Kierkegaard drank coffee all wrong

Kierkegaard

Mason Currey wrote about artists’ coffee habits and obsessions yesterday in the latest of his “Daily Rituals” series on Slate.com. Here’s an excerpt:

The Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard “had his own quite peculiar way of having coffee,” according to the biographer Joakim Garff. “Delightedly he seized hold of the bag containing the sugar and poured sugar into the coffee cup until it was piled up above the rim. Next came the incredibly strong, black coffee, which slowly dissolved the white pyramid.” Then he gulped the whole thing down in one go.

I don’t think I could take that much sugar, but I guess it worked for Kierkegaard. Also in the same Slate post, check out Balzac’s effusive description of coffee in the artistic process:

Coffee glides into one’s stomach and sets all of one’s mental processes in motion. One’s ideas advance in column of route like battalions of the Grande Armée…. Were it not for coffee one could not write, which is to say one could not live. [Read more]

What’s the link between coffee and creativity? Lots of famous artists and leaders — including Beethoven, L. Frank Baum, Paul Erdös — loved their caffeine. Sure, it might be just a coincidence. But are you willing to take the chance?