Writing left handed

Thoughts for Thursday: Please Shut Up!

A photo of a cup of coffee.

Image via Wikipedia

For the past few months, I’ve been searching for the perfect coffee shop to make my own.  Today my search has taken me, once again, to Chapterhouse on 9th and Bainbridge.  I first visited Chapterhouse with Date #3 back in the early days of my Match.com career.  It was then that I noticed Chapterhouse comprises a veritable wunderkabinett of good looking individuals.

Seeing as I was on a date at the time, I was forced to focus on my iced coffee and the med student who had paid for it, as opposed to the other, better looking med students who were hunched over their books in the next room, but I made a mental note to return at a later date—on my own.

In truth, I forgot about Chapterhouse for a while and since it’s been so cold for the past few months, I’ve limited my coffee shop explorations to a seven block radius.  But now that the spring is just around the corner (well maybe not “just” around the corner, but it’s out there somewhere, I’m sure of it) I’ve been expanding my search.

I like Chapterhouse because it’s full of good looking men.  Granted, none of them has ever spoken to me but I figure it’s only a matter of time because eventually the school year will be over and they’ll have to stop studying.

I don’t like Chapterhouse because it’s always crowded and it’s nearly impossible to find a table from which to view the good looking men.  Today, for example, I’ve been forced to seek refuge in the basement.

Despite the lack of scenery, I don’t actually mind the basement.  It’s quiet and the first time I spent an afternoon in the basement, I managed to revise three chapters of my manuscript.  As such, I was looking forward to another productive afternoon before heading out to teach my evening classes but it would seem that the gods have been conspiring against me today.

In summary:

A Short List of Things that Do NOT Belong in the Coffee Shop

1)      Children with stuffed animals

2)      Children with vehicular toys

3)      Children in general (Don’t get me wrong: I like children, I just don’t like them ruining my productive afternoons with the sort of behavior that is better suited for Chucky Cheese’s than for Chapterhouse.  I mean really, I don’t care how discerning your four year old may be when it comes to her hot chocolate; she does not require an entire coffee shop in which to devour her marshmallows and I think my fellow writers/students/unemployed artists would join me in celebrating were she and her father to finally take their game of Candyland elsewhere.)

4)      Undergraduate study groups (don’t these people have somewhere on campus to discuss their case studies?)

5)      Nerdy, middle aged, socially awkward philosophers who, despite their evident interest in observing natural phenomena and theorizing upon said phenomena, have failed to grasp the basics of coffee shop etiquette (namely, that no matter how interesting you may find “the philosophy of abstraction,” I don’t want to hear about it.  I especially don’t want to hear about it when I’m an entire room and four tables away.)

I was just starting to tune out the great thinker’s incessant drone when two of her friends walked in.  For a minute, I clung to the hope that she’d quiet down in order to let them speak, and that they might have been a bit better about using their “inside voices” than their companion, but then one of them turned to her and asked, “I actually had a philosophy question for you!”

Somebody please shoot me.

9 Responses to “Thoughts for Thursday: Please Shut Up!”

  1. Katie

    Ha, I tried writing in a coffee shop on Monday and it, too, did not go over so well. And I have to agree – kids belong in a coffee shop no more than they belong in a fancy restaurant or an adult movie at a theater. I swear, sometimes parents think we (non-parents) are the ignorant ones, but it’s like many of them forget what it’s like to not actually want kids around all. the. time. (Wow, can you tell I have strong feelings about this?)

  2. 2blu2btru

    I completely understand this, which is why I love libraries on campuses or really nice bookstores. They have free wi-fi and computer access, there’s almost always a nice coffee shop, everyone is there to read, write or study something, and it’s known the world over you have to be quiet. They have little glass rooms for groups to study in where they can talk without disturbing people (and provide me with a good show, should I be interested in people watching). I don’t drink anything with caffeine now (it helps keep the migraines away), but I remember most having nice hot chocolate and coffee drinks.

    Good luck on your search. Maybe you just picked the wrong day this time.

  3. Your Landlord

    As a long time mom, I completely agree, children do NOT belong in coffee shops! Do they not realize that there is a perfectly nice Ikea down the road, where one can buy coffee, hot chocolate and then deposit said munchkins in the ball room if they so desire? OR go to a DINER (remember these, “hipster” parents? yes, a diner, where your parents probably took you to have mommy and daddy time), of which there are several nearby as well…maybe coffee shops should start having a bouncer 😉

  4. Not Singularly Defined

    Word. I completely agree with you on things that do not belong in the coffee shop, or any coffee shop! You forgot one, though. Pretentious faux chess players drinking a soda, S-O-D-A, do not belong in a coffee shop. At least not one I want to hang out in.


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