I was asked to write an observational statement about my new surroundings. A chai into the evening, 10:10 on a saturday night, I’m in a very strange hybrid of a coffee shop, doing a very strange thing (reading quietly) and noticing so many people who want to be known as different but also flock to this space of sameness.
Perhaps that makes me the different one — reading instead of being on the phone ignoring my
friend, girlfriend, date, life. Maybe it’s because I’m not trying to be hipster, fringe, vegan, low mainenance, a characature of a personality. Maybe it’s because I’m content being alone.
Whatever the differentiating tiers, I will say amidst all this harsh assessment everyone is exactly the same, myself included.
It’s odd because in wisconsin*, everyone is exceptionally casual all the time. Jeans to work? Sure! Didnt shower today? No problem. My JCrew wardrobe with it’s leather gloves, satin heels and walking coat are decidedly out of place. However, that’s not preventing me from wearing them.
Everyone in wisconsin is also pretty easygoing. The only folks that are bent out of shape are the ones that are overworked an underappreciated. Like the busdriver, the clerk at cvs and the grocery store bagger who obviously is at the end of his shift. I try to be nice, give complements and hold everyone to being punctual.
Everyone in wisconsin is also more than meets the eye, which I suppose is why I feel I fit in. The barista rocks fairtrade coffee, ancient glasses and Weezy, for example.
I feel like everyone here is a physical reconciliation of a lot of polar opposites existing in the same body. Creativity is pretty standard here as well. Whether that means everyone is an artist or everyone is full of shit I will never know (statistically impossible) but I do know we’re all upfront about who we are up here.
Some folks have it tattooed on their arms and others have it tattooed on their hearts but I truly feel in my heart of hearts the folks I’m surrounded by want the same things I do: someone to love, someone to listen, a rewarding job and a meaningful life.
“I fear oblivion.”
Somewhere in this odd bermuda triangle of shifting similarities and differences are the new folks in a new chapter in my life. Until then I’m cool with my book, man’s sweater and come tuesday, my Gentleman Cat.
There, I said it. CAT. At long last. And oh my, he is a monster.
*disclaimer: i mean “milwaukee” when i say “wisconsin”