As far back as I can remember, Garfield has been my favourite cartoon strip. I would long to read it as my Sunday morning paper routine when I was a teen and continued as a grown up too. At some point, I was so fascinated, I even bought Garfield books which my 8-year-old completely adores now. But it never once crossed my mind, I may share similarities with this cat – fat, lazy and giving his companion a tough time.

This morning, the better half set my spoiler mode – ‘ON’. With new coffee capsules, he decided to lure me with Decaf. The taste of coffee, minus the effects of caffeine – can it get any better than this?

Warning – he has done this to me in the past with 0% alcohol beer. And I have regretted. There is nothing great about a fizzy drink minus sugar faking it with a dash of beer perfume. It bloats you without the satisfaction of enjoying the real thing. Yet, the foodie within is always caught off guard, the minute he shows a carrot – decaf this time.

So breakfast is traditional Pohe which go well with masala chai rather than coffee. That is my verdict. But when the coffee lover at home cannot contain his ravenous hunger for newly purchased Java beans, I give in, in the name of love. Aahhh, the things you do in order to prove it over centuries. I agree on half a cup though. As the Nespresso Coffee Maker powers up, pulls in the capsule noisily while wafting out aroma and letting out steam, I dash out of the kitchen with some piping hot Kande Pohe and Bakarwadi (another favourite snack from India).

The coffee looks so perfect, it’s pointless to resist temptation. One look at the sparkle in the eyes of the dutiful coffee connoisseur, I take a deep breath in to devour my first sip and baah, spat, what was that? Coffee, without milk and sugar? My mouth is all bitter with the rather distasteful drink I gulped in the garb of fancy names and refreshing aroma and fake froth on top to fool me. Even the worst medicine from childhood tasted better. Like some irate customer, my facial muscles flex involuntarily, spiraling the rest of the family into a laugh riot. To salvage the situation, he who brew the beans rushes to the kitchen to add dairy to the drink and reset my happy hormones while I gobble up spoonfuls of Pohe trying desperately to revive my dead taste buds and plaster back a smile.

My kids need absolutely no cartoons or Sunday morning shows for entertainment. Unfortunately, they are also making their opinion of coffee based on me. If only their father was half the show stopper that I am, we would be able to rule out bias. I also realise, when it comes to coffee, I am no different from the character played by the late Shridevi in English Vinglish. I like Nescoffee – with milk and sugar. The milk that comes from tabela/farm not cartons. I declare myself a tea-total-err. Period.

P.S. It isn’t until I open up the Saturday Straits Times post coffee that I discover I am eligible to be renamed as Garfield Deshpande. Gosh, how could we share so many traits?