Barnes & Noble Cafe – Brookfield Square – 95 N. Moorland Rd., Brookfield, Wisconsin

Monday thru Friday 9am to 10pm & Sunday 10am to 7pm

I'm not sure if the cafe is open as late as the store, and I don't think Brookfield Square is, but if you're walking around a mall or going to the Barnes & Noble Cafe at 10pm—wow, hard core. It's impressive that the store is open that late, actually—and I like to think it's in order to service heavy-reading insomniacs. I also like to think the B&N Cafe is the epicenter of the suburban sex scene, and I may be projecting, but sitting in here with a coffee and writing in my notebook, looking around at the busy order counter, and the tables, spread out on the far side of the Barnes & Noble store, one person per table, it did inspire my imagination. I felt one ingredient removed from the action, and probably writing in a paper notebook, with an ink pen, rather than using a smartphone or e-reader was the key. I guess if you're using a “NOOK” (B&N e-reader, and short for nookie) or the NOOK app, you can read for free here, and I'm guessing there might be a way to DM like-minded book-lovers in the direct vicinity. The coffee (and insane dessert drinks more commonly ordered) is Starbucks, and for sheer overkill there are desserts from Cheesecake Factory (when removed from C.F. like this, make it seem more like an actual factory, right?), and I treated myself to a pre-packaged Rice Krispies bar/thing (GF) that some factory food genius managed to fuck up. I got some writing done, as it's not a bad atmosphere, and a place I could imagine hanging out if I did live in the suburbs, even without the necessary savvy to navigate the lonely housewife hook-up scene.

Richard Skiller 7.28.18