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Best Way To Beat A Caffeine Addiction? 1337

ethanms writes "I'm pretty sure that I'm addicted to caffeine... I get nasty headaches if I skip coffee and soda for a day. If I go even longer, then the headaches get worse and I start to become (even more of) a pain in the ass to those around me. Within five or ten minutes of a cup of joe or can of Mountain Dew the headache is gone and I feel fine... There's plenty of advice out there for dealing with addiction, but I'm really interested in how other /. users have managed and controlled their own caffeine intake, especially considering how heavily it is pushed by many development / engineering communities. 'Just drink more' isn't really the answer I'm after either."
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Best Way To Beat A Caffeine Addiction?

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  • Easy (Score:5, Funny)

    by boatboy ( 549643 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:36PM (#7855193) Homepage
    Start smoking.
    • by rkuris ( 541364 ) <.moc.yfinu. .ta. .kr.> on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:53PM (#7855370) Homepage
      Here's a paper [] describing the positive effects of nicotine. Since cancer generally takes 20-30 years from the time you start smoking, if you're around 50 or 60 years old, the positive effects of starting to smoke outweigh the negative effects, although the studies aren't complete [] yet.

      Some doctors have considered prescribing nicotine [] as a cure for a variety of ailments, including schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, attention deficit disorder and colitis.

      I'm thinking about it!

      • by Hein_or_Henk ( 629782 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @08:20PM (#7855985)

        The article starts like this:

        For the smoker, nicotine has a positive effect on attention, cognition and mood."

        So in other words the positive effects are there only for the already addicted smoker who is suffering the effects of withdrawal symptoms.

        This is probably similar to the effect coffee drinkers perceive when they have their first cup of the day. It's as if a mist clears in your head and you can think clearly again. This mist however is something that only coffee drinkers experience and is a coffee withdrawal symptom. People who do not drink coffee do not have a mist in their heads to clear up.

        So be smart just don't smoke!

        • > This mist however is something that only coffee drinkers experience and is a coffee withdrawal symptom. People who do not drink coffee do not have a mist in their heads to clear up.

          Did you read the parent post? It mentions schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, attention deficit disorder and colitis. Three of those four could definitely be described as having a "mist in their heads." As for colitis, doctors aren't sure what aspect of cigarette smoke controls it, but straight nicotine doesn't seem to have the
      • by jayhawk88 ( 160512 ) <> on Thursday January 01, 2004 @09:13PM (#7856234)
        I also hear that feeding your children lead-based paint chips can make for a tasty afternoon snack that is low in calories and fat. What more could a parent ask for?
    • I was gonna say booze or suicide, whichever suits your life best.
    • Re:Easy (Score:3, Interesting)

      by c1ay ( 703047 )
      Do you smoke? Once I quit smoking I gradually lost my craving for coffee as well. It wasn't long before I caught myself pouring a cup of coffee and noticing later that I didn't even drink it. Prior to all this I was in exactly the same boat as you, no coffee = blinding headache. If you do smoke I used Nicorette to help me with my demon, perhaps it will help you with yours.
    • Re:Easy (Score:5, Funny)

      by M. Silver ( 141590 ) <silver&phoenyx,net> on Thursday January 01, 2004 @09:49PM (#7856442) Homepage Journal
      Start smoking.

      Getting pregnant worked for me.

      Most slashdotters will have to go with the smoking thing, though.
  • Mental discipline (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Brahmastra ( 685988 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:36PM (#7855194)
    How about just stop taking caffeine, nicotine, or whatever it is you are addicted to (if you wish to stop that is).
    • by I Be Hatin' ( 718758 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:44PM (#7855289) Journal
      How about just stop taking caffeine, nicotine, or whatever it is you are addicted to (if you wish to stop that is).

      I suppose that would work, but have you ever had a caffeine-withdrawl headache? Maybe spending an indefinite amount of time with piercing pain in your head sounds okay to you, but I'd imagine ethanms would rather find a less painful alternative.

      • Re:Mental discipline (Score:5, Informative)

        by blincoln ( 592401 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:02PM (#7855460) Homepage Journal
        I suppose that would work, but have you ever had a caffeine-withdrawl headache?

        I stopped getting them (the caffeine-based ones at least, see below) after about a month when I quit.

        I'd tried reducing my caffeine intake, but I just kept going back to it (especially when I had early morning meetings), so I figured cold turkey was the only way it was going to happen.

        I'd been drinking caffeinated beverages of one kind or another for about fifteen years (since I was ten or so), and at the end of it I was taking No-Doze in the morning and drinking a thermos full of coffee or black tea every day.

        It's been about six months, and I have only two minor complaints:

        - I can't drink the tea at my favourite Chinese restaurant [] anymore.

        - *Not* drinking caffeine (a painkiller) means that now I feel the migraines I've apparently been getting for a few years (according to my doctor). They're pretty infrequent, though, so I just keep a bottle of aspirin around.

        It took about three months before I wasn't really tired in the mornings. After that I was able to sleep normally and my hands don't shake anymore. Maybe I can finally use a soldering iron properly =).
        • Re:Mental discipline (Score:4, Informative)

          by Dixie_Flatline ( 5077 ) <vincent DOT jan DOT goh AT gmail DOT com> on Thursday January 01, 2004 @08:11PM (#7855927) Homepage
          Migraines tend to be a problem where the blood vessels in your head expand, causing extra pressure in your head. This is why many migraine sufferers have 'aura' or weird visual effects. The expanded blood vessels put pressure on the optic nerve.

          Caffeine is a vaso-constrictor, meaning it makes your blood vessels contract. It's a common cure for mild migraines. I suppose you can consider it a painkiller in the sense that it works a bit like a mild anti-inflammatory. Other things that may help are ice on the side of the head that feels warmest (which is also fairly common with migraine - a feeling that one side of your head is extra warm.)

          Anti-inflammatories are commonly prescribed to fight migraine. Ibuprophen works on mild ones, you'll see Celebrex and other more powerful ones prescribed as well. Asprin is also a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory that works for some people.

          There are a lot of other migraine drugs out there, including a bunch of migraine abortives that work well, even on severe (ie. the kind that cause vomiting and extreme pain) migraines.

