By Susan Weber

The good news is the more coffee you drink, the longer you’re likely to live. The problem is, there’s no proof that coffee makes you live longer. The latest study shows mere association. Of the half million people tracked over ten years, the ones who drank two to three cups of coffee a day had a 12% lower risk of death than non-coffee drinkers. An expert from Stanford says we don’t know which of coffee’s attributes accounts for its links to longevity. There are anti-occident rich compounds, anti-inflammatory properties — and who knows? Maybe the secret’s in the restorative joy the cup of coffee gives its biggest fans.

As a coffee-drinker, I’m thrilled to think my steamy mug or the rich brew crackling fissures into mounds of ice come summertime are giving my life span superpowers. The fountain of youth has been percolating under our noses. Which begs the question, what does one do with all this bonus yearage? What’s my appropriate response to the extended future the research portends?

Short answer: live. Longer answer: remember the eyes of my beloved looking forward and back, seeing it all too clearly. The squandered coinage of minutes, hours, years. The misplaced devotion to duty. Wishing he had understood retirement. Turning to the treasure in his people and away from the drama on the world stage that had always vexed him mightily. In the end, we grew so weary. Our lucid conversation dimmed. And still he was offering gifts to those of us who paid attention. His eyes, orbs of sober dignity and wisdom, told us to live. Let live. Never hesitate to forgive. And to fill our days with infinite regard for the magical fragility of time.

Photo by Kaushik Datta CC BY-SA 4.0