After an afternoon at the Hut, a plate of fried tofu and two pots of jasmine tea, I have 2,000 words, a big fresh scene, tea stains and sweet-and-sour splotches all over my pages, and three new pornographic doodlings. Tits and ass in the left margin, flaccid dick in the right. Never the twain shall meet.
The waitress brings another pot of tea. She never asks what I’m up to, never hurries me along, always remembers to ask if I want a cupcake before she brings the check. I wonder what her home looks like. Macrame and spider plants, yellow Formica table with three tulip chairs, sunburst clock (of course it works!), a spoon rest made of abalone shells set in acrylic, two Ikea tables and a bunch of glass grapes in a bowl. She’s a beautiful hipster, with a long black braid and a constellation of freckles across her nose. I’ve made a cliche of her, which is less than she deserves. I’m sure she has a pencil skirt in her closet, even if it’s way at the back.
You won’t believe what I just wrote, I want to tell her. A big big scene, an earthshaker oh baby oh boy, and you wouldn’t believe what Julian just said to Celia. He wants her bad, you see, he’s pushing hard. He can’t stop shaking her tree. But from my booth by the door I am god, and I say he won’t even wet the tip. Isn’t that a thought, freckle-face? While you’ve been filling my teapot and serving drunken love noodles to the nurses at table four, and setting out the chopsticks, and wiping up the spills and offering passion-fruit cupcakes all around—imagine, you walked right by them time and again. You say you didn’t hear a thing? Didn’t catch the vibe? Really, not at all. Yes, I do look calm. I know, an island of calm, yes, I’ve been told. But my pages runneth over.
Do you write in public? Ever feel like you’re putting one over?