The neck cramp used to be the distinct malady of the big reader or the overly ambitious and generous lover. Yet, almost instantly our spines curved downwards towards our phones.

How shocking one found this when they finally noticed directly corresponds with the degree of neck ache. To the shoulder blades? “Oh, so this is what the passage of time feel’s like. Interesting.”

Down to your office job lower back pain? Barely an additional tickle on the overburdened and underpaid subconscious that already knows there is no final straw for it’s infinitely twist-able back.

It was easy to feel the collective quiet anguish between the cottage like wooden walls of the urban cafe. These days it was counter balanced by the tri-daily doses of horror and/or schadenfreudian delight (depending on your taste buds). But it was nonetheless a sign of weakness; if the apocalyptic climax the reality pornographic appreciation society awaited came in the afterglow these unlikely ninjas would be among the first to fall.

By the window, straight backed and staring straight out upon the street that alternated between unverified once in a lifetime scenes of joy, horror, and miscellaneous, she sat with books open and pages marked. Whatever the content, be it notes that helped with the transition of complex knowledge from yesteryear through now to tomorrow, or the bad poetry of the endlessly idealistic,┬áhe’d be damned if he didn’t say hello to someone who might find him a worthy companion at the end of the world. There weren’t a lot of them left, and there was sure to be a lot of heavy lifting.