1. The Hotel Bar
Seeing Dolores walk in, or someone who looked like a Dolores (he’d had more than a few since clocking out), he shed his orange reflective vest and used it to wipe the barstool next to him, for he was the champion of virility and lifting things of dense mass over his head – there was no disputing that, and he would tell her as much, unprovoked, when she sat: he leaned in and slid her a frozen margarita that was all but melted, a cigarette dangling from her mouth, and in that moment, beneath his threadbare jeans covered in chalky dust, dirt and soot, and a t-shirt that smelled of hot tar, he was as naked and triumphant as the bronze statue of Perseus, clutching the serpentine locks of Medusa’s decapitated head. Tonight, he was sure, would be special indeed. Instead, he woke up alone, naked and huddled in the corner of his cheap hotel room, swaddled in a urine-soaked bed sheet.
"I Am Special"
The ball game was interrupted and the gentlemen were incensed. Breaking News, something exploded somewhere. Meanwhile, Gary stared away from the television mounted high in the corner behind the bar, beside racks of pull-tab lottery tickets, and deep in the caverns of his skull, somewhere wedged between the memory of his first communion when he pissed his slacks in front of the entire parish and failing seventh grade US History for cheating off of the wrong student, he had a thought. No, he had a vision.
Edited by Bretty Rawson.
Featured image provided by the artist.