Coffee mug.

I haven’t written in quite some time, and there’s still that trip to Norway about which I haven’t garnered enough energy to write… so just to warm up my writer’s mind once again, I decided to write about the first thing that randomly came into my line of vision just to once again move my fingers and type out some words.

The white porcelain coffee mug sitting on my desk smells of low-level Starbucks “Christmas Blend” coffee. I’ve had this blend since last winter, and recently decided to grind myself up a cup of it as a form of coffee bean mercy killing, and just to give myself a fix of hot caffeine. The coffee stains smeared at the inner edges of the mug show where I casually sip the now cold and bitter decoction throughout the day. It was delivered to me unsolicitedly to my income tax/real estate office in December of 2007 by Midwest College of Oriental Medicine as a part of a package that also included a poster of some old Chinese drawing and a letter, hoping to lure me into their Masters of Oriental Medicine program. The mug contains a graphic of the school’s logo combined with the compulsory Yin-Yang and Bagua Trigram symbols on it, so to let you know that it’s A Very Authentic Chinese Medicine School. As word may have it, I actually did join their Masters program in Oriental Medicine which took me about three and a half years to complete, during which I experienced a tremendous amount of stress, the loss of my father, and a lot of tears and sleepless nights. Today, the mug sits in front of me here on my desk in my Oriental Medicine practice, coffee stained and cold, reminding me of a time before I embarked on the journey of the Tao of healing. My life was immeasurably different back then.


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