Café Morning

“You must be the food critic for the ‘East Bay Express,'” the fellow said as he sat down at the next table. He was about my age, a straw fedora and string tie. The morning before he had made his presence known by loud, angry declarations to an audience sized somewhere between himself alone and the world at large. So this showed an improvement in, if not mood, medication.

But how he had arrived at my assignment in life was unclear. True, I was marking yellow pad with ballpoint pen, but I had no vittles within reach. And my black leather motorcycle cap and Kelly green Penn Relays t-shirt did not scream, I would have thought, “Taste buds!”

It took me a couple hours to figure it out. “‘Cheesesteak,'” I told Adele, “was one of the books I had out for sale.”

“And the other was ‘The Schiz,'” she said, “so he must have thought you spoke his language.”