Sunday, February 18, 2007

The seat...

I decided to stop for a beer at the pub by our house.
I went in and sat down on a chair. I was there for a while but nobody paid any attention to me, so I got up and walked to the counter.
“One beer please.”

The bartender looked at me and told me to sit down. I did.
I lit a cigar and put my foot on the bottom of the chair next to me.
The bartender looked at me and slowly ventured around the counter.
Finally…, hopefully he’ll bring me a beer, my first Czech beer after a long time, it’ll probably be pretty bitter but on the other hand there’ll be a lot of it.
“Take your feet off the chair,” I heard above me.
“Why? And where’s the beer?” I asked.
“Take your feet of the chair before I get pissed!”
I put my feet down and stared at my cigar. It’ll peg out soon, just like me. Oh well.
The bartender came with a beer. As usual, the glass wasn’t filled all the way and the beer had foam with huge bubbles, well, what can you do…
I took a sip and suddenly felt my youth coming back to me. The years spent with this beer, parties and drinking binges at cottages and in apartments… IT WAS GREAT.
I got a little too excited, put my foot on the rail, and the chair cracked and broke…
I saw the bartender coming around the counter again.
“I’m sorry, I’ll pay for it,” I almost wept.
The bartender took my beer glass and without a word went back to the counter.
I must have looked like I was crazy.
“Please, gimme my beer back.”
Without a word, he poured the beer down the drain.
“Please, I’ll fix the chair, I’ll take it home and fix it, I know how,” I heard myself saying.
“I’m really sorry…”

“Really, I’ll fix it.”
“I’ll leave my ID here if you want me to…”
“Nooo… hmmm… you would really fix it…?”
“Yes, really, I know how to do it, I’ve fixed chairs before.”
“… OK… take the chair and bring it back tomorrow…”
I walked back to my table and picked the chair. I was sooo pissed, but I felt nobody could tell.
The bartender put his arm on my shoulder and walked out of the pub with me.
“You’re a good guy,” he said and squeezed the hand that was holding the chair.
“Hmmm,” I said and turned away.
There was a line of parked cars in front of me, ending at the intersection about fifty meters away, at the corner where I live.
I grabbed the chair and with all my strength slammed it against the ground. The actual chair fall apart in little pieces, but its seat rebounded and rapidly flew away above the sidewalk.
I heard some screams, but at this prolonged moment of time I was mesmerized by the seat as it rebounded from the sidewalk and jumped on the hood of the closest car, and from there on to another one…
I got scared that exactly at this moment somebody would drive by, the seat would fly straight into the driver’s face, and he’d be dead…
FUCK, I didn’t anticipate that.
“I’ll kill you, you fucking asshole,” I heard next to me.
Shut up, that’s not important right now, I answered the challenge in my mind.
“Guys, come here, look Frankie, this asshole…” I heard from a distance.
But all my attention was fixed on the flying seat. It was jumping from one car to another and it seemed it was accelerating more and more.
Jesus, please, don’t let anybody drive by right now, it could kill him…
“You bastard, I don’t want to ever see you around here again!”
“Well, I won’t be around, ever, don’t worry,” I heard myself answering.
The seat bounced off the last car and disappeared behind the corner.
It seemed that no car was coming. Uhhh… great, what a relief, I was already imagining myself in jail for murder…
I went home.
The seat was lying in front of the door. I picked it up and looked at it for a second. Goddamned seat.

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