When Jesse accidentally runs into Camille with his fixed gear bike, breaking her self-built Lomo camera, it looks like things are off to a rocky start for the pair. Jesse smooths his mustache and invites Camille to a vegan craft beer festival to make it up to her. He is shocked when she accepts and that evening in front of a savory gluten-free pie food truck, romance is kindled and they begin the long process of “hanging out.” But things aren’t all smooth sailing for the sort-of-couple-I-guess, as Jesse fights for his dream to become a graphic designer (of which there are simply not enough in the world) and quit his day job at the sustainable coffee collective, just as Camille sees the collective as her opportunity to find a distributor for her sea salt and bacon topped caramel quinoa balls.
Jesse was a bad boy, known to be involved in an underground kombucha manufacturing operation. But Camille was no saint, either. If anyone found out that she was from Orinda and was in a sorority at San Diego State, her image would be shattered. Besides, all she really wanted now was to keep it real, to use hash tags, to support the plight of some sort of South American peoples, to find the ultimate 90s workout video on VHS to use as part of an art installation she hoped to one day complete.
Further stress is added with the sudden return of Camille’s former sort-of boyfriend, Marc, who has come back to town after training as an artisan book binder in Vermont. At some point, Marc will try to woo Camille with a book of Okkervil River lyrics he hand-bound in dried and cured kale leaves, stitched together with threads from an old Corona poncho.
A tale full of longing, ironic haircuts, urban farming, unexplained monetary sources, and analog devices, this story is one you will want to say you’ve already read when someone mentions it.