Business: Cafe
Really Quiet Cafe   (+12, -5)  [vote for, against]
I'm so sick of not being able to read a newpaper in peace

If you're like me, you probably enjoy going to your local (ie ubiquitous) Gloria Jeans or Starbucks on a Sunday morning to enjoy a peaceful coffee and to read the paper . . . yeah, good luck.

There the coffee grinder, the blender (for making frappacinos), banging the coffee thingee against the used coffee bin thingee, staff yelling out 'Geoff - your caramel frappalatte's ready'. In other words, constant mind-numbing bloody noise.

My idea is for a really quiet cafe (aaahhh) - this would consist of sound deadening wall coverings, a separate double glazed area where the coffees etc are made, double glazed windows - ie everything possible to reduce the amount of ambient noise.

There isn't that better . . . now we all be friends again.
-- Brett-Blob, Oct 05 2007

Previously in the halfbakery Restaurant_204_2733
How soon we all forget. Where is contracts anyway? [dentworth, Oct 05 2007]

so no crunchy toast then ? +
-- xenzag, Oct 05 2007

no slurping either? [+] because I like drinking coffee in peace, but [-] because my reaction to this idea is "why don't you just stay at home instead?", so neutral [±]
-- hippo, Oct 05 2007

I would love to find a convenient lunch joint that was really quiet. I have to leave work for lunch - a mental health thing. Most cafes and restaurants around here are little relief from the noise and confusion of work. I would patronize a Really Quiet Cafe.
-- cypherz, Oct 05 2007

Brilliant idea. You could have something like a swear box but for any sound made...
-- vincevincevince, Oct 05 2007

hmmm. almost a rant, but actually would be a hit. [21 Quest] points out the alternatives already present. good. if [hippo] and [21] are confused about why one leaves home, there are a million reasons as varied as the individuals who have them. for me it's fewer distractions. there are no chores, only the swaying movement of humanity. wait, that sounds gross. anyways. i like the idea of going to the quietest cafe in the world. sign me up. +
-- k_sra, Oct 05 2007

Congratulations, you have invented "Staying home and having a coffee."
-- Galbinus_Caeli, Oct 05 2007

not true, [G-C]. staying home is plagued with its own distractions and boredom.
-- k_sra, Oct 05 2007

Tell that to me from before I was younger than you!
-- theleopard, Oct 05 2007

Probably younger again. It sounds like he's younger now and can understand you, but there was a time when he was older than you and a time before that whence he was younger and did not have the capability of understanding you, thus the suggestion for confrontation. This all probably went down after he drank a bunch of time capsules and jumped in a wormhole.
-- daseva, Oct 05 2007

"Ah, but I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now"
-- normzone, Oct 05 2007

[contracts]' idea was for no speaking. he took a lot of heat for that one.

-- dentworth, Oct 05 2007

A bone for promoting Starbucks, otherwise known as Fourbucks. [-]
-- nuclear hobo, Oct 05 2007

Agreed. My university library just had an expensive coffee shop installed and the noise skyrocketed. Coffee shops try to portray this elitist and intellectual environment but really people just show up, being their stupid selves. I think a coffee shop in a public library might make this work, but the government red tape might not make this the best idea.
-- kevinthenerd, Oct 05 2007

My daughter is a public librarian. They aren't even allowed to shush people anymore.
-- Galbinus_Caeli, Oct 05 2007

Ah, the conundrum of our age. We exit our abodes in an effort to be social, but find society raucous and chaotic. So we grumble about the lack of peace and quiet, and cite the merits of solitude and serenity.

Places such as you describe already exist, you just have to seek them out. And when you find your double-glazed cafe please call me if they have double-glazed doughnuts.

Mmmm, doughnuts. <wipes drool off chin>
-- Canuck, Oct 05 2007

Earplugs. At a pinch, your fingers will suffice.
-- lostdog, Oct 05 2007

//I think a coffee shop in a public library might make this work, but the government red tape might not make this the best idea.//

Indeed. One presumes that food and drink would not be banned.
-- vincevincevince, Oct 06 2007

I was at the airport yesterday, waiting for a flight home, trying to read my book in the departure lounge. Over the tannoy, a girl was announcing, her lips too close to the microphone, so that it kept "Pft-A 39432 Pft-o Pft-elfast, Pft-assengers are in-Pft-ormed that this Pft-ight is Pft-oarding now.", then some bloke behind me was giving some whiney telephone pep talk to his daughter, who it sounded like, was getting "dragged down" to the level of some unspecified antagonists. There was also a small boy looking out of the window and quite innocently pointing and excitedly shouting "Plane!" to his mum every time he saw a plane (which, considering the location, was pretty frequently). After trying and failing to read the same paragraph 12 times in a row (I counted them), I got one of my silent and furious rages on, and decided to get a beer - an unwise choice, since waiting for service at an airport bar is almost guaranteed to fuel this brand of outraged indignancy - so by the time they called my flight, I was ready to burst.

As it happened, it turned out OK - we flew in to London city around 7pm, and after being treated to a truly spectacular nightime panorama over London - our final approach brought us in directly over Canary Wharf, the airport is so close, it's almost as if you are skimming the tops of the skyscrapers as you come in to land - the whole thing was quite beautiful - my rage completely forgotten - along with my book.
-- zen_tom, Oct 06 2007

Yay! [+] for this. I'd also like to see more general legislation to reduce noise in places like dining areas and waiting rooms. Keep announcements to a minimum. Ban the use of those rattly trolleys that someone always insists on wheeling past loaded with plates or whatever. Punish by means of fines the use of onion-ring-frying-machines which beep repeatedly when they reach the end of their cooking cycle. Oh, and round up all the people who make and distribute 'background music' CDs.
-- MaxwellBuchanan, Oct 06 2007

It is so easily done! I let myself off by saying to myself that sometimes, furious indignation can be fun.
-- zen_tom, Oct 06 2007

Quiet is where people aren't. More people equals more noise. By and large people generally aren't aware of the noise they make, and even when they aren't especially noisy, what noise they do make must invariably contribute to the ambient noise to some degree.

Is it possible to do this? I answer with a qualified 'yes.' But the ridiculous cost of materials and installation above and beyond even high-end existing low-noise environments would be prohibitive.

If you really want to have a quiet coffee, make it home, take it outside, sit on the porch. Leave the TV and computer off. Read the paper, pet the cat, relax.
-- elhigh, Oct 10 2007

I grew up in the largest, quietest house in town, one of five. Noise means life to me. I love noise.
-- monk, Oct 10 2007

Some noise is good. It brings a kind of stochastic resonance to events requiring concentration, like studying, or maybe sudoku. I think distraction requires participation by the distracted.
-- bungston, Oct 10 2007

-- snap'n'whipher, Oct 10 2007

{bangs together two rusty lengths of rebar, bellowing incoherently}
-- bungston, Oct 10 2007

-- monk, Oct 11 2007

[+] Brings to mind the restaurants where you eat in total darkness and the waitstaff is blind. Yeah, you could sit at home in the dark with a TV dinner, but nobody makes any money that way.
-- Noexit, Oct 11 2007

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