Saturday, February 05, 2005


Things that take the fun out of your over-priced latte, volume I

This evening afforded me the opportunity for an interesting study in human nature, if such it may be termed.

I was a little early for a social engagement in Umeda (like, by an hour and a half) so I decided to kill some time in Starbucks beforehand, that being the only coffee place that has a no-smoking policy.

Having bought an under-sized, over-priced "grande latte", I settled down with my copy of Raion to majo (Japanese edition of The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe) and prepared myself for some serious language study.

On the table next to me there was a Japanese girl, evidently on a social engagement judging by the manner in which she kept a-checking at her watch, tutting and generally letting the world know that whomever she was meeting was late.

Eventually, a French girl showed up with the words "Ah Kira, ah am so sorry." No explanation of her tardiness, you'll note.

Having attained a coffee (which, I suspect, was the last thing she needed), and gotten comfortable in her seat, she proceeded to launch herself into a FULL HALF HOUR MONOLOGUE about her no-good boyfriend, who'd- understandably enough- been cheating on her; this with minimal input from the poor J-bird who'd been waiting for her all this time, and, I realised, had evidently heard this story a good many times over the last few days/two months/seventeen years (delete as applicable.)

I found myself a little annoyed at the French girl's boyfriend, insofar as his libidinous activities had happened to land an ungracious, whingeing dullard at the table adjacent to my own.

"'E 'as no respect; 'e treats everyone like ah piece of sheet!" she announced, apparently unaware of the annoyance that her impunctuality had caused her partner and that her self-centred diatribe was causing me.

I shook my head, squinted at the mystifying characters in front of me and tried to ignore the sensation that a woodpecker was going to town on my temple.

"MEN! Zey are all ze same! Zey are all basteurds!" the woman spurned declared. Right next to the ONE AND ONLY English-speaking MAN in the ENTIRE FUCKING SHOP.

I considered throwing my piping hot coffee in her face, then smashing her in the kidney with my knee. I realised that this would not improve her opinion of men.

My soul weeping within me, I gathered my things together and left as quietly as I could.

SMASH kill destroy. You'll feel better about it in the morning.--vmm
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