Clothing was spread all over the room and homework was left half-finished at the computer desk. An Apple laptop was quietly playing Brit-pop favorites, Oasis, and their debut album “Definitely Maybe.” “It’s just rock ‘n roll….it’s just rock ‘n roll….” was heard as “Rock ‘N Roll Star” came to a close. Grunge favorites Alice In Chains and Nirvana adorned the walls in grandeur poster fashion.

Over in the corner of the room was a single bed, covered by a blanket with a penguin pattern all over the spread. This was the bedroom of Jeff, a boy no older than sixteen, ready and eager to get his driver’s license in a week thanks to being recently grounded and forced to wait for the test. Jeff sat on his bed, a solemn look on his face.

“Look, I’m really sorry. I didn’t realize talking to her would piss you off. I promise not to talk to her again!” Jeff exclaimed. “I never knew that you and Anna Roberts used to be friends in third grade, and that she stabbed you in the back for Derek Henderson. It was an honest mistake!”

Jeff heard only silence. This made him even sadder because he now knew that he was in deep shit.

“I know how I can make it up to you. This Saturday, I’ll take you to the ol’ baseball diamond and we’ll watch your favorite team the Jones County Coyotes kick the ever-loving crap out of whomever they are playing this week. How about that?” asked Jeff.

With still no reply, Jeff really needed to think of something better to make up for what he did.

“What about a nice night on the town? I’ll take you to whatever movie you’d like to see. Dinner at a fancy place? Flowers? the whole works, I promise!” begged Jeff.

Nothing. Not even a glance. By now, Jeff was starting to get desperate for a solution. He started searching his mind frantically for words that could offer him salvation from his relationship faux pas. Tucked in the corner of his brain, he stumbled upon the idea that he felt would certainly get him back into her good graces.

“I have it! I think this is going to be the clincher, honey. To repent my sins and all the damage I have done, I will let you kick me in the nuts. Kick me as hard as you’d like. Just punt them! I deserve it. Hell, if you feel like it, you can sock me in the gut for good measure!” exclaimed Jeff.

Finally this got a rise out of her, but not enough for Jeff to feel at peace with his demons. Nonetheless, he knew he had found a path to relationship recovery. Jeff continued to bring up methods to make up for his wrongdoings.

“Jeff? Honey? Are you talking to your hand again?” politely chimed Jeff’s mom from outside his bedroom door.

“SHUT UP MOM!!!!!” shouted Jeff. “It’s psychological therapy, you stupid bitch!”

“I’ll show you psychological therapy, you fucking brat!” Jeff’s mom screeched as she continued on into the laundry room, leaving Jeff to keep jabbering to his imaginary girlfriend.

Sioux Falls, South Dakota— Coders all over the city long for the times when they would sit in peace, sipping their coffee, next to their MacBook Pros.

“It’s just not the same as the old times when I could sit here undisturbed, able to get work done. Those were the good times. Now I have to deal with things like this family over here discussing how their day is going, or this guy coughing a lot while reading today’s paper. It’s all distracting me from getting my NodeJS app finished up and tested.” said one coder, who wished to remain anonymous. “Don’t even get me started on the people who come in and ask for the most inane drinks imaginable.” she quipped.

Aaron, a freelancer who spends most of his working days in select shops around town, has noted similar issues.

“When I get started with my day, I am usually the only one here with a computer in front of them. Before long, everyone around is sporting a computer, using up all the bandwidth. That bandwidth used to be all available to just me, and it’s disheartening. Spotify streaming quality suffers because of all the extra traffic. Because of this, my focus gets ruined and I fear my client site designs lose quality as a result.”

One report states that Aaron received cold shoulders and looks of disbelief when he brought his concerns up to the baristas. Once he asked to speak to a manager, the manager told him that they can’t just kick everyone else out. They said that the continual flow of customers is part of the daily revenue. These customers spend more money than Aaron does on his own.

When asked, both of our coders agreed that times past were much nicer. “It’s just better for both of us before the lunch rush kicks in and no one else is around.” Aaron then added “We’ll just have to return early tomorrow and enjoy the salad days while we can.”

No word yet on if they would try to work together to create their own peace.