There are six tables in the little café near home. I was sitting in here, all alone, when suddenly the hordes descended. I was on a roll, word-wise, however, so I held my ground.
There is a very pretty girl who spends a lot of time here, and her boyfriend often brings his laptop when he eventually arrives. So I am no longer the only guy with technology who spends time here. I was pretty absorbed in my work, so I wasn’t monitoring the ebb and flow of humanity through the joint, but when I got up for a brief urine break I noticed a third laptop in action. Six tables, three laptops. Not bad for a place without WiFi.
But while the third laptop was interesting, the operator was arresting. Seated at the glowing screen she has the librarian look — blonde hair pulled back, glasses, printed material laid out next to the keyboard, a look of intense concentration on her face. And lips. Then she got up to select what tea she wanted, and, well, dang.
Amazingly, it has happened. Not to my benefit, I think, but I have seen someone who makes the computer an accessory that is downright sexy. There are some accouterments that not everyone can wear. I once saw a pretty girl, late at night, outside an all-night auto parts store, poking under the hood of her Mustang, face lit by the glow from the flashlight propped on the fender. (Honestly, I don’t remember if it was a Mustang, but if it wasn’t, it should have been.) While she remains the sexiest woman I have ever seen, laptop girl tonight was up there.
Lets face it. You’ve got your supermodels, who make a career of simply looking good, and then there are the truly sexy women. Granted, the most successful models are capable of exuding some intangible force of personality, but like a chain restaurant, they are constrained by the need to appeal to the widest possible audience. You are not going to see the woman I saw tonight in any fashion magazine. She wasn’t selling that. Women who fix cars, or work on laptops in cafés, women in the act of resourcefulness and creativity, thinking not about how they look but about how they’re going to get the job done, those are my kind of folks. On the right face, concentration can be very sexy.
She’s gone now – the time you are moving through reading this is much different than my time. Gone forever, probably. I’m not sure she did me any favors tonight raising the geek chic bar the way she did. Before I was an exotic foreign writer. Not bad. Now I’m a scruffy writer. I’m OK with that – it’s certainly true, after all, and my laptop, beat and battered, fits the look well.