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Now Walk Me Through It One More Time

Here is your seat young man. Please sit down.

Here is your menu young man. Feel free to browse the items on the menu and select one that may be to your liking or taste.

Can I bring you a drink Sir? Something to get you started Sir? Sure, I’ll have a beer, preferably one that is on the frosty side.

Yes Sir, right away young man.
Will someone be joining you tonight young man? No, I don’t think so. Just flying solo tonight; just driving solo tonight.
Look out the window to the right and see the street. Cars are driving by. Not much traffic tonight. The volume is sparse and pedestrians not many.
I stare at the cars as they go by; red taillights that fade into the haze of falling dusk.

I feel my chest shift a bit and feel the mortality of my existence slipping just a fraction. I feel the welling start and really feel it. It arrives at my eyes I feel gratitude and then immediately push it down. No, not yet. I haven’t earned the full intensity of that feeling yet.

Here is your beer young man. Thank you…
Have you decided yet young man? What would you like?
I think we both know the answer to that. I’ll have the same, the same as last time.
I’ll put in the order young man. Let me know when you would like another drink young man. Nod my head in acknowledgment.

Look at the street again. Not much has changed just the red taillights touching dusk. I feel my chest shift again. No, push it down. I haven’t earned it yet.

Here is your order young man. Would you like black peppercorn with that? No thank you (but yes please). Would you like parmesan cheese as well? No thank you (but yes please). It’s a nicety Sir. I know that. I know you do Sir.

Stare at the food in front of me. I feel sick. If I have to dine just one more time I might empty my entire stomach on the table directly in front of me. There’s that feeling again. Twisted iron in my stomach. Stare at the cars again. They’re still driving by. It’s almost dark. I feel the alcohol worsen the state of my mind and put me in a mild stupor. Oh well, it’s just a mild stupor, not a drunken stupor and not inebriated. I’m still within the legal limit and that’s all that matters unless lady luck is not on my side and I don’t want to even talk about the people and things I cannot control. That’s what defensive driving is for and I’m pretty sure I barely passed that course too.

Buy a Porsche. Hmmm…no thank you. All those fancy features. Maybe I could press some of the buttons and feel better about myself. Push on the accelerator and take back control of a life that I cannot control. Rip it the whole way there, burn more fuel and walk out the car fearless.

Buy a Ferrari. Hmmm…no thank you. All those luxurious features. Maybe I could press some of the buttons and feel better about myself. Push on the accelerator and take back control of a life that I cannot control. Rip it the way there, burn more fuel and walk out of the fearless. Maybe I’ll accidentally trip as I step out of the car and fall on my face. Get up and see if anyone is looking.

I won’t eat this meal. It’s for someone else. Stare at the street again. There are those red taillights again. Dusk is falling. It’s almost dark. White hanker-chief on my lap. Might as well stain it with something.

Are we all finished young man? You bet we are. I mean, yes we are.

It was a pleasure dining with you tonight Sir. See you again young man.
One more look at those red taillights. There’s that feeling again.
One more swig…just a little one. Lady luck be on my side tonight because I am sober but I’m still going to need all the luck in the world to go where I need to get to.

Now walk me through it one more time.
Ok, I will but this is the last time and I after I do I want you to let this go,

Matthew Polkinghorne

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