18 May 2018

Friday on the Train

"I'm out"
His parting words to the people at work who knew him Monday to Friday as a jocular, easy going guy. Never a moment of anger or dissension, he put in his 40 plus hours with a smile and a laugh. No one knew him outside of working hours but they felt as though they did and that allowed him to keep his descent into the darkness to himself while keeping up appearances. Long practiced at concealing his true nature, he was able to present one face to the world during the day before his mask slipped and the madness took over.
This particular Friday found him actually bounding down the steps as he hopped in an Uber for the ten minute ride to the train. The big city awaited and a weekend of semi conscious poor decision making was is the offing. Knowing that he could day drink Sunday if he left his car at home, he made sure he wouldn't be an asshole and utilized his one good choice in the next three days to take that ride.
The train always presented him with the opportunity to pre game a little, as it were. While not a fan of whisky, he knew it would smooth out the edges before he had to hang out with his distant friends who only knew him as a glad handing social drunk who loved to have a good time. He was acutely aware of appearances and his new travel coffee mug wouldn't make the return trip but held a healthy wallop of booze to give him the liquid courage he needed.
The key to drinking in public always began with knowing to keep to yourself. Headphones, an obscure book not read but well worn as a shield against unwanted conversation and a pair of shiny cop sunglasses made his face all but lost in a crowd. He took care to find a quiet spot and leaned against the window as though sleeping, occasionally taking a long pull from the mug, the whisky burning a little but warming his soul to the thought of spending time so close to where they found their happiest moments not so long ago.
Hid melancholy of the past few days was fading as he felt the heat of a boozy love give him the false hope he so longed for. While the people he would be spending time with were surface friends, he would not have to delve deep this weekend, he still had to keep that facade of happiness intact. Letting people see any sadness or weakness left him feeling like they would reject him and he would truly be alone. So onward the train went, deeper he fell into the rabbit hole of a drunk and once again the curtain came down on the one act play that was his responsibility. He cut ties to the world and let his inner demons out for another trip into the dark side. Who came out the other side of this weekend wasn't his concern, he had forgotten that anything beyond his next drink existed.

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