Sitting in my Panera – 4/18/2008

Last summer, when I first came to Grand Rapids, I found a Panera Bread near my apartment, and adopted it. I would go twice a week, or so, get a bagel for breakfast, or perhaps a bowl of soup for lunch, and then sit and work, writing in this very blog, or on this or that short story.

At least one person behind the counter recognized me when I cam in by the end of the summer, and I was lonesome over the summer, so I appreciated that. The fact that she was a cutie had absolutely nothing to do with it, I swear.

In coming back here, I was hoping for more nostalgia than I found. Perhaps some warm welcome or something. They did ask me if I wanted my bagel toasted, but they do that to everyone. It feels like a Panera: familiar, but not special. But then, I’ve never been one for longlasting-profound feelings of anything. I get glimpses of them here and there, but any more than that and I feel melodramatic.

I do enjoy Panera, though. It has a nice, coffeeshop-like feel, that quiets me down. For those that don’t know me personally, I’m a loud person who talks too much, and so quieting me is a big thing.

Plus, just as I started that sentence, a lady walked by and asked me if I’d like a free sample of Panera’s new egg sandwich. It had bacon, and was very good. The girl might well have been the one who recognized me last summer—I can’t remember what she looked like, so it’s possible. I’d like to think it’s true: it’s the sort of thing that happens in novels all the time, but not real life.

I turned my ankle last night. I’ve got ice against it right now, and it’s starting to feel better. The irony, of course, was that I turned it while walking down steps, thinking how cool it was that humans were able to attain the engineering knowledge to be able to make things like elevators, wheel-chairs, etc. I’m not even close to needing any of those, mind: just hobbling a little, and that should go away by tomorrow. But it’s a funny story, non-the-less.

It’s 8:28, and the first session at Calvin starts in two minutes. I was planning on going to a poetry reading by Thom Satterlee and Paul WIllis. We’re featuring them in the next issue of Stonework, and I’d like to meat them in person. But I’m still in Panera, and I think I might sit for a while longer yet. The ice on my ankle feels good, and the drain of being at a conference, constantly getting academic input, is draining.

I have an idea for an essay. Perhaps I’ll start on that, now.



  1. Wes said,

    April 20, 2008 at 12:41 pm

    You’d like to “meat” them in person?

    Playing too much KoL lately? ;-)

  2. Cassie said,

    April 23, 2008 at 3:34 am

    Hopefully I’ll be able to adopt that Panera myself… :)

  3. cassandrajo said,

    April 23, 2008 at 7:59 pm

    Hmm. I imagine you’ve gathered by now that I have two blogs. The one used to leave the comment above is the one my family has access to. I’m still using WordPress. :)

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