          I'm not a doctor, but my SO has had migraines for years. As a result, I know a lot about symptoms and (temporary) cures.

          Lastly, despite the fact that the tea has caffiene in it, does it really mean that you can't drink it anymore? I've cut all caffiene from my life, but I still enjoy the tea at the restaurant with no ill effect.
          • Actually, no. (Score:5, Informative)

            by The Tyro ( 247333 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @10:58PM (#7856809)
            Disclaimer: I'm an ER doc, and I treat several migraine patients a day.

            The origin of migraines is incompletely understood, and the vascular theory is only one of the hypotheses that are used to explain the origin of migraines. In addition to the vascular theory, some evidence points to serotonin and dopamine receptor involvement... the truth of the matter is that nobody knows.

            However, that said, read this thread and you'll understand why an entire industry has grown up around migraine treatment... everyone's are different. There are entire clinics and centers that do nothing but treat migraines... do an internet search and you'll find some. There are neurologists out there who make a good living treating nothing but migraines.

            If you read the list of medications that are used to treat migraines, it reads like a pharmacy inventory... everything from cardiac medications to anti-seizure medications, sedatives, steroids, anesthetics, narcotics, anti-psychotics, and everything inbetween. If a person has migraines long enough, they eventually find out something that works for them, primarily through trial and error... once you go through the common drugs with no relief, there's almost no other way to find a treatment for refractory migraines.

            For my own part, I've found one thing that almost universally relieves migraines: sleep. Sometimes the treatment of a particularly severe migraine involves nothing short of knocking a person out with drugs so that they can go home and sleep it off.

            Back on topic, however... caffeine is an effective treatment for migraines, particularly in the early phase of the headache. Keep in mind, however, that one man's meat is invariably another man's poison: caffeine relieves migraines in most people, but causes them in others.

            All I can say is know your triggers, avoid them, and treat EARLY.

        • by nick_davison ( 217681 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @08:16PM (#7855953)
          It took about three months before I wasn't really tired in the mornings.

          I had to stop, like that, because of a medical diagnosis. Well, I could have continued but the consequences were unspeakable.

          The same diagnosis turned around pretty much everything, health-related, in my life. I changed my diet and started going to the gym every morning.

          The gym was really the secret for me. I've been a sworn night person for my entire life. After a month or two at the gym, my body got convinced it was supposed to fire up at 6:30am every day and started taking care of itself.

          It's convinced me that there are morning and night people, just not in the permanent, unalterable way most people think of it. Your metabolism shifts very slowly to suit what you do with your body. If, like most coders, you do next to no exercise during the day but regularly push your body to perform coding jags late at night, your metabolism will have shifted to suit that time of day. If you cut out the late nights and start pushing your body to the gym every morning, it will convert over.

          The only problem is, it takes a good month or two of serious commitment. I always swore people who said what I just said were full of it - but then I would try it for a couple of weeks, or go to the gym two mornings a week while sneaking in several late nights. Once I had to completely switch over, it happened relatively quickly.

          So, caffine is one way to get going in the mornings. Alternatively, get to the gym, every morning, without fail, and cut out the late nights, for two months. If, like me, you lose 10% of your body weight in the process, the attention from women'll more than make the effort worthwhile.

          Just one request: Leave it a couple of months. Those of us who go regularly already have to put up with the New Year's Resolution crowd for the next six weeks. ;)
      • One quitter's story (Score:4, Interesting)

        by zerocircle ( 559005 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @11:09PM (#7856854)
        I suppose that would work, but have you ever had a caffeine-withdrawl headache?

        Yup. After pretty much living on Pepsi and then Coke for my high school and college years (though I was never a coffee drinker), I stopped cold turkey in January 1992. I had a headache -- constant, low-level, not piercing -- until that April. Then my head was fine.

        What amazed me most was that my digestion improved dramatically. After about a month, I realized with great surprise that my whole food tube worked smoother than ever; my colon had been virtually tied in a knot for years. This may seem excessively prosaic, but believe me, well-working innards are an unfathomable blessing.

        A couple of years ago, in my usual post-prandial sleepyheadedness, I decided to try a Frappuccino. BAM! I was awake! I was mentally productive! I was ON! And, very shortly, my abdomen was vaguely crampy and bound-up. I tried it again the next day: The mental effect was far less pronounced, but the digestive malaise was back in full force. That was the last experiment I needed.

        After quitting, I did have a more pronounced fuzz in my head in the morning, much harder to shake off. But I've found that an all-night decongestant removes that and lets me bounce easily out of bed in the morning -- it seems to be breathing-related, not a matter of caffeination (though the two may be linked somehow; IANAMD).

        It's hell for a while, but if you stick with it, you may find that quitting caffeine (and paying separate attention to your other problems) makes you a lot healthier in the long run. Did for me.

    • Re:Mental discipline (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Radish03 ( 248960 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:58PM (#7855425)
      That's not always a viable solution.

      I get migranes, and for them I take Excedrin Migrane pills. Usually I take 2, which in total contain 130 mg of caffiene (~3 cans of coke, ~9 Penguin Mints), and this makes the headache go away pretty quickly. For about a month straight during my senior year of high school, I got a migrane at almost the same time each day (give or take 20 minutes) so I would take the Excedrin and the headache would go away in about an hour. I was somewhat suspicious about this, as it happened daily, and I started to wonder if I was addicted to caffiene, so I experemented a bit. Some days I would bring something caffienated with me (like a Code Red Mountain Dew) and drink that before classes started. And wouldn't you know it, I didn't get headaches those days.

      When I did get a headache, however, I would have trouble paying attention to the class (paying more attention to the feeling that my brain was getting too large for my skull). So to go without caffiene completely wasn't a very good idea, so I started working myself off of it slowly. I got some caffienated mints, and would just eat a few of those before I knew I'd get a headache, and maybe a few more around the time I'd get a headache if I felt one coming on. And thats pretty much how I dealt with it, but I had to take it pretty slowly to ween myself from the caffiene.
  • by Goalie_Ca ( 584234 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:36PM (#7855198)
    Just stick it through and soon enough you'll be free. Learn to drink water instead.
    • Just stick it through and soon enough you'll be free. Learn to drink water instead.

