Bring on the cocoa

Truques e amuletos que vencem o pânico da página em branco.
Ou uma desculpa para eu contribuir para riqueza da Green and Black’s.
E cientificamente comprovada, são as endorfinas.

Em “Works like a charm”, Guardian

Douglas Coupland: chocolate

“Last summer I had some stomach problems and had to remove several items from my diet – chocolate, hard liquor and tomatoey foods. Around that same time began a period of writer’s block that, after seven months or so, began to frighten me. I think all writers are superstitious that way – that somehow, some day, whatever it is that makes their voice their own will simply leave. When you’re inside writer’s block it’s horrible because you’re simply not you any more. You’re this person who used to be you. Now you’re this person who’s going to have to get a day job.

This winter I also began going to the gym with a trainer five days a week, and after a few weeks I noticed that, in general, when exercising, my endorphins take about 45 minutes to kick in. I’ve never been a jock and I always thought endorphins were a media hoax, but they do exist, and once your system releases them, exercise becomes fun.

I asked my trainer, Neil, how long it takes his endorphins to kick in, and he said maybe five minutes – so I began to wonder if maybe there’s one simple chemical reason for jocks being jocks and nerds nerds: endorphin release rate. I asked Neil if he could find out if there was a food or a pill I could eat before the gym to speed up endorphin release. His answer? Chocolate.

So I began eating dark chocolate two hours before working out and was shocked at the almost instant change in my body’s response to activity – I loved it – my happy chemicals were releasing within five minutes. I was wary of a placebo effect, but it’s been a month now, and my endorphins kick in, bingo, right on the five-minute mark.

But the big shocker was that my writers’ block ended. This was a block so bad that in its midst writing even these simple few hundred words could never have happened. And I owe it to chocolate: specifically, Baker’s milk chocolate chips, which come in 300g bags – the chips used in chocolate chip cookies. Without these chips, there is no work. It’s that binary. I keep them to the left of my keyboard and I eat maybe 50 or so medicinally once a day.

The one sad thing that happened as a result of this is that I no longer enjoy the taste of chocolate – my brain has reclassified it as a medicine and, frankly, I wish I could take chocolate pills and not have to taste it any more. Nature is, if nothing else, perverse.”


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