If you're a fan of Friends, you're well aware of Central Perk, the coffee shop in the series that was practically a Friend itself. Because Rachel Green, Monica Geller, Phoebe Buffay, Joey Tribbiani, Chandler Bing, and Ross Geller were always meeting in that coffee shop, it stands to reason that they drank a lot of coffee. But just how much has always been a mystery — until now. Author Kit Lovelace took one for the team and watched all 236 episodes of the NBC hit and recorded exactly how many cups of coffee each character drank throughout the ten seasons. The results are astounding (not just because it's a lot of coffee, but because I realized my coffee consumption isn't too far off).
It all began with a tweet. On Tuesday, Lovelace dug up some old statistics and presented them to the world.
"Digging through old stuff, just found my results from the time I went through all 236 episodes of Friends to see how much coffee they drank," he wrote, accompanied by a chart.
If his account is to be believed, Monica had 198 cups, Phoebe had 227 cups, Rachel had 138, Ross had 188, Chandler had 212, and Joey had 191. Through some guesswork and meticulous arithmetic, Lovelace also calculates that the characters spent a total of around $2077.20, including tips.
Luckily, another chart shows how their coffee consumption changed throughout the seasons, and for the most part, they had all mellowed out to less than one cup an episode by the final season.
"It came about after I read a piece I read on the Scientific American blog an assumption about how much coffee each character drank each episode," the author told the Huffington Post about what inspired him to do this research. "I was a little disappointed to see that no one had actually tried to figure out the real numbers, given that the source material was out there."
Over the course of a week, he figured it out by strategically watching and dividing his attention.
"If they were somewhere where there was no coffee (Ross giving a lecture; Monica catering an event etc), I would fast forward through the scene keeping an eye out for any potential mugs or cups," he explained. "Any Central Perk scene, or apartment scene where they were eating and drinking I watched."
That mystery's solved, but we still don't know if Ross and Rachel were ever really, truly, legally on a break. Hopefully that's Lovelace's next mission.