      My advice exactly.

      Most of the common addictions (nicoteine, alcohol, caffiene) have a short withdrawl period, usually just a couple of days. I would plan 2 or 3 days for it, over the weekend might be best unless you can take the productivity hit at work. Just accept the fact that you're going to be an irritable jerk for those few days, and maybe forwarn the people you care about.

      Drink lots of water, and try to get plenty
      • by WindBourne ( 631190 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:37PM (#7855717) Journal
        Most of the common addictions (nicoteine, alcohol, caffiene) have a short withdrawl period, usually just a couple of days.

        Obviously, you have not been a smoker, a drinker, or soda drinker.
        I have quite smoking twice. The first time, It was somewhat difficult, but not bad. I did not smoke for 6 months. Then I thought just one while at a bar. By the night I had smoked a packed and was back at it for about 4 years. When I quit the 2'nd time, it was a bitch. For the first week, I basically stade away from everyone; I was on a 1 week vacation and just kinda of slept through it. After that, I get rid of all my old smoking habits. To this day (3 years later), I still crave cigs when in old habits (such as eating and studying).

        In years past, I have drank large amounts (as well as did other things) and would be considered an alchoholic by some definations. Yet, I found it trivial to go with out for months on end. Each of us have their own addictions.

        So what is the point? If the poster is having a difficult time withdrawing and really wishes to, then I suggest taking about 1 week off from work, avoid old habits, and sleep it off. Once you get past it, then avoid all caffeine. Over time, you may be able to go back to a little bit, but based the posting, I doubt it.
        • by muffen ( 321442 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @08:14PM (#7855941)
          I quit smoking too, and I did it cold turkey a few years ago. I didn't smoke for two years, but then I picked it up again (at burning man of all places in the world).

          Second time around, I was really pissed off at myself. I decided enough is enough, and I stopped, and haven't smoked for a while now. I've been weak at the pub a few times since I quit the second time, but I've managed to recover pretty nicely. Next morning when I woke up after having a cigarette in the pub, I decided it was only a minor setback, and I went on track straight away. Now it's been a few months since I had the last cigerette, and I feel really good.

          It may have been easier for me to quit smoking than a lot of people, because I didn't actually like smoking. I hated what it did to my throat. I'd wake up with a bad throat, and that annoyed me.

          BTW: I was smoking for around 7 years in total.

          I know that you are trying to break a caffeine addiction, but quitting smoking is very similiar. You just have to do it cold turkey. If it gets really bad, just remember why it is that way. Instead of thinking that a cup of coffie will fix the problem, remember that it is the source of the problem. You've come as far as asking for help, that means you really wanna quit... just do it!!

          In the end, only YOU can do it. Remeber that.
      • by dsplat ( 73054 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:38PM (#7855722)
        Ordinary headache remedies will reduce the severity of the headache during caffeine withdrawl. However, some of them include caffeine. Check the label.

        Also, dehydration isn't going to help anything. Make specific plans for what you are going to drink. Caffeine-free sodas work okay if that's what you're looking for. Water and juice are fine. I switched to seltzer. I lost the caffeine and the caleries at the same time. And it tastes better than the tap water.
      • The upside that you have to look forward to is that you won't be nearly as tired all the time, and thus you won't feel so much like you need the stuff. And, of course, on the occasions when you do really need it, a little will go farther than you could possibly imagine now. (I typically have about a half cup of coffee maybe twice a month and it really kicks my ass, and I am NOT a small guy).

        There are other interesting effects from stopping caffeine intake.

        One is the effect on perceived intellectual quick
    • Get the flu (Score:4, Insightful)

      by legojenn ( 462946 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:02PM (#7855457) Homepage
      I finally broke a caffeine addiction that I have had since University a decade ago. Just get sick so bad you are near death. You won't want to eat for days. Don't worry about the craving beacuse you will be only semi-conscious anyways and the kitchen, Bridgehead, Starbucks, etc will all be too far away. Even the smell of food, will make you run for the loo. When you get mobile, you will be dehydrated. You will probably prefer to drink water as it hydrates you, I mean it is its job. By the time you are feeling better, eating, moving, breathing, your body will have forgotten about coffee. Drink another one at your own peril and don't get a flu shot.
    • by abhisarda ( 638576 )
      drink tea!
      Im not kidding. Instead of giving up coffee completely..
      substitute one cup(or 2) of coffee with tea the first week... and so on until you're drinking only tea.
      And then gradually cut down to 3 cups of tea a day.

      Look around for good quality tea []). You might have to experiment a bit.
      For caffeine and flavor, I'd suggest black tea. You can make it the same way you make coffee
      but strain the concoction a second time through the filter.

      Understand that caffeine and sugar are a killer combination. Both of
    • Well, I gave up all caffiene about 4 years ago, and am very thankful. it has made my life a lot better IMHO.
      I was at a dangerous point (unless people think a whole packet of nodoze-plus in one go is normal..) and just decided to stop.
      Now I am ultra sensitive to caffiene, but just don't need it. It is a very bad physically addictive drug.

      My advice - avoid sugar as a substitute - you can get diet caffiene free cock for example (well, here in NZ anyway).

      Also avoid chocolate, coffee, many caffinated soft drin
    • Yeah. Turkey is a dish best served cold. Sure, it might suck more than most people's - when I stopped drinking Mt. Dew, my withdrawal was pretty incapacitating and lasted at least 2-3 weeks. (I had $39 in late fees at the library when I finally made it back...)
    • Most headaches are caused by dehydration. If you don't substitute something from the watter you were getting from the coffee and soft drinks, you will indeed get a headache. This is not a sign of addiction. Stick one of those two or three gallon water bottles from the grocery store in your cubicle and drink it like coffee and you won't have headaches.

