[Drama-induced Shopping] Coffee princess, caffeine queen
by Guest Beanie
Shopping King Louis
I come from a long line of tea drinkers. My mom is a tea drinker. My grandmother is a tea drinker. I’ve been drinking tea for as long as I can remember. This, I believe, resulted in me having a bit of disdain for coffee. I had no good reason for it. I’d never had any before. I had no idea what it tasted like, aside from my experience with coffee-flavored Jelly Bellys. It was a blind prejudice, pure and simple. Looking back, I find my contempt shameful. How could I judge something so completely and so harshly without even trying it first? What a terribly toxic way of thinking.
Luckily, as always, a drama came along to broaden my horizons and open my mind to new possibilities, new ways of thinking. Specifically, a little show called Coffee Prince. The aroma of coffee in that cafe was almost tangible… and strangely, despite my disdain for the beverage itself, the smell of coffee was always something I secretly enjoyed. I soon began to imagine what the taste must be like. I couldn’t believe what I was thinking. Me? Coffee? It felt like some sort of betrayal to the very essence of my being! Nevertheless, after the end of an episode, I suddenly found myself grabbing my purse and running to the local coffee shop to buy a latte.
As soon as I came back home, I settled down to watch the next episode, coffee in hand. The first sip was… a bit disappointing. A little bitter. I was confused as I watched the characters on my TV blissfully drinking away, trying to match that with my own experience. I took another sip. Still bitter. What was it? What piece of the magic was missing? Then, I remembered: sugar. Yes, sugar! I put a spoonful in, took a sip, and immediately felt the difference. Yes, this was the sort of light sweetness that I had imagined. With every remaining episode of Coffee Prince, I made it a point to have a cup of coffee at my side as I watched.
My love affair with coffee continued for a couple of years. Tea was never forgotten, but I couldn’t deny the thrill that this new experience gave me. I did, however, find coffee to be quite a bit more cumbersome to make than tea and, being the lazy person that I am, coffee did not become a part of my daily life. That is, until Shopping King Louis aired.
Shopping King Louis
I should preface this by explaining that Seo In-gook could convince me to buy literally anything. The minute I saw Louis slamming his first cups of Maxim Gold coffee, wasting away Bok-shil’s precious, hard-earned cash, my interest was piqued. Unbidden, my fingers were typing “maxim gold coffee” into Amazon, and before I knew it I was buying a gigantic $20 box of instant coffee sticks.
When my box came to my door a couple of days later, I nearly jumped for joy. I’d never tried American instant coffee because I’d never heard good things, but oh, Maxim Gold was different. At this point I could forgo putting sugar in my coffee if I needed to, but I would always include it if given a choice, and Maxim Gold was pure, sweet, sugary goodness. Was it quality coffee? Well, no, but I’m no coffee snob. While I had grown to enjoy the taste of a good cup of coffee, I was mostly in it for the sugar and the caffeine, and Maxim Gold provided both of those in convenient, travel-friendly packaging. It was exactly what I dreamed it would be.
What I did not expect my Maxim Gold experience to do was to allow me to connect to characters that I otherwise never would find a common ground with. My heart absolutely broke for little Hye-na in Mother, and I couldn’t imagine being forced to grow up so fast at such a young age, but the minute I discovered her love for Maxim Gold, I understood this part of her on a visceral level. Likewise, I have not experienced hardships anywhere close to equaling Ji-an’s in My Ajusshi, but seeing her stuff sticks of Maxim Gold from work into her pockets and going home to drink it in the dark meant that her character became more accessible to me, in some strange way. Just as a drama opened my heart to coffee, so too did coffee open my heart to drama characters I would otherwise find hard to relate to. What a lovely, cheesy circular thought! We all mock PPL in dramas, and often rightfully so, but perhaps there are moments when seeing something familiar on-screen provides us something to latch on to in an otherwise unrelatable story.
But as sweet as that thought is, perhaps the most important way that this bean water has revolutionized my life is by giving me the jolt needed to both get me through late-night drama-watching sessions and revive me the morning after. I have already witnessed the way dramas can broaden one’s mind, so I no longer feel guilty for forgoing sleep to watch dramas (even though I adore my sleep). Some things are more important and, jokes aside, I do believe that my drama-watching has changed me for the better in many ways. So don’t be frightened when you see my face in the morning and just hand me my coffee! Dark circles are a badge of honor for any drama fan, and I’m no exception. Besides, isn’t that what undereye concealer is for?
Dal Ja’s Spring
- [Drama-induced Shopping] Growing the impossible
- [Drama-induced Shopping] Finding my style through K-dramas
- [Drama-induced shopping] Three times one drama influenced how I spent my hard-earned cash
- [Drama-induced Shopping] You’re a beautiful plushie
- [Drama-induced Shopping] It started with a phone
- [Theme of the Month] Drama-induced shopping
Tags: Theme of the Month