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The Second Cup

The day's second cup of espresso is always better. On the first one, one is, perhaps, too timid, or too tired to remember how tightly one needs to pack the grounds... and the steam passes through them too quickly, resulting in an adequate, but not completely satisfying cup.

Perhaps the first cup provides enough stimulation to return with greater gusto and cram the grounds into the filter, hard enough to keep the water trapped in them for just the right amount of time. There is something very gratifying about seeing that lovely velvet brown creama developing on top of the coffee. It's like someone took everything good about earth and sun and rain and condensed it into this confection of air and water and aromatic oils.

I've taken to pouring my cream in a straight line across the top, and then stirring it in slowly to see what patterns develop. Like looking up at the clouds... or at an inkblot. In this last cup, it ended up looking like a winged dragon afloat on the ocean.

Ew: somebody burned some microwave kettle corn and now the air is filled with that acrid reek.

Amusement: A. Fuzzy Bunny

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