Friday, November 9, 2007

no coffee shop can be your everything ...



isn't this always the way? we get the good table at amazing grace. the viney one in an alcove by the window where you can hear the guy describing his dream journal, but he can't see you rolling your eyes every time he says "stream of consciousness."

i have nine dollars worth of turkey sandwich on feta and grape bread, tomato basil soup and a coffee the size of my soul. but when we go to crack into the internet, we can't get online.

this is extremely disappointing. i'd wanted nothing more that to sit here and write and repeatedly check my email. not to mention watch chuck do this thing he does: stare out the window over his left shoulder while typing on the laptop in front of him. this is what i imagine it would look lie to see stevie wonder LIVE IN CONCERT!

another life lesson. no coffee shop can be your everything.

so i ditch 75 cents worth of coffee and $1.36 worth of soup. we leave the cool comfort of amazing grace for the cool comfort of the red mug in superior. this seems like a fine substitute if we can sit on the red couches, but there isn't an outlet in the vicinity ... we don't want to sit at a table, because this is supposed to be relaxing, not polite. we end up here:



... in what is basically a hallway-slash-waiting room for the women's bathroom. this, as you would imagine, is a high-traffic area. caffeine, bladders ... you don't have to be a brain surgeon to understand the mechanics.

***

aside: on the other side of this wall is a unisex bathroom, equipped with both a urinal and a modern day toilet. if a man walks into a unisex bathroom and has both options, which does he use? and, in this scenario, is it acceptible for a man and woman who are comfortable using a bathroom in front of each other [this is hypothetical, BELIEVE me] to lock themselves in this space at the same time?

***

after the first woman trips over our feet and into the ladies room, it becomes apparent that this is not a sound-proof structure. just as i'm about to say "looks like we've got a hand-washer," chuck leans in and says "what they don't realize is that we can hear even the most delicate sounds from in there."

we have become accidental bathroom eavesdroppers.

for the record, at no time does this become a set list for the body-as-its-own-personal-marching-band. this is more about our proximity to the bathroom and, well, the potentinal for it becoming a set list for the body-as-its-own-personal-marching-band.


"my disgust is palpable," chuck says.


***

for awhile we are distracted by country pop music twanging its way down the staircase from the ceramics shop upstairs. minutes earlier, radiohead had been playing in the coffee shop. now faith hill is pecking away at my brain.


[chuck likes to photograph ceilings. this comes in handy. now i can show you where faith hill was coming from]

"what's that?" chuck asks.
"oh ... some woman from a small town just left her abusive husband. she just moved here to the big city for a little anonymity. now she likes to crank faith hill while tossing paint onto a canvas," i say.

this seems like a reasonable answer to him.

***

now there are four women. a pack of tourists. craning and clucking and looking around with wonder. each muttering variations on the word "bathroom?"

we both sigh.

"the only thing worse than menopause is clueless menopause. ... when you are simply baffled by the location of a bathroom ... when you have to wonder out loud hmmm where is the bathroom ... how are you going to deal with the rest of life's complications?" chuck asks.

***

meanwhile, i go check out what makes this bathroom better than the one with a urinal. the one far from our range of hearing. one you don't have to trip over our feet to get to.

it seems to be pretty standard, albeit fairly large. toilet. scrub brush. some floral-flavored smell fixer. so i take a photo of myself, instead, then leave.



eventually we are forced to tune into our ipods.

3 comments:

nanners said...

you guys should move to mountain view, Calif. google should hire you. fair trade coffee promoters should hire you. if i have to see one more photo of you both drinking coffee with your laptops and blogging i am going to unfriend you both. tech nerds.

Flenker said...

when given a choice, guys will always, always use the urinal. Unless they're extremely lazy and need to sit down. There's a whole guidebook that we read for urinal use, it may seem simple, but there are many, many rules.

L Sass said...

I once had a job where my cubicle was next to the bathroom... and it was NOT soundproof.