Limbo ’17. March 24 Edition.

Last week. Waffle House. 3:30 am. Somewhere in North Carolina.

Three tables of people, one them just leaving and a few more still-to-be-cleared tables.

That silent, slightly-depressing, but oddly-comforting early-morning aura has enveloped the room. The lighting bright and a bit too harsh.

Server: Hey baby, just sit right here
Me: Thanks
Server: You want some coffee, baby?
Me: Yes please.
Server: How about food? You eatin’ something?
Me: How about some scrambled eggs, plain grits and some wheat toast.
Server: You got it, baby. I have to call two orders first, but we’ll getcha taken care of
Me: Thanks.

It’s now two tables plus me at the counter. Server calls orders, wipes tables. I move down a few seats to get away from the direct breeze of a ceiling vent.

Server: You okay over there baby?
Me: Oh yeah. No problem. I was just moving down a few seats.
Server: Oh I can tell that. I was just askin’ if you’re doin’ okay
Me: Ha, yep. Long drive. Taking a break.
Server: I hear ya, baby ….

Etc.

Today. New York. My neighborhood diner:

I walk in and take a table. Server walks up.

Server: Same?
Me: Yep.

No etc.