I'm a fly on the wall.
It's a normal thing for me. Some would say it's anti-social and I might agree with them to an extent. They feel that I'm not participating because I'm not part of the conversation, but I'm there in a different way. I'm a part of their world, but in my own way. I don't have much to say because I want to hear what they have to say. What makes them tick. By and large people that talk a lot are mainly interested in themselves. They don't need me there, and they certainly don't care for my opinions.
I'm sitting at the bar in a back corner on a Monday night. Christmas is in less than a week, and I should be doing my shopping. But like every year, I will save it all for the 24th. Gift cards for everyone. That's my motto, it has served me well.
I like this bar. It's not loud, and the music doesn't hurt my brain. I can nurse a few beers for a couple hours and then go home without any problems. Johnny is behind the bar. He knows me. He knows that I won't buy much, but I will take care of him with nice tips so he's usually happy to see me.
There is a TV on the other side of the bar which gives me a good excuse to be panning the entire scene without looking strange. I can shake my head and smile at the guy that's been after the cute blonde for nearly an hour now. He's hoping to find the right words, the ones that will give him a shot, but it doesn't take much to notice it's too late. He probably already said the wrong thing which is difficult to recover from. She's bored and disinterested, but too nice to just blow him off. I don't know which one of them I feel more sorry for.
Then there's the couple dancing. They're already married, and there is tension there. If I had to make a guess, it would be that this was a place they frequented while they were dating. They don't get out much and they're feeling a divide. This is a night to help rekindle something. Remind them of what they once had. I haven't decided yet if it's working because it looks like they can't decide if it is either. Which means it probably isn't.
"So you're a people watcher."
The voice almost causes me to jump. People don't talk to me here, plus being an observer, it's hard to believe someone snuck up on me without my notice.
"People watcher? That makes me sound like a creeper. I'm…just absorbing the atmosphere." I say turning to the voice behind me.
She laughs and I smile. Her laugh is nice.
The girl standing in front of me is dressed in a look I call 'precision chaos'. She's wearing a plaid short skirt with fishnet stockings. A t-shirt that hugs all the right places and shows a picture of a unicorn in an enchanted field. She's wearing fingerless gloves that go up to her elbow. They are blue and white striped. She's wearing minimal makeup and the look is completed with two black pig tails that hang down past her shoulders. All of it appears messy and goofy like she just threw something on out of her clothes hamper and ran to the bar. However, I know she likely spent at least an hour carefully crafting it.
That makes it sound like I'm being cynical. I'm not, she pulls off the look well.
She holds out her hand and I shake it. "The name's Bri." She says.
"Eric." I respond as I feel heat rise at my neck.
Looking back, I never had a chance.
I'm a fly on the wall.