day of rest
sunday was a miserable day at the bar. barely any asses in the stools, and those that were were too familiar. quiet and slightly brooding, nothing new to say, so saying nothing. they sat and stared at their drinks, slowly nursing them to near completion before raising a hand or nodding their head for a refill. every so often they would look up to me, searching for a solution in my eyes, an answer to the dull ennui that brought them there, but i had nothing. i only stared back from behind my own muted gloom.
i paced behind the bar tired and hungover. a customer would come in and id greet them with a forced cheer and they would smile weakly then sit near the door, as if they wanted an easy exit. they needed not to worry about me though, i wasnt trying to engage them. i was shut off for the day, running on autopilot. from the moment i walked in i knew the day was a wash. no joy to be had or money to be made. it was just a matter of counting the hours until i could close.
i had one or two beers towards the end of the night. by habit more than thirst. when last call came i only had to lean across the bar and explain the situation to a couple sitting near the window. i didnt have to lower the volume on the stereo or scream it three times to ensure everyone heard. i just needed to quietly let these two people know where we were in the night, and alert them that the end of things was around the corner. i barely raised my voice to tell them. i spoke in a slow and reasonable tone, as if i was divulging a small historical fact about the neighborhood, one that not many people knew.