Head hung low. Eyes down. Never meeting someone’s eye. Habits I hadn’t noticed until the day my back seized. I cranked my head straight up to gulp air and gasp in pain. Since then, the one comfortable pose was chin up, eyes on target. Straight into the crowd. Straight into your eyes. Never looking down to avoid that jolt of pain collapse my shoulder blades and tear up my spine.
“Aren’t you a confident fellow,” a stranger said with a
twinkle in his eye.”
I had no choice. I held my head high because I couldn’t take
the pain anymore.
My wife claims she doesn’t like violent movies
and won’t watch them with me. If it’s got guns and car chases and explosions and
people getting shot at, she’ll generally ask we chose something we both would
enjoy. If I persist, she’ll retreat to her phone, or just leave the room. Just
not interested. She likes movies with strong female leads who use words to tear
apart the hearts of their enemies, or more often close friends and family,
eviscerating each other emotionally and celebrating with a glass of dry wine.
We just have different tastes in movies I guess.
Left the building sometime before lunch and out of the corner of my eye I spotted some stray threads on my shoulder. I brushed them off, but — That’s when I realized my shirt was on inside out. Mortified, I ducked behind a car to quickly flip it outside in. Unbelievable. All morning the shirt tag’s been flapping behind me like a little idiot cape and I’m ringed in wild thread like a carnival knock down punk. Who saw me, and furthermore who saw me and didn’t say squat? Do I even have any friends looking out for me anymore?