I don't drink coffee, never have, but I have to start every day with Morning Joe--the morning show on MSNBC. First of all, I really think the name is cute, love the coffee ring graphics, etc. But most importantly, I just love to wake up with these people. Joe Scarborough, who I rarely agree with, is the main host, and Mika Brzezinski and Willie Geist make it utterly watchable (I must have gone to college with a dozen Willie Geists). I don't even mind Pat Buchanan on this show--he's jovial, can take a hit, and demonstrates an ability to consider arguments rationally. The hosts talk politics for several hours, and make being up at 6am completely palatable. Hell, sometimes I even get up at 5:45 so I can be done showering etc. and be fully present for the opening moments. They're funny and clever and what sets them apart is the way they banter with each other on air. Forgive me, but this is why I loved Howard Stern for so many years. I was unable to stomach much of the freak-show/hooker stuff but could have listened to Howard and the gang rib each other for hours on end. It's like comfort food for me, reminding me of all those hours sitting in dorm rooms with good friends, feeling witty and daring and safe all at the same time. I also really appreciate that Morning Joe is pretty solidly PG. Children are being ripped away from their moms at polygamist compounds on the Today Show, and some creepy guy has locked his daughter in a dungeon on Good Morning America, but Morning Joe serves up presidential politics only. Primaries, policies, speeches, gaffes. That's about it. So when my children wander downstairs and slump next to me on the couch to gather their strength for the day, they aren't hearing anything earth-shattering. I imagine they're hearing 'blah blah blah Obama, blah blah blah McCain,' but even if they are really tuning in to what's being said, it's mostly just interesting political machinations and theories, and I like where their questions lead us. The music that leads in and out of breaks always brings me back (Squeeze--Black Coffee in Bed?, Steve Miller Band, Come on and Dance?)--proving yet again that people MY AGE are running things--and believe it or not, there's something about that that makes me feel safe too.