highlights from the medieval scholars that took over my workplace today





so my campus is currently hosting an ENORMOUS conference of scholars who study medieval history. they’ve been completely flooding the tiny cafe where I work and drinking our coffee faster than we can make it, but the good news is that they provide some PRIME people watching, including: 

  • the fact that all of their name tags include pronouns so that I won’t feel bad assuming anyone’s gender in this post
  • the woman RANTING about one of her colleagues on the following grounds: “he thinks he understands it from some class he took in 1996! FUCK OFF, TOM.”
  • the man who was loudly and earnestly discussing the “influence of the Harry Potter fandom on our modern political discourse” while he got a soda 
    • before he was out the door he’d switched topics to his preferred methods for teaching students about elves 
  • the two nice extremely polite young British lads who I could not tell apart to save my life. their name tags indicated that they were apparently not twins, but cloning does not seem impossible.
  • the sheer number of people graciously volunteering to buy lunch for people they’ve just met 
  • an unexpected number of very handsome soft butch women involved in medieval studies. I am bisexual and weak.
  • the guy in the flannel shirt who had the coldest, softest, most feminine hands I’ve ever encountered. I fell in love with him for a good 60 seconds. I am bisexual and weak.
  • people who aren’t from America being cheerfully confused by our money, including my favorite, a Canadian woman who told me “I’m slow with American money because it’s all the same color.”
    • I’ve learned that people who aren’t going to be in the country for more than a few days don’t give a SHIT about their change and will toss all of it in the take a penny/leave a penny jar. I collected so many quarters, y’all.
    • also a nice British woman called it the penny pot, which is the cutest shit I’ve ever heard and absolutely its new name.
  • just in general the EXTREMELY good grace and patience with which everyone accepted that we only have 2 cashiers and that it takes about seven minutes to make more coffee.
    • SEVERAL times after I apologized for the coffee wait (because this is customer service and minor inconveniences mean we have to grovel) the response was ‘lmao no worries this just means I get a fresh pot’
  • a woman approached me to day with a fucking enamel pin of that old illustration of a nun gathering dicks from a tree (you know the one) and I said immediately “oh my god, is that a pin of the penis tree?” and she looked stoked and said “yes it is the penis tree! you’re only the second person to recognize it!” what kind of boring ass medieval scholars has she been hanging with???? she was probably so fucking excited to finally have company where she could wear that pin and nobody said anything??? rude.
  • you know, this one

I have more:

  • every single person who said “cheers” when I gave them their change.
  • the painfully hip young man who was dressed entirely in standard academic business casual EXCEPT FOR his shiny silver doc martens. 
    • me: “you boots are amazing.”
    • him: “!!!! thank you!”
  • the man who walked in, spotted the selection of high octane energy drinks, and nearly cried with relief. when he came to the register to pay for what was probably enough caffeine to kill a horse he looked me dead in the eye and said cheerfully “thanks, I’m jet lagged as shit and I can’t be expected to function right now.”
  • the dude who overheard my friend Austin listening to Florence and the Machine, started chatting with him about it, and asked him out on a date
  • I sold a hot dog to An Actual Nun

You know Florence’s Mum is a renaissance scholar with a specialty in fashion/material goods history, yes? Evelyn Welch, superstar.

I didn’t know that, but it explains a lot about Florence’s style and I’m very happy I know it now