There is Less to Say

"I drink good coffee every morning. Comes from a place that's far away. And when I'm done I feel like talking - with out you here there is less to say."

At my coffeeshop, there is an older man who comes in everyday and sits at a table for two. Since I started working there nobody has ever joined him. I often consider the longing he must feel. He is alone, not just for his morning coffee, but in life.

I think about the way it feels to sit with someone you love, the same someone, every morning. And I think about the silence that must follow when that conversation stops for eternity.

Every day he leaves behind a stack of newspapers with huge rectangular holes cut out of them, carefully, from front to back. I had no idea what these holes were for, and vaguely entertained the idea that it was an interesting symptom of dementia.

Yesterday, he asked me for a pair of scissors since he forgot his. After I got them from behind the counter, I asked him what he did with the newspaper every morning.

He smiled and said "I cut out the articles my wife will like, so she can read them with out being bothered with this other nonsense." He gestured to a front page covered in stories about emotional and economic deperession. In his hand two articles: one about foreign aid, and another about Earth Day.

I have never seen true love so exemplified. To care for someone so much you can't bare to see them hurt; even by a sad story about a whale trapped in the San Diego harbor.

[ image from house of milk]


  1. that is such a cute story i just cried a little

  2. this is such a beautiful story it makes my heart ache!! & LOVE the colin hay song at the beginning :)

  3. i bet you still tear up when you see that guy, but now out of joy.

  4. Sam. I would say "wouldn't it be great to have love like this?" but then I almost think it would be ruined if it was such an everyday norm.

    Still. It is nice to know it's out there, and that you're lucky enough to see it.

    Love you, boo.

  5. wow, that's a great story and a reminder that true love is out there. i worked in a coffee shop in college (i still moonlight at one) and i befriended an older man who was always alone. he just talked to me about his adult children and his wife that passed away and i learned a lot from him. i'm glad you took the time to talk to this man.


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