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Sleeping on a couch every night makes your neck feel like there’s a red hot metal pole attached to it. The leather on the couch sticks to your skin when you start to sweat in your sleep from the heat of the Los Angeles summers. The heat combined with its old age makes the red leather have spots of pink.
I was sitting in an unpadded chair in a tiny room that was made into an office by simply putting a desk up against the wall with a computer on top of it. I was wearing the only nice clothes that I had which were a pair of black pants that were two sizes two big, dirty black leather dress shoes, a yellow long sleeve collared shirt that I tucked into my black pants, and an old black hat that stopped my long black hair from covering my face. A middle aged woman was sitting in a chair facing towards me. She was a blonde woman wearing a long blue dress and she looked like she had been really good looking at one point of her life, but she wasn’t exactly ugly at this time. “Why do you want to have a job here?” she said. I wasn’t going to say what first came to my head because I didn’t want to tell her that I have no money, hardly any food, and I’ve been looking for a job for three months and that this stupid clothing store was my last option.
“Ever since I can remember, I’ve always had a fascination with pants” I can’t believe I said that with a straight face. That was the dumbest thing I’ve ever said. “Really? Tell me about it” she said. Oh crap, I had to think of a reason why someone would be obsessed with pants. She probably knew that I had no idea what I was talking about. I always put myself in bad situations out of my own stupidity.
“I don’t know when it started or why but I’ve always loved clothing.”
“Yeah I know exactly what you mean; I use to have that same feeling when I was your age”
After everything that I would say, she would write something on a pad of paper that she had on her lap. What was she writing? I’ve only said two sentences and she already has enough information to right down a paragraph. Maybe there’s something going on here that I’m not aware of.
“What sort of things can you bring to our company if we hired you?”
I don’t know, I think I would be the same kind of employee as everyone else. Actually I think I would be a worse employee than everyone else. I couldn’t even get a job a Blockbuster. How hard is it to sell videos? There are people in this world that have no arms and they still make more money than me.
“I would bring hard work and dedication to your company”
I’ve never brought hard work and dedication to anything, but at this point in my life I think anything is possible. I have no money, no car, no job, and the only thing I own in this world is my red leather couch, but that’s only if you consider it owning something after you steal it.
“Okay” she said “do you know anyone that works here?”
“Yeah, I’m really good friends with Neil, I think he’s worked here for a couple of months”
“He doesn’t work here anymore; he got fired three days ago”
“Really? He didn’t even tell me, why did he get fired?
“He got caught stealing”
This puts me in a horrible position because Neil was the person who was supposed to get me the job in the first place. So that means without him it makes it extremely difficult for me to get hired. Also, because Neil was fired for stealing and because I’m friends with him that makes her see me as a bad person for being associated with him. Why would she hire a good friend of someone that was fired for stealing?
“After having a few conversations with Neil” she said “your name happened to come up a few times, and he told me that you got fired from your last job because you accidentally put fireworks in a cash register and the whole thing exploded.”
At this point, I would be better off playing pickup sticks with my butt cheeks than getting a job here. Before I had the red leather couch, my cousin Daryl made me sleep under the sink. I was hoping that I would be able to get this job so that I could finally sleep on a bed that I bought myself. She looked at me like I was in a straight jacket trying to bite my elbow.
“Why did you put fireworks in the cash register?” I took a short pause before answering.
There was a long silence that seemed like the longest and quietest moment of my life. She took off her reading glasses and puts her pad of paper on the desk next to her.
“I get the feeling” I said “that you’re not going to hire me so why don’t I just leave and save you the trouble of forcing me out.”
Before she could say anything, I had got up out of my chair and rushed out of the small office in the back of the clothing store. I walked through the store and because I was staring at my feet trying not to look at anyone or have anyone look at me, I walked into a rack full of t-shirts and knocked the whole thing over. There were t-shirts of every color in a pile on the floor. I stopped and looked down at the landscape of clothes and it seemed like there were hundreds of them all over. I couldn’t help but notice all the colors that spread across the tile. I looked up and everyone in the store was staring, and some were laughing. The only thing I could do was ignore them, leave, and go home to lie down on my red leather couch.