notes on a coffeemaker

I am entering new territory here by starting a blog.

The purpose of said blog is to talk about the backstories of my novellas, thereby generating interest in my novellas, thereby prompting an increase in sales of my novellas, as I interact online with other writers of books and novellas.

So, yeah… novellas.

Let’s start with Quarantine Level 4: Blood in the Sky, Book 1.

This story was originally a Twilight fanfiction (and, no, I am not going to apologize for writing Twific). I am going to need to truncate the additional story lines for all other characters excluding the main couple, but still—that is its particular origin.

What I wanted to muse about today was a quote from the beginning of the novella, and how it interacts with my daily life.

First off, let me announce how much I love coffee.

I drink 2 to 3 cups of it in the morning, with ice and milk. So this is my drug of choice.

Iced Coffee Swirl

Damn it, now I want another cup of coffee.

Anyway… the biggest issue for me is how best to make that coffee.

There are a couple factors here to consider which include the fact that I am a) lazy about food in general, and b) not entirely functional first thing in the morning.

Which means a complicated espresso machine would be a waste of money. I would probably start crying, beating it with a wooden spoon and begging it to work.

And while I could drive somewhere and purchase a cup of coffee, there are problems that arise with that plan. Mostly, I refuse to pay the surcharge for that luxury. Also, see above comment on my limited amount of rise-and-shine functionality.

Plus, I like brewing my own coffee at home. Everything about it makes me happy, except for one thing…. thunder clap, eerie music, goats screaming… guilt about using K-cups.

I read stories like this all the time, and the bottom line is that even if the new generation of K-cups are more environmentally friendly than previous generations, that doesn’t make them environmentally friendly or “green” overall.

Which brings me to the quote from my novella:

“After all the single-use plastics floating in the Earth’s oceans had amassed themselves first as archipelagos and then as entire mountain ranges of impenetrable waste, causing countless species of fish to become extinct.”

Even if K-cups could be made completely recyclable, there is no guarantee that they would be recycled or that anyone would buy the recycled waste to make new product. And you can’t have an effective recycling program without both adequate input (i.e. waste) and adequate output (i.e. new products made from that waste).

That is to say, if no manufacturers are buying ripped up plastic bits from discarded K-cups and straws and plastic shopping bags and sporks and clam-shell boxes, then the whole system breaks down and nothing gets reused; it only gets dumped in landfills.

And at this point, landfills aren’t just on land. They float around the oceans, or—what’s even worse—microplastics from these garbage patches float down to the so-called “midnight zone” where we can’t see the damage they wreak.

So ignorance I guess is bliss.

Garbage Pacific Ocean

Meanwhile, all I want is a damn cup of java. Good java that doesn’t taste like burnt tires.

I should also mention at this point that I have tried the adaptors that replace the K-cups, but they are uniformally an afterthought and it shows.

If you are going to have a Keurig, you need to use K-cups (or their generic cousins), and so if you don’t want to generate K-cup waste, then you need to get rid of your Keurig.

Even Spock can’t argue with that logic. All that’s left is to make the commitment.

I can’t fix the world’s problems; I know this. But I can try to not add any more problems to the mix by making relatively simple decisions such as 1) bringing re-usable bags to the store, 2) carrying around metal flatware and reusable straws in my car so I don’t have to resort to single-use plastics if I need to hit up a drive-thru and 3) being a little bit pushy with clerks about not accepting single-use plastics. Even if they give me dirty looks.

To that end, and to make a short story long (this is something my dad says all the time, and it is very appropos to him), I have finally made the right decision for both the planet and my early morning mind-mush and gotten rid of my Keurig.

If any of this offends you, you’re welcome to argue with me. Just keep it civil, please.

Alternatives to Keurig

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