Waiting Room Television: The Day It Was Out Of Order
There are five of us, all men, all here by ourselves, all middle-aged or better.
We are all savoring the peace and quiet in our own way. Most of us are fiddling with our phones, checking email and Facebook and such, enjoying the complimentary WiFi. One of us is reading a newspaper, occasionally making a cheerful flourish out of turning to the next page. One of us is humming quietly, but I can’t make out the melody. One of us — likely the oldest of us, trim and well-manicured, wearing a cap with a Navy ship registry embroidered on it — is typing with gusto on an expensive-looking laptop. He is pounding out what sounds like it might be about 60 wpm and he rarely slows down. He only pauses to take another sip of coffee, just a sip, then he gets right back to full speed. Some piteous soul out there is getting a piece of his mind, and it seems that they are getting quite a considerable portion of it.
On two occasions, polite and well-meaning staff members have come in to apologize that the waiting room television is on the fritz. Each time, we have all joined together to startle the poor staffer with our hearty huzzahs and bonhomie and cheers that the infernal teevee machine has been cut down.
We are a true band of brothers here in the service department waiting room.
—J.F. "Jeff" McCullers