      Coffee and soda are nasty stuff, but there is nothing wrong with caffeine. You will feel coffee on a good long bike ride. Don't even try to slake your th

  • suggestion (Score:4, Funny)

    by larry bagina ( 561269 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:36PM (#7855201) Journal
    get yourself addicted to crack or heroin, or CmdrTaco's dirty underwear.
  • multiple withdrawals (Score:5, Interesting)

    by abysmilliard ( 557352 ) <graye@livejourna[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:37PM (#7855207) Homepage Journal
    The last time I quit caffeine (it only stuck for a few months), I killed it good by ALSO giving up cigarettes, sugar, and drinking at the same time It creates a situation where you feel so fucking miserable that really, you stop worrying about caffeine or really anything else, for that matter Anyways, caffeine exits your system after about three days. I suggest giving it up when you next have the flu, next have a really, REALLY bad bender, or next time you have a fever. The other feelings will be so painful, additional misery shouldn't bother you (much)
    • by G. W. Bush Junior ( 606245 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:14PM (#7855542) Journal
      The explanation i got from a biochemist when i tried to quit was that the signal-molecules that are there when you are tired compete with the caffeine molecules for the cells receptors (cafeeine is a competitive inhibitor).

      The body compensates by overexpressing the receptors, so after a while everything works like you before you started drinking coffee, but if you try to quit you become tired very quickly (because of the extra receptors).

      The receptors have a turnover time of a little more than a week, so if you that long you should be ok again... but it's not really a question of the caffeine leaving the body, as much as a question of protein-turnover in your brain.

      The advantage over cafeeine addiction over cigarette addiction is that when the physical addiction is gone, then you are ok.
      With smoking, the physical addiction is just a tiny part of your addiction.

      (note: I am NOT a biochemist)
      • "I don't know that Atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered patriots." -George Bush

        That's George HW Bush who said that, by the way. I don't have any real reason to belive that GWB feels differently, but I still wouldn't imply that he said it by leaving out the middle initials.
      • by nanoakron ( 234907 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @10:19PM (#7856610)
        Well, interestingly...caffeine is a noncomeptitive antagonist - i.e. it doesn't compete at the same cell-surface binding site for it's adrenergic (i.e. adrenaline and noradrenaline) agonists.

        Instead, caffeine (and other methylxanthines such as theophylline) act by blocking cyclic-AMP degeneration by intracellular phosphodiesterases. This was kinda what Pfizer were looking for when they stumbled across viagra (sildenafil) - a cardiac specific phosphodiesterase which they could inhibit to increase the affect of circulatory adrenaline on myocardium.

        So...what are the take home messages - caffeine in high doses will act like other adrenergic agonists...and will to some extent mimic such 'evil and hated' drugs as cocaine in its actions (note to government: ban immediately!!! panic now - there's no time for rational thought).

        I don't deny caffeine addiction exists - I recently treated a young guy admitted with cardiac chest pain whose only vice was 15 cups of coffee a day for the past 5 years. Like any other addiction process, it will take a long time to overcome and each time you see a coka cola it may prove hard to resist.

        But there are no drugs that immediately come to mind that would help the immediate withdrawal process....perhaps you could discuss the situation with your doctor and ask for low dose diazepam for particularly bad situations. Most reasonable GPs would give it to you in the UK - I don;t know about the US however.

        But, best wishes with the new year ahead, and just be thankful that the only thing you've likely wrecked so far are your teeth. Just stop now before it gets worse.

        Best wishes,

  • by James A. C. Joyce ( 733782 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:37PM (#7855209) Homepage Journal
    And don't suddenly stop your intake. Reduce it gradually, in transitional stages. This can be difficult, but it's worth the patience.
  • by herrlich_98 ( 267669 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:38PM (#7855215)
    Ask your doctor rather than ask Slastdot.
  • Worked for me... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nuxx ( 10153 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:39PM (#7855222) Homepage
    The best way I've found is to taper off your caffeine usage to maybe half a cup of coffee per day, then just stop.

    Yes, it sucks. Yes, you'll get headaches for four to five days. And yes, you may end up with some weird flu-like symptoms after about a week.

    But, after all the feeling-like-crap for a while, you'll be over it. You just have to deal with it.
  • by tuxette ( 731067 ) * <> on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:40PM (#7855233) Homepage Journal
    ...and found some pretty funny stuff:

    "Caffeine is the Christian drug of preference. Drink a glass of red wine or light up a cigarette during Sunday Night Fellowship Hour, and you will be thrown out on your ear. But a two-hundred-gallon pot of black adrenal-rush will bring friendly smiles of delight. The meeting would not be the same with the absence of its nutty aroma filling the church basement. Little white Styrofoam cups floating in small clusters of heavenly conversation." link []

    Otherwise, I found this interesting: Scientists cast doubt on caffeine addiction. []

  • try dilution (Score:4, Insightful)

    by chloroquine ( 642737 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:40PM (#7855238) Journal
    Why not try reducing your caffeine intake slowly. In a manner similar to people trying to quit smoking, change the mode of caffeine intake - instead of drinking coffee or soda, switch to those caffeinated mints and then limit yourself to a specific number of them a day. As the weeks pass, reduce that number.

    Alternatively, dilute your fully caffeinated coffee with decaf. Start with a 3caf:1caf mix and then bring that down to 1:1 and then 1:3 and so on.

    Good luck.

  • by Aqua OS X ( 458522 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:41PM (#7855250)
    You could always try medical marijuana. Odds are that'll get rid of the headaches.
  • Physical activity! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by FartingTowels ( 553440 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:41PM (#7855253)
    Start running/jogging an hour a day, every day -- this should be enough to get you going when you feel sleepy or tired.
  • Cold Turkey (Score:4, Informative)

    by nonmaskable ( 452595 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:42PM (#7855266)
    Just do it. I had headaches for a week, but I've been free 18 months now.

    Some hints for this approach - drink a lot of ice cold water. Use pain relief without caffine (some pills have caffine in them) when you need to feel normal. Eat healthy and exercise.

    I'll suck, but it'll end.
  • by sczimme ( 603413 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:43PM (#7855272)

    Drink lots of water.

    Take Bayer aspirin (contains a little caffeine) or Aleve to help with the headaches. (Motrin didn't help - YMMV.)

    Do not set your alarm - sleep as long as possible on the day you decide to quit. If I slept through the normal caffeine-consumption period (usually morning) I felt better. I don't know why.

