Coffee with Jack is Back

It has been more than a year since Morning Coffee with Jack and Tollers was last put out. A lot has changed over that time, including a new career (running Drinklings is not the full time gig), a new house, and some re-focusing of a lot of things in life. C.S. Lewis once said something to the effect that sometimes moving forward is really moving backwards. This ended up being a very true thing for me, as it so often is, with balancing life, business, and many other things. In the midst of the new career, the needs of family and proper prioritization came calling and that meant hanging up a few things including the MCJT. With it, the idea of the podcast and a lot of mug development. The author of Ecclesiastes, perhaps ad nauseum, reminds us that there is a season for everything. And it quickly became apparent that I needed to spend a season focused on just being present for my family, stabilizing my career, and just assisting a business to thrive that was now on the periphery. 

But as any aspiring writer knows, the itch to put pen to paper is ever present, even if it is subtle. It’s uniquity never vanishes. For the writer, words are an extension of oneself, a reflection of the interface between the world as the object and the self as the subject. When one loses the opportunity to write, there is often a loss of self and a loss of understanding the outside world. Though I have taken a good bit of time to stabilize a rocky private ship, I have not given the time to reflect on what the storm and the duty to take steer of the vessel have meant. When one is working to keep from sinking, one is not focused on whether the transport is pointed North. The ability to navigate only emerges after the ship can justifiably ride the waves with proper nautical anticipation. This sometimes comes with checking for inflictions, reinforcing points of tension and atrophy, and a thorough re-evaluation of how the ship can continue to carry on without compromise. 

To this end, Morning Coffee with Jack is…back! But in slightly less aspirational ways. The aim of Morning Coffee with Jack and Tollers initially was to produce a weekly Monday reflection piece to go alongside your favorite (Drinklings, hopefully) cup of brew. But that proved too aspirational to keep up amongst the storm of life and ran counterintuitive to the balances and wisdom recommended by most of those that I was looking to reflect on. How can one talk about opposition to the “speed of modernity” if one feels like reflection must be kept on schedule? How can one talk about the importance of sabbath rest and yet not take it oneself? How can one talk about making space for fellowship and imagination yet not have time and space for the important people in one’s life? Ultimately they are self-defeating comments and reflection ends up becoming more reaction than anything. 

I love Drinklings and the various elements that come with the business. I also love writing and all the potential to reflect, to listen, and to pour the mind and soul out onto the page. But I also know that what you love can quickly become what you unknowingly begin to hate. When love stifles what is a priority, it can quickly lead to burnout and resentment. And that was happening to this series (which was not all that long lived) and to other things in my life that deserved no burnout or resentment whatsoever. 

But now the burnout and the resentment are swinging the other direction. To not write, to not reflect on paper (or screen) feels like a burnout of its own kind. Like a betrayal of the self and the world lives in. So, the blog re-emerges from the casket it was cryogenically laid in. 

But, as this resurrects, here’s what is changing:

First, this blog will carry no weekly schedule. It is, after all, a creative side project offered by a coffee company. And as we so often say, “But first, coffee.” Reflections to go along with coffee will come as God allows. With no pressure. No need to be “on time.” No need to keep to a schedule. At this stage in life, I am realizing the only priority of schedule I must abide by is the responsibility schedule of my family care. And, as any aspiring writer knows, the written word rarely feed a family. 

Second, I will aim to be briefer than before. I am, as is clear here, an unashamedly loquacious individual who also recognizes that verbosity takes a toll on both reader and writer alike. The work it will take to be brief will, I think, payoff in my stamina to keep up with this Drinklings creative blog. 

Finally, I am renaming this to Coffee with Jack. No “Monday Morning”, no “Monday Coffee with Jack and Tollers.” Just…Coffee with Jack. I just like that a bit better and have wanted to do that since almost the very beginning. After a year, I think re-branding this blog works well. 

At the same time, I hope to continue to steer Drinklings into its next foray. Our 242 Wholesale Coffee Program has been taking off a lot this year with several churches and organizations coming on board. We will continue to make new mugs (see our most recent St. Gianna - Patron Saint of the Unbornand a new sticker line up with most of our current mug faces made with high quality stickers from our buddies at Sticker Mule (a great resource if wanting to make your own custom stickers​​)."

Of course, I am--at the end of the day--just one man with an awesome team of individuals that help run the day to day of this organization. And we could not do this without the support of customers locally, nationally, and even internationally that support this. Coffee, Imagination, and Fellowship are the cornerstones for what we do. So as all that goes into this revamped blog series, we want to say with excitement and passion that…Jack is Back!

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