Whenever news of another cafe opening reaches me, my eyes light up and my shoulders perk up at the prospect of a fresh hangout spot to stake out. But when it turns out to be yet another caffeine tavern, the light seeps out of my soul as my eyeballs roll so far back into their sockets that I can see my brain. I know I can’t be alone in my less-than-friendly sentiments towards coffee. And yet everything seems bleak as all the other non-coffee drinkers maintain their silence and pretend that they’re not merely tolerating the beverage for diplomatic purposes. However, I refuse to back down. I will be the voice of the minority and I will stand by my aversion to hot bean water. I can already hear the deafening boos of the crowd as millions of caffeine addicts indignantly condemn me to the stake.

Personally, for me, I’m more of a pearl milk tea girl. Some may argue that pearl milk tea, or also known as boba tea, is actual tea’s trashy cousin with the long hot pink press-on nails and who’s prone to a life of petty crimes. Others may say that pearl milk tea is coffee’s rowdy neighbour who lives down the street, throws the loudest parties and dumps their trash into other people’s bins to avoid paying for their own garbage fees. I, on the other hand, think pearl milk tea represents everything that’s good in life in all its milky, full-cream, sweetened glory. To each their own set of odd perceptions.

But first of all, why do fans of the beverage feel the need to declare their addiction from the rooftops and rave about how they’re truly, madly dependent on it? Everyone loves milk tea; you don’t see us making a big fuss about it from beginning to end. Rule number one of Fight Club: Don’t talk about Fight Club. Can we make it the same for Caffeine Anonymous?

Also, why is there a detectable sense of hierarchy when it comes to the way the drink is consumed? For some reason, the more bitter and unpalatable the coffee is, the more hardcore you seem. Apparently, the blacker your brew, the darker the depths of your soul, which is why black coffee drinkers walk around with a bit more swagger in their step than the softies with an affinity for creamer and artificial sweetener.

Lastly, why is coffee the ultimate benchmark of adult meet-ups? I’ve lost count the amount of times people have told me that we need to “catch up over a cup of coffee” and then sheepishly backtrack themselves after I reveal that I don’t actually drink coffee. “Actually, neither do I. I just said coffee because it sounds better that way”, they say. Better in what way, exactly? In my opinion, there’s something more tangible about closing a conversation with “It was lovely seeing you again. Let’s meet up next week for some disposable plastic tumblers filled with sugary iced milk tea, topped with rich cream foam with some sunken tapioca balls at the bottom”.

Are you a publicly declared coffee lover or do you prefer the serenity of a modest cup of tea? Let us know in the comments which side you’re on!

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Jazreel
"I'm the writer your mother warned you about." A modern South East Asian girl who's ahead of her time and currently in the midst of self-rebranding. Plans on being a lazy, entitled, money-driven millennial even when she's seventy. A perfect combination of all four Golden Girls, her fruit equivalent would be a spicy strawberry.