Hot Water

Some Venezuelan beans I roasted last weekend.

As a young child, my mother sought ENDLESS ways to entertain me. I was like a charming, hyperactive, intensely de-focused hummingbird who positively THREW himself into each day, sometimes quite literally. Out of desperation one day, she gave me a pair of Matchbox cars that would change color when placed in hot water. This opened up WORLDS of possibilities. I could now play with my bathtub toys when I wasn’t taking a bath! Days before, I didn’t even know that was LEGAL. Hot water now became synonymous with FUN, and to this day, 24 years later, I smell steamy tap water and shoot back to those little cars, wrinkly fingers, and dry towels.


As I grew, hot water became better and better. I bathed in it. I showered in it. My mom bought a hot tub and I had girls over and I flirted in it. Every time I interacted with hot water, I came away feeling good. But nothing prepared me for what it did to a small brown powder.

As an adult, hot water plays a significant role in my mood and energy level. Hot water makes the stuff I love so much: Coffee. I roast coffee. Roasting coffee is an iron of mine (the metaphor will be explained tomorrow) and the smell is HEAVENLY. If I could blog a smell, I would send you the smell of the first batch of coffee beans that I ever roasted. They smelled rich and complex, completely unlike Folgers and the gas station swill I had sold at a convenience store. If I crushed those beans just right, I would get a coarse powder that would turn into a beautiful, creamy coffee when run through a French press. This. This is where my buzz comes from. Making, roasting, and teaching about coffee. That’s my buzz. Working with kids who look at you and say “Wow, building a fire IS pretty cool!” is my buzz. Making my wife a cup of coffee that tastes EXACTLY like it does from Starbucks is my buzz.
Tomorrow, you guys get iron. Come back after that, and I’ll show you another buzz.

Author: El Chris

I'm full of snark that doesn't always come out. I have a soft spot for kids and people with special needs. I'm a disability advocate by day, and a coffee roasting photographer by night. You'll love me, but your parents will love me more.

2 thoughts on “Hot Water”

  1. I used to play with these cars. I would imagine one day having a real car painted with this same magical enamel. Oh the fun (mischief) that could be had. Then pull out of the car wash a dripping, unquestioned same make, different color 'innocent' bystander. "No Sir, Ociffer! I didn't see a red Corvette flee the scene of this incredible toilet paper prank at the courthouse, where I got all of those speeding fines last week. I'm going to leave now in my wet blue Corvette." *winks at camera in my boyhood imagination*

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