Friday, February 18, 2005

Cup 81: Coffee Orifice

Originally uploaded by matt_leclair.
Where: Pembroke Elementary
When: 8:30 am Feb 18, 2005
Who: scads of kids
Coffee: New England Coffee Roasters Breakfast Blend
Mood: uninspired

Look at the lid on this cup. It is the usual not-quite-horrible coffee I get in Pembroke. The coffee isn't great, but the lid is a masterpiece of modern engineering! Years ago Apple computer came out with a series of laptops that were so well designed that they put all other laptops to shame. The design was so complex, however, that Apple needed to use a Cray supercomputer to model the case. This lid is way more complex than the PowerBook case, though! It is kinda cool to be living at a point in history where such a marvel of technology can be as common as a cup of coffee. Now that personal computers are now more powerful than early 90's supercomputers, how many more marvels will we see?

The lid has a plug, for starters. It is on a tab that extrudes from the center of the cup. You don't have to rip any plastic off the lid in order to drink the coffee. You just fold it back and push it against the back of the lid where there is a slot that pinches the tab and holds it reliably. But you can reclose it! That is so cool! How many coffee lids do you ever see on disposable cups that you can completely reclose? That part is cool, but what really excites me is the curves. This lid is all about the curves. I never realized just how uncomfortable the sharp edges make a coffee cup until I drank coffee from a cup that was all curves. This cup is designed in such a way that the mouth comes in contact with nothing but curves. It is unsettling at first. It gives it a much more organic feel than a plastic lid has a right to have, as if this were some bioengineered organ grown to excrete coffee. But there's also something very sensual about it at the same time, like a nipple designed for adults to drink from instead of babies. What other wonders does modern technology have in store for us? I can't wait to find out!

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