10 o’clock list: WiggleGround Faux Pas

Paul Newman drinks coffee. [via http://www.redraig.co.uk/]

Paul Newman drinks coffee.

Love it, hate it, feel relatively neutral about it, Gambier has one coffee shop with many names: officially, Wiggin Street Coffee, colloquially, WiggleGround, disdainfully, that-place-that-isn’t-MiddleGround. As a real stickler for the rules and all things couth (sorry, too much Downton Abbey), here are the biggest annoyances found at WiggleGround.

  1. The Awkward Outlets on Cords – Can you use this outlet? Yes. But only if you can drape it over my side of my booth in such a way that you: A. Knock over my water, B. Rifle/rip/rend my very “organized” stacks of notes, and/or C. Stick your armpit in my face.
  2. The One-Man Booth – The church tower chimes four as you stumble from your last class, drunk with exhaustion. As you drag your butt across campus, driven by the hope of a syrupy mocha, the prospect of a booth to rest your sorry bones wanes. An opening? Impossible, since there’s always that one patron saint of Wiggin Street who holds court, everyday at rush hour, filling the recesses of his otherwise-empty four-man booth with notes, coats, etc., dashing your dreams of moderate discomfort and surface area.
  3. The “How-Long-are-You-Going-to-be-Here”? As I am chronically guilty of one-woman boothing (call me a hypocrite), I have been asked this question a lot—by starry-eyed lovers wanting to gaze at each other as they recite Italian love poetry and play footsie under the table, by Baby Drama scene partners, by prospies with their helicopter mommies. For all intents and purposes, I’m never leaving. So don’t you dare judge me for my open window screens! The Internet is my homework!
  4. The Super-Table – If you have eight friends, go to Peirce and occupy a darn circle table, not a booth AND a center table AND all of the twelve chairs Wiggle Ground has to offer. You aren’t imagining the dirty looks from the poor souls in isolation booths—this is a college coffee shop, not a middle school all-girls sleepover. Take your giggles and shrieks outside. Please and thank you.
  5. Boycotting – Do you still refuse to go to the only coffee place in town just because it isn’t MiddleGround? In fairness, we all miss it terribly. After all, the most emotionally compelling shot in J. Rad’s masterpiece, Liberal Arts, is of the old sign, with its coffee bean logo, ripe with nostalgia and fond memories of grilled cheese with avocado. But, alas, poor Yorick, change has struck and stuck. Perhaps a nice traditional cappuccino can warm the icy, bitter cockles of your heart?

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