I’ll Take ‘Manners’ for $1000, Alex!

Published December 28, 2010 by Hemlock

So, I don’t have too many pet peeves. Well, maybe I do, but at least they’re realistic… at least I think so. My husband will probably tell you differently.

What brought this on, you ask? Well, my answer is this: I’m at the cafe section of a popular chain bookstore. The only hint I’ll give you is that they don’t carry Starbucks.

Now, they have plenty of tables and chairs, and some of them are even cushy. However, there is a serious lack of power outlets. Sure, there are a couple, but the problem is that there are only three or four of them and you can only plug-in two laptops per outlet. This is okay, too, except for the fact that the way they have the tables arranged, there’s really no way to have reliable access. They usually have the big tables that seat four directly in front of the wall outlets, so this means that there is usually plenty of room to spread out your various college books and get to work.

The problem arises, though, when there is a single person sitting at those tables and they don’t have any devices with them that require that power outlet they’ve commandeered. Yes, you read correctly, my Friend. One fracking person taking up an entire table that would normally sit four. Plus, this would normally power a minimum of two laptops but in a lot of cases these outlets will power even more since a growing number of people are now carrying around these mini surge protectors.

It wouldn’t be so bad if there wasn’t a sea of the small tables sitting there all empty and lonely.

It’s generally known now, that if you go to a bookstore cafe, it will be filled with people clacking away on those pesky laptops. Cafe’s aren’t what they used to be. Yes, people still grab a magazine, order a coffee and then sit down to read for a bit. However, more and more people are gravitating towards coffee shops to do their college coursework. Why? It’s quiet (unless it’s that other bookstore that sells Starbucks!). It’s really that simple.

What I really hate is having to bother people to get access to the outlet. They look at you as if you were asking them to take over for Atlas. Seriously! All I’m asking is to use the damn plug-in that you’re not using.

So, if you are one of those people who doesn’t take a laptop with them to the book store, please listen to the following: When you choose a table, take the time to check and see if there is an outlet on the wall. If there is, and there are other tables available, take the other table. If there are no other options at the time, don’t act so butt-hurt if one of us laptop geeks asks to use the outlet. We could be your child’s teacher one day, or even the President.


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