Continued from yesterday’s post, predictably, “The Writer (Part 1)“
The writers were at work.
The process of work seemed rather curious. It was a great big library in a great big school in a great big country where escalators went up and down a very spacious, gigantic room with a ceiling at least three floors high.
It was called, predictably, the library.
Therefore, most people seemed to be there for the wireless internet.
Some seemed to be waiting there for their next classes looking over printed course packs they’d obtained from a copy store nearby.
Some were concentrated on updating their locations on Facebook.
In the library.
A place with rather existential dimensions.
There was a cafe on the ground floor where the scholars were gathered.The scholars were gathered in the cafe.
Work seemed a rather curious process.
Four rather serious looking men and women in their late twenties and early thirties were gathered at a table.
Work was about to start.
Two ordered steaming mochas, one with soymilk, half-decaf, half coffee, another no sugar, only cream, all decaf.
One ordered Tazo tea and seemed disdainful of coffee.
The fourth seemed new. Rather clueless, he simply got the cheapest regular.
Besides, he was an international student, was paid next to nothing as a stipend and perpetually surrounded by his loaded fellow internationals in the STEM fields on their way to becoming the next Bill Gates. People often approached him to teach Math to their kids.
He wasn’t going to try that way to make some quick bucks anytime soon again.
Work was about to start.
Out of the four, three had Mac books, which they took out from backpacks, with several badges attached, displaying their positions regarding various issues.
Those badges made me rather deferential of them.
“Hello writers.” I said. “Can I observe your session”?
Then, remembering they were writers, I quickly surpassed myself.
“May I observe your session”?
At first, I thought, Tazo Tea’s response was rather irrational.
“Writers!!” She said in a level of decibels that seemed somewhat unnecessary considering I was standing right there. Her vocal chords not that far from my cochlea.
But then, Soy Latte seemed to underestimate his expectations of my eardrum as well.
“WRITERS!!!!” He seemed to roar.
Clearly, the caffeine had gotten them highly strung. For all four were now behaving in a way somewhat unnecessarily animated.
Louder and louder.
WRITERS! WE’RE NOT WRITERS!
A server, who looked like a young undergrad in one of their TA classes rushed forward. She took pity on me but rolled her eyes at my ignorance all the same.
“They’re cultural critics,” she whispered.”Did you call them writers?”
She piled a little extra whipped cream on my cappuccino clearly as comfort.
Having no hope of getting an interview with any of them, I meekly sidled into a chair at a table close by.
Not daring to get close, I observed them out of the corner of my eye.
Work was about to start.
But I had made them agitated.
A loud discussion was taking place.
“We do the reading!” said Tazo.
“They only do the writing!” said Half Decaf.
Meaning the writers, I supposed.
“And then we do the writing about our reading of their writing,”said Soy Latte.
How dare this ignoramus think she can confuse us with them!
Very mysterious creatures indeed.
Then work was going to start.
Indeed it did.
At last I was about to get some observation notes, I thought.
A very serious discussion started soon enough.
I being the ignoramus layperson (not to mention my damaged eardrum), I missed a lot.
There were a lot of stuff on various ‘ologies and ‘isms. Only to be expected.
My deference increased.
But the words comic books, Buffy, Superman, Harry Potter seemed to be moving around a lot.
As did the word pedagogy.
I was already guilty of not having put my pedometer to much use recently.
So I didn’t dare interrupt and ask for explanations.
I heard “Glee!!” Some more stuff. No clue. Then more comic books.
This time, they called them graphic novels.
Then some Buffy, the vampire slayer. Then Betty, the ugly one. Some more Buffy. Some more Betty. More Buffy. More Betty. More Buffy.
Buffy!. . . Betty!. . . Betty!. . . Buffy!. . .
Half Decaf had gotten into an argument with Soy Latte about whether the Ugly in Ugly Betty was a social construct and if it was, whether Betty could be said to exist at all considering she couldn’t be Betty without being Ugly. This could not be logically correct, contended Soy Latte, since Soy’s cat had refused to leave the couch the whole time Ugly Betty was on last night and considering she always exhibited a greater preference for old toys in comparison to new pretty ones, recognition of Ugliness had to be a biological imperative.
The ‘ologies and ‘isms soon got fewer and fewer.
More and more of my kind of stuff. I was thrilled!
This was the stuff they discussed on Oprah! And book clubs!
I sat there for an hour and a half.
A page and a half total had been written.
I left a happy observer.
Their close cousins, the writers, were gathered in a nice pub close by.