Interviews With People From Your Hometown Bar
Bartender: What’ll it — hey, what’s up man? I haven’t seen you since we graduated five years ago. Yeah, I dropped out half way through college. I didn’t like it, you know. You know me, always the rebel. What? Oh, yeah, I was doing Communications, but it was all bullshit. I don’t know, I didn’t even want to go, but you know how things are. What’s up with you? Ah, that’s pretty cool. You’re writing now? You’re going to write a bestseller, is that it? No? Oh, I thought all writers wanted to write the next best novel. I don’t get it, so why are you writing? That’s cool, I’m trying to write now too, but I have no time to do it. I’m here basically all the time. I’m thinking of moving out somewhere, but I don’t know. Oh, yeah, sorry, what did you say you wanted? Whiskey sour? Oh, whiskey soda, okay.
Balding Classmate: Holy shit! What’s up man! What are you doing here? Researching? What? Did you finish school? Nice! I actually just started again. Yeah, I went to community college, but I wanted to start my own construction company. I went for Business, but I couldn’t pass Algebra 2. That shit is rough. What about you? Cool, cool. Yeah, I took an English class at school, but it was boring — no offense. I think we read White Lion? White Jaguar? I forget the name. It was about some guy in India who does some crazy shit. I think he wanted to get with an American chick or something. Yeah! White Tiger! You’ve read it? Sweet, man. I had to write a paper on it. I didn’t get the story really, but you know how it is. School? I applied to a CUNY, and I’m starting next semester. I’m going to try for Business again, but who knows.
High School Janitor: Hey! Yeah, I remember you. You’re that kid that threw wet toilet paper on all of the lockers. Do you know how long it took to get’em all off? An hour? You’re a joker, aren’t you? No man, it took all night. There’s 438 lockers and I don’t know how the hell you managed to hit them all. I’m sure you thought it was hilarious, but guess what asshole, there’s always some that has to clean up after you little punks. Twenty years I’ve been working there and I’ve never seen a bigger jackass than you. Really. I can’t wait to call it quits and get the hell out of there. My wife tells me to retire already, but I’ve been at the school so long, it feels like I’d be leaving a family behind. Have you ever been to the roof at night? It’s fucking amazing. The stars and the sky and shit, I sometimes go into the astronomy room and read about space. Space is fucking big, I never really thought about it, you know? Quantum theory? Yeah, there was a textbook that described it. April Fool’s? There’s no April Fool’s at the school anymore. Kids get detention for pulling pranks. Yeah, a teacher almost fell on her ass after some idiot strung up strings around the hallway. That was you? You’re a piece of work, you know that? Don’t fuck around anymore. Don’t do stupid shit. There’s always someone that has to clean up after your mess.
Cook: I’m not a chef, but I watch The Food Network sometimes. I like Michael Symon the best. He’s got a good laugh. A good laugh means a good person, you know? No? Well, remember that. I usually just throw things into a fryer and that’s it. The most popular item? Chicken fingers. Surprised? French fries are a close second. Yeah, I graduated from the high school like 20 years ago. I was in construction before this, but I hurt my shoulder. It aches every now and then. This is less intensive on my shoulders. I used to be pretty great in gym class. Did backflips and climbed up ropes easy. I can’t do that anymore, but it’s good to know that I used to be able to. I know what I can and can’t do anymore. It’s disappointing, but that’s life. You got a cigarette on you? I don’t smoke either, but it’s always good to carry some. You never know who you’re going to meet.
Friend’s Father: It’s you…hi. I don’t come here often. Do you? I see. I just needed some time out of the house. You know my wife; she can be a bit…confrontational at times. I’m embarrassed that you’ve been around when she raises her voice, but that’s just how she is. How’s school? Oh, I forget sometimes that you and my daughter graduated together. She’s in medical school now. Are you in banking? No? Accounting? Oh, you’re a writer. I didn’t know that. Well, I’ve been reading some Robert Ludlum books recently. I just finished The Chancellor Manuscript. You haven’t read any of his books? Aren’t you a writer? I’m only joking. I have a pile of books in my study that I need to go through. I’ve been thinking of picking up Jack London again. Did you know my dog died last year? Here, look at him. He was a man’s dog. I feel like I’m nothing without him….
Truck Driver: I know I have to drive, but who the hell are you to tell me that? I’ve been driving with a bottle of whiskey by my side for 15 goddamn years. You’re just a damn kid, who do you think you are? That’s right, I’m drunk, but so what? I’ve been coming here since you were born, you little bastard. Stop drinking. What a load of bullshit. I bet you eat only vegetables. Look at you, you skinny punk. I have a goddamn job, what are you doing here? I drive across the goddamn country. I’m American. I drive all around the country. That’s right. I don’t remember where I’ve been three years ago. What a stupid question. Why am I driving across the goddamn country? To deliver stuff. I don’t know why else. A family? No, I don’t have a family…I don’t have my parent either…I’m so goddamn lonely. I just want to stop driving. I haven’t even had someone to call a wife. Fifteen goddamn years I’ve wasted driving. What the fuck am I doing? No one appreciates what I do. No one notices me except when I honk my horn. I only do it for the kids. They get a fucking kick out of that, you know? But you dicks do it to be facetious. I know you fuckers.
Moose Head on Wall: For years I have watched over all occupants in this establishment. I’ve been staring at that gentleman’s balding head for quite some time. I suspect he is aware of his unfortunate genetic inheritance. Where did I come from? I used to roam the forests of around this town when it was just three cabins and a dirt road. A man killed me to feed his family. I am not terribly angry about it; after all, he did what he had to do to survive. He was gracious enough to recognize my stature and mounted my head to this plaque. I’ve been moved three times—from the wall to my right, then to the wall in front of me, and now, here. It isn’t a bad location to observe men and women from here. You’re the first to ever notice my wandering eyes. I get bored sometimes. I count the number of bricks on the wall across from me. I know there are exactly 88 bricks. I had to count it six times to make sure because the bartenders block some bricks from my view. I also memorize the drinks that are served and the brands of alcohol. It is a good idea to exercise your mind as often as possible. By the way, if you can, please pick this spider’s nest out from my nose, it’s been bothering me for ages.
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i inhaled deeply. your scent, your deodorant, your cologne, even your morning breath. i know these scents so well and the familiarity is comforting.
This video of a puppy watching a scene we’re so familiar with and evoking the same sentiments we once felt is oddly heartwarming, extremely precious and a dash of funny.
You died, and the hope that you would one day love us back the way we loved you died with you.
Weight Watchers likes to say that nothing tastes as good as skinny feels. Which I guess means they’ve never tasted Cinnamon Toast Crunch.