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  • BethBlack

The Case of the Caffeine Caper

When I met Brian nearly a decade-and-a-half ago, he was an addict. It was a dismaying thing to watch. He would jones for his drug of choice, sometimes for minutes or even whole half-hours, until he could get his hands on a bottle and down all its contents immediately. Of course, his particular choice meant locating the drug was easy, while overdosing on it would have been hard. You see, Brian’s drug was a bottle of soda. Or, as I’ve come to say in my most-annoying Andy Griffith twang, sodie pop.

He drank Mountain Dew, so his doctor put him on a 12-step program. It involved prescribing a medicinal concoction. And 12 years later, I realized that I should have been suspicious when he told me that his specialist was named Dr. Pepper.

Anyway, I made peace with his habit a long time ago.

Other people had their own take on it. Our bike mechanic, a wizened Vietnam vet named George, had his own opinions of Brian’s caffeinated zip. George’s hearty round face turned taut whenever Brian zoomed in the store door flying high on a Dr. Pepper dose. Brian would launch himself across the showroom floor, glint in his eye, zooming past us on his way to the back office. On cue, George always announced, “There goes ROCKET MAN!”

So, rocket flash forward to now and our current situation, depending on the Internet to provide. Right now, we’re okay. We managed to order a couple weeks’ supply of his medication. Dr. Pepper is apparently not in the same kind of demand as the Dew. Still, things could change in the supply chain, and it’s made Brian nervous. You know what he does when he’s nervous? He drinks more sodie pop.

When the bottles started dwindling, I took the drastic measure of hiding the remainder of his supply somewhere on the property. Yesterday morning, I awoke to find evidence that he’d been on a man-hunt, of sorts, turning the place upside down in search of a bottle.

Grumbling about tripping over the tossed sofa cushions and after returning the lamp shades to their proper homes, I unearthed a couple bottles and handed him his daily allotment. After all, we had agreed — well, I agreed — that he should stick to a two-bottle plan each day to maximize the number of days he can savor his favorite flavor. Now that I think about it, he actually gave me the stink eye when I told him the plan. But I digress…

So, this morning I awoke to discover him looming over me. Creepy, scary, threatening. He whispered, “You’ll get your coffee when I get my Dr. Pepper.”


He mumbled something about a two-cup plan for my quarantine routine.

I’d write the end of this post now, but I have to go check under the bed. The couch. The potted plants.

Back later...

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