The cafe

In every European city, there are cafés, bars, and restaurants that stand as totems to a youthful cosmopolitan dream. They are tavernlike and multipurpose places. Usually, their customers are under forty-five. The language of first resort is Global English, which extends the present into the continuous and makes bathrooms “toilets”: language that belongs to nobody, and so to all. These are the places where expatriates gather to feel less foreign, and where locals go to avoid losing touch. To visit is to feel lost, but also on the verge of being found.

-Nathan Heller ‘Imagining a cashless world‘ The New Yorker

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