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Sunday, September 29, 2013

A clean, well-lighted place by John von Daler


                You have of course heard the old joke about #Groucho Marx not wanting to be a member of any club so lousy that it would give him a membership. I have a similar problem: I enjoy and seek out isolation in public places. I always choose places to sit where other people do not come. My own club has no other members.

                The problem with this attitude is that I end up choosing places  that get closed because of a lack of customers. My favorite bus at the moment is bus 26 down Frederiksberg Allé towards town. I love the ride because I always can get a seat. Now you just know that this is not going to last. The bus company will probably do some kind of a count and figure out that not enough people ride that bus and then they will shut it down.
                A few blocks up on Frederiksberg Allé I have found a new little cafe that sells coffee, homemade cakes and ice-cream - and really not much else. You can sit outside at small white tables on elegant white chairs or inside with deep couches and soft armchairs. The feeling of the place is very feminine, like being invited into the home of a pretty lady friend - and indeed the women who work there are beautiful, friendly and speak Danish with charming accents. I come maybe three times a week and order a café au lait and sit and read in the sun. It is so pleasant and I feel very, very pampered.
                There is one problem, though. Not many other people come there. I can always get my favorite chair. I sit alone and read while being exclusively waited on by beautiful women. I love it.
                But the thought entered my mind the other day: Am I the angel of death for a café like this? Or the bus for that matter? Should the sweet ladies rush to close their doors when I approach? Here he comes. Nobody ever comes when he's here. Quick! Close everything and pretend we are not here!
                The thought of them closing depresses me so much that I may start putting on a new disguise every time I go there. Just to make it look like different people come. Tomorrow I think I'll be Groucho.
                After all, you want to do what you can to protect a clean, well-lighted place.




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