Thursday, August 23, 2012

                                                                      Returning to teapots and bizarre tea cosies.
One for the road before farewells! 

...Despite the permanent smell of burned bacon grease and the likelihood that Ruth or Lillie would get the orders confused, Clary's had a loyal breakfast and lunch clientele.  People sauntered in...greeted one another from table to table, or from table to soda fountain, and every word was overheard and passed along later...Patrons...might include a housewife, a real estate broker, a lawyer, an art student, and perhpas a pair of carpenters doing work in a townhouse down the street.  One might be heard to say, "All we got to do today is seal up that doorway between her bedroom and his," and news that a marital Ice Age had
decended...would be common coin by the end of the day.
The man....always ordered the same breakfast: eggs, bacon, a Bayer aspirin, and a glass of spirits of ammonia and Coca-Cola.  But he didn't always consume it.  Sometimes he just looked at it...Then he would either begin to eat or get up without a word and walk out the door. The next day, Ruth would serve him the same breakfast and go back to her perch at the end of the soda fountain to take a drag on her cigarette and see what he would do. I, too, began to watch.

Extract, a non-profit review from Berendt: John Midnight in the garden of good and evil Vintage 1995

No comments: