More specifically, I (who at the moment sit in the right-hand lower corner of the shot) come here because of its:
1) Proximity to work, gym, church and home.
2) Green-shaded lamps on every table.
3) Singular status as a public gathering place devoid of baristas yelling drink orders.
4) Restrictions on food, removing the temptation to snack that invariably comes when I'm online at home.
5) Free, fast wireless.
6) Hot men studying.
I've come to believe that while the soothing atmosphere is more suitable for schoolwork than most places....the Reading Room also fosters an undercurrent of scoping. I admit that when I choose a place to plug in and sit, I base this choice on who else is at my table and who else might be in my line of vision. When I'm working I spend a fair bit staring off over the computer screen, brainstorming....and a lot of other folks do the same.
So the guy I'm directly across from has a wedding band and is speed-reading a computer manual....and he's leaving right now. But the gentleman directly right has a olive skin, a six-o'clock-shadow, faded jeans and is making notes on a thick stack of papers with "NATO" in the title. Two tables up, even, he's red-haired with a white Mac book and concentrating so hard he's licking his lips.
I fantasize about picking a man up in a library, kind of like when one sits alone at a bar trying to make eye contact with the cabernet drinker two spots down.
I have no idea how this would actually work. The silence discourages conversation. There's no way to banter via computer (a la Molly Ringwald and Andrew McCarthy's characters in Pretty in Pink, which, speaking of, how the hell did that ever work?). Most folks wear sweatpants and scarves with bed-head and are probably stressing a 20-page brief for Monday's Con Law class.
However, there's something sexy to me about intelligence and academia and those in it who might love this space as much as I do.....that I have to believe at some moment I'm going to look up and catch the eye of the man I'm looking at right now....to the left, third table, grey long-sleeved t-shirt with grey short-sleeve shirt over, blond tousled crew-cut, chin down in concentration as he types.
Once that happens, I'll just have to wing it.
And, perhaps, come back tomorrow?