My writing buddy Bernie is out of town for the week so today in place of our meeting I went to Barnes & Nobles to conduct research for a new project.
It's a dog project where I need to research different breeds and write...stuff. (Sorry, confidentiality agreement). But the important part is I have to select a certain combination of breeds. So I pulled out "The Encyclopedia of the Dog" and several breed specific books, grabbed a mocha (mmm... mocha) and planted myself at a table in the Barnes & Noble cafe.
People kept slowing as they passed by my table. The books were big ones and big glossy pictures of different breeds were spread across the table as I scribbled in a notebook. After about 2 passes, people would stop to ask what I was doing. When I mentioned it was a dog-writing related project, most were eager to recommend their breed. One man stopped by and asked if I was researching what sort of dog I wanted. He seemed disappointed that it was merely an assignment. But he cheered up and told me why Dobermans or Irish Setters would be an excellent choice for my piece.
I'm telling you--there is NO better ice-breaker than a discussion about pets. I had some short but really nice conversations today. When I packed up and left, half of the cafe waved goodbye to me.
Some days I just can't help but think... I have the coolest job.