And so you return home, to your apartment. And sit with a cold beer on your couch. Still in black business suit, tie undone, feet up on the little table. And you listen to the cd you just put in. Your eyes are a bit glazed, from the beers, or from the tiredness of a long day spent behind walls. In the office buildings. The music makes you a bit sad. You are not sure why, because it's just music.
But suddenly you want to call your mom. 35 years old and you want to hear her voice. Or even your dad. You even reach into your pocket for your phone. But then you don't call. You are doing ok here, you are ok on your own. You decide to call tomorrow, when you will have more energy, when your voice won't be tired, lonely and weak.
The music is still on, and it reminds you of your cousin and his wedding. Those were the days. You miss your cousin and think about calling him too. But then remember your sister, its her birthday today. Layla.
You listen to the ring, holding the phone to your ear, taking a sip of beer with your left hand. You stare at your feet, one of your black shoes are untied. You wait, and after the fourth ring you hear your sister's voice, telling you she is out and about. Please leave a message. So you tell her to call you, you tell her happy birthday and to go out to dinner with her friends, on you. You want to say more, pause, but can't remember what else it was you wanted to say, and hang up. You throw your phone into the far end of the couch and take another sip of beer. It is time for bed, way past the time actually, but you are too tired to move.
Tomorrow is Saturday, you promised Samantha you would run in a race with her, to benefit kids with leukemia. Was it really already 4am? You pull your brief case toward you, and take out a file of papers and notes from this afternoon. You organize them on the desk, in piles. You get up, straighten up the couch pillows, put the remote on the table, dust off your phone and put it in your bag. And head to the bathroom, to brush your teeth. You try to remember whether tomorrow will be rainy or sunny.
Perhaps the race will be canceled, if it rains too hard. Though, probably not, you think. You could call Samantha tomorrow, and tell her you are not feeling well, rough day at work. Or, what the hell, it's for children with cancer, you decide, sleep can't argue with that. So you put your alarm on for 9am. And hope you wake up and are still motivated.
Part 1 December 13, 2005 Sometimes in the morning, you get up to make the coffee. And out of the corner of your eye, you catch the latest news. On TV. When the coffee is ready, you boil the milk. Whole milk, always, because skim reminds you of college and that night you drank a gallon and threw it all back up. It's almost 6:30am, and you still have to shave and get dressed. Should have showered before making the coffee, you think, should have gotten up just a little earlier today.
It's nice out, mid fall, the leaves are turning yellow and deep reds. Outside it's a bit colder than you thought, your breath leaves trails of white behind you. You zip up your coat a bit more, balancing a bagel between your lips and a half a cup of coffee between fingers. Inside the car, you turn on the heat, start the wipers to clear the yellow leaves from the window.
The radio man says today will be a nice one. He says tomorrow will probably be the same. And the next day there may be a hurricane in Nicaragua, a tropical storm in Cuba, and a flood has followed an earthquake in Sudan. You take a sip of coffee, turn left out of the drive way, and in fifteen minutes you are locking the doors of your car. Parked in the parking lot, outside your company's building, 30 stories high.
Your office is on the ninth floor, overlooking a neighborhood deli and a corner tobacco store. You say hello to the pudgy doorman, whose cheeks are more red then usual today. He asks you about the White Sox, you laugh, and nod your head. In the elevator you smile at the seceratary from floor 7. She looks particularly sexy today, in a light blue suit and heels. She smiles, as the elevator stops, and says excuse me as she brushes by. She even turns a little as the doors slide by.
The elevator door opens to the rush of ninth floor. Men and women in business suits with coffee cups and papers tucked in vanilla folders under arms. You make a right, dodge Henry whose cubical always smells of cold cheese. And make it, almost, safely to your desk in the office in the corner overlooking Central Ave. Sharry, your secretary, has already left you a note. Reminders about your meetings, 10 o'clock, 11:45, and a lunch at 1. You turn to your computer, set the empty coffee cup down, straighten your tie as you scan your mail. 25 new messages since last you checked, which was only 8hrs ago.
And so this is how, your day begins. And so this is how your life is. Its seems like everything is going ok. And that you are in no need for changes, no need for anything.
But as your day soon ends. Tired is what you are. Five cups of coffee later, you find yourself in a bar with Tommy and Harold from the company. It's 8pm and you are hungry, but a beer and peanuts sounds better than your empty apartment right now. You could call Tanya or maybe Sammantha, but a beer and peanuts sounds better right now. It was a nice day at work, got lots done, but didn't call your sister, it is her birthday today. And you don't think you'll get around to calling till later tonight. All you feel, like doing, is sitting with a drink. And maybe a hot shower, maybe dinner actually, maybe your empty apartment is beginning to look nice.
The bar is loud, and Harold is a fool, trying to talk to the waitress. She smiles and leans in, she'll be getting a good tip tonight. And Tommy is obsceced with planning a trip to Vegas tonight. The girls in the bar are nothing special tonight, except this one in the corner who seems a little lost. Perhaps sad, perhaps she knows, you think, something. Her hair is a dark brown, her eyes could be green. You would like to go over and talk to her suddenly, but realized she seems a bit lost. Not interested. Not interested in what is said. And say she was, that type, you bought her a drink and said she looked nice. And she smiles a sexy smile and gets in the taxi cab with you. And the next morning comes and all you want is for her to be gone.
No, it's all too tiring, might as well just stay right there drinking a beer and having peanuts. But she does seem lost, you notice again. She does seem to know, something. She must, because you can't go talk to her, you would have nothing to say in this bar. She is too young to be here. A puppy in the shark bowl. Maybe she is waiting for a friend.
Cheryl the waitress catches your gaze and mouths 'future employee' and winks. You blush just a bit, was it that obvious? Cheryl comes over with a new beer and says, you seem to have taken a liking to our newest sister. She starts tomorrow.