Wednesday, August 19, 2009
The couple two tables away
are breaking up. You can see it in her eyes: that half anxious, half indignant look as she talks and talks and waits for him to react. And in the way he adds sugar to his coffee, eyes focused on the task, the air of deliberation as he opens each packet and pours it in, taking care to let nothing spill. Empty packets clutter the table. This must be his sixth, maybe even his seventh. Soon he will have to stop adding sugar, will have to bring the cup to his lips. But the coffee will taste too sweet to him now, it will sicken him, disgust him. He will abandon it with something almost like relief, letting it sit there, growing cold on the table, until someone comes and clears it away.