Monday, November 14, 2011

Everyone has their moment of discovery, dude

Morning, glorious morning. Rarely do I wake up so refreshed, so I hit the bricks — first, with Rufus, to read his his pee-mail, then on my own to the teahouse. Just a few moments of reverie and reading — reading for pleasure, a rarity for me these grad-school days — before the day's demands begin in earnest.

Next to me, at the window counter as I nibbled, two dudes. I shouldn't generalize but if I had to guess, let's say, I'd feel safe assuming that fraternal rituals were in their near past or future, and that the previous night's entertainment had involved "Animal House" quantities of beer. Ballcap Dude was so bleary that Specs Dude apparently had ordered for him.

Ballcap Dude: "This coffee is, like, really good."

Specs Dude: "Not coffee, dude. Chai."

Ballcap Dude: (a beat, then squinting into his cup, perplexed) "Chai? What's chai?"

Specs Dude: "Tea, mixed up with milk and spices. Good for you."

Ballcap Dude: (brow still furrowed, but loosening) "Tea."

Specs Dude: "You said you like it. Just drink it."

Ballcap Dude sipped again from his stained cup, and his face finally relaxed. You could see the wheels of revelation and epiphany whirring away underneath the hat, and finally he said — slowly, more to hear himself declare it than for anyone else's benefit:

"I ... like ... tea."

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