Billy Sangster

Stuff out of my brain

Green Tea

1:49am and I’m wide awake. Since I moved to this house further out in the countryside (compared to the city flat I was in before, that is) my sleeping pattern had been relatively normal. Not this night though.

I’ve read Irvine Welsh’s Sex Lives of Siamese Twins over the last week or so and there were more than a few references to Green Tea in it – one of the main characters is a fitness freak and that, and water, is all she seems to drink.

The other day I was shopping in the supermarket and I saw it on a shelf – so I thought I’d give it a try.

Only when I got home did I notice I’d picked up the decaffeinated version. “Och well,” I said to myself. “May as well give it a go.”

It tasted terrible. I drink six to ten cups of fresh, pressed coffee a day. I keep my ground coffee in the fridge, for fuck’s sake. I use a trendy Aeropress. I love my coffee. This reminded me on when I was young and my brother and I made tea out of nettles at a camp fire. It was good fun, but they tasted pish. The box went back in the cupboard.

The next time I was in the supermarket I saw the same stuff and thought I’d give it a second chance (we all deserve that, don’t we?), with the right stuff this time. I made sure that decaffeinated was definitely not on the label.

I got home, tried it again and this time found it acceptable. I decided then and there to have a break from coffee and a few days later I was down to two bags left in the box. That was when I resorted to the decaf once more. This time I found the taste bearable. For a day. Then the headaches came.

I’m now midway through an inadvertent caffeine detox. Cold turkey, as it were. Today I felt like my body had been in a washing machine. Like I’d been run over or something. Pain in my lower back and legs. Lethargic. Brain feeling fuzzy. A strange feeling at the back of my eyes and yes, headaches. Constant, sharp, blinding headaches.

The temptation to brew up a batch of fresh coffee was foremost in my painful mind most of the day. I persevered though, the pain lessened and now the headaches are farther (further?) apart. Now I’m sitting at 2:07am and I’m wide awake, having slept from 10:00pm. I feel alert and pain-free for the moment.

When I should be bloody sleeping.

I thought It was supposed to be the other way around? I thought I should be constantly sleeping at the drop of a hat, unable to function for at least a week. That’s what the Google search told me, anyway. Shouldn’t believe any of that though, eh?

I mean, when I’m drinking coffee, I can have a cup right before bed time and sleep all night no problem. Weird like that.

Now I face the choice of staying on the non-caffeinated side of life or returning to the bad old days.

Think I’ll give the righteous side a while longer. It can’t hurt. And the buzz I’ll get when I go back on the “grinds” will be fearsome. Look out anyone unlucky to be on the end of my verbal diarrhoea on that day.