Sunday Seen & Heard 3.27.22

On Sunday mornings, I try to get up early and post up in a neighborhood coffee shop for writing practice. I read a chapter of Natalie Goldberg’s Wild Mind: Living the Writer’s Life and spend 10 uninterrupted minutes capturing my surroundings.


You can park for free in Cleveland Heights now. Staring at the green and orange “Free Street Parking” sign, I remember nights of putting old tickets on my windshield before heading to the bar, hoping to deter meter maids with deception. One year, I racked up over $200 in Cleveland Heights parking tickets and I loathed the place. Enough to abandon its trendy hipster vibes for neighborhoods that wouldn’t bleed me of increasingly hard to find quarters. (We all used debit cards for fuck’s sake). 

But oh, how the mighty have fallen. Now, right next to the “Black Lives Matter” sign on the window of the coffee shop… Free Parking. Seven days a week. In green and orange. Begging the good people of Cleveland Heights and all its visitors who retreat to the quirky charms of the little suburb to patronize its businesses post-pandemic. If there is such a thing. 

I stopped writing to check the time and lost my flow. That was a righteous rant, wasn’t it? This Phoenix Coffee is distinct from its sister on Coventry Rd. Same wood, metal, and greenery theme. Same tiny light bulbs over the plants — they won’t photograph nearly as well a second time around. I want to take a photo of the free parking sign from inside but am afraid the blonde in the rubber boots seated near the window will think me a weirdo. I should do it for that reason alone. 

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a girl named rob

I used to be "skinny black girl." I'm now a slender woman on the other side of 35 with no new moniker who is not quite interested in writing under her given name. Still writing my life, a day (or some months) at a time. Also, still black.

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