A Cup Of Coffee Please? It’s a matter of Choice.
Every day of our lives, we make many choices. Some are easier than others.
We get to make many choices every day during our lives. They can be easy, needing little thought, while others are hard, causing confusion and angst. Especially before your first cup of coffee of the day!
It is early morning and I stumble into a local coffee shop in need of a shot of caffeine. I slump at the counter and, through bleary sleepy eyes; peer at a long and varied list of fresh coffees.
I face the biggest choice of fresh coffees I’ve ever seen! I don’t want a fancy one, a posh one, or an exotic one, or one that has come from far-flung mountains in a distant land. All I want is a normal plain one. A strong one.
The list presents too much choice for a half-asleep, semi-recumbent drowsy person at such an early hour who has just crawled out of bed. I try, but I can’t decide which one I want without the help of a cup of coffee to wake me up enough to decide which one is the one I want!—it is hopeless. I can’t choose which one, and an impatient, harassing queue is forming behind me…
My poem A CUP OF COFFEE PLEASE (written for the Dverse theme of CHOICE) illustrates how I am sometimes incapable of choosing from a complex list of options!
A Cup of Coffee Please
“A cup of coffee please.” “Which one do you want?” I umm and I ahh. It’s hard for me to say… “What about that one— that I had the other day? It had some froth on the top.” “Was it this one or that one?” asks the barista. Or, Espresso , double espresso, frappuccino? Latte, cappuccino, cortado, Flat white, iced coffee?” I fret and I sweat. All I want is A coffee! A strong one will do. A queue builds up behind me I feel a nudge from behind ‘Come on! make a choice.’ Be kind Oh dear I hear your voice. But I can’t Make a choice. How can I choose? It’s fine either way! Out of so many—um? um, ah, er? It’s difficult to say. I stutter and mutter And utter, “What is that one? Oh no! It’s got butter?” “No, it’s cream.” I scream. And stammer and stutter— I just want a coffee! A normal coffee. “Hurry up and decide! You’re causing delay.” I point a finger at a long list “That one.” I say. “Which one?” asks the barista. “White coffee, Americano, Americano with milk? Monsoon Malabar? Macchiato, Mocha, Iced Latte, Cold Brew, Nitro Cold Brew. Frappe, Affogato, or Mazagran?” “Any one!” say I. “Any one? Large or small? Or medium?” I exasperate! The barista shrugs with a sigh. “I need to know what you WANT.” I reply, “All I want is A COFFEE!” With that!—I give up, and with a couple of choice words I take my leave With my thirst unquenched and my mouth parched dry I wave to the queue and barista. BYE BYE! All I wanted was a coffee. — Lesley Scoble - September 2022
My favourite poem about making a choice is the soliloquy by Hamlet in William Shakespeare’s play, Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (ACT III Scene I). It is the famous speech when Hamlet is contemplating the choice between life or death.
To be, or not to be?
To be, or not to be: that is the question: Whether ‘tis nobler in the mind to suffer The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep; No more; and, by a sleep to say we end The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks That flesh is heir to, ‘tis a consummation Devoutly to be wish’d. To die, to sleep; To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there’s the rub; For in that sleep of death what dreams may come When we have shuffled off this mortal coil, Must give us pause. There’s the respect That makes calamity of so long life; For who would bear the whips and scorn of time, The oppressor’s wrong, the proud man’s contumely, The pangs of despised love, the law’s delay, The insolence of office, and the spurns That patient merit of the unworthy takes, When he himself must his quietus make With a bare bodkin? who would fardels bear, To grunt and sweat under a dreary life, But that the dread of something after death,— The undiscover’d country, from whose bourn No traveller returns,— puzzles the will, And makes us rather bear those ills we have Than fly to others we know not of? Thus conscience does make cowards of us all; And thus the native hue of resolution Is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of thought; And enterprises of great pith and moment, With this regard, their currents turn awry, And lose the name of action.— Soft you now! The fair Ophelia! — Nymph, in thy orisons Be all my sins remember’d. William Shakespeare — Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (Act III Scene I)
I choose to sign off now.
The choice is yours. ☕️