The Cedarville Review 2024

THE CEDARVILLE REVIEW 43 real late, walking the streets like I had some business to be about. I guess I didn’t really but I wanted to pretend. I wanted to pretend I had some special place to be or person to see, you know? So I walked and walked, passing all these people in long coats and long faces. I fi gured I was hungry and stopped at this little bar with a funny yellow neon sign. It was called “The Crooked Dog” and had this poor, golden, drooping dog hanging below the name. Pretty weird sign if you ask me. I pushed on in and sat at the bar, scuffed up wood and coffee rings all over. The guy behind it was scowling something awful. I fi gured he must hate his job, cause of all the creases on his forehead. I mean I would too, with all the junk he’s gotta listen to. I made up my mind not to bother him with all my troubles. I ordered a water and a sandwich so he wouldn’t say I looked too young. Though he might’ve anyway. I don’t take after Dad and a good thing too. I was minding my own business when this big hulking guy with patched elbows stormed in, all dramatic and crazy. You could tell he was mad right off, the way his nostrils quivered, and his eyes widened and squinted every couple seconds. He kept clenching his briefcase like he was gonna snap it to pieces. You know, Jeffey, just like Dad used to. There weren’t many people in there, but we all looked up startled. He stood there for a second then landed at the bar a couple stools down from me. I kinda edged away (I was careful, Jeffey, I really was) cause I didn’t want to get mixed up in anything. But I don’t know, I guess this guy really needed someone to talk to and the bartender wasn’t giving him anything, so he turned