Having from time to time written commentaries on my eating habits and recently adding the restaurant review to my general scope of reviews , last Monday I brought up the idea of writing a review of my experiences at my usual Monday night dining establishment to the bartender I deal with on a regular basis. He thought it would be a good idea, and so here it is that on a Monday night after a long day of work that I find myself sitting at a bar with a glass of iced tea to my left and a laptop sitting on the bar top while I write a review of a dining experience. I am glad that I was able to find the bar congenial for the purposes of social reading, as it allowed me to finish a work on the political thought of Machiavelli while at the same time watching some basketball, eating, talking, and doing a fair amount of blogging. I consider that a very productive way to spend the time, and I was able to do it without a great deal of manspreading, even though I must concede that I probably looked quite odd in my reading books and typing on the computer, and in my perhaps excessive interest in doing many things at once.
My experience this evening was fairly typical of my Monday nights. Since the Old Spaghetti Warehouse does not open until 4:30PM for dinners, I do not go here unless I know I will be at work later than normal. Since I have a report to do every Monday that lengthens my workday considerably, I make it a habit to eat on Mondays after 9 or 10 hours of work here. The bar is a bit dark for the purposes of reading, although I usually end up with a couple of books (last week it was three) read during my time here. Today, for example, I was able to read by the light of my laptop. What made my experience fairly typical, aside from the presence and use of my computer, was the fact that I sat and read at the bar and soon the bartender had my salad with balsamic vinaigrette and my bread with butter and a glass of iced tea with a bowl of sugar packets. Part of the joy of going to familiar places is the fact that one has an easier time dealing with the necessities of ordering because one has habits that are understood and remembered by others. Being a creature of habit, I appreciate having my habits known and responded to in a thoughtful manner.
There are other advantages to being a creature of habit, and that is the fact that I appear to be greatly distracted by being such a devoted reader, which allows me to observe the behavior of those around me with a great deal of cleverness. For example, I may watch the waitress who complains about the trashy women at a place on Century Blvd that make her want to stab herself, and I wonder perhaps too obviously why someone would wish to stab themselves in the face of those who offend them, instead of wishing to stab the offender. Likewise, I smile at the observation of my fondness for sweet tea among those who do not share my own background and my own interests in keeping my tea sweet. Likewise, I find myself sitting for quite some time next to someone who found in eating dinner at the bar a good reason to conduct business and to criticize someone’s conduct to someone on the phone. Likewise, I found that a gentleman who appears to be the shift manager forgot that I had spoken to him at some length just last Monday when he said it had been a while since he saw me last. Not everyone does a good job of remembering what I am interested in, after all, although as a writer, such details as are committed to writing because much easier to remember because they form part of a written record that itself serves as an evidence that I once lived, and ate and read a lot while doing so in the company of acquaintances and strangers alike. Should it be wondered at that I would enjoy being in the company of those who understand what I am about and who appreciate and enjoy it?
 See, for example: