Tucked away in the center of Lincoln’s Fields, a lush green space hidden behind the LSE campus, sits the Field’s Cafe. The Cafe decor appears as I would imagine the offspring of a ski lodge and a tennis pro-shop if they ever happened to get together.
The sign out front of the Cafe reads, “come inside for a cup of our award winning coffee.” Award winning…who said? Which award? We have no idea. The sign lacks any recognition of some sort of award-granting body such as Zagat or Michelin that one would expect.
Initially, I found this citation-lacking claim to be rather antithetical to the LSE mantra: “to know the causes of things for the betterment of society.” To their credit, my professors have effectively hammered home the importance of knowing our sources and how it is that we come to know what we know.
Yet, with each additional visit to Lincoln’s Fields for a post-lecture lap around the park, a lunch break taken on one of the many park benches that line the perimeter, or to Field’s Cafe for an afternoon coffee, I have become less and less troubled by the Cafe’s “citationless” claim. This is because the beauty of Lincoln’s Fields is that within the confines of the park nothing has to make sense (or prove its bona fides).
Lincoln’s Fields is essentially LSE’s secluded backyard free of the hustle and bustle surrounding the busy downtown campus. Whether spectating a tennis match from the back deck of the Cafe (yes, there are in fact three tennis courts in the park), dog-watching on the main park green, or any other (in)activity that one fancies, the park offers the perfect break from studies.
As the term nears its end and final papers and exams loom on the horizon, I truly appreciate having this quaint grassy knoll right on campus. There are few better study breaks than linking up with a couple of friends in the park, taking a lap together and grabbing an award-winning coffee before returning to the library.