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Great Advancements in Portable Beverage Technology

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I talk about coffee pretty often, and that’s probably because I drink coffee way too often. It’s not uncommon for me to feel torn between my desire to spend as few dollars as possible and my desire to have an nice cup that doesn’t taste like the beans were roasted by a blacksmith. Of course making coffee at home is a good way to control costs, but let’s face it we’re all busy people here and we can’t just sit around in our PJs all day sipping a nice Organic Peruvian blend and thumbing through the pages of the Sunday times. We’ve got places to be! And while we can read the iNewYorkTimes Dot Blogspot for free on our ePhone iKindles where ever we go, we still have to feel the sting of a $4 cup of coffee with no refills if we want that for the road.

But that was before I discovered some amazing new devices that, although simple, I would definitely place alongside my iPhone in the pantheon of “signs I’m living in the future.” If you please:

It's a travel mug! No, it's a French Press!

REI Double Shot Press Mug: I stumbled on to this little guy while searching through sale items at REI and it’s amazing. It’s a travel mug – with a French Press built into it, which is about the simplest way to make incredibly strong coffee. Just add coffee grounds and hot water and you’re off to work. There do exist other, more expensive travel versions of the French Press, but this one looks like it would take a bullet for you. (Plus, it’s from REI, which always means you can just bring it back and they’ll give you a brand new one.) The best part though? The bottom has a secret, airtight compartment for storing an extra cup’s worth of coffee grounds, so when you start fading around 10:30am you can brew up another cup using the hot water tap in the office kitchen and spare yourself another terrible office coffee.

Do yourself a favor and find one without that stupid sticker.

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Generic Fake Iced Coffee To-Go Cup: And for the warm, upcoming summer months we have this amazing new invention. To the untrained eye, it resembles a standard plastic to-go cup, but it’s actually a double-walled, insulated and sealed tumbler that’ll keep your iced coffee cold for about as long as you can stand to be out in the sun without a beer in your hand. And it’s next to impossible to spill, which is nice if you’re a klutz.

I got one of these from Tully’s for 6 bucks, plus they filled it up for free so it practically paid for itself right off the bat. On the weekends, when you’re more interested in getting drunk than waking up, you can whip up a tall gin & juice and people will think you just really like juice.

The greatest thing to happen to the previous generation in terms of Portable Beverage Technology was either the coffee mug with the ridiculously wide, non-skid base that made it impossible to tip over, or the widespread adoption of standard cupholder size. When you consider all that, I’d say it’s a pretty exciting time to be a coffee drinker on the move. Although, if anyone has any opportunities to buy a Costa Rica coffee plantation on the cheap, let me know.

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Andrew Dalton - Aggressive Panhandler

Andrew Dalton - Aggressive Panhandler

Andrew is an East Coast transplant from Virginia hamming it up in San Francisco without any intention of leaving. Having worked every typical job from Bike Shop Employee to Bartender to Ad Agency Hotshot, to Dotcom Layoff he now busts his ass covering the "weird things to do" beat for gracious local audiences at SFAppeal.com and rallies the Western Addy/Lower Haight/Panhandle neighborhoods into action at AggressivePanhandler.com. His work was published in a real, paper magazine one time. One day he might even figure out how to make money from it.