Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Real and Artificial

Today at the café there were three young women at a table and two young men at another table. Did the duo see the trio? No. Let me focus on the two young men, both about 19 years old. One was dressed in black, the other in lighter colors. Very casual. Haircuts and nice teeth. They were modest,  attentive to each other as lovers are. I think they are "just" friends. Now to the next table. Costumed, clothes carefully chosen. Make-up. Their conversation was audible to everyone, as though they were talking to each other on cell phones. Attention was divided. Each looked somewhere else. The two guys looked at the paintings at the same time, then returned to each other. The trio were continually distracted. Designed and made up/"As they were". Natural/Artificial. Attentive/Distracted. What does this mean? Elsewhere? Single men. Single women. An Italian couple, visiting the city, arrived. She went for a menu, looked after him. He had dark hair, a narrow face, lean body. Modest (again), self-conscious. She was mostly uncovered: low-cut, high-rise shirt. He was also in black, like one of the duos. Why are men wearing black? Why are some alone? Where are the other pairs of friends? A woman came in. Her perfume filled the room, overwhelmed the smell of coffee and food. The men smell as they do. One must get up close to have the smell. It will not be a perfume.

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