Coffee Dad

I drink a lot of coffee. Like, an awful lot of coffee. So much coffee that if the kids see me without a cup of coffee in my hand between the time I wake up and lunchtime, they ask me if something is wrong. They are probably right to ask me that.

I did not start drinking coffee until I was 33 years-old, however. Just didn’t like it or need it before then. But when it became necessary to be up and functional to take care of babies, my love affair with coffee began. It’s been a good eight years.

This afternoon the kids decided that they wanted to try coffee. I told them about how it’s not a good idea for kids to drink coffee and how caffeine is a drug and how drugs are addicting and how it will stain their teeth and make them crazy and stunt their growth.

Then I made them some coffee to try because, man, coffee is AWESOME.

I let them have some of my everyday. Not wasting high-end whole bean stuff on these two:


Also: not letting them use my kickass Takin’ Care of Business mug I got at Graceland because, as if:


I did allow them to use the Fiestaware mugs. I started with a bit less than half a cup:


“UGH!! NOT BLACK!!” Carlo said. “BLACK COFFEE IS BITTER.” He clearly heard that from someone else, but I let it slide. I started coffee by drinking it with cream (never sugar), so I decided to give them training wheels.

First the sugar:


Then the cream. Or, in this case, milk, because I don’t keep cream or half and half around:


Alright, we’re ready to go!


 The result:

I was somewhat surprised that they didn’t immediately spit it out. But as an experienced parent, I also smelled b.s. with these responses. They clearly wanted to like coffee because if they said they hated it I might be loathe to let them do other adult things.

Carlo begged out after two sips by saying “I’m … not thirsty,” and poured his out. Anna took a few extra sips and said “Um, it’s too sweet. Maybe next time I’ll do it without sugar,” and poured hers out. I filled up my TCB mug and settled in to the afternoon portion of my love affair with the dark stuff.

They’ll be back. They always come back once they get that first taste. They’ll be chasing that dragon just like their dad does soon enough.

Craig Calcaterra

Craig is the author of the daily baseball (and other things) newsletter, Cup of Coffee. He writes about other things at He lives in New Albany, Ohio with his wife, two kids, and many cats.

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