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Prompt Eight

Wednesday January 27, 2010

“It’s new, but it doesn’t look new.”
“It never did.”
“They never do.”

He was talking to himself again.  Sitting in a car, staring at a nameless building, talking to himself.  Out loud.  Things were going well. It was his first day at this job and already his optimistic toast and eggs breakfast felt like lead in his belly.  Weighing him down.  Placing the eggs carefully on the stove top as he sunk the bread in the toaster, he had felt on the brink of some new promise.  He had felt like his life was actually starting, like Cato Electric was sure to forge him into the kind of man that he had always wanted to be.

Now, in the parking lot, all of that hope feels very distant.  Almost like a dream coming back fuzzy in the way that dreams always do.  He opens his eyes wide to clear them and blinks a few times, taking in the place.  He had been here of course when he was interviewing, but the place doesn’t look the way he had remembered it.  The sign is still there and the benches along the walkway seem familiar, but in this light he is struck by the ordinariness of all of it.  There is nothing grand about this place.  Nothing special.  This is going to be a job like any other.  Like all the ones he has had before.  The truth of this stretches in his mind like a child waking from a nap.  Slowly it settles heavily in his bones.

He fumbles in his briefcase for the security badge that had been made for him earlier in the week.  There it is, wedged underneath the lunch he brought.  Taking a deep breath, he attaches the badge and closes the car door with what he hopes is purpose.  It’s time.

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