Fake A Smile

January 14, 2009
By Nicholas D'Andrea, Long Beach, NY

As he gets out of bed, he head is dizzy. He made his way for his door ignoring the Doritos bags and
Juicy Juice boxes on the floor. Why should he care anyway, the house keeper will be in tomorrow to
take care of his mess. He takes a shower before he even opens his eyes. He puts his red polo work
shirt on and his cackies and brushes his hair in the mirror. He's a handsome young adult but he
doesn't know it. He hears it enough from his loving mom, but, that's just what moms do. He gets in
his car that's almost half his age. He arrives at his minimum wage job, he's underappreciated but
his hard work is more than well acknowledged. He works by his father's motto of work your ten
dollar an hour job, but work as if you make twenty. He sees a customer a fakes a smile, he hate him,
and he doesn't even know him. He can't stand anyone he meets. The politicians are scum, the
white collars are shmucks, and the blue collars are all f***ing peasants'. He has yet to meet a
person to make him smile. But it's all he does. Smiles and shows the world how happy he is. But
he's not. He's too depressed to go on; he just doesn't know it yet. He's sick of routines
and sick of an ordinary life, he needs more. Molly is a cashier at his job. She is stunning. He
likes her, and she him. He never spoke to her. She tries to, but she might as well be speaking
French. He has so many things to say but only gives one word answers. She goes to the warehouse to
get more paper bags. She opens the cabinet and begins to unload them in a basket. He walks up to her
and smooth talks her and convinces her to go to the movies. He snaps out of his trans. His thoughts were realistic, just not reality. She waves goodbye and
he fakes a smile. Fred is a construction worker who comes into the store whenever the store needs to
be maintained. He gets on the lift to fix the broken light bulb that hangs from the ceiling. As he
takes the light bulb out he realizes the electric is still running and gets shocked. Half of
Fred's body is hanging off the lift and the crowd of people all gather around, trying to figure
out how to get Fred down. However He has already thought of a plan. He started to climb the end cap
and makes his way to the top of the shelf where the overstock microwaves were held. He starts to run
on the shelf towards the top of the lift and makes a jump for it. He barely makes it. His left hand
was just able to make it and he's able to get his right hand up. He begins to pull his right arm
up and eventually pull is body on the lift. Everyone is watching, especially Molly. He brings the
lift down and the paramedics take Fred away and Molly hugs him. And it happens again. He's out of
his trans again, and Fred puts the light bulb in, and makes his way down. Fred see's him, and he
fakes a smile to Fred. He goes in the Warehouse to cut the boxes and notices the blade of the box
cutter. He rolls up his shirt and begins to slice his wrist. He goes horizontally, of course. He
wants to finish the job. But again, out of his trans. And completes cutting the boxes, Jack walks in
the warehouse and he fakes a smile to him. After his shift he gets in his car. He turns his radio on
and Louis Armstrong is singing "What A Wonderful World" and he fakes a smiles. He thinks to
himself, "where the hell is he from? And how do I get there?". He gets home and goes to his
room. He closes the door and makes his day to day most difficult decision, pain killer or muscle
relaxant? He chooses the vicodin. He wants to be numb. He accidently empties the bottle in his hand.
He looks down and takes them all. He sees his family at his funeral and they are all miserable. They
miss him and they want to know why. He snaps out of his trans with the pills still filling his hand.
He takes them, all of them. And he smiles, but not a fake smile. A smile one makes when there life
is fore filled.

The author's comments:
This was written in ten minutes, largely infulenced by The Catcher in the Rye's protagonist who often day dreamed about his dream job, mixed with a little more moden drama

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