My spider sense was tingling

Something was up. Something terrible.

I’m always on the lookout for conspiracies… we all should be, but as you probably know, THEY would rather have you sit placidly in your stall like penned calves whose only job is to get fattened for the kill.

But I won’t be misled. I saw it when it happened.

On Friday, our usual coffee maker and urns vanished, to be replaced by a machine. A vending machine.

So far the coffee is free, but I have noticed the inconspicuous “Insert coins here” label next to a slot on the side. I’d be willing to bet on my pet gerbil’s grave that within a month or so, we will be paying for coffee. Oh, at first it will be a nominal charge… say 25 cents… but after a while they’ll quietly raise it to thirty. Then to fifty… and so on.

Before long, we will be signing away our paycheques to support our caffeine addiction.

Or is that too obvious? Have you seen Deep Space Nine? In that (unbearably awful) Star Trek spinoff, the Jem Haddar are a race of soldiers, genetically engineered to be vicious, cruel, and have a permanent addiction to a drug called tetracell white, which can only be provided by their masters. Obedience through addiction.

Free caffeine… as long as we’re good employees.