Best Served Cold

He is wrapped in an enormous coat, way too thick for the sweltering heat. Then again, that coat will serve him well in the wintry months; how else can he carry it until then? If he had a house to store his coat in, he wouldn’t need be here, after all, with his back to the steel and coffee / spit-and-polish of a Starbucks.

If he had a house in which to store his coat, he wouldn’t be hunched over a trash can, peering quizzically at a paper and grease time capsule from hours ago. Throw out the ketchup packet, and success! A small victory over the garbageman. Curly fries served cold, an artifact of a lifestyle different but not too far-off from his own. (For after all, he’ll never excavate grey poupon over swordfish from these ruins.)

And I? I pause, and push (don’t pull!) the smoky glass doors and walk into the house of steel and coffee / spit and polish. Sufjan Stevens pulsating in my ears. Head over to the tattooed, apron-clad boy (man?) behind the level counter. “I’d like some water please.”

Refreshed. Free. Stride outside. He is gone.