It's a day, like any other. The cafe is closed, probably until Wednesday night, for remodeling. It's almost sick, how much a creature of habit I really am. I spent most of the day sitting in front of my computer, playing around with Poser and 3D Studio Max, trying to create a decent 3D image of SpiderMan, of all things. I'd been at it pretty much all day long, having woken up at around 10 AM and stopping at around 9 PM. That's far too much time doing, basically, nothing.

I had to get out of the house, if only just to eat. I was out of cigarettes, too, and I was in the mood for coffee. I hopped into the Blazer borrowed from Dad and set out for the cafe, eager to check my email, surf on the 'net, eat, smoke and drink coffee 'till I was jittery. Then it dawned on me: the cafe's closed.

They're redoing the kitchen and bar entirely, ripping out the old and replacing it with something new, perhaps something borrowed, too, like a marriage of reconstruction and deconstruction. "Fuck it," I told myself. "Get some smokey treats, toss a few dollars into a drive-thru window and see if they can use some help. It'll at least be something to do, better than sitting on your ass all night."

And that's exactly what I did.

Sure enough, the place is a mess. Chuck, the owner and the landlord for my own place (I'm a tenant in one of his houses in East Nashville), was standing in the front patio and chatting with a friend of his. The benches which normally rest in front of the tables on the patio were lined up along the sidewalk, like they were waiting to get back inside the cafe sometime when Hell freezes over. Everyone waits in line at Cafe Coco at one point or another, even the seating has to get in line. I find this to be amusing, for some reason. I think it was the mental image of countless regulars, like me, who decided to come to the cafe anyway, only just to sit on benches parked on the sidewalk.

There were no regulars, other than me. I offered to help out with the remodeling, but the job was well in hand. One thing they did need, though, was for someone to stand guard and tell people to, basically, go away and come again some other day. I gladly accepted the task. It was something to do.

I can't begin to express how much I truly enjoy being here alone, with no one to bother or interrupt me. I finally get to come to the cafe and not have some sniveling nit pick my head for advice when all I really want is just to be left alone for a few hours. No distracting laughter, comments, noises, shouts, music... nothing but sheer solitude. The only downside, though, is that there is also no coffee.

While sitting here, reading a book that a friend of mine wrote, a thought stirred within me. A line from the book, "Satan certainly wants me badly enough, while Jesus hasn't lifted a finger to pick me up since I was a kid." I'm not what you would call a subscriber to the Christian philosophy, but the thought that occurred to me is this: Christ doesn't need to make a power play for your soul; He already has it. "Satan", however, is on this world and has a limited chance at turning you away from God. If "Satan" fails in his endeavors to turn you, and you die still in God's graces, then you have nothing to worry about.

I dunno... it was just a thought that seemed kinda relevant at the time. Good / Evil. What's all the hubbub about? If you want to be good, then be good. If not, then why worry about guilt?... unless the guilt is inspired by a significant portion of your conscience which truly wants to remain good.

Guilt is such a strange thing to me. It doesn't really serve a purpose except to make people feel bad. Why curry the favor of guilty thoughts? The whole religio-polical thing aside, if you follow your conscience and consult with it from time to time, how can guilt possibly come into play? Do I regret things I've done in the past? Honestly? No. I rather like myself as I am, today, and I wouldn't be who I am if not for all my little (and big) fuckups. Guilt has no place in my life, no more so than the distracting voices of other people when I'm trying to write.

I am alone in a sea of people; I am alone in a cacophany of voices. I don't feel guilty about that one, tiny bit.

Go away. We're closed. Ciao.

Another passing thought: Does Nate ever sit back and watch E2, smiling with pride in his creation, knowing that there are people out there, somewhere, who are putting to good use the thing he toils over so arduously?