normally only get after spending eight years in line at an upscale coffee boutique where you are forced to interact with someone called a "barista," whose entire job is to sneer at you because you cannot remember how to pronounce the obnoxious name or cup size of whatever drink you are trying to order.
I love my TWO machines because they take the thinking out of making coffee. OK, I know what you are thinking here. You are thinking: "Gee, Doug, I'm thinking there isn't a whole lot of thinking that goes into making a cup of coffee."
Well, let me just say you sound a lot like my wife, who is not a big fan of my new coffeemakers. Her problem is she likes the coffee machine we already have.
That machine was given to us years ago by my sister, who is some kind of coffee guru with Starbucks, and the problem with it is unless you have a degree in nuclear physics you can't operate it, and even then you have to watch the instructional video that came with it.
I refuse to watch instructional videos on the grounds I am a guy. Another person in our house who does not watch instructional videos is our basset hound, Cooper, who loves the new coffee machines because he enjoys chewing the little foil pods that hold the coffee and milk.
Somehow, using a tongue that would make Gene Simmons green with envy, Cooper sweeps the foil pods onto the floor and sits there gnawing on them until he's transformed from a lethargic, bleary-eyed sandbag into a jittery sandbag that has clearly consumed too much caffeine.
But that's not the point. The point is I can feel myself starting to nod off, so I'm going to take another well-deserved caffeine break and make myself an espresso. If you need me, I'll be in the bathroom.