Sunday, June 16, 2013

His Suit And Tie

He adjusted his tie, fixed his hair, and checked his teeth in the mirror. His suit was new (but smelled faintly of the inside of a closet), and his shoes were polished black. A garbage bag full of torn pants and dirty shirts sat near the door, waiting to be disposed of. The signs were already in the dumpster behind his apartment building. 

Ten minutes passed while he stood in his bathroom, and he couldn't say what he'd been thinking during that time, if anyone had bothered to ask.  No one did; not that day, not ever. 

Sunlight poured over buildings and pooled between the shadows of leaves on the ground, driving the man's spirits further downward as he walked to the corner of 9th and Stewart. One of the busiest corners in the city; the corner that had been his station until that morning. As soon as he'd donned the suit, he'd given up on his previous occupation. His previous life.  

He told himself he wouldn't do this, but he couldn't resist. Just one more visit. He walked slowly by the cafe on the corner. No one shouted obscenities at him, no one heckled him, and no one looked at him with pity. 

"The world didn't end like he thought, I wonder what he's doing now?"
"Probably killed himself. Can you imagine? How ridiculous would you feel if you went to bed expecting to be lifted up to some city in the clouds while you slept, and then woke up to the realization that you'd been wrong? Wrong for like... years of your life?" Two regulars he recognized conversed next to him, completely unaware of their present company. 

Their laughter burned in his heart, and blood rushed to his face. He considered walking into traffic. He considered wandering down dark alleys, looking for bad situations. He considered a lot of things in those few moments of humiliation and fear of the unknown. 

He straightened his tie, and continued his walk toward the daughter he'd disowned after she told him she didn't believe in his God. Now that they had something in common, maybe they could reconcile. 

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