Gilt in the Sunrise

April 14, 2010

On my good days, I get out of the house around 6:00 AM and go to the fitness center at my office complex.  I generally work out for forty-five minutes to an hour, hop in the shower, get dressed, drop a foul-odored bag in my car and report to the cubicle before roll call.

I usually run into one of the regulars by the lockers after working out.  There’s a steady crew of three guys who are younger than me.  I’m on hi-how-are-ya terms with all of them.  They’ve been friendly enough to shoot the breeze with me before.

Returning to the locker room each morning and seeing one of the guys, I inevitably think to myself, What could I ask or say that’s relevant, current or friendly? One rightly wonders why I hadn’t considered this during the previous hour.  I hadn’t nonetheless, so I send a pageboy scavenging through the Rube Goldberg innards of my mind in search of an answer.  He comes back up from the depths with a gilt-edged scroll that reads: “Nothing.”

I make awkward grunts, excuse-me’s, and maybe venture a, “Good morning,” which is pleasantly returned.  It takes precious little silence for the pageboy in my mind to feel awkward.  He chews his lip until I dismiss him.  He skips off to find something else to do.

I take my shower, get dressed, sometimes mumble an uninspired, “Have a good one,” and bolt outside to wide open solitude.


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