Friday, March 26, 2010

Ian Wolcott's recent post on coffeehouses included a description of one in Seattle that seemed eerily similar to the Gray Owl and probably other such places in college towns across the country. I laughed knowingly when I read it:

As an undergraduate in the early ‘90s my friends and I used to frequent a Seattle coffeehouse known as the Last Exit. The baristas were unpleasant, the coffee equally so, but it was still a favorite. Late nights at the Last Exit were smoky, crowded and rowdy. Professors declaimed godlike in crescents of adoring sophomores. Unwashed hipsters plucked guitars beneath high windows. Junior Marxists preached from the corners. Others crowded round tables to watch games of chess or of go, and to whisper philosophically. My friends and I would order our pulpy espresso drinks and sit behind piles of books and papers and pretend to study. It was pretentious as hell, but heaven to us then.
The Gray Owl is unfortunately not smoky and it rarely gets that rowdy, but the rest of this paragraph could be a fine description. Pretentious as hell, and I enjoy it.


Lindsey said...

A+ post.

katietracy. said...


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