gwyn: (flashpoint asshat)
[personal profile] gwyn
Thursday I had to be out of the house for a while, because the new house cleaners I was trying out--the house has gotten so bad, especially after the puppies, and I haven't been able to keep up OR afford cleaning help, but I realized I was going to have to suck it up and do it because I've gotten very work busy and life busy, what with the tumor and all--were coming to do an initial deep cleaning. I took my laptop up to Starbucks by my house, because I discovered years ago that for some reason, I can write better when there's a noise level of constant talk and activity around me. I don't like it when someone gets either really close and talks across me to someone else, especially if they are very loud or have piercing voices, but most of the time this doesn't happen.

I also have a particular (tall) table I prefer where I can stand or sit as my back needs, but it's often not empty, so I stand at the counter right next to this table or at the window. You're sort of close by the people around you there, but that's okay, because I still can tune most of it out and the activity helps me focus. I find that really strange, but since it works, I use it.

I was feeling pretty low--the transgender thing had happened the day before, which really affects people I care for, and then there was the whole thing with that fucking narcissistic fartbag McCain voting to proceed with repeal debate, and I was just…having trouble concentrating on writing the next chapter of Celluloid Hero even with my favorite table. This older guy sat down to wait for his order pretty close by me, at the window--he was dressed in head to toe cyclist spandex with the logos and ridic colors, which always makes me roll my eyes, and he kept checking his phone, and then his wife joined him and they moved over so they were basically sitting right next to me. There's a particular breed of older Northwest liberal I dislike, because they're always the ones who talk about how progressive they are and what they did in the '70s and whatever, but in the end they have Gary Johnson or Jill Stein signs in their yards and they're freaked out by the actual reality of LGBTQ lives, and I just sort of thought he and his wife might be one of those.

I wrote, and tuned their conversation out, which was relatively easy at first because the wife's voice was quiet and the husband was keeping it relatively low key, with a few outbursts, but then his voice kept rising and he was increasingly agitated, so I couldn't help but listen at that point. He railed about "what difference does it make to anyone" and I think I heard "gender shouldn't mean anything except to the person who feels it" and something about people who are serving their country unlike that asshole who calls himself a president and how little gender reassignment costs in the budget, and then their voices lowered again and the woman went off to the restroom.

They talked more when she came back, because he'd been checking his phone, and then he REALLY got worked up, spitting about what a douchebag asshole McCain is and how evil these people are to want millions of Americans to die while they get taxpayer funded fantastic health care, and I lost track of what he was saying, but the wife silently put a hand on husband's shoulder and he stopped, kind of half laughing, and started going, "Grrrarraughargfrraaarrr" with little monster hands, making fun of himself and his incoherent rage. Then he more calmly proceeded to rail against the fucking republicans and the giant dickbag in the white house.

It made me happy in my heart. It made me laugh when he mocked himself, and that's been in pretty short supply lately, and it made me happy to hear someone in that age/social class/values system not be a transphobic jerk--I salute you, old spandex guy and your hilariously tolerant partner, and here's hoping there's more of you out there in future.

Date: 2017-07-29 08:40 pm (UTC)
kass: white cat; "kass" (Default)
From: [personal profile] kass

Date: 2017-07-29 08:47 pm (UTC)
morgandawn: (Default)
From: [personal profile] morgandawn
I would've been won over by the monster hands and the gggring and the rrrring. I'll raise a hot chai to him and to you as well for the wonderful write up

Date: 2017-07-29 09:17 pm (UTC)
dine: (dine1 - misbegotten)
From: [personal profile] dine
when you mentioned a "particular breed of older Northwest liberal" I cringed, because I've run across that sort, but then your eavesdropping paid off. I was giggling by the time I reached the monster hands. that's a great scene! thanks for sharing the experience

Date: 2017-07-29 09:50 pm (UTC)
adair: Large Greek pot with horses (Greek pot)
From: [personal profile] adair
It is so nice to have your bad expectations not confirmed. For me that is a rare event, but does happen - a cheerful moment in your day. May other things go as well.

Date: 2017-07-29 11:13 pm (UTC)
kore: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kore
Aww, that's lovely.

Date: 2017-07-30 01:50 am (UTC)
st_aurafina: flags waving and people raising arms in silhouette (Activism: Flags)
From: [personal profile] st_aurafina
I salute you, old spandex guy and your hilariously tolerant partner

I salute them too! Relationship goals as fuck, right there.

Date: 2017-07-30 03:11 am (UTC)
mackiemesser: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mackiemesser
What a pleasant surprise in a week that's been full of the other kind. :)

Date: 2017-07-30 02:24 pm (UTC)
quarter_to_five: (Default)
From: [personal profile] quarter_to_five
Lol I love that. And I also often head off to cafes or the like to work, because something about the noise and the obligations of a public space feel motivating. But, also, I like to sometimes take breaks and eavesdrop or just observe (true, at times with gleeful annoyance.) But there's also that aspect of being out in the world and who knows, maybe the next person who asks you what the wifi password is will turn out to be a great adventure or just a worthwhile five minutes of chit chat. I once talked a guy who sat across from me through the entire theory of my grad seminar. He asked! It helped.

Date: 2017-07-31 04:38 am (UTC)
mlyn: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mlyn
Oh man, that Starbucks encounter ended so much better than I expected.

For improved productivity with white noise, check out, I fucking love it. It's a huge thing, but one of the kinds of atmospheric sounds they offer are things with a fair amount of white-noise-by-people, like a crowded cafe, restaurant, park, etc. You can also stack different audio files for a custom mix. It's incredible.

One of my favorite customs is called Falling Asleep with the Ship's Cat, because it combines a distant thunderstorm, creaky sailboat sounds, lapping water and other weird subtle muffled internal sounds ("in utero"), and of course a cat's purr. The audio sources load once and then play on a loop (with optional randomization), they're not streaming, so they're not big data hogs.

Date: 2017-07-31 10:29 pm (UTC)
spikedluv: my irises! (spikedluv - iris by tazi)
From: [personal profile] spikedluv
Great story! *g*

Date: 2017-08-06 08:33 am (UTC)
jb_slasher: ryan luciani; empires (luciani says 'hi')
From: [personal profile] jb_slasher
Oh wow. I wish I could have been there but just reading about it makes me smile. People really can surprise you sometimes.

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