The world begins at midnight. As the stroke of midnight is called out from bells, we herald the dawning of a new dusk even as most others melt away to wrap themselves in the comfort of their beds and late night television. At 1a the people stop leaving and the rushing cars become more sparse. The streets empty of people and the ranks of the half-sloshed bar-dwellers dwindle just a little more. Underneath the frowning street lights, we emerge, fresh-faced and laughing, full of energy, piss, and vinegar. At 2a we stand laughing delighted in our odd suits at the ashen-faced last call stragglers as they come creeping out of their dens, just drunk enough to question whether we are real. By 3a the streets are mostly clear, populated only by a lone bicycle wending its tired way home or a tight knot of quietly moving people with shoes in hand. We remain alert, alive, forming circles around fires, computers, in the cracks of the world that most people that don't even notice. 4a rolls around on the dour clock faces and we launch new adventures, setting out into the clean, abandoned parks, reveling in the crisp thunderstorms roiling along the rivers and the sheer scope of the wonder in the world. When the cities are crowded, they seem mundane due to everpresent companionship, but in the night each and every one of us could well be the last person alive, the lone witness to the absolute joy of the moon gliding from clouds to shine down on vociferous arguments and manic productivity. By 5a we begin to wonder whether our wakeful watching through the march of dusk has percolated into the snoring minds of those who comfortably slumber around us. At 6a, the Eastern sky begins to wash away into the first barren hints of the coming day, and we realize that the dread Morning People will soon awaken and disturb our revelry. So we end our projects, dry our war paints and clean our tools, then wend our ways homeward, hissing over dew-drenched asphalts for one last snack before drawing the heavy curtains and rolling ourselves into the brilliance of our dreams. We are night owls, and we are watching.
We try to be polite.