man in a bar

normal, unassuming man sitting alone in a nearly empty bar lets his eyes wander over the numerous nozzles for imported and domestic draft beers. he drank two large beers very slowly. he smiled at the bartenders. he ordered chicken wings and french fries.

he gestured with his chin at the various nozzles of draft beer. he has this big, glassy smile on his face like everyone’s friend.

“hey, what’s that stuff with the evil dude on it?”

the bartender looked up from the glasses he was furiously washing. “what was that, dude?”

“that beer with the evil dude on it? what is that? where is it from?”

“*ma-RE-dsoo*. french.”

“maredsou?”

“yeah. it’s stronger than beer. it has eight percent alcohol”

“i’ll have to get me some of that next. you get that for me after this one.”

“sure, dude.”

the man alone at the bar adjusts his hat. he nibbles his chicken wings. he holds the catsup bottle like something lost at sea.

when he thinks that no one is looking at him his eyes drop like a sailor lost at sea. his eyes find the horizon in the mirror over the bar. there is no horizon there at all, but that’s how the guy looks into it. like somewhere in the mirror there’s this spot where the flat earth drops into the void and he’s floating there on a barstool raft, nibbling french fries and waiting. just waiting.

i didn’t say hello to the guy. i paid for my drink. i went home, alone. i fell asleep.

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