Times Like These

We sipped a little this morning. She with her tap water, me with my coffee.

She tells me to ease up on my caffeine intake. Constantly. Says I’m going to become dehydrated. That my health will fail, and that could be dangerous in “times like these.” Like nothing else is dangerous. Like we have a lot of time remaining anyway.

That’s the phrase she always uses: “Times like these.” As though these “times” aren’t real that this is only a facsimile of something more realistic that is happening, or did happen somewhere else. To someone else. Continue reading

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EIGHTY-NINE

The sun set. To Bill it was like watching a cup of coffee being dumped out in a sink. The warmth of the day evaporated fast, and the feeling that anything was possible suddenly died.

With the darkness came a sense of fear, an anxiety that flooded Bill such that he could hardly breathe. He didn’t sleep a wink, and by morning he was hopeless.

Then the sun rose again, and he steamed coffee and took the first sip of the first day of the rest of his life.

EIGHTY-THREE

There was no coffee left in the pot. Not good. There were only the dregs, the unwanted coffee grounds that would never be fully consumed — and rightly so.

In those dregs he saw himself, a lower end of the totem pole kind of guy in the office. But like everyone else, he could see, on the horizon, the path to a better position.

But right now, Chris had to only worry about brewing a new pot of coffee to fill his boss’s mug.