PERCY

Was I ever gonna learn not to fall into the same pattern? It never failed, over and over. I’m the guy that always overestimated people, gave them too much credit. I’m the great encourager. And every time it let me down.

Why?

Haven’t I acted in good faith?  It’s a “belief in fellow man” thing is how I see it. And how I feel it. Am I supposed to be learning something here? Is it a matter of fixing it now so in the next life I don’t have to come back and do it all over? I don’t think I could bear it. I mean if one believes in such things anyway.

I can’t help but wanna be jaded.

It’s upsetting. When he came up the steps and walked onto the patio I already had my drink. I didn’t have much time-I’m sure he had all the time in the world. If I didn’t wrap things up here by at least one-thirty and get back to the office to relieve Stan, he’d have another hissy fit and that’s just way too sad. God knows none of us needed the drama and if I wasn’t there to help he’d very well go haywire.  And that’s another thing: Why am I always overcommitting? I’m not Superman for chrissake! I mean that Stan is so talented, but I wish he’d occasionally show some appreciation for everything I do.

Enough about Stan.

He sat down at the table looking slightly disheveled, but seemed even enough. That’s a relief. Well after three sips of my cocktail I didn’t care- I was getting warm and fuzzy.

“I already ordered my drink,” I smiled. “I couldn’t wait.”

He opened his menu. “That’s fine, not a problem.  I tried calling that lady, the one with the room for rent, but I know they must have given you the wrong number. I’m not sure if on purpose or what.”

“I’m sure they didn’t give me the wrong number on purpose.” I took another sip of the cold, cold vodka. There’s almost nothing better GOD DAMN on a hot summer’s day.

“Well it just rang and rang each time I tried. Did you write it down wrong? Phones don’t do that anymore nowadays ya know.  Just water for me please,” he said to the waitress, eyeballing me suspiciously. “It’s a little early to be hitting the booze so hard, isn’t it Percy?”

I looked up from my menu. “Huh?”

“I’ll have the turkey club,” he handed her the menu. “Besides it’s gonna take an awful lot to move my stuff out and maybe they already rented it. You know you really have to know someone to get a place in this town.”

“Cobb salad please,” I swirled around my glass of ice. “And another one of these.” I raised the glass to my lips, threw back my head and sucked out what was left. “Aaaaaaaah.”

“Percy,” he said. “Maybe it’s already rented is what I’m saying.”

He was looking for an answer; wanting to hear my take; waiting to be fed.  “I heard you. Could be. I told you the only thing you can do is try. You can do it, I know you can. You have to keep your chin up. Look at how great you’ve been doing, right?”

“Yeh like you said.  You always tell me that.”

“So? Look where you were and where you are now.” It’s true I always said that. But what else should I say? “Don’t you realize how great you’ve been doing?  Haven’t I always supported you?” The waitress put down my drink and I quick picked it up for a slurp.

“But what about you Percy! What are you doing? You’re not anywhere different than since we met, and you’ve been talking the same talk all along. And how long has THAT been?”

“So?”

“All you do is tell me how you believe in me and all that, to keep my chin up. And what do YOU do? I mean what’s wrong with you? If anything, you’re probably dragging me down here, look at you. What do you want from me? Why don’t you use all that talk on yourself Percy?”

percy

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