ye olde Hi-Fi Cafe

My quest for beer was fruitless, so I gave up and went to ye olde Hi-Fi Cafe. It is so much the same: cool art on the walls, jukebox, good coffee and food, the view out the windows. It is so different. Sitting there, sipping my iced coffee (yes, another one) and waiting for my falafel-hummus sandwich, I felt much the same way I did sitting at Leroy’s in Door County last August - who are these people? And don’t they know who I am? Don’t they know that there was once a drawing of me hanging on those walls? Don’t they know that my own art has hung on those walls twice? Don’t they know that I met a few of my best friends and several of my former lovers there? Don’t they know that I used to spend so much time there, do so much of my writing there, that I used to refer to it as my office? Don’t they know they used to sell my zine up at the counter? Don’t they know that I used to be such a trusted regular that I was one of the few people allowed to have a tab, which enabled me to get coffee and food when I was otherwise broke? (Which I almost always was; and yes, I always paid off my tab the second I had any money at all.) It used to be, if I sat at the Hi-Fi for a while, I’d run into someone I knew (not counting the people that worked there), or meet someone new. It used to be, if my pals didn’t know where to find me, they could show up at the Hi-Fi, and odds were, I’d be there. It used to be you could smoke inside (but you can’t do that anywhere, anymore); it used to be they sold beer and wine, too (and if they still did, I wouldn’t have had to go on a quest for beer). Everything is different, nothing has changed - everything has changed, nothing is different. (x)

#rustbeltjessie #prose #milwaukee #personal #youdontmeetnicegirlsincoffeeshops

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