When my 10-cup coffee maker suddenly died (several years ago now), a friend gave me his Black and Decker Brew n Go coffee maker. Then about four years ago, the permanent mesh filter split away on the right hand side from its plastic skeleton and ever since I’ve been using makeshift filters creatively crafted from paper towel, Kleenex or even (close your eyes, put your hands over your ears) toilet paper.
I finally got tired of the makeshift filter dance and went out and bought a new machine. I knew I didn’t want the pod type. After rifling through the personal coffee maker section, I discovered that the most economical, user-friendly model seemed to be the Black and Decker Single Serve Coffee Maker (the new version of the Brew n Go).
I’m basically happy with my new coffee maker. However, there are two major differences between the old model and the new one I can’t ignore. The new mug has no handle and is cylindrical rather than round. It’s designed so that you can brew coffee with the lid on, but I think it makes the coffee taste too plasticky. Consequently, I leave the lid off. As the level goes down toward the bottom of the mug, after taking a sip, the remaining liquid whirlpools, and can splash coffee up into my left eye. This has occurred several times now – fortunately by the time it happens, it’s never hot enough to do any real harm.
Which brings to mind the first time I became aware that progress was not necessarily a good thing. When I moved into my first apartment, I inherited my grandmother’s vacuum cleaner. It was made of metal; it had weight; it sucked dust up from my carpet and floor like it meant it. Eventually, I had to replace it. I bought a state-of-the-art canister model with seven attachments. The first time I used it, it sent me flying – I had forgotten that the new vacuum was made mostly of plastic, and when I gave it hefty tug to change direction, I lost my balance.
The moral of the story is, if you’re not careful, progress can spit in your eye or throw you off-balance. In the meantime, I’m adjusting – less coffee in mug means taking slower sips.