Mundanity is about exploring the mundane in detail, finding life, story and inspiration.
They’re there every day, same time, same place, same order, same story. Hand on metal, they can feel the aging paint flaking off the pole, like the trunk of a tree, each of the thousand or so hands that grabs it hacks away at the paint like an axe would its bark. Weathered over days, months, years, the paint falls away and the exposed metal beings to brown like autumn leaves. Their forearm tenses, obeying the command on the door they push through into the coffee shop, metal hits metal, a series of vibrations flood the air as the bell rings to announce their arrival. A few seconds later, ears adjust and the sound is drowned out by an orchestra of people, machines and bodies going through the motions.
With a screech as loud as a steam train the milk frother makes the particles of air dance across the room at speed, landing on their ears with a deafening tone, enough to make a dog turn tail a mile off. The machines continue their cacophony of noises, coffee beans being ground together, the violent action crushing and smashing each one, releasing the aroma, the flavour and the sweet nectar that draws so many into the shop.
Solid as stone yet light enough to drift, the scent of coffee rushes through their nose, so strong they believe it could manifest suddenly from thin air. Snapping out of the overwhelming rush of new yet familiar stimuli, they shuffle forwards into a line of bodies. Like towering buildings each individual forms a pillar of waiting, of patience. Each upright, varying in height, flinching forward in a mechanical way towards their end goal.
Conversations to digital ghosts compete for dominance, each mouth in the queue forming sentences at pace, important conversations, bickering, complaints and happiness swirl around the queue as it slowly shuffles forward. Only at the till do these individuals turn their attention to the actual human Infront of them, reciting the same string of words they do every day on the same spot. It’s not long until they’re absorbed back into their own world of chaos, drowning out the shop around them.
Order. Their order. Eyes swim across the board as letters form and coalesce into words. Words and numbers, choices, the options overwhelm and confuse but they know. They always know. Order, choose, wait. Standing and swaying, swaying and standing in the mass of people waiting for their own specific order. Anxiety fills the group, one careless reach, one slip of the mind and the wrong order is taken away. Chaos ensues, anger rises and tensions tighten as people’s days are held up. The finely tuned machine of the shop comes to a grinding halt with one swift action.
Today their coffee arrives, complete with a misspelt name despite having visited this same shop every working day of the year. Hot to the touch, the cool air of the room is already condensing on the cardboard sides. Trickling down each droplet finds its way to the surface, pooling to make a mess of spilt coffee, milk and condensation. A black-brown swirls with white, colliding with the clear water dripping from the cups, the storm of liquid builds on the table, gathering speed and volume until a wet cloth falls upon it. Almost instantaneously the storm of fluid vanishes as it is drawn into the seams of the fabric. A raging storm vanquished with a single swiping motion.
Bringing the cup up to their face, the intoxicating smell assaults their senses, pupils dilate wide and fill with the view of the thick black liquid. Too soon to try, but never learned, they take a sip. The scalding drink cascades over their tongue spreading a wet fire across their mouth and down their throat. Nerve endings tingle so violently each individual muscle in their face tightens, contorting it into a grimace of regret.
Pain follows, flooding through the mouth, down the oesophagus and all the way down to the stomach. The wet fire spreads and reaches all it can before it slowly goes out, devastating the flesh and leaving a bitter taste in its wake. Tingling intensifies, all taste is lost, invisible pins prick at the tender flesh of the tongue. Ruined, scalded and ashamed, they leave the shop, the cause of their demise clenched tightly in their hand.