    Oddly enough, going cold turkey (vice gradually decreasing caffeine intake) worked better for me.

    Good luck!

  • by Our Man In Redmond ( 63094 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:44PM (#7855286)
    I'm curious about the other side of the coin. I do about a six-pack of Diet Coke a day, but I don't seem to show any signs of addiction if I don't get my caffeine. No headaches, no jitters, nothing. In addition, it doesn't seem to affect my ability to sleep. The only difference I can tell between the caffeinated and non-caffeinated versions is taste.

    Granted that's my major source of caffeine (I don't do coffee or tea) so in any case I don't get a lot. I wondered whether other people have seen similar effects, and how widespread this might be.
    • by oneiron ( 716313 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:51PM (#7855350)
      Yea, that's how I was. Never noticed any headaches or anything else... I never had problems sleeping.

      Don't be fooled, though. The caffiene is still affecting you. You will get much better sleep if you're not hopped up on caffiene. Caffiene keeps you from reaching the lower frequencies of brainwave activity where your body recovers the best... Quit for a week, and you might notice feeling much more refreshed in the morning. I know I did. That's why I never went back.
    • I guess there is a certain amount of steady intake thats needed for you to be addicted to something.

      When you consistently overshoot that limit and keep exceeding it, you tend to have grow dependent on it.

      There was a time when coffee would do nothing to me. It would not affect my sleep and it would really not make me active or anything, and I used to have about one or two cups a day.

      However, I just started having more coffee just to feel the effect of it, and I found that beyond a limit I would feel hot,
    • 6 Diet Cokes has the caffeine of 2 cups of coffee. It is perfectly normal that that dosage wouldn't affect you. For coffee drinkers, it is not uncommon to drink 8 or more cups a day.
    • by palmtree3141 ( 515602 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:55PM (#7855823)
      Oddly enough, caffeine's effects on people vary greatly and has a pretty high correlation with how introverted or extroverted a person is... Extroverts respond to coffee, introverts to alcohol, generally. It's not perfect, but a very statistically significant correlation.
  • Medicine (Score:3, Informative)

    by Herkum01 ( 592704 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:45PM (#7855299)

    Ibuprofen, lots of it! :)

    Periodically I get hooked on caffiene, it is poor discipline on my part that I feel a need to develop a comfort habit. It takes me about two weeks to get through withdrawl and I am back to normal and I feel much better than when I ever started doing whatever.

    My advice is take something that will reduce the symptoms that is not dangerous and only when you really need them. Eventually your body adapts to its new situation just don't create a new addictive situation! :) The question is can you hold out long enough for your body to make the adjustment. Just ask a smoker if he has tried to quit and how many times, it is not necessarially an easy thing to do.

    Good Luck

  • Drink a lot of water (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Go Aptran ( 634129 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:48PM (#7855326)
    I quit drinking coffee three weeks ago. Drinking lots of water helps cut down on the headaches... and upping your protein intake seemed to help me as well. If going to the coffee house or stand is part of your daily routine, get a steamer (steamed milk) instead of coffee. It's 1/2 to 1/3 of the price of a mocha or a breve.

    One unexpected side effect of quitting is that my contact lenses work better. Coffee had the effect of dehydrating me to the point where my contacts would dry by two in the afternoon.

    Good luck. The first few days are the worst.

  • by gid-goo ( 52690 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:52PM (#7855365)
    Cut the amount you drink in half every other day. So if you have a normal mug you fill up only drink half that tomorrow. Do that for a couple of days and then cut that in half as well. When it gets ridiculous switch to green tea for a while. After a couple days of mild headaches you should be good to go. Takes a week or two depending on how bad your addiction is. The hardest thing was how tired I felt after quitting. That lasted for a week. Somebody said it was because adrenal function gets screwed up by coffee but I don't know. At least it's easier than cigarettes. I quit smoking 8 years ago and it is still hard to control my impulse to grab a smoke.
  • by TexVex ( 669445 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:53PM (#7855368)
    I've withdrawn from both fairly recently. My advice to you is, just deal with it for three or four days, then no more problem. That even applies to going cold turkey off cigarettes.

    I experienced headaches from the caffeine withdrawal, so I took ibuprofen. Drinking lots of water helps. Like, one to two gallons a day. You'll urinate a lot, but there are worse things that can happen.

    Nicotine withdrawal was...interesting. First you have to be serious about wanting to quit. You are going to feel like crap. But, truth be told, having a common cold feels worse. So just be prepared to deal with it. I went cold turkey. I couldn't sleep on the third night, so I felt extra crappy on the fourth day. But by the fifth day there were no more symptoms AT ALL. For this reason, and because every single other person I know who quit smoking did it by going cold turkey, I strongly advize not buying any nicotine gum or patches. Just show the guts it takes to freaking quit, and do it.

    I feel that most addiction withdrawal pains are psychological. I still think about lighting up every now and again. But it's not a craving -- it's just a little part of my years-long habit poking its head up out of the hole I buried it in to say "hi" every now and again.
  • by EDA Wizard ( 2225 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:54PM (#7855382)
    I was drinking a pot or more of coffee each morning with a couple of cokes and shots of espresso in the afternoon. I was getting light headed and would get tired randomly throughout the day. I decided it could be the caffeine so I tried to quit cold turkey and had similar problems quiting. The headaches were the worst part for me. My solution turned out to be a new blend of beans.

    I'm a Peet's Sumatra fan so I went to my local Peet's and had them blend a 50/50 mix of decaf Sumatra with a regular Sumatra. This alone cut my consumption by half and I didn't even notice the missing caffeine.

    I also dropped the espresso in the afternoon and I drink about half the coke that I used to.

    I'm thinking about dropping to a 25% caffeine blend of Sumatra and brewing two pots a day. It still will be less caffeine than I used to drink and it gives me something to drink in the afternoon.

    Good luck. Be happy you aren't trying to quit crack. My half crack plan doesn't work as well as this.
  • Masturbate more (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ToadMan8 ( 521480 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:55PM (#7855388)
    Do you think about drinking coffee / dew when you are masturbating? I didn't think so.

