Olivia ’12 RSS feed

About Me:

My name is Olivia and I am a senior at Butler University. I spend most of my time in Lilly Hall as a BFA Dance Performance major. When not in rehearsal or ballet class, I write papers for my English Literature second major. In my super-abundant, never-lacking, this-is-highly-sarcastic spare time, I attempt to cook in my apartment kitchen, watch Youtube videos of ballet, knit sweaters that never seem to come to an end, and read books both silly and serious. If I could take any class at Butler just for kicks, I'd go for DiffyQ.

Check us out on Facebook Follow us on Twitter! Butler's YouTube Channel Chat with a Student

Posts Tagged “coffee”

The Coffee Saga: French Press

Remember my post about starting to like coffee this past summer? This fall, I took over my roommate’s coffee machine precisely the same week she moved on to bigger and better things (i.e. French press). And so I had the means to make coffee myself. I picked out a tin of medium roast coffee at Trader Joe’s with my boyfriend, learned (thankfully not the hard way) that you do indeed need a coffee filter, and took to making my own mochas.

Mocha Recipe:

  • A spoonful of cocoa powder
  • A spoonful of sugar
  • Coffee
  • Milk
  • Hot water if desired
  • Coffeemate, carmel sauce, or chocolate chips to make it fancy

So there I was at Hubbard and Cravens with Boyfriend, finishing exam stuff before the end of the semester. We’d done the tea thing when we first arrived, chai for him and white tangerine for me. Paper writing… Time passed… Coffee smells… (sentence fragments, and not even parallel ones…)

[Side note: If you want to run into a bunch of Butler people, drive/bike/walk to this coffee shop. On this particular day, I saw my roommate and her friend, a former member of the dance faculty, and my English advisor.]

My roommate also loves Hubbard and Cravens and had been raving about the homework-increasing powers of a French press she ordered the day earlier while writing the “What is dance?” Theory and Philosophy paper. I went for it — I ordered a French press. When asked what kind of coffee I wanted, I hemmed and hawed. I was new to coffee-drinking, I told the barista, and I had a medium roast I liked. All their flavors were rather bold, he said. Well, I said, I tried one that was supposed to be “delicate” and didn’t much like it. I loved mochas. Could I have something with chocolate overtones?

Boyfriend ordered a mocha. Smart lad.

When my French press came, it was in a tricked-out Bodum container — at least a Level 5, I decided. The flavor was quite bold, reminiscent of honeysuckle, with the faintest aftertaste of sunshine mingled with the crisp and raw punch of cherries. Basically, it was just sour to my n00b coffee-taste-buds. The French press might have been a Level 5, but I had only recently attained Level 2.

Those sips of mocha which I stole were awfully good. And adding different combinations of cream and sugar to the coffee made for a wonderful diversion from Shakespeare.

Life with BSI

To continue my stilted outline of my summer schedule as a Butler Summer Institute scholar, I shall pick up where I left off on Sunday, pondering the goodness of mochas.

Sunday: Research. Try to get into Lilly Hall to use the practice rooms, but the building was locked.

Monday: Memorial Day! Research. Bike along the Canal Path (so flat! such an easy ride!) to The Flying Cupcake to buy treats. Give treats to the girl taking my headshots. Take headshots. Check out of the Apartment Village.

Discover Lilly Hall is still locked. Discover there is no piano in the Reilly Room. Discover the room with the piano in it on the third floor of Atherton was locked. Sweet talk my way into the piano room at ResCo. (“Sweet talk” = ask if I can use it). Plink around–I can’t play the piano, though I often get irresistible urges to plonk happily for two hour stretches. Talk to a friend. Relax with my roommate.

Tuesday: Research a lot to make up for Monday’s frivolity. Take a ballet class with some other Butler dance majors. Attend a research ethics module for BSI. Research.

Wednesday: Research in the morning. Have (I admit it) another mocha. Decide Hubbard and Cravens is far superior to Starbucks–and cheaper. Attend a BSI lunch and hear about other students’ projects, a faculty mentor’s career history, and a very funny comparison of the Midwest to Florida. Research.

It’s the life, I tell ya. I decided about three hours ago I need to begin broad and go narrow, rather than the other way around. I have since produced much more writing then I did all this morning. Hooray for helpful insights!

Taste test: “As ongoing unrest throughout the world indicates, location alone cannot determine national identity: Living within a country’s borders does not guarantee loyalty to that country’s sense of self. We cannot dismiss location as a quality of nation entirely, but often location engenders cultural similarities which serve as much stronger factors in shaping a national identity.”

A bit salty? I thought so too.

