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The main character in "A Clean, Well- Lighted Place," written by Ernest Hemingway, is the older guy. The old guy, who remains nameless throughout the brief story, comes to the café for the light it gives him against the night. He stays late at night, and stays "At the shadow the leaves of the tree made against the electric light." The older man is deaf and finds comfort in the "gap" he feels within the quiet café. The old man struggles with older age and the feeling of nothingness which is representative of the shadow outside the café. The well-lit café represents cleanliness and order. Outside in the dark, a young soldier and a girl rush along the streets. Apparently, the couple intend to go off alone. They symbolize the excitement that can go on in the night between two people. The old man is around eighty years old, and doesn't have a wife. He doesn't experience this kind of relationship in the dark. Rather, he finds company in the clean, well-lighted café. Even though the only other two people in the café at the late hour are the two waiters, the old man finds it content. The two waiters comment that although he is "A fantastic client they knew that if he became too drunk he would leave without paying." The younger of the two waiters wants to go home. He has a wife and claims he never gets "into bed before three o’clock." He treats the deaf old man as if he were dumb. He speaks to him "with that omission of syntax stupid people employ when talking to dru...