For those who lead busy lives, a leisurely cup of coffee in the morning at the kitchen table may seem like a luxury associated with a bygone era. It is more likely that the blessed jolt of java is obtained in a retail outlet on the daily commute or after dropping the young ones off at school. On-the-go coffee has its compensations. Often it is a gourmet experience, crafted by baristas, tastier than the pedestrian blend provided by the humble Mr. Coffee machine at home. But not everyone is wholly enamored of sipping rapidly cooling brew from the cardboard cup, itself, environmentally suspect and risky to carry. A travel mug must be a godsend. But, is it?
Travel mugs are not without their disparagers. Criticisms concerning dribbling due to ill-fitting lids may top the list, perhaps making these vessels popular only with dry cleaners. Others decry the taste of plastic or metal compromising the flavor. Many models of travel mugs are not dishwasher safe. Not all mug shapes and sizes fit into a car’s cup holders, creating a balancing act for drivers. And they call texting a distraction? Try dealing with six ounces of scalding liquid in your lap sixty miles an hour. We call that a full-on emergency.
Is there such a thing as the perfect travel mug? We suspect not, but our clients seem to be hell bent on finding something reliably spill-proof. That is why so many mugs are abandoned in this futile pursuit of perfection. A clear-out should restore much-needed space in kitchen cabinets and your car’s interior. Start with some the worst offenders. That should be obvious. These are the mugs for which no lid is to be found, or vice-versa. Next in line are promotional mugs that you have acquired but have never touched your lips. Don’t forget to toss any that lack insulation. If they can’t keep a drink hot or cold for more than five minutes they deserve the boot. Then see if you can remember which one or ones sloshed all over your computer or ruined a really expensive outfit when your commuter train lurched without warning. Recycling those should be particularly satisfying. It really makes you question whether liquids were meant to be drunk while the body is motion.