Also, Pandora just played Dvorak’s 9th symphony and is currently on Arvo Pärt, so I am a very happy camper.

YouTube Preview Image

The coffee saga

My cousin at Giant's Causeway

My love affair with tea began at the tip of Northern Ireland, in a restaurant at Giant’s Causeway. My geology-minded cousin wanted to visit the site, so there we were, the four of us–my grandparents, my cousin, and me.

The Irish table--site of my tea testing experience

Once we had clambered among the rocks, it was time for lunch. The table was so small, we had to put the tea pot underneath the table! My grandfather ordered the tea, but when it came, it was hot. He had hoped for iced tea and asked if anyone wanted it; I did not think I liked tea but figured I should try it since, hey, I was in Ireland, land of tea and sheep.

Ireland is green and filled with sheep.

I loved it, and I proceeded to drink my way through Ireland–with tea. I kept a journal, and at the end of our trip, I had had something like twenty-four cups of tea. That’s somewhere around six cups of tea a day!

Of course, when I returned home to Richmond, I could not keep consuming tea at that prodigious rate. Too much caffeine, not enough walking-everywhere-as-a-tourist exhaustion. But my love of tea remained with me for the next three years.

I read books on tea, collected teapots, gave a speech on the benefits of tea-drinking for speech class, bonded with my not-at-that-point boyfriend over mutual coffee dislike, frequented the tea store in Richmond, began every morning with a mug and like as not ended the day with the same.

I still love tea. But I have long wanted to drink decaffeinated coffee after dinner parties. It seems so elegant, the delicate white cups on their saucers, a dessert more refined than a brownie. A few months ago, I began to accept a half-cup of coffee at every catered event I attended. I mixed in milk and mounds of white sugar and sipped at it a few times, disliking the bitter taste but enjoying the sophistication aura of dessert coffee. Silly, I know. I feel the same way about cheesecake; I don’t like it, but it seems so refined!

And then I ordered a decaffeinated coffee from Starbucks. I managed to get about half of it down. Then came the decaffeinated vanilla latte from the Monon Coffee Company. Then the vanilla latte at the airport Caribou Coffee a mere week ago–the first caffeinated coffee drink I’d ever tried. I managed to drink most of the small size, wishing there were a half-cup size I could order.

Now I sit in Hubbard and Cravens, having tried my first mocha. And I want another. This might be the first coffee drink I really enjoyed… and I might have been craving coffee for a few days prior to the event.

Tell me now. Am I treading a dangerous path? Should I nip this coffee craving in the bud before it gets out of hand? I don’t want to have to have coffee in the morning to function. Tea is quite sufficient. And mixed coffee drinks are expensive. And I feel a traitor to tea. But the foam, the foam! Mmmm….

No more promises

Okay, I just don’t feel like detailing the pen-returning adventure. Suffice it to say that there might have been a car chase, a reunion, and the return of inadvertently pilfered property. And ninja moves.

Dylan Thomas

This Sunday marks the end of the first week of BSI. Butler Summer Institute is a nine week program that allows students from all disciplines to conduct an independent study over the summer with a faculty mentor. Butler University provides housing and a stipend; there are also various lunches, informational sessions, and other get-togethers. I think we might get to do practice GREs. Next week is a research ethics module. Ugh. Much more fun will be the volunteering project in the works.

My first week looked a bit like this:

Monday–Move in. All day. BSI dinner in the evening.

Tuesday–Move in during the morning. Research in the afternoon. Discover UT kitchens doe not include microwaves.

Wednesday–Library in the morning. Lunch with the rest of the BSI participants. The library again. Give myself a ballet class. Research for the rest of the day.

Thursday–Research in the morning. Take a ballet class from a DVD with some other Butler dance majors who are on campus. Play the piano. Research for the rest of the day. Walk to a restaurant with my roommate and a friend for dinner. Research.

Friday–Research in the morning. Take a jazz class and give a ballet class with another Butler dance major. Play the piano. Research for the rest of the day.

James Joyce

Saturday–Visit the farmer’s market with my roommate. She has been spoiled by the farmer’s markets abroad but still managed to find some asperagus that wasn’t too expensive. Walk a bit in Broad Ripple. Do research and laundry. Bike to the nearby St. Thomas’ for Mass. Research.

 

Sunday–Breakfast in UT, then bike to Hubbard and Cravens’ coffee shop to research and finish annotating my last primary source! Write a blog post in stilted sentences.

Stilted, stilted. Time to delve into Anglo-Celtic literary tradition! Exclamation point not sarcastic. Quite sincere in my love of Dylan Thomas, even if James Joyce still requires many, many pretzels for moral support.