Sometimes when I am in an airport, I look at the selection of books in one of those overpriced newsstand shops. I have never found any classics there; the sections are always filled with Stephen King thrillers, Anne Rice, and Mary Higgins Clark. You know, those thick softcovers with shiny covers. I would love to find some high-quality, intellectual books there as well, or even some good modern fiction like John Irving or Toni Morrison. But I guess that when people are on airplanes or in waiting rooms, they prefer the latest page-turners.
The two differences between airports and cafes is coffee and reading material. In both places, people are coming and going, sitting around waiting for things to happen. It doesn't much matter that in airports, people are waiting to get on a plane that will carry them far away whereas people in cafes are awaiting more pedestrian events, like the arrival of a cafe latte or some dark handsome stranger. But in an airport, you see people drinking stale coffee and reading the latest Stephen King, while in a cafe, you see people drinking delicious lattes as they read A Farewell to Arms or Tender is the Night.
You are what you read.