Late-Night and Waffle-House

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic
A lonely man is given focus in his life.

Submitted: January 23, 2012

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Submitted: January 23, 2012

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Part 1 - Walking:

So, I'm walking down the street. My hands are in my pockets, and I've only got about five more hours until I have to wake up. It's been a long weekend, and at this point, I'm not sure if I should cut my losses and just find a bar or a record store and distract myself from my miserable life, or simply go home and sleep for the remaining time. The red hand at the other side of the street tells me I can't continue walking while thinking. So I simply think for a minute. It's for the best, I'm miserable at multitasking. I take a moment to assess the situation. It's Sunday night. I'm all alone. I have to wake up at 7:30 to get to my job at 8:45. It'll take me 30 minutes at the least to get home. I'm dressed in clothes I could easily wear to work. I would kill for some sleep, but it would be hell to wake up after only 4 or so hours. I really can't decide. Indecision is the bane of my existence. If I go home, I will regret how little sleep I got. If I don't go home, I'll regret not having that. Regret either way, still sleep fucking me over. God, I should have just stayed home tonight. I should have fucking stayed home. The white walking man lets me know that no cars will mow me down if I cross. I trust it. No crisis this time. I continue walking, and I'm not sure where I'm heading now. I notice the chill. I didn't realize the temperature until now. Criminy, I really probably should turn in. Now, on top of being tired and miserable, I am cold. My face is probably turning red right now, goddammit. A car zooms past me. First one in a while. That's probably a sign. I see a Waffle House up the street. Moment of truth, sleep or food. I'm already walking towards Waffle House. Fuck it. I look both ways, I cross the street. Jaywalking though it is, no one is there to give a shit. I make my way to the Waffle House.

Part 2 - Waffle-House:

I sit down, waiting to be served. The waitress finally heads over. She's young, cute. I wonder why she's working the graveyard shift at a Waffle House. "Late night?" I ask. "No shit." She says. I sheepishly order a coffee and a buttermilk waffle. I don't repeat the mistake of talking. I get my coffee pretty quick. I pour a packet of sugar and a packet of sweetener in it, followed by a cream. I'm such a fucking man. I can't drink coffee until it resembles ultra-warm coffee-flavored ice cream. I am so cool. I sip it through the stirring straw thing. The waffle comes a bit later, I wait for the waitress to leave and begin eating it. It's pretty damn tasty, but not enough to assuage my mediocrity. Suddenly that song from Oliver and Company that goes like, "Why should I worry, why should I ca-a-a-are" comes to mind. It's not very fitting, because there’s a clear answer to this. I should worry because I'm up at 3:00 at night in a Waffle House in the middle of nowhere, trying desperately to not come across as more of a fool than I already do to this cute waitress. I should care because this is the best night I've had in a while. I finish my waffle. Now, in this moment, I have nothing to live for. I finally make the decision to not go back home, so I refill my coffee with the intent of caffinating the fuck out of myself whilst also passing the rest of the night. Ten minutes of dead fucking silence pass. I evaluate my life. I'm completely lonely. I'm legitimately considering the waitress here as the girl I could most likely successfully get a date with, and her only impression of me is when I made a stupid and borderline insensitive joke about 15 minutes ago. At least she hasn't seen me depressed. She hasn't seen that side of me. She hasn't been exposed to the shitty side of me. Now I'm wondering if I should legitimately make an effort to flirt with this girl. I preemptively rule this out. I know there's no way in hell some random girl at a Waffle House will just magically go out with me. God, I'm so lame. I surreptitiously glance at her, she's reading some magazine. I can't tell which, but it appears to be an article about some musician. I can't check without being completely obvious about it. I sip my coffee. I'm so pathetic. I really wish I lived in a movie. In a movie, if I was supposed to be with this girl, it would have been obvious from the first moment we talked. Instead I look like an asshole who just tries too hard. Actually, I suppose I've made myself look like I currently do, like an asshole. Shit, why do I insist on making myself look bad? It seems like that’s the story of my fucking life. Always a bridesmaid never a bride. Except I'm a guy, and have no friends, so I can't be bridesmaid to shit. Christ, it's only 3:30 but already I'm wishing I could leave and go to bed. I know if I do I'll regret not talking to her, but I'm also pretty sure I'll regret talking to her if I do. Shit. Shit shit shit. Indecision strikes again. I finish my coffee. I refill it again, remedy it with cream and sugar again. I don't really have anything to do, and she looks bored as fuck. I try to do something other than wallow and over think, so I fumble around in my pocket for some change, get just enough to get one song going on the jukebox. I skim the selection for a bit; pass over "More Than a Feeling" and "December 1963 (Oh, What a Night)" two songs that have nostalgia involved. I enjoy them both, especially the latter. I just feel more like finding something I haven't anything associated with at the moment. I finally settle on "Fun Fun Fun" by the Beach Boys. I wait for "Radar Love" to finish, and then my put in my selection. What a random-ass assortment. I sit back down. The happy song fills the room, but it doesn't lift my spirits as I'd hoped it would. Damn. I glance again at the girl; she's still reading her magazine. I leave a twenty-dollar bill on the table and a card with my name and number. I write under it, "If you get really bored and lonely, and have no one else to turn to. I can't imagine that would ever happen, but if it does, here you go." Signed "The guy who just ordered a coffee and a waffle, and tried to make small talk." I leave.