    Really though, what causes the headaches (my most hated withdrawl symptom) is the capalaries in your head constricting back a bit after the caffine caused dialation and thus the headache (same w/ other headaches, just not caused by caffine).

    Sex (and thus masturbation) releases natural chemicals that can reverse some of those effects.
  • try this (Score:3, Insightful)

    by .@. ( 21735 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @06:57PM (#7855418) Homepage
    Switch to Yerba Mate.
  • How my mom did it (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Mark_in_Brazil ( 537925 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:09PM (#7855503)
    My mother was a serious caffeine addict, but didn't know it. She did know she was consuming a lot, and decided to stop. When she stopped, she started getting really bad headaches. It didn't take her long to figure out that caffeine made the headaches go away and not taking caffeine would invite them back. Her solution was remarkable for its simplicity and ingenuity. It was true nerd solution, but not produced by a nerd (I think the nerdiness alleles passed to me by my parents were recessive, but got the chance to shine and show what they could do in me).
    Here's what Mom did...
    She was buying coffee beans and grinding them herself. She got some decaf beans. She started with almost all non-decaf beans and just a little bit of decaf, ground them together, and made her coffee normally. After that, over the course of a few weeks, she ramped up the decaf percentage (ramping down the caffeine-filled beans at the same time, of course). After those weeks were over, she was drinking almost pure decaf, and then the transition to 100% decaf (or thereabouts-- the decaffeination process is not perfect and is probably worse in whole beans than in grounds due to the relatively low surface area) was easy.
    Mom's body apparently reacted to changes in caffeine dosage like the famous frog in a pot of hot water. I've been told (usually in the context of a discussion on eroding civil liberties) about an experiment that showed that if you put a frog into a pot of really hot water, the frog feels the high temperature and just hops out. On the other hand, if you put the frog in a pot of cool water and start gently heating it, the frog does not notice the gradual temperature changes and ends up dying when the water gets hot enough. Similarly, when Mom tried to go from lots of caffeine to zero caffeine, her body freaked out, and she had to suffer through splitting headaches. On the other hand, when she gradually ramped down her caffeine dosage, the body was able to adjust to the small changes, and she was able to go to full decaf without headaches.

    BTW, I was forced to quit caffeine toward the end of the Fall quarter of my 2nd year in grad school. At the time, I was drinking multiple 2-liter bottles of Diet Coke at home every day, plus several coffees and Diet Cokes on campus. I had to drink Diet Coke; if I'd consumed the same volume of regular Coke, I would have weighed about 900 pounds. Anyway, I started having serious problems with my stomach. Basically, my entire upper digestive system would convulse like I was vomiting, but nothing would come up. The Doctor asked me if this might be stress-related, and I laughed and told him I didn't know. He understood-- I was never NOT under stress, so I had no control for comparison. Well, he suggested a really bland diet, cutting out a whole bunch of things I consumed regularly. I looked at it and thought "I can either start eating like a very old man at age 23, or I can drop the one thing I know I'm abusing." I quit caffeine cold turkey. At the time, I already had a cold. The next week was a living Hell. I had headaches that made me want to scream, plus the symptoms of the cold, plus the lovely symptoms of the effects of the caffeine on my stomach. Oh yeah... and I had my final problem sets and the preparation for finals. Ugh. But I did get over it. The cold cleared up in the normal time for a cold, and the headaches only lasted a week or so. The symptoms of the damage to my stomach, on the other hand, lingered for years. I can now drink a guarana (Brazilian soft drink made from a berry that naturally contains caffeine) or really strong coffee and not have to heave and retch. But for years, I couldn't. Beware the dangers of caffeine, everyone.

    Anyway, for anyone who doesn't HAVE to quit caffeine RIGHT NOW and can take a few weeks to try to do it right, I recommend trying my mother's approach-- ramping down the non-decaffeinated portion of your coffee from 100% to 0% gradually, over the course of a few weeks. It worked for Mom.

  • by harks ( 534599 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:19PM (#7855580)
    I've found that its much much easier to quit caffeine than nicotine or alcohol, because the withdrawal symptoms are not much more than a headache and they go away relatively soon.

    A funny story, a friend of mine had a huge caffeine addiction (drank 20 or so cans of Coke a day) and decided to quit.... he was telling me about how he never has any caffeine any more while drinking his huge iced tea. I asked him about the iced tea, and he had no idea it was caffeinated. "Maybe thats why after I quit drinking Coke, I started drinking a ton of iced tea!"

    So be sure to know that caffeine is found in a bunch of stuff, like tea and chocolate.
  • by Natchswing ( 588534 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:19PM (#7855583)
    I myself had a similar problem. During my college years I was doing about one 2-liter bottle of Coca-Cola a day. I never drank water, just downed coke when I was thirsty. If I went for some time without having any it would give me a nasty headache but drinking it wasn't friendly on my stomach either. But, living off a few hours of sleep per night for a few years straight will do that to you.

    One day I just made the decision to stop. I went through about a week solid headache but after that the craving was gone, it really wasn't hard to get rid of.

    A year later I couldn't find anything to drink but a coke so I tried one and couldn't stand the taste. At this point I don't think I could ever drink Coke again, the taste is just nasty.

    Over time I finally moved myself to mostly water. Being a sugar addict also it took a little while to get used to drinking water. Water works well as an appetite suppressant as well as keeping you well hydrated. Your headaches may not be due to lack of caffeine as much as lack of water.

    The downfall is that you run to the bathroom more than anybody you know. But to trade that for less headaches, a happier stomach, and overall better health was definitely worth it. You'll find that drinking water instead of anything else will make you feel better. I found that feeling better was a big contributing factor to me being more productive, both at work and at home.

    Take a week and make sure you are well hydrated. WELL hydrated. A glass an hour. If your urine is almost clear you're doing well. If you get into too much water it may be good to replenish yourself with a sports beverage once in a while.

    That's another issue. When I drank coke all the time I thought Gatorade was too bland and didn't have any flavor. After a few months of dedicating myself to water a glass of gatorade tastes like pure sugar to me. Suddenly I don't crave sweets as much. Cakes, cookies, candy - they all seem a bit overpowering.

