We sit here alone together, sharing a communal space, completely engrossed in our communication devices yet not communicating at all. Netflix, selfies, Words with Friends that really aren’t, Candy Crush, just mind-numbing diversions.

I am just as guilty as anyone else. Our smartphones and tablets throw up our invisible force fields- our cones of silence- protecting us from social awkwardness, inadvertently catching someone’s eye, or worst of all- loneliness. We are disconnected in an overly connected world.

We gather In what, in another age or place, is a nexus for neighborly chats, town info, deep discussions and random scuttlebutt. We’ll have none of it though. Instead we sit hunched over steaming lattes and streaming displays, earbuds in for extra protection, aimlessly thumbing through 140-characters-or-less slugs of inanity and six second bursts of feline video hijinks.

I’m tempted to just walk over to a random table, plop down and and strike up a conversation. But I am of an age and size that makes that either intimidating or really creepy (or both), so I’m just sitting here documenting it visually. Just little digital sketches of us all alone- together. And I’m not going to lie, I do like the coffee.

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