Coffee killed Captain Kangaroo again

Share this:

My wise husband splurged on a new espresso machine for our anniversary. The purchase was not budgeted, but my husband, smart man that he is, views the new machine as a solid investment in the happiness of our household.

I do love my caffeine.

The beautiful new machine, a relatively inexpensive one, is a solid step up from the really cheap one I bought last year to replace the super-cheap one I trashed the year before.

So, when the new machine arrived, all buff and shiny, I set it on the kitchen counter, admiring its size and heft. I practiced with the ground-coffee holders (one for brewing two cups and one for one); they filled easily and clicked crisply into place.

Most importantly, the machine brewed a great cup of espresso.

So, I’ve been in latté heaven.

This morning, up rather early, I made a latté and fired up my laptop. I had a busy day ahead, and, oh, the coffee was so good. No, make that AMAZING. The perfectly brewed latté was hot and snappy, in the largest mug I own, crowned with a nice head of foam.

I sipped and I worked, my attention span bouncing from one thing to the next like lightning.

I fired off one tweet, then another. I wrote a piece for The Livingston Post, rearranged the website’s front page, and did a few web-queen things.

I kissed my kid goodbye.

I scratched the dog’s ears.

I went back to Facebook.

I checked the local newspaper and radio station websites to see if anything had blown up overnight.

On “Morning Joe,” host Joe Scarborough was getting worked up about something, so I listened in for a bit. I sent a couple more emails; I checked in on Twitter; I drank more coffee.

Then, a Facebook share caught my eye: “Captain Kangaroo dead at 76.”

Oh, say it aint so! I clicked the link, sorrowfully skimmed the post, and then shared it on Facebook: “RIP Captain Kangaroo.”

Captain Kangaroo, buddy of my childhood. What a shame.

“Captain Kangaroo died!” I called out to my husband as he dressed for work.

“Didn’t he die a while ago?” he said.

“A Facebook post says he died on Friday,” I said.

My husband shrugged, too busy leaving for work to worry about my sadness over the death of Captain Kangaroo.

I fired off a couple more emails, hopped to Facebook, then to Twitter. I read a bit of this and that, and found time for a couple quick Words With Friends moves before I had to get ready to leave for a meeting.


Working like a maniac, I got so much done, including mourning a piece of my childhood, all the while drinking the greatest latté ever brewed (did I mention it was AMAZING).

I checked Facebook one last time to find a post that said Captain Kangaroo actually died in 2004, not Friday.



What the …?

I did a news search for Captain Kangaroo — not a word about his death. A visit to Wikipedia told me that he died in 2004.

Someone was wrong, and I hoped it wasn’t me. I clicked on the link, which took me to the post that said Captain Kangaroo died on Friday.


Then I noticed the fine print at the top of the post — it published on Jan. 24, 2004.

OMG – I was spreading over-8-year-old info on Facebook. How could that happen?

I leapt back to Facebook to see if I could undo what I had done, but it was too late — people were already commenting — so I posted a follow-up: “OMG! Proof that I need to SLOW DOWN in the morning — I shared that Captain Kangaroo died and wished him peaceful repose. Then, a sharp-eyed friend noted that the beloved guy of my childhood actually died in 2004. I re-read the ‘Captain Kangaroo dies’ story from MSNBC and saw that it was posted in 2004. Sorry if I harshed anyone’s morning unnecessarily.”

I sat still for a moment, realizing that I was feeling oddly exhuberant. The last time I felt like this was while driving alone Up North last summer. Fueled by a party-sized latté and an oatmeal cookie from the Mount Pleasant Biggby’s, I found myself accompanying Bruce Springsteen on “Thunder Road” at the top of my lungs.

It was one of those weird moments, sort of what I imagine an out-of-body experience to be like. For a minute or two, I was one with the music, totally unaware of how loud I was singing or how goofy I must have looked.

I was way wired then, and I was feeling the same way this morning.

Then it hit me!

I ran into the kitchen and removed the ground-coffee holder from the shiny, new espresso machine. I got the other coffee holder out of the drawer.

One was twice as large as the other.

Guess which I’ve been using to brew my AMAZING latté.

If you guessed the double shot holder, you’d be right.

I’d sucked down enough caffeine to power my entire house.

I took a moment to clear my mind. I checked back on Facebook.

A funny friend posted this on my Captain Kangaroo mea culpa:

“OK, you better sit down. I have something to tell you about Mr. Rogers.”


About Maria Stuart 211 Articles
Journalist Maria Stuart lives in Howell. She worked at The Livingston County Press/Livingston County Daily Press & Argus as a reporter, editor and managing editor from 1990-2009. She is often spotted holding court at Uptown Coffeehouse. You can check out her website by clicking here.