Dr. D.'s favorite household appliance.

I never used to drink coffee until I discovered its magical powers of keeping me awake after sleep-deprived nights and of making me look pensive and meditative while reading in the coffee shop. While I do enjoy the coffee that baristas offer, I always prefer to drink my own home-brewed concoction. I don’t know why, but my coffee tastes better to me than even the most expensive gourmet coffee at any coffee shop.

I love to lounge around the house in the morning sipping at my coffee while I read my e-mail before I go out for my morning run. I used to have a Mr. Coffee with a timer that my mother-in-law gave me for my birthday, but then she died, I got divorced, and my Mr. Coffee stopped working. So, I decided to splurge on a coffee maker. I bought a Cuisinart Grind and Brew coffee maker in 2003 and enjoyed its coffee until about three months ago. It had a timer, so I was able to set it up the night before and literally wake up and smell the coffee. About two years ago, my beloved Cuisinart stop functioning like new and I tried to fix it–following in my father’s footsteps–but I was lucky to put it back together again without actually improving its performance. The only thing I got out of the experience was a headache, minor cuts on my fingertips, and a very lame blog entry. But I continued using the coffee maker until about two months ago when I could no longer disassemble the grinder in order to wash it. I tried everything to pry it out, but it was more stubborn  than me.

Finally, I decided to buy another coffee maker. This was my chance to try a new brand, but I loved my Cuisinart so much that I decided to buy the exact same model again. I bought it in 2003 for $125 plus sales tax. So I expected to pay much more in 2008. Surprisingly, that model was still about the same price at most stores, but I like shopping online and I noticed that sold it for $119, with no sales tax and no shipping charges. Then, I noticed that they also sold a refurbished version of the same model. I was very surprised to discover that a refurbished coffee maker cost more than a new one: $144! Obviously, I bought a new one. I received it at my door within three business days! I happened to be home at the time and the UPS guy put the package directly in my own hands! I was glad I bought the new model because Cuisinart had improved its performance ever so slightly, but enough to make a notable difference that was apparent from the first cup of coffee. In fact, I burned myself with the very first sip. I didn’t realized the my old coffee maker was no longer making very hot coffee. Wow! Hopefully, I’ll get at least five years out of this one.

Don’t eat here

Enchiladas suizas

I will never eat at a certain Mexican restaurant again. I refuse to even mention its name or location. I met my girlfriend there for lunch one beautiful Sunday afternoon. Well, we ate and we had a couple of Margaritas. Before I knew it, the manager asked us to leave so someone else could sit there. I was so insulted by their manager who asked us to leave. The real killer was that he was Mexican. Sometimes your own kind will treat you the worst. When we said we would order something else, he said it was too late. We insisted that he serve us. We have a right to sit in a public place like a restaurant, especially since we were paying patrons. We didn’t get up and he called the police on us. He wanted us arrested for criminal trespass. The police showed up and my girlfriend said that she felt intimidated by them. I can honestly say the police officers did their job professionally. However, I understood that the manager wanted us arrested. I didn’t want to be arrested so we eventually left.

As I discussed this with my girlfriend later, I became more upset. How could they do this to us? I called the restaurant and asked to speak to the owner. The first time, I was told to call after 4 p.m. The next time, I was told the manager, Larry, was in a “meeting.” When I called back after the “meeting,” I was told that the manager would call me back, but I was allowed to voice my complaint to call taker. Of course, Larry never called me back. So I called Larry back two weeks later. He claimed he never received my message. I explained to him that I received bad service there because the manager called the police on us. Of course, he heard that my girlfriend (at first, he thought she was my wife) was making a scene and that’s why they asked us to leave. I had to correct him. The manager working that day told us we had to leave. Then my girlfriend became upset. I really didn’t blame her. I was upset, too, but I didn’t want to be arrested for something as silly as this. Who wouldn’t be upset when you plan to eat supper at a nice restaurant and then the manager calls the police threatening to arrest you for criminal trespass?