He couldn’t make it out. The sign above the jukebox, it glowed a neon green. Said somethin’. The letters were hazy; it was a dreamlike state.
Stumbling over to the men’s room, the old man placed his hands in his jeans pockets. Pulling his right hand out to push the door open, a ten fell out along with a couple of one’s. The trucker didn’t notice. Just kept talkin’ to himself; singin’ along with the songs playin’; money on the floor got picked up quickly. A smile came to a young man’s face.
And he stood at the urinal; weavin’ back and forth; waitin’ on the flood to come. It did. All over his pants. Some things you can’t control. Went to zip up and felt the wetness; could smell the piss. Wondered why his pants were already zipped. Could’ve swore he pulled it out. Same as the night before and the night before that one. The owner of the Peterbuilt parked outside was on a roll. Had been since Thursday when he got into town and dropped his load at the Dollar General. Wearin’ the same smelly clothes. Hadn’t showered for days. Didn’t care.
He was on the road. Waitin’ for a load to take up to Zanesville. There was nothin’ special there. No wife. No kids. Just another town. He had never settled down. Thinkin’ he never would. The thought of a normal life never appealed to him. Gave him nightmares thinkin’ ’bout it. Some kinda world where from day to day you had a lousy life with a fat wife. Kids drivin’ you nuts. He’d wake up in a cold sweat.
The driver walked up to the bar in his piss soaked pants and asked what he owed. The bartender came up with some figure off the top of his head. He nodded. Reached into his pockets and discovered nothin’. Not a dime was to be found. He started to laugh. An uncontrollable laughter.
You got money for the tab?, the barkeep asked.
Hold on, he fished ’round some more in his pockets. Nothin’. My wallet’s out in my truck. Let me go get it and I’ll pay you, the bartender motioned over to the bouncer to follow him out.
The driver stumbled across the gravel to his purple truck. He loved that truck. Only thing left he could claim as his. He opened up the cab and climbed inside. The bouncer placed his large body ‘tween the door and the steel steps.
Here you go, the old man said. Here you go. Don’t ever let it be said I never covered my debts, the doorman counted the cash. There was no tip.
He passed out till mornin when the Mississippi sun came shinin’ through the window. Maybe by tomorrow he’d be in Zanesville. Just maybe.