Diane Hine (25 July 1956)
The couple ordered flat whites in the café.
“I bet there’ll be spillage in the saucer”,
she said, watching waiters dash past the table.
“Well, there was a time, ” he said, “when pouring
hot coffee into your saucer was thought
quite acceptable. The tip, blow and sip method.”
“Really, ” she replied, “well, I like a dry saucer
and expect it, for four dollars and fifty cents! ”
A cappuccino whizzed past. “Half a cup of air, ”
she said dismissively, “coffee with bubblewrap.”
He smiled in reply. He really didn’t care.
Their waiter arrived promptly, saucers in hands.
His was set down first. A trickle of tan
slid down the outer white curve. “Waves, ” she exclaimed.
The waiter paused, second saucer in hand. “Ma’am? ”
Her smile was tight. “The forcing frequency of your gait
resonates with that of the liquid, causing waves.”
The waiter glanced at the gent, who smiled and shrugged.
“The solution, ” she said, “is to use a suspended tray.
A pendulum set-up would buffer…..”
At that precise moment, a bag-laden customer
brushed past, nudging the waiter’s arm and hand
which still held her saucer - white as white. The cup
was launched, flew briefly and dived into her lap.
She was stunned; momentarily nonplussed.
Hot but not too hot, she thought as liquid splashed.
Gasps from other tables; someone said “Awesome…..”
The gent patted the waiter on the back.
“Not to worry, ” he said, “I know for a fact,
she really didn’t want it in the saucer.”
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