Thursday, March 6, 2008

Cheeseburger in the Distance

I don’t know of any way of describing it other than “it’s just there.” It just sits there, two-dimensional and seventy-five feet up in the air. I’ve seen it everyday for the past nine months and I can’t get it out of my head. It taunts me in a way that I can’t really describe; its like something that you know is supposed to be a part of you but you’re not ready to have it, hold it, enjoy it.

Of course, I’m talking about the giant cheeseburger on the Friendly’s billboard near my office. You can see it out of any of the five windows that face the east but looking out just any window isn’t fair to it. The one true and unobstructed view of it can only be obtained while standing at the urinal. So if you find yourself there, at the urinal in my office, turn your head to the right and you’ll see it. Out past the hotel’s small lawn and gazebo, past South Main Street, past the high school, then over highway 84. It’s there. A two-story tall piece of heaven on a bun, the writing on the sign obscured by one of the countless, dreary, brick office buildings that circle this downtrodden city like giants without a home. But at least the burger is there and it always will be, I think.

I sorely want that burger, I do. I don’t know why I don’t just go over and get it, or at least touch it. The walk over wouldn’t be tough, just a couple hundred yards, still that distance on a dreary day may as well be a couple hundred miles; I can’t commit to that. Even if I got there it would be a long, long climb up a cold ladder to reach my prize. Then what? Could I even take it? Would it be real or would I have to bring my own burger, would that be blasphemous? See, why would I even try. I kind of like it there in the distance, brightening my day whenever I take a piss. Maybe taking it would be a piece of Icarian buffoonery; another piece of humiliation to put with the others. Still would that be much worse than pissing in the same damned urinal, looking out the same damned window forever? Probably not, but I guess I’m not ready to go after the cheeseburger in the distance. Not yet anyway.

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