Here Today, Gone Today
Otis sat on the bus with his lunch – ham & cheese on rye – in a brown paper bag resting on his lap, holding it for the sharper turns. He could afford a car, but he enjoyed watching people too much to pass up the opportunity to observe them every chance he could. He crafted stories for where they were going, where they were coming from. He imagined the young man with a bouquet of flowers had planned an elaborate set-up to propose to his girlfriend. The soldier in uniform was finally home from deployment and going to surprise her husband and daughter at her grade-school graduation. He would write these stories during breaks at his office job where he balanced books and had no other creative outlet. The files were deleted, removed along with all of his other personal effects after his sudden death, but one story he never wrote – a story he had actually forgotten – was the day he stood and gave his seat to a woman who, unbeknownst to him, had just learned she was pregnant after years of being told that she was barren.