He likes to spend morning time at the local coffee house, nearly every day. Gregor finds his friends there. They come and go. He likes these folks and they seem tolerant of his lobotomy. It all works well, most days.
Gregor listens to his friends and makes mental characters from them. His therapist taught him this trick and Gregor always follows the advice of his keepers.
Here are some of Gregor’s coffee house friends, listed in no special order.
The Reporter. Knows where all the skeletons are buried. Completely aware of current events, big and small. Probably knows where all future skeletons will be buried. Better than a newspaper, faster than a speeding newscast, more interactive than a TV news feed. A complete necessity if you live in a small town.
The Artist. Multi-media is the way to go. Blend, scramble, re-touch, smooth, make edgy, color it in pastels. If it isn’t art, it isn’t real. That includes everyone and everything. Talks about it endlessly. Cannot focus. Words that let you take a quick nap. Too unreal for Gregor’s taste.
The Historian. An unlimited storehouse of all events in the area. None of these events are verifiable but they are finely detailed and vibrant. Each piece of wisdom interlinks with someone still alive, or nearly so. Often partners with The Reporter to produce information. Has some interesting moments, but not that many. Tends to repeat.
The Intellectual. Everything comes down to the provable, the tangible. There are no mysteries in life, nothing that cannot be known. If it’s here, if it’s ever been here, if it will ever exist, The Intellectual knows why and can explain it all. Sometimes you just want a wild ride without all that analysis.
The Humorist. The opposite of The Intellectual. If it exists, it’s humorous, funny, tainted, silly, wholly undemanding of great thought. If it’s out there, it’s funny. Sometimes inappropriate but usually entertaining. Like The Historian, can tend to repeat from time to time. Needs to take better notes.
The Skeptic. Believes nothing and thinks you should also believe in nothing. The world is a giant conspiracy and all the players are conspirators. Nothing should be taken on faith, ever. Interesting for a while but leaves you a bit thirsty for the magical.
The Politician. Always running for something but never quite gets there.
The Excuser. It doesn’t matter what happened. Everything is OK. It will always be OK. Even opinions are OK, regardless of who spews them and how outrageous they become. I’m OK, you’re OK. Everything is perfectly OK. None of this can be real.
The One-Liner. Gregor’s absolute favorite. Rarely speaks. When the words come forth, they never miss their mark and are sufficiently subtle to give everyone a chuckle. Well, maybe not for the target of the one-liner. Gregor just lies in wait for these.
The Whiner. Doesn’t need any description. Everyone nods and keeps quiet.
The Windbag. Good on those stuffy days but a bit tiresome. Welcome when your jaw hurts and your ears are not yet overworked. You never need to worry about missing a word or two, or even a long paragraph. Like The Whiner, gets a lot of nods and that quiet smile recognizable by all but the speaker.
The Happy Warrior. Another of Gregor’s favorites. Life is good. Life has great stories, never overused. At the end of the day, life is a fascinating journey. Makes you feel the pleasure of still being upright. Shows up just often enough to be a genuine breath of fresh air. Never overstays the moment.
The Bored. Not really there at all. Could be just another chair that no one will ever use. The facial expression tells all. It’s OK, though, because the words are few.
The Young One. Doesn’t stay long. Never bores others. Too much life on the horizon to sit around and over-analyze. Fun. Lets you know that the race truly does belong to the young, as it should.
The Smart One. Rarely shows up at all. Too many other distractions in life. On those rare appearances, doesn’t stay long but usually has something interesting to add to the conversation. Reliable. Real. Gregor likes this one.
Gregor lives here.