This morning, due to an annoying and far-too-complicated-to-explain issue with street parking, I've been forced to relinquish hopes of hunkering down on the 2nd floor of my beloved Brooklyn Public Library and, instead, man the window seat at a cafe not far from where I'm staying. Probably most people would PREFER to work at a coffee shop. The clientele is undoubtedly less schizophrenic than the aluminum foil clad wonders at the BPL (and the art on the bathroom walls here is decidedly more intentional).
And though many complain about the types of narcissistic faux-writer types who work in coffee shops--"you should totally write that down"--I don't really have a problem with the people. In fact, I actually prefer to work around light chatter, clacking, signs of sentient life. There's something reassuring about it, no doubt thanks to my Mom, who never liked it when I closed the doors of my bedroom, even when I was reading or doing homework. Also, what I've noticed after a couple days around town is that there's not much difference nowadays between the types of workers in either place (laptops, wistful window-gazing, journals, LSAT books); if anything, the people who work in the library seem more serious about actually getting work done, mooring themselves--sans oatmeal chocolate chip cookie--to a taxpayer-funded table and the dream of a GRE score in the 99th percentile.
The thing I hate about coffee shops--and why I've chosen to do something less serious than work on my novel [Blog: "I thought we was friends, baby."]-- is music. As someone very sensitive and interested in how musical selection effects group dynamics (i.e. my drunk name is Notorious I.P.O.D.H.O.G.), I can't think of a worse place or time to pump Ice Cube's "Gangsters Make the World Go 'Round" than at 10AM over muffins and Earl Grey.
Who wakes up and goes, "Ah, I think I'd like a nice coffee, a bagel, maybe a couple sections of the morning paper. Oh, and some Immortal Technique played at concert volume." Well, probably only one person, Immortal Technique.
I'm totally blowing this joint....as soon as they get through this new Raekwon album. (Hot shit!!!)