outwait outrun outwit


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08.11.03, monday night

Today at work, three teenage princesses in Macy's Punk sat at the counter, dropping names and reading horoscopes midst-order and when they couldn't have their damn bagels with lettuce tomato cream cheese onions and sprouts even though goddammit we always have it here and even though goddammit you don't have onions and sprouts and you've never done it that way, they said, We're gonna tell. You have an attitude problem. We'll tell on you. What's your name? "What's your name?": a weekly refrain here in this cafe, which everyone goes to if they don't want to go to Starbucks or Peet's. Because you know, it's way cooler: it's locally (and Republican-)owned by a famous man and guitars hang on the walls and man, you can attend poetry readings and jazz concerts here. Locals and not-so-locals come to drink (boxed) wine, espressos, and mates (cuz, like, they read about it somewhere in Che Guevera's diary) and scribble poetry in sweaty stained notebooks. But man, those workers! They sweat alot and they never sit and they don't look too happy and they hear, "What's your name?" often and they never seem to stick around long. A new face, a new name to learn every other week. You see, the boss thinks that running a coffeeshop is like running a department at Nordstrom's. You know, with secret shoppers and on-your-toes-even-when-no-one's-here because she's not paying me $7/hr + meagre tips for nothing. But I'm not bitter. There is September and October and November and December. There is 2004. There are stories to finish. There is always change, everything and everyone and everyplace indelibly tattooed STC: Subject To Change. Snap my fingers, say Dang like Marlys in Ernie Pook's Comeek and when someone asks me for my name, I smile, It's only coffee.


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