Part 3 - Work:

I walk to my house. It's 4:13. Shit, there really isn't any point in getting two hours of sleep, but I'm too tired to do anything, and I just ate. I seriously consider breaking my own leg so I can go to the hospital and get some sleep there, but it seems like too much work. Sigh. I lay down for just a second. I wake up four hours later. Shitty shit shit. I take the fastest shower of my life, and run to my car. The motherfucker doesn't work right away. I try again and by some divine providence, it starts. I leave for work; I have about 15 minutes to get there. I speed all the way there, exactly 10 miles per hour over. I arrive almost exactly on time. What a fucking week this'll be. I head into work, heart racing. I nod my head to the corporate fellows I'm supposed to know. I don't know these people, I know of them. I can tell you their names and jobs, but I couldn't tell you their favorite anything. I don't know if they’re married, have kids, live on the street. I don't know what half of them sound like, for crying out loud. This is the most impersonal place, and I hate it. I sit down at my desk, take out my laptop. Type in my password. It's an altered version of my name that I used to use as a user name. That was so long ago, I don't even remember what website it was for. I feel like it was some weird cartoon network thing. You traded imaginary stickers, and everyone wanted the Dragon Ball Z ones. I open my browser, peruse my social networking sites, see if anything important happened. Ah! Someone I don't know commented on an old forgotten friend's status I liked. Whoop-de-fucking-do. I close it. I continue to dick around on the computer whilst I'm supposed to be compiling some shit about our finances from the past three years. I know that when I finally start, I can probably get it done within two or three hours, but the deadline isn't until Wednesday, and they'll just give me more to do if I finish early. I continue my game of minesweeper. I hope someday I'm able to actually play this damn game. Every time I think I'm getting the hang of it, the next click is a mine. This time, so far so good. I click on a gray one, it uncovers a few more. Shit, now either one of these two remaining spaces could be a mine. I decide to guess the top one. Damn, so close. Oh well. I log on to the company's internet to look at the web-comics I frequent. As I wait for the 12kb/s connection to load a picture. My thoughts flash back to the Waffle-House girl. Hmmm. I wonder what she did with my number. I wonder if I should go back there tonight. Knowing me, I’ll still be unable to sleep, so I'll probably wander again. But is it wise to go there again tonight, after giving some random stranger my number? Hmmm. My boss starts heading over, shit. I alt-tab out of minesweeper and back to my spreadsheets. He passes by. Whew. I wonder what her name is. That Waffle-House lady. Probably something straightforward. Like Samantha, or Sarah. Hrm, both 'S' names. Weird. I wonder if there’s some Freudian thing about that. Anyway. I continue to fake-work for a while. At lunchtime, I go to a Taco bell and order three bean and cheese burritos. Damn tasty, even if they are probably unhealthy. I go back to work. The rest of that is a blur of boringness. I go home.