    All these positive things just from dropping the sugar and drinking water. Everybody was stunned when I first went to a restaurant and ordered water. Even I felt odd. Now it is just the obvious choice, everything else tastes far too sweet.

    Give it a try and let me know how it works for you!

  • by milkme123 ( 302350 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:19PM (#7855584)
    I was addicted to caffeine and sugar, big-time. Also I ate take-out every day and weighed 270lbs.

    1. I stopped drinking 3 litres of pop every day. After 36 hours, the migraine went away and I had no more physical need for caffeine.
    2. I weaned myself off of sugar over a month by drinking Kool-Aid with gradually less sugar addedd. Once I could handle that, I switched to 2 litres of plain water a day.
    3. I learned how to make stirfrys (and a few other quick/easy things) and stopped eating takeout.
    14 months later I've lost 70 pounds, eat healthy vegetables every day, and no longer drink pop or coffee.
  • Cold Turkey (Score:5, Insightful)

    by zaren ( 204877 ) <> on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:30PM (#7855663) Homepage Journal
    That's how you beat it.

    When my son was first born, my Mountain Dew habit went from a few cans a day to a few 2 liters a day (plus a few cans from the school vending machine, plus a Big Gulp on the way home...). After that, I got a job where one of the perks was a soda fountain - all the Pepsi / Coke products you could guzzle, at no charge! Geek heaven, it was... until I realized that not only was I an unbearable bastard on the weekends as I came down off of my buzz, but I'd put on another ten pounds. (My wife later informed me that she was getting ready to leave me, and take the kid with her, because of my non-caffinated attitude problem.)

    So after sitting down and thinking about it one day and figuing out that I could cut over 1000(!) calories a day out of my diet by quitting the Dew, and make myself an easier person to be around on top of it, I quit. No coming down gradually, no easing off, I just stopped. In the middle of the week, at that. I made sure to warn those around me about it, to keep them clear of me, and I also made sure to replace the Dew with water - LOTS of water, since I got 90% of my daily fluids from that yellow nectar.

    Holy flurking shnitt, did I have a doozy of a headache! Lasted me two days! But by the weekend, I was in pretty good shape. I made a few mistakes after that... like drinking it again about a week after I'd "quit". I got right back on the train with the very first drink; killer headache the next day. It took a few trips like that before I realized I couldn't touch the stuff AT ALL for a LONG time after I'd quit.

    So now, 2+ years later, I can hardly stand the taste of Dew - something I thought I'd never say :) I can have the occasional cola and suffer no ill effects the next day. Moderation is the key once you cut the ties. A little taste isn't going to kill you, but I know that if I put down a 2 liter in one sitting, I'd be back on that train again.

    Just quit the stuff cold turkey. Your body, and the people around you, will thank you for it.
  • by fzammett ( 255288 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:32PM (#7855673) Homepage
    I think it was a Saturday Night Live skit with Bob Newhart. Meant to be funny of course (and it was), but at the same time it's the single best piece of serious advice I've ever heard for anyone addicted to anything.

    STOP IT.

    That's it. Don't gimme all this psychobable, don't gimme all the physiological reasons it's not that simple, because it f'ing is.


    If you don't want to drink soda any more...

    STOP IT.

    It you don't want to touch yourself 10 times a day...

    STOP IT.

    If your a crack whore...


    Cigarettes shortening your life?...


    Your a 400 pound fat-ass that's about two porkchops away from a heart attack?...

    Say it with me...

    STOP IT!

    Just stop being a weak-minded fool, deal with the discomfort that will probably result from going cold turkey, and get over it all. JUST F'ING STOP IT. NOW!!
  • The Patch (Score:3, Informative)

    by C60 ( 546704 ) * <> on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:32PM (#7855676) Homepage
    Okay, so there isn't a patch, but there should be.

    To keep myself from turning into a raving lunatic without my coffee, I make a point of drinking one less cup of coffee a day for a week. Saturday night I take an ibuprofin, and sunday I go without coffee (or other stimulating beverages) completely. No withdrawls.

    Besides the fact that I'm incredibly poor and have a tendency to run out of coffee at the worst times, this is a habit I picked up when I was working 80 hour weeks. It had the added benefit of making the effects of my monday morning coffee all that much more stimulating. And of course, mondays were when I needed it the most.

    The magic key to success here is to drink lots of water. The best habit I have is to keep a 1 liter bottle of water with me at all times. It helps a lot with caffeine withdrawls, but only if you start drinking the water well before you start getting headaches. (I'm talking days before hand)
  • find your own level (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mihalis ( 28146 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:51PM (#7855795) Homepage

    I had a stage where I was abusing caffeine. I would drink 5 or 6 mugs of strong filter coffee during office hours, and I would also make a coffee or two before bed, especially if I'd had a drink. So I would be wrecked every morning and need more stimulation to get going.

    But after some health problems, I cut down. I don't enjoy my day as much with no coffee at all, and 1-2 coffees before mid-day seems to be tolerable, so my natural level is about 2 coffees before noon on average, with special dispensation for Friday and Saturday if I will be able to stay up as late as feels good, and then (and just as importantly) sleep in to make up.

    Maybe absolutely zero coffee would be best taking the strict view, but, you know what, we'll still die anyway.

  • cold turkey (Score:3, Interesting)

    by deviator ( 92787 ) <bdp@am[ ] ['nes' in gap]> on Thursday January 01, 2004 @07:55PM (#7855821) Homepage
    cold turkey worked for me when I was playing around with Atkins a bit - the first few days were pretty hellish, then everything was back to normal - energy levels were up consistently throughout the day.

    It stayed like that for several weeks...

    Until I took a vacation to Vegas, had a few espresso drinks and got rehooked on it. Oh well. I suspect I'll be in and out of caffeine for the rest of my life. It's just so good. :)

  • Some Alternatives (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DynaSoar ( 714234 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @08:50PM (#7856135) Journal
    Caffeine is one of 3 methylated xanthines, the others being theophylline and theobromine. Taking the others can serve to reduce withdrawal. Caffeine is the most addictive because it's the fastest acting of these, just as crack is the most addictive form of cocaine. You can find these chemicals in:

    1. Chocolate. It has 10% of the caffiene of coffee, but contains these other also. It also contains PEA, "an endogenous neuroamine, increases attention and activity in animals" ( PEA may be the most neglected and useful of the brain amines. Chocolate makes many people just feel better; this may be why.

