Coffeehouse Culture: an uncommon economic indicator — maybe

by Sandy Ikeda

I’ve noticed in the past 6 months or so that it’s been getting harder even on weekdays to find a seat at my preferred local coffeehouse (aka “the office”), and much too frequently lately I’ve had to bail to my second choice, which very often is also full. It’s not the cold weather because the crowding these days is a lot worse than in winters past. My wife suggests it’s the recession, with the growing reserve army of the unemployed – who in my nabe would mostly have worked on Wall Street – choosing to spend its time sipping joe in public than at home. Sounds plausible, but I’m too timid to ask anyone straight out if they’re there because they lost their job.

Anyway, just another, admittedly trivial, reason to hope this recession ends quickly. (But it won’t – not for another two years, I think, when inflation will be double-digit.)