We go to our corners, the family. There’s the TV and the kitchen for the genders to split, devices for the teenagers to keep them docile, interested, present.
Life spins in a prism of thoughts and distractions, frames. Most you forget, aren’t worth saving, isn’t enough space. The repetition of role-playing at work, at home, tired performances repeating lines, gestures, dramatic displays. The sink, the closet, the coffee maker: Have a Nice Day, out the door.
Art’s got a way out of this, to make art out of work and life, to live with wonder despite the seeming toil of it, finding mystery in the banal, objects and people we pass unseen, holding them up at the right angle and saying, Here…look…art is falling in love with your world.
But we go to our corners because we need space and distance. Love is natural and real, but love is hard, and so are people.
Which is why I understand those who need to live alone, but I can’t help seeing the sadness that hangs on them still. When I lived alone, how I spent most of my time conspiring not to be. How I carved my days toward a time when I would be with someone, that’s who I was: the absence of someone else.
And now to have most everything anyone could want, probably more, and still feel a loneliness…we go to a corner to talk to someone, anyone, who might be out there somewhere, and all of us in the coffee shop are really alone right now, right next to each other, recording what’s happening here and transmitting it to the darkness of the infinite, the internet.
I’m here now because I want to be. And you’re here with me now, too.