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The Brazillian Coffee Crisis

Senior Ishaan Gollamudi

In the midst of the Delta variant wreaking havoc in the Midwestern U.S., and the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan: an entirely separate issue has evaded coverage. Coffee — the ubiquitous beverage that has kept humanity and its bowels moving since 850 AD — has come under threat. As a result of severe drought and the worst cold snap observed in decades: Brazil’s coffee crop has been decimated. Noble beans, beans with rich, complex flavors — only truly appreciable after the addition of copious amounts of whipped cream, syrup, and other pretentious forms of sugar — struck down in their prime. As if this tragedy was not enough, the reduced supply of coffee has caused prices to skyrocket. The cost of Arabica coffee beans has gone up by 18%, and the cost of Robusta beans by as much as 30%. Just as hot water trickles down through compacted coffee grounds, moreover, these increased costs will soon trickle down to the consumer: the textbook definition of trickle-down economics.

But the question remains, why? Why has this tragedy befallen humanity? What unholy confluence of factors triggered the aforementioned droughts and frosts that have curtailed the world’s supply of liquid alertness? What would Big Bird and Ted Cruz’s lovechild look like? The answer to these questions ostensibly lies with Brazilian Prime Minister Jair Bolsanaro.

Bolsonaro is a noted climate change denialist who campaigned on a platform of allowing increased industrial and agricultural access to the Amazon, which he did put into effect as Prime Minister. After all, he curtailed the fines issued by Ibama, Brazil’s environmental protection agency, for violations like deforestation and illegal burning by 29.4% Consequently, he is an incredibly popular figure with the highly influential farmer voting bloc. However, mounting evidence suggests that Bolsanaro may actually be a front. A figurehead, for one of the shadowiest crime syndicates to ever stalk the Earth.

They are known by many names. The Caffeinated Cartel. The Mocha Mafia. The Espresso Enterprise. The Pourover Posse, and most famously: La Crema Nostra. Insider intelligence suggests that they are responsible for not only the aforementioned drought and frost, but also Brazil’s current ecological policies. It makes logical sense, after all, considering how deeply La Crema Nostra’s jittery claws are supposed to be embedded in the Brazilian coffee trade. By expanding the fertile land available for agriculture, more coffee can be grown, which translates to increased profits for the syndicate.

However, the true brilliance of La Crema Nostra is observable when one considers that, based on a Reuters report, rampant deforestation is costing Brazil’s agribusiness sector $1 billion yearly. Although that might seem like an incentive to curb deforestation, La Crema Nostra apparently perceive the situation differently. By allowing for such ecological devastation, which contributes significantly to climate change, events like the aforementioned drought and frost will only become more common. Events that can rip through coffee plantations like Joe Rogan through an industrial-sized tub of Ivermectin. Events that will create a deficit in the supply of coffee, thereby increasing the price and the profits La Crema Nostra can rake in.

Of course, such brilliant business sense has only been seen once before in recorded history: when Dick Cheney capitalized on one man’s father-issues to squeeze $40 billion out of Iraqi oil fields.

Returning to the situation at hand, somehow bleaker than any discussion involving Dick Cheney, it would appear that the impacts of this deficit in supply are beginning to be felt. Some individuals, for instance, have retreated deep into the Himalayas: fearing that someone will try to talk to them before they have had their coffee, which is now an increasingly unlikely event. Unprecedented rates of handlebar mustache-drooping, moreover, have been reported in the male barista population: another tragic outcome of this coffee shortage. 

Clearly La Crema Nostra’s malevolence knows no bounds. To conclude on a slightly different note, some have inquired about the “mounting evidence” for La Crema Nostra’s existence. Suffice it to say, there is evidence for their existence, but as of today, evidence of the evidence of their existence may require evidence of its own. Evidently, evidence is clearly of tantamount concern, although the evidence for this is objectionable, as is evident above.

there's a price on my head

Senior Muskaan Grewal

there’s a price over my head
and every time you get closer it gets higher
because for you it feels like i’m still bleeding and have bled
you might as well just throw me on the burning pyre
no keep on drawing my wanted sign
those bars you want me behind won’t keep me out of your head

do you want me to say my line?

it doesn’t matter when you’ve already let me into your bed
you can reject me if you want to
toss me aside if you can bring yourself to do it
but i know that you’ll come through
cause when i stand in your head, i’m always backlit
talk about my danger to others

this forked tongue flickers out just for you 

your hitched breath, i know my every other glance smothers
they won’t know my bed is where you come to
but this price on my head isn’t for free
and i know you love the feeling of a taboo
but you’ll worship me like a devotee
and even when i walk away, on you i’ll feel like a tattoo


Senior Muskaan Grewal

i didn’t save your contact to my phone

and whenever a text came in

i always had to go through the list in my head to figure out who it was

the thought of that makes me sick to my stomach

guilt and regret do not taste good

horrible alone and worse together


i always thought there was a later

a later for me to type those letters of your name

and take a picture of us for the contact photo

i always thought there was a later

until there wasn’t

and then i didn’t know what to think then


and when i scrawled that letter to you

on my best paper that wasn’t mine

and waited to write you another one

because i thought we had later

i had to swallow down that cocktail of guiltregret

one more time


because it has been a year

and i swallow down your words to sober me up daily

and i chew the knowledge that you kept that letter on your nightstand

and that i wore your jewelry every day of my sister’s wedding

and that i was your baby niece

and that you called me miss missy more time than i could count

and that my niece loves me with half of the passion that she loved you and you loved her with

until my jaw goes numb

and i feel like i can make it through one more day

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