Dixie Darr

I Need a Place to Hang Out

In creativity, Denver, work on February 2, 2011 at 9:25 am

Pasquini’s Pizzeria is a homegrown Italian restaurant in a turn of the century building featuring exposed brick walls, antique brass chandeliers, mismatched plates, and to-die-for breadsticks and grilled sandwiches. When I walk in, the waitstaff calls me by name and remembers my usual order. They don’t mind when I stay for a couple of hours reading and writing or working at my computer.

It’s what sociologists call my “third place,” a place separate from home (the first place) and work (the second place) where people congregate for social and creative interaction. I always looked forward to going there, until suddenly I couldn’t anymore.

When I got sick last fall and was diagnosed with diabetes, I had to quit going to Pasquini’s because I could no longer eat their food. I miss it and have been looking for another hangout ever since. The local coffee shop discourages people from hanging around taking up their limited table space. A nearby bakery, like Pasquini’s, has nothing made with whole wheat or whole grain bread. Other places in walking distance specialize in burgers, fries, Mexican food, and the like—all off limits to me.

So I continue to search for a place I can walk to, eat the food, and hang around. If you’d like to open such a place, I know a couple of empty storefronts that are available.

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