Getting the hint / by Brooks Watson

As I get older, my intuition gets sharper. I tend to pick up when someone is trying to get something from me, or take advantage. I'll give people a chance to prove my intuition wrong, but they usually don't succeed. 

The opposite situation is happening this very minute. I'm not wanted. I'm sitting in a new, beautiful Starbucks, next to the fireplace, sipping out of a big mug, and well, getting no work done. The WiFi in this flagship store is astonishingly slow…purposefully slow. "No worries" I thought when I sat down. I have my Clear WiFi device, "Ol' Reliable". I wait. Nothing. I'm apparently in some sort of no mans land in the middle of downtown Chicago. I wonder if that's purposeful too.

Photo 1.jpg

For 45 minutes, I've been switching from one task to the next in an effort to find an app or program or browser that will work on this 1999 WiFi signal. So now, I'm working offline on my notes program. I'm writing about "getting the hint" when someone doesn't want you around. 

The wifi access here is obligatory, but evidently serves another more subtle role. It's a messenger, with one message. "Check your email and leave, laptopper." 

This "You're not wanted" instinct is a good one to hone too, because some people are very much like this Starbucks. They'll tolerate you temporarily, but what they really want is for you to leave. Happily, this doesn't happen that often, but when it happens the best thing to do IS leave. Sometimes you just don't connect. 

So, that's one way to see my WiFi experience. Here's another. I moved to Argo Tea down the street; a proven signal. While posting this, their WiFi crashed. Maybe the hint is this: "Get off the internet". This message seems more likely. Disconnecting.