Saturday, June 23, 2007

How Queens can you get?

Since I have been doing this, I have written about half a dozen posts that never made it to the blog since my neighbor’s wireless was down during the twenty minutes when they would have been topical. The wireless was down on Thursday, but I felt unusually obliged to put the post up anyway, since it was an apology, and I felt it needed to be delivered in a somewhat timely fashion.

Getting a file from my PC to open on my roommate’s Mac is a maddening process that involves using some open source word-processor, which takes a little longer than a baseball game to load. I opted instead to take a USB drive down to a weird little bakery/ice cream/internet cafĂ© that recently opened down the street.

The place is has Arabic writing in the window along with a Western Union sign, and the people who go there and work there are generally Middle Eastern. They have a sort of generic oven that seems to produce generic pastries out of made of yellow, sticky sweet filo dough. The place is run by several very nice middle-eastern women. I have been going there for coffee lately, since they are next to the nearest deli that sells the Post, and the service is so slow and confused that I can make it through about a quarter of the sports section before they give me my cup.
In the back of the place there are about five computers, all fairly new, mostly with flat screens. When I walked in on Thursday, I found out that it costs $3 for an hour of internet; I gave them a dollar for an amount of time that I described as “like five minutes.”
The only free computer was in between a little girl who was listening to some educational CD and a woman in a Muslim head scarf, with whom the girl working the counter sat down once she had given me my coffee. The internet was not connected on the one free computer, so I asked the girl if I could get my dollar back.

The woman with the scarf instead offered me their computer and, after I tried to decline, moved away. I sat down, and put my post up as quickly as I could.

But there you were: in the mysterious internet-bakery, a woman in a hijab was offering her computer to an unshaven white-boy in a Che Guevara T-shirt, so he could update his Mets blog. Someone should have taken a picture and put it on the borough flag.

1 comment:

nigel fowler said...

This sounds like what America is supposed to be like, which is perhaps what Queens now is. We live in hope...