Thursday, November 10, 2022

The waiting area by the gate, one flatscreen showing a storm surge lashing Florida’s coast, another showing golf, white men hunched in a green expanse, the tedious unchanging leaderboard displayed. Plus. Minus. Even. The bar and grill across the way is closed but already at this early hour you can glimpse a server behind the screen of idle taps, getting things ready for the coming onslaught of anxious, booze-mad fliers. The agent at the gate informs us that boarding will begin at five forty-six, one minute past schedule.

Man he really is concentrating on that putt. 

Last call for San Francisco from the neighboring gate. The others in our seating area are utterly unremarkable. No defining features, mannerisms. No intriguing conversation. A terrible torpor has set in; they barely reach their hands up to their faces. They’ve been reduced to this: travelers. When they get back to where they come from they’ll reinhabit themselves. People with jobs, friends, hobbies. Secrets. Features that define a life. But for the time being they’re in a state of grace: they’re nothing.

In fact the TV screen with golf has been frozen all along.