“Would you like to go get coffee?”
When somebody asks you that, you know what they mean. They’re not suggesting, literally, that you might want to synchronize a trip to procure coffee – they’re inviting you to talk. Maybe they want to talk about work. Relationships. Kids. Parents. Movies. Music. Sex. Religion. Politics. School.
You could probably list another half dozen conversational topics you typically discuss when you get together with friends or family. And you still wouldn’t get to the subject of “death.” That’s because death is a subject we Americans don’t like to talk about.
Yes, we know it’s coming for all of us, but we seem to believe that if we employ a technique somewhere between outright denial and magical thinking, we’ll deal with the death of our loved ones only when we really have to – when they die. And similarly, someone else will take care of us when we die.
Liz Dunnebacke says we can do better. Liz quit her job in the film business to dedicate herself to death. She founded and is Executive Director of a non-profit organization called Wake.
Wake is for people who would like help planning an orderly exit from this life when the day comes at some point in the future. And for people with zero planning who need help with a deceased person, right now.
Of course, as Sigmund Freud kind of said, sometimes a cup of coffee is just a cup of coffee.
Sometimes when you want a cup of coffee, you want a cup of coffee. Good, strong coffee that will make you feel how you want to feel. And you don’t need it delivered with a bunch of conversation. If, however, you would like especially strong coffee delivered directly to your home or work, Brice Sanderford can help you.
Brice is co-founder of Riverboat Coffee Company. Riverboat cold-brews coffee and delivers it to you in glass growlers – those glass containers usually used for craft beer, with a resealable top. Or, if you need a little more, they’ll bring you a keg.
Riverboat also has a retail location Uptown on Magazine and Napoleon, and a pedal-powered mobile coffee trike called “The Caffeine Queen.”
In our pursuit of happiness, there’s definitely something to be said for the popular opinion that we should live in the moment. But, whether that moment is as momentous as the death of someone we care for, or simply waking up in the morning and wanting a cup of coffee, it’s good to have a plan.
On the face of it, there might not seem to be much in common between a for-profit craft-coffee company and a non-profit deathcare organization, Liz and Brice are both in the business of encouraging people to think ahead to improve their own wellbeing and happiness. And whether the end result is in a growler or in the ground, that’s a noble enough pursuit, don’t you think?