I wonder as a I wander

I had a raging caffeine headache yesterday — rather, a lack-of-caffeine headache — and it made me wonder: What would happen if everyone in the world gave up caffeine for a week?

No coffee. No tea. No cola. No energy drinks. (OK you can still have chocolate — it has very little caffeine and I’m not a sadist.)

Would snappiness, even violence, rise as the world endured a massive headache? Or would it get slower and sleepier as everyone lost the will to keep moving? Or maybe we’d all draw closer, kinder, gentler in a massive wave of commiseration.

Would office napping become accepted — even encouraged — when no one, not even the boss, could stay awake by 2:00 p.m.?

What would people do with their time without waiting in the the line at BigBucks or McD’s drive-through or the corner coffee shop or hanging out at the communal pot at work?

Would everyone gain weight by substituting sugar for caffeine?

It would be interesting to find out — but only for a week, as the loss to the economy could be devastating.

I’m contemplating doing one of those “cleanse” diets after New Year’s — you know the kind, no caffeine, no sugar, no animal products, maybe even no gluten. I’m curious how it would make me feel, and if I could really do it. I’ve done my Lenten stints of no coffee, or no chocolate, or no sweets over the years, but there was always some other vice to sustain me. This cold-turkey purge would be a first. I understand you feel pretty lousy the first 2 or 3 days, then suddenly you’re sleeping better, you feel lighter, you have more energy.

Just thinking about it makes me woozy.

But no matter, that’s 3+ weeks and 50,000 calories away. Today… today it’s 16 days until Christmas and I have dozens of cookies to bake and decorating to finish and gifts to wrap and a few things to buy and caffeine and sugar are the friends I’m not supposed to hang out with but are too cool to resist.

I have measured out my life with coffee spoons.
~ T.S. Eliot