A Hipster Travels

He sits in one of the middle seats, listening to his iPhone while reading Phillip Roth. The hair on his head is cleanly shaven, but his beard is dark stubble. The black frames of his glasses are ironically thick.

The stewardess comes around serving drinks. He removes his earphones and places the book on his lap.

"Would you like tea?" she asks him, with a thick Italian accent.

"Does it have caffeine?" He makes a little moue of distaste.

"It is not decaffeinated."

He waves his hand in what for him is a gesture of dismissal. "That's OK."

The stewardess is puzzled. She speaks enough English to know that "OK" means "yes." But he had seemed so concerned that the tea not contain caffeine just a moment before.

He is oblivious to her puzzlement, and merely repeats himself. "That's OK."

She shrugs her shoulders and pours the tea for him. Now he is puzzled. He had not thought of the fact that a foreigner is likely to interpret his "OK" as meaning assent. He had not thought of it because, frankly, he had not been thinking of the woman at all. He had been thinking more important thoughts: thoughts about how his avoiding caffeine is a mark of distinction, thoughts about how well constructed is his iTunes library, with just the right blend of obscure classics and contemporary indie music, and thoughts, if he were to admit it somewhat worrisome, as to whether reading Portnoy's Complaint isn't just a bit cliched.

So now he has a cup of tea that he doesn't want and which he will return untouched, in a few minutes, to an increasingly puzzled stewardess.


  1. Long flight, huh? LOL

  2. Meanwhile, others are watching an older Irish guy thinking, "Is he gay for that hipster?"

  3. Oh, come on Bob...

    Though, you do bring up a good point... Why was Gene focusing so intently upon that young, male hipster? Hmmm? I wonder if other passengers actually thought that Gene was gay for that hipster, who knows?

    I am just screwing with you, Gene. I like to observe people, as well. My last experiment was a jury duty obligation that included about 200 people. There was all sorts of humanity swimming through that particular crowd. More than enough hipsters to go around a few times over. Me: I could have brought my MacBook Pro and surfed the net in true hipster "style" via WiFi. I instead chose to read a few books.

    Gosh, I am such a dork.


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