It’s time to resurrect a little series I did a little while back: Shooting Sacred Evangelical Cows. This time, my target is something I’ll call “poseur coffee drinking.” It’s a makeshift title, I admit, but I think you’ll see that it has merit.
From where does this latest installment of SSEC proceed, you ask? Here’s where: from perusing any number of blogs run by folks in my peer group: youngish, theologically oriented, book-loving, culturally plugged in, ironically inclined, that sort of thing.
What you find on many websites is some kind of description like this: “I love reformed theology, U2, anything by Steven Soderbergh, and a fresh cup of joe.” Or maybe: “My interests are theology, issues of social justice, Beastie Boys, and an Americano from (fill in neighborhood coffee shop here).” Or perhaps: “Can’t resist a good Bonhoeffer quotation, Edwardsean philosophy, and a venti mocha with light whip.”
You get the point. Here’s the thing about this situation: there’s nothing ironic or unique about liking coffee. We all like coffee. Coffee is good. Made well, it’s really good. It’s kind of like saying you like bread. “Anything by Piper, Band of Horses, and Pepperidge Farm rocks my world.” Everyone likes bread. And everyone likes coffee.
This includes me. I like coffee. I like mochas with a fierce passion. I like a cappucino with dessert. Coffee is good. This, however, sets me apart from approximately no one. Coffee is one of the pleasures of this fallen world. I and a good portion of the rest of the human race enjoy it.
So, reformed hipster/progressive/student/master-of-irony, next time you consider charting your particular coffee-related beverage of choice, next time you wear it as a distinctive identity marker, remember: everyone else likes coffee. Work harder on the goatee pattern, find another brand of undiscovered denim, dig even deeper in the alternative music shop to lay hands on the truly avant-garde musical act, because your love for coffee–it ain’t getting you there.