Why argue in private when you can do it at Starbucks?

arguing at Starbucks

Sacrificing for your children

The 13-year old has the gall to have guitar lessons on Thursdays for an hour and a half. Instead of driving home, I torture myself by going to the closest Starbucks with my laptop.

They need to surround each table with heavy velvet curtains that are somehow soundproof so I don’t have to see people or hear their conversations.
Walls? Actual walls would make me feel too claustrophobic.

When you’re arguing at Starbucks, people notice

There’s a couple behind me right now with their sleeping toddler arguing about who makes more money and why one makes more money than the other. It’s a conversation with bits of power struggles, stupidity, pain, betrayal, distrust  woven together and it feels like it will break at any minute.

The woman is prideful and happy to lob insults at her partner: that’s why they pay me more because I’m more committed than you are; you’re lazy; maybe if you worked out, you’d be better; God, you’re eating again? Sometimes, you make me sick; it’s my money.

He’s on the defensive as he holds their child and his anger and frustration spews out of him: you spend all our money on yourself; everyone at your office hates you because you’re such a bitch; you’re just like your dad; you’re so selfish; instead of being here with us, shouldn’t you be out buying shoes or something?

Seriously? You two are arguing at Starbucks right now? I’m just trying to watch the second to last episode of Breaking Bad here. C’mon – leave me in peace with my drug show.

Their words strangle me and I hear the knocking of a panic attack in my ears. I’m slingshotted back in time to my childhood when my parents would argue about everything and the root was always money.

My palms feel sweaty and the muscles in my neck are starting to tighten.

I hope someone throws scalding hot coffee at my face and puts me out of my misery. I cannot listen to their shit any more.

I don’t know these people. I don’t know their backgrounds, their circumstances, their stories, the paths that have lead them to this moment where they are growling at one another in front of strangers in a coffee shop while disjointed notes from a jazz tune play in the speakers overhead..

If it weren’t so sad, it would be funny – like that awkward scene in a romantic comedy where someone’s heart is being broken and you don’t mean to laugh, but you do because crying requires more energy.

Why do we intentionally hurt the ones we love? Or are we hurting the ones that love us? There’s a difference right? The case for reciprocity is muddled and I’m starting to crawl into a space I don’t know anything about. Although, I did get an ‘A’ in a college Psychology class. The fact that everyone else got an ‘A’ doesn’t matter.

I think I just need to go live in a dungeon somewhere and not have access to humans. Netflix – yes. Humans – no.

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