Part 4 - A Dream:

I change into some comfortable clothes. I sit on a couch and watch an episode of Arrested Development. Never gets old. I doze off for a bit. I wake up at about 7:30. I'm pretty goddamn hungry, and I don't know where I should go. Suddenly Waffle House seems like a good idea again. Hrm. Probably not. She's probably not in until later anyway. I decide to stay in. Froot Loops and the last of the 2% milk. Yum. I doze off some more. I begin to dream. I'm in a platoon of 13 men; most of them school friends that I haven't seen in years. We're the last resistance against the oncoming torrents of evil entities. My dream doesn't expressly state what they are. I am armed in armor that I believe I stole the design for from Power Rangers Lost Galaxy. Weird. I realize that this girl I liked in high school is the soldier next to me. Maybe now I'll have a chance with her. She glances flirtily at me. I smile back. We go out to battle, but suddenly the dream shifts to her and my suburban bliss. It's a cliché scene, with ascots and all sorts of bullshit of that ilk. She sets the table, and I kiss her on the forehead. How lovely. In real life, she went to college elsewhere and I never saw her again. I really really liked her, but now I'm no more than a faded memory in the furthest recesses of her mind. She is still the main love interest of my dreams though. Fucking awesome. She leaves to get the food we're gonna eat, suddenly my phone rings. I answer and it's the Waffle-House girl. She says she wants me. I nervously glance at the kitchen, when suddenly my front door bursts open. It's Waffle-House, and she's wearing leather. Goddamn is it hot. I wake up abruptly. I've fallen off the couch. Goddammit. It was about to get to the good part. It's 1:40. I've gotten a fair amount of sleep already. I'm starting to get a mite hungry. I know what I'm thinking I want to do. I also know that that is a horrific idea. She hasn't called, and that means she's not interested. Going back there will just make it all the more obvious that I'm desperate. She looked so bored last time though. Fuck. FUCK. I know I shouldn't, but suddenly I'm imagining going there, cheering her up and sweeping her off her feet. Fuck it.

Part 5 - The Beginning:

I get my coat, and head out. I elect to drive this time, and make it in record time. I nervously enter, looking around half-hoping she's not there. At first glance, she doesn't seem to be. I'm both disappointed and relieved. I sit in the same spot and wait to be served. A few minutes pass, and I'm in no hurry, so I don't mind. I put my head on the table. I half doze off again, but about a minute in; someone taps me on the shoulder. "Hey, Late-night. What'll you have?" She says. I lift my head embarrassingly. There she is. Soft, smooth skin. Piercing blue eyes. Light auburn hair. She has a profoundly joyous aura about her, despite the bags under her eyes. She has a hint of a smile, I think. I realize I should be talking. "I'll have a coffee and three eggs over-easy." I say. She nods and leaves. She fucking remembered me. I try to hide my obvious elation. She comes back a few minutes later with the coffee and eggs. I thank her, she smiles and nods. I consider apologizing for the note I'd left the previous night. I decide not to. After I'm halfway finished with my eggs, she comes over. She sits down in the booth, across the table from me. I swallow my current bite. "Look." She says. "I'm not some whore who'll just bang anyone who comes here late at night." I open my mouth about to defend myself. She stops me. "I'm also flattered that you would do such a thing. And I’m so damn bored." I smile, I plead my case. She laughs. We talk for a few hours. Finally, her shift is over. I thank her for the conversation, and bid her adieu. I tell her to call whenever she needs a conversation. I'll always be 10 minutes away. She says she just might do that. I return home and sleep. I don't have to be at work the next day because of some safety testing stuff. I'm cool with that, I hate going into work. I decide to break out the guitar and see if I can still play. I more or less can, though it doesn't come as easy as it used to. I try to write a song. Fail miserably. Give up. I consider calling Waffle House girl, but I remember I don't have her name or number. I laugh at this. I go outside. It's a good day. Life is pretty good, overall. It's gonna be an ok week. This weekend was long and shitty; Monday had its ups and downs. Things are looking up though. I think I might go for a walk every night. I think I might. Why not? It's not like I’ve got anything better to do. I'm working a shitty job, with a boring life. Why not spice it up with a random stranger? What's the worst that could happen? I put my shoes on and walk out the door. Life is good.


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