    2. Guarana: An "herbal" (actually the inside bark of a tree) that contains all 3 of the chemicals, caffeine least. However, it can become a substitute addiction, and it costs more than chocolate. There was a soda that had guarana, but only as a flavoring, not a "suppliment". Some "power drinks" have guarana, but can also have ephedrine, which is not a good thing.

    3. Foods: Caffeine acts by increasing norepinepherine (NE) levels in the brain. Take it away and NE drops. This is the mechanism of addiction. Any foods high in phenylalanine or tyrosine are good dietary precursors to replace the NE the body isn't getting now that caffeine isn't forcing its production. High phenylalanine or tyrosine foods are typically your high-protein foods, meats and fishes, dairy products, whole oats and wheat. Here's a picture of the metabolic pathway involved ( asp?ID=356). You'll notice it says "(nor)adrenalin" instead of (nor)epinepherine. Same chemicals, outside or inside the blood/brain barrier. Yeah, caffeine gives you adrenalin.

    Caffeine truly is addicting. However, it is one of the weakest addictions. It's easy to break and the withdrawals are not bad. Also, it can typically be used safely by those previously addicted, without necessarily causing re-addiction.

    I am not a physician. But then I'm not prescribing anything, and what I offer as suggestions are not controlled substances. I am, however, a professional neuroscientist with a fair amount of experience in psychopharmacology, and prior to getting my doctorate, worked for several years as a licensed substance abuse counselor.

    Me, I'd go for the chocolate. Whether I need it or not.

    Q: Why is there no twelve step group for caffeine addiction?


  • by epine ( 68316 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @09:26PM (#7856292)

    Drinking that much coffee is not good for the body. I learned the hard way: wore out my adrenal system.

    It's not so easy to quit as some people suggest.

    First time I quit cold turkey, spent three days in bed with wracking headaches and no appetite for food. The headaches became less severe after three days, but my body was not yet at peace. Suffered unproductively for the better part of two weeks and then started drinking coffee again to get on with my life. But a lot less than before.

    Another iteration of quiting and unquiting got me down to about two or three large cups a day.

    Then I had a prescription medication that interacted badly with caffeine and I had to quit again. Still had the headaches for several days, but this time my life didn't stall completely. A month later I still couldn't function at full intensity, so I started drinking one cup each morning.

    At one cup of moderately strong coffee, I can quit anytime without a headache. At 1.5 cups per day, missing a day is risky. At 2 cups per day, I'm fully addicted. It can vary over a wide range from one person to another.

    After many hard fought battles, I figure it takes the best part of three months for the body to fully adjust to a different caffeince consumption level. People forget that coffee has hundreds of other alkaloids, not just caffeine. Decaf coffee affects cognitive structure (not in a good way) without causing the same vascular effects.

    Now I stick to about one cup a day, the level where I know I'm not addicted. Can miss a day with only a little blah to deal with.

    Tea never worked at all as a caffeine substitute for me, nor do any of the colas. It's not just the caffeine you have to live without.

    The best trick I learned was to change my brewing methods.

    First, use a high quality dark roast with intense flavour. Dark roast has less caffeine, because some of the caffeine is destroyed in the roaasting process. If the roast is good, I find I'm less tempted to cheat on the ratio.

    Don't use a French press. I love the body of a French press, but it comes at the price of extracting in triplicate. I switched to drip, which was (un)depressing at first, but I got used to it.

    Grind your own beans. Some roasts can be ground a lot finer without losing flavor or becoming bitter. A fine grind with a quick brew cycle will extract more flavour relative to the amount of caffeine. Don't ask me about the physics, I don't understand it either.

    Brew in smaller batches. I used to use brew length as an indicator for the quality of a roast. If the roast can be extracted in a French press for more than four minutes without becoming nasty, the roast is really good. With a French press, the coffee tastes better if you pour from about ten inches above the top of the Bodum in a slow drizzle. I could never figure out why this worked, but then I learned that this is just enough time for the water temp. to drop below 200 degrees. Water right at the boiling point does something nasty to coffee beans. But, oh, I was saying don't use a French press only the memories are too good.

    Even with a drip, the extraction cycle is important. The problem is that if the coffee tastes like crap, my first instinct is to fix the problem by tossing twice as many grounds in the filter basket.

    Drip coffee makers don't scale: the length of the extraction cycle varies with the amount of water processed. Shorter extraction cycles are better for getting good coffee with less caffeine.

    For my small Braun drip, anything over half a pot creates difficulties with balance. I drew a black line at the fill level which produces an optimum exrtraction cycle: it works out to two 10 ounce cups.

    Even with the black line, I had a constant battle with an expanding miniscus. Some days I could make that miniscus so large, I could squeeze an entire third mug out of the deal.

    The stroke of genius was to throw the caraffe away. Now I brew my coffee
  • by blamanj ( 253811 ) on Thursday January 01, 2004 @10:49PM (#7856768)
    I get up first in the morning and make the coffee. She asked me to get her off of caffeine without the headaches, and I did it. It took about three weeks.

    I simply mixed decaf beans in with the "leaded" beans gradually over time until they were 100% decaf. Like I said, I did it over about three weeks, maybe 80:20 for 5 days, 60:40 for 5 days, etc. The day I told her she was completely decaffeinated, she was surprised. No headaches, no side effects.
  • by billmaly ( 212308 ) <bill@maly.mcleodusa@net> on Friday January 02, 2004 @12:46AM (#7857551)
    This is one of those damned interventions I've read about. GET AWAY FROM ME...I can handle's not a problem, I don't want to stop...NOOOOO GIVE IT BACK...GIVE US BACK OUR PRECIOUS's ours and ......WE....wants it!!!!!!!

"Mach was the greatest intellectual fraud in the last ten years." "What about X?" "I said `intellectual'." ;login, 9/1990