He could almost smell the chicken sandwich glowing on the television screen in the corner. Mayo and ketchup pouring down like waterfalls of the world with clouds of sesame seed buns puffing and puffing round and around. A quick burst of logo and cut of frame and the smell of fast food changed into that of a twenty-something year old male modeling jeans - the fruity tang of mousse and tropical cologne with a musky hint of camera-light sweat. He rubbed his fingers on his own thigh and imagined that his pants felt like the crispy dark denim in those pixels. The screen flashed again, this time back to green grass and timbre-deep men dissecting scenes from recent American football games. He personally thought the effort and devotion required to fill an hour with elaborate statistical discussion of hunky men tossing a ball was a bit superfluous, but then again, the general nature of human activity is expendable. Disinterested, he looked over at the cash register. Flannel Shirt with Skinny Jeans was ordering a macchiato upside-down with triple shots. He took a sip of his iced coffee and thought about how overblown some people can be. Swallowing with a muted “gulp,” he let his tongue fumble around with the straw as he let his eyes glide over to Blondes at the window-side table. One of them had her hair in a ponytail, the other in a braid. He tried hard to think of which style he liked best - Ponytails are playful, energetic, fun . . . but Braids are more refined, self-sufficient, mature. Both had nice hair, like soft feathers of an angel cascading in gold, but he eventually picked Ponytail and watched her for a few more moments. She had nice teeth as she talked and just the right amount of freckles to offset her pore-less skin. She took a kiss of her latte that left a little fluff of foam on her upper lip. He thought this was cute, and as she daintily wiped it off with a small embarrassed smile, he was glad he picked Ponytail.
Bzzz! Bzzz! Bzzz!
He looked down at his mobile; it was an acquaintance calling. He stared for a moment at the screen, looking blankly at the name and the icons blinking back at him. He hated phones - always interrupting. He imagined the phone starting to melting. Green plastic and glass rushing into small rivers quicker and quicker across the table, dripping off into a sizzle on the floor. A coffee cup starts to shrivel in the puddle of molten product, and the table begins to soften underneath. Liquid drips down onto his pants, burning holes into the cloth. The puddles start to flow across the rest of the shop, broiling everything they touch. Flannel Shirt with Skinny Jeans sinks slowly and silently into a puddle as he dully waits for his coffee. Blondes casually get up and say goodbye to each other, hugging with grateful laughter for a pleasant afternoon. Their chairs and table gently dissolve into the floor. Braid starts melting first, and her parting words are directed to Ponytail’s face, then throat . . . then belly . . . knees . . . feet . . . gone. Ponytail turns with a smile and meets his gaze. The entire room around them is turning into burning goo, but they are both a part of the same moment - together. His heart starts to beat faster, and in his lovestruck panic he is able to send up a friendly wave. As Ponytail starts to reduce into the floor, she waves back at him with her perfect little hands until the tips of her fingers finally ooze into soup.
He hates phones - always interrupting . . .