Steampunk Cafe

Sue Ten will be going on vacation soon, and that means I will be responsible for keeping the potato batteries in her bedroom running so her husband Logan’s semi-comatose brain will get just the right dose to keep his heart beating and his mind tracking The Weather Channel and CNN.

Outside of that, Logan is pretty much an “easy keeper,” which is what my ex-husband Patrick-the-Liar used to call me, endearingly, of course, and I wasn’t even in a semi-coma, although after a few years with Patrick, it was increasingly hard to tell. I suspect that I sleepwalked through much of that part of my life without even knowing it.

Now, I just go with the flow of rampant insomnia, and don’t worry about it. It’s easy enough to leave my turquoise conch cottage and head up the lane to the pie shop where I can hit a few golf balls, have a plate of pie, check the post-it notes covering my computer, read a little poetry, and try not to let it all mesh together too much.

Now, I suppose I could ask your second-cousin Darnell to help out with Logan, but I need him at the Pie Shop to help me with some re-decorating. After looking more and more at that fabulous golf periscope, I’ve been thinking that maybe the Pie Shop needs more of a steampunk flair.

If you don’t know what steampunk is, just let your thoughts drift to an illustrated copy of any Jules Verne book, or just picture Captain Nemo at home in the salon of the Nautilus. It’s the future, visiting us from the past, with all the elegance it can muster.

Take, for example, this picture of a steampunk computer. I want it:


Computer from

Now imagine a steampunk jukebox, coffee maker, kitchen, cash register, radio, golf-ball washer, neon lights, soda machine, dishwasher, lawn mower, golf cart, and more.

I’ve never thought of myself as a luddite, but maybe that tendency has always been lurking there. I remember watching TV with the twins when they were in junior high, and we’d often see a public service announcement aimed at kids and asking, “What can you do to change the world?”

Chandler and Rose would say in unison, “We’d go to central control and smash all the machines!” Yes, that would certainly change the world, but where would they get such an idea?

No, I’m not really against technology. In fact, after a week of living out on the other side of the edge of the ’Glades, I have new appreciation for all magic in the air that keeps me in constant touch with you, and really, I don’t know what I would do without you right over there, telling me what I need to do to keep on keeping on. I appreciate it, and I thank you in my heart every day.

Then again, I do think technology could be ever so much more elegant than it is most of the time, so I am pledging to do what I can to re-create The Slice of Heaven 24-Hour Pie Shop and Driving Range as a steampunk Mecca.

At least, that’s my idea today, but if I ever get a good night’s sleep in, who knows what I may think up next? Maybe a steampunk potato battery? I’m sure Logan won’t mind if I do a little experimenting on his power supply while Sue is on the road, at least not as long as his Social Security checks keep rolling in. Tags: ,,,