Cafe Culture & Being Anti-Social

“A single conversation across the table with a wise person is worth a month's study of books”

“A single conversation across the table with a wise person is worth a month’s study of books”
~Chinese Proverb~

Perhaps I shouldn’t say ‘anti-social’. Perhaps I should say…ok, let’s just go with anti-social.

I like to strike out daily as a little bit of fabulous, a little bit of intriguing intellectual, and a little bit curious cutie. I also like to think that I’m successful at some of these things.

None of these little quirks is an invitation to interruption, small talk, or other people who don’t have enough confidence to entertain themselves for the duration of a cup of coffee.

Today, I ventured into a coffee shop that, on a scale of one to ten, ranks at about an 8. That’s pretty good since I’ve yet to experience a 10. Even my favourite haunt in the city only ranks at 7. 7.5 on a good day when the nose-picking newspaper bin diver is absent.

With a seasonal menu that offered both pumpkin spice latte, pumpkin spice tea and apple pie tea latte as well as the standard Americano and espresso, I was overjoyed to find a table to myself.

The establishment, ‘The Socialist Pig’ is adjacent to a restaurant boasting simple yet gourmand fair. I opted for an apple pie tea latte and a glazed/fried tofu burger with spicy condiment, homemade roll, and grated carrots with a side of over-dressed salad.

Despite being rudely interrupted by an over-dressed housewife who could not entertain herself while her twin companion excused herself to the ‘powder room’, I had a lovely time.

This woman interrupted me mid-bite, pointing, with her bony finger within inches of my meal, “Do you mind me asking what it is you’re eating?”

I hope my eyes said it all, ” Yes. Yes I do you annoying social skin tag.”

Instead, I answered, “Tofu.” After all, she only had to look at a menu to deduce what it was that I’d filled my mouth with just as she felt the uncomfortable feeling of being alone. Poor darling.

She looked, and sounded like a previous colleague of mine who likely wouldn’t have touched a place like The Socialist Pig with a ‘barge-pole’. If only because the last known barge-pole was hung in the Antiquated and Annoying Sayings Hall of Fame three-freaking-centuries ago.

Mrs. Uncomfortable-in-her-own-skin then proceededto ask in her too-loud voice about where ‘you get your delicious coffee. “Concord,” was the answer. Mrs. Uncomfortable’s response made me choke on my pretentious, but oh-so-freaking-delicious burger-sandwich; “Oh, so it’s locally grown.”

Are you serious?! Yes, I imagine you glorious twit, that the coffee beans were grown right in the middle of corn, beans and squash on the local reserve. Sweet love of Jesus, where do these people come from?

After a very long stretch of days on end working a job that I really do love, I crave the company of one of two types of people; the introvert, or the intellectual of carefully chosen vocabulary. Today I shared the company of neither, which is a lovey third option, minus the universal hiccup of she-who-thinks coffee grows in the Eastern Ontario wild.

If you ever have the good fortune to travel to Gananoque, I do suggest a visit to The Socialist PIg. Try the coffee, try the tea, but if you see a woman with dark-rimmed glasses sipping her tea quietly while reading the Globe and Mail, keep your socially-anxiety-provoked-silly questions to yourself. Unless….

You’re a single male between the ages of whatever and whatever with something interesting to talk about, and a sailboat moored at the end of the street on the St. Lawrence.

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