The Cup that Cheers but does not Cause OCD

Caffeine is good for creative workers, whereas stimulants like Adderall do not necessarily help.

Caffeine also blocks adenosine receptors in your brain. Stephen Braun, author of Buzz: The Science and Lore of Alcohol and Caffeine, once explained it as an “indirect stimulant, as opposed to, say, amphetamine which liberates dopamine, a directly stimulating neurotransmitter. By blocking adenosine receptors, caffeine allows the brain’s own stimulating neurotransmitters (i.e. glutamate and dopamine) to do their thing with greater gusto and less restraint.”

For a time in college I did experiment with a combination of coffee and the now-obsolete tranquilizer Meprobamate (a/k/a Miltown).* Two inches off the floor and flying steady. It’s a good thing that I was too poor to get seriously into that kind of thing.


* People calling Milwaukee “Mil-town” are too young to get the joke?