The Workplace Glasshouse
Hamish. His workplace was his playing field. A time to glow. 23 and rapid fire with the banter. The staff kitchen was the goal line.
"Susan, if you eat all that pasta, I'll have to start calling you Giovanna!"
The three who stood by him chuckled but she could only manage a tiny wry smirk.
Walking by the reception window he caught sight of himself. No wonder they all loved him; tall, broad shoulders, well-dressed and a woman magnet. He points to the smiling receptionist. "Don't let any of the ugly people in! We have too many here already!" She smiled and blinked. Like many of Hamish's comments, people didn't think much of them until after his charming presence was vacated. Then the frown set in.
Coffee time in the kitchen.
"Who the fuck left all this mess? Christ some people are pigs. They can't cope without mumma!”
A couple of workers agreed, though one of them had contributed to it.
Returning to his desk, Hamish passes 44 yr old Bryan. “Mate, you'll never find another woman with a haircut like that!”
“Oh. Isn't it modern?” His hand went to his freshly manicured follicles. “I thought...”
“Mate, I've seen a better cut of lawn at the cemetery.”
An awkward but rousing cackle rose around them.
“That's a bit mean,” said Mary with a knowing grin.
“Bryan knows I'm only joking, don't you Bry?”
Bryan looks to those around, not wanting to appear boring. “I'm going to change it soon.”
A lunchtime later when Hamish is in the kitchen filling his water bottle, a colleague quietly enters. “Hey Hamish! You see the game?”
Hamish is startled and the stream catches the bottle and sprays his shirt. He jumps back, looking down. “Shit!”
“Sorry Hamish. Didn't mean to scare you mate. But you do look like you're ready for the wet T-shirt Comp.”
A busy kitchen roars with laughter, like a volcano giving into the steam. They are pleased to see a reversal. Finally.
Hamish is red. “Shut your trap! It's not funny! Look at my shirt!”
“I said sorry mate. It's only water.”
“Don't call me mate, you idiot!”
Rows of eyes studied the transformed jokester.
“What are you looking at? You can all get stuffed!” He stormed out.
After that, no one thought his jokes were funny anymore and within weeks, he resigned.
And then Bryan met the love of his life.
With his old haircut.
In June, a short series of Flash Fictions, Feral Street. When Rednecks move in. NOT for the easily offended.
Next Post, Greatest Written Films returns.
Nice to see you.
New Website: Anthony J. Langford Books
2018 Best New Talent - Short and Sweet Festival Sydney
2014 Pushcart Prize nominee. (more)