Reading in coffee shops

December 3, 2007 at 9:59 pm (Doing, Reading) (, )

So, how long do you think that you can eek out one decaf filter coffee whilst engrossed in a good book?  My record in Prague last week was one hour and twenty minutes – at that point the very cold dregs in the bottom of my cup no longer constituted a drink and I felt compelled to move on.   Despite having spent a whole 40 koruna (about a quid) and mimed a pulsing migraine to specify the necessary decaffeinated nature of my beverage, I felt guilty for taking up a chair when I no longer had any drink left.  Or did I feel that if I stayed any longer, I’d be obliged to buy another coffee?  Just what is the etiquette of time versus cups?



  1. Maverick said,

    I have an unfortunate habit of buying one cup of coffee at either my local Starbucks or the indie coffee shop across the street, and staying there for hours–the Starbucks because it doesn’t have wireless Internet and I can do creative writing there without being tempted to check my email–and the indie shop because it does have wireless Internet and my home Internet isn’t dependable and I need it for freelance writing. So, it may not be correct–but I figure one cup buys me a few hours.

  2. Vanessa said,

    I really know where you’re coming from on this one. I think that the coffee shops don’t mind as long as they’re not so busy that you’re clearly taking up space someone else needs whilst sipping cold latte for three hours (eg, in Leeds city centre on a Saturday before Christmas… Starbucks is not pretty). But when wasting time in cafes and coffee shops out of necessity, I usually buy a big cup of whatever and try not to totally finish it…

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