The Micropolitics of Melbourne Cafe Society

by Kieran Healy on October 19, 2003

We go into Trotters on Lygon St (highly recommended, by the way). It’s busy, there’s only one free table, and the middle-aged guy next to it has to tidy up the paper he’s annotating so we can sit down. I’m chatting away to my (American) other half, possibly about the talk she gave at Melbourne Uni yesterday. Messy paper guy gets slightly agitated. He takes a few more notes, rummages in his bag and produces a copy of Why Do People Hate America?, apparently on general principle. It doesn’t seem relevant to his note-taking. He leaves it on display on our side of the table. He doesn’t make eye-contact.



johnx 10.19.03 at 11:30 am

Looks like it may be a good book.


Peter Wilkinson 10.19.03 at 12:26 pm

From the general tenor of your diary, I doubt that you were surprised by the existence of the book. If you are in Melbourne, looking for people well enough informed to know that Iraq is about oil fields, Afghanistan is about the gas pipeline, private corporations run rigged elections in the some states of the USA and that Dubya is a crook, Lygon Street is amongst the best places in Melbourne to find them.


Andrew Edwards 10.19.03 at 12:58 pm

Heh. Nothing like a hard leftie trying to passive-aggressively start a debate.

Glad you had the sense not to open a conversation.


Anthony 10.19.03 at 2:14 pm

Shame you didn’t have a copy of “Hey! You’re a Dickhead!” to flash back at him.
You could have spent an amusing (and expensive) hour rushing into Borders or Readings (his preferred choice, I’d imagine) to find books with appropriate titles to reveal to each other.


matt 10.19.03 at 3:46 pm

If I’d only known that the reason people hate americans was that we force them to straigthen their papers and share a table! All this time I thought it was our bombing them and supporting oppresive dictators…

This is pretty funny, though.


dmm 10.19.03 at 10:48 pm

Apparently you need to carry around a copy of “How The Irish Saved Civilisation” for just such an emergency.

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