A large man sits with his elbows on the bar and looks in the mirror that stands behind a row of bottles. He wears a brown coat and has been watching the couple one seat down from him since they came in. The woman hung her purse on the hook below the bar and while he does not look at it, he imagines it as a weight pulling down the bar where it hangs. The woman sits nearest to him and is relatively attractive aside from all the makeup and perfume. She gets up and goes to the restroom and the sag in the bar remains. Her man’s eyes have become fixed on the baseball game in her absence, which is when the man moves and relieves the bar of its burden. As he turns to leave he feels a hand clap on his shoulder followed by a stern voice issuing a warning. He breaks the wrist connecting the hand to its arm and looks in the mirror to see himself still holding the woman’s disfigured limb. Her man stares at the television and she doesn’t move or make a sound. And then nothing does.
October 12, 2012