My grandpa is a self-hacker

Something I never gave much thought, but astonishes me even more now.

My grandpa is proud 87 years old. He has seen some things and therefore can tell interesting stories. But now that’s not the point.

My grandpa regulates himself. He dislikes Coffee or Mate tea but when it comes to his blood pressure he, probably like most people of his age, takes pills to lower it. If it is too low he drinks a Red Bull to rise it again. He says that he likes the taste of it and the energy that it gives him.

In a time of quantified self and self-hacking, my grandpa probably should write a book about how to get to such an age and knowing his body so good. For me, he’s a self-hacker prototype, and he doesn’t even know what that means.

The unwritten law of buying a Caffè

Waiting for my connecting train at Frankfurt Fernbahnhof this Saturday I wondered, what is the best performance-quality ratio for coffee?

Frankfurt has the biggest airport in Germany and the third biggest in the whole of Europe. And guess what, airports not only transport goods and people they also, and that‘s an unwritten law, always deliver overpriced coffee. Be it London, Brussels, Addis Abeba or Entebbe, the quality holds never the promise of the price.

At Frankfurt Fernbahnhof I started to walk around. Rewe City, Starbucks, the Hilton Hotel, a salad bar and of course all the manager lounges.

Starbucks, it’s an illusion. Comfortable furniture, nice atmosphere. But behind the front you have stressed employees and a revenue driven company. Who can blame them? But don’t expect me to go there and drink one of the overpriced milk shakes they claim to be made with coffee in it.

The rest, also don’t blame them. Coffee made out of vending machines. Just press a button and receive money for it. It’s probably the German culture.

In the end I found a kiosk, offering coffee for half the price of it’s competitors. The Barista knew how to use her machine. It ended with having a decent coffee. And that in Frankfurt. It was marvelous.

By comparing the cultures I visited so far, I came to the conclusion that a good coffee never costs too much. Is the price to high, they not only rip you off, you most probably will end with a bad product. And nobody wants to drink that.

In the following chart, I compared coffee quality (subjective value) to prices in Euro. The conclusion is:

  1. there is no bad coffee in Ethiopia or Italy
  2. there is bad coffee in Germany
  3. respecting the strength of the original currency there’s most probably a price area where you should relax when ordering a coffee and there’s an area where you definitely should get suspicious
  4. Don’t orientate yourself by this chart when your in a place where’s no coffee culture (sorry Uganda)