the case of the bouyant bookseller

September 14, 2008 – 12:53 pm

another in an occasional series: tales of coffee woe you, too, could experience were you enough of a self-flagellating masochist.

while everyone else hobnobs in seattle, this blog was wandering morosely through a bookstore in a drafty house last night, reading charles simic with a mug of batdorf and bronson’s nicaragua isabelia french pressed like a 9,500 kg caesar 3 earth crusher might treat browning’s “slopes of verdure.”

said the man wielding the grinder, “want some cream?” a question answered in a way that you already know. and then, “how about some hot water poured in there? because, uh. it’s strong.” upon which moment this blog finally peered up from its simic.

and behold:


“oops,” said the fellow.

we’re talking here about one of those cups so strong that it goes all the way through being bad and comes back to semi-good again. like ceremonial ethiopian jebena brew, or the rare turkish pot, it recaptures through sheer force — in this case, forces of darkest chocolate, driest apricot, kickiest nutmeg.

and suddenly, we’d leaped giant pages of simic vocabulary in single retinal bounds and deduced the exact point of the universal fulcrum betwixt quotidian felicity and ethereal angst. which, charitably speaking, just might have been the point.