Saturday, September 12, 2015


Somewhere close lurked Cerberus — I couldn't see him but I felt his monster's breath on the base of my skull and I knew that if I turned around one of his heads would lunge and consign me to live here forever. This was the Third Circle of Hell, where the gluttons were sightless and facedown in the slush. But I saw:

"My other person who was supposed to work the counter was a no-call no-show," the guy in charge said. "The person working the grill, this is only his second night."

A balding round man in sweatpants cried out:

"Do you have anything like the box deal, only with two chalupas? And a chipotle?"

"A daredevil?"

"Chipotle." He recited the word like it contained a mystery.

"That was a limited-time deal."

Twelve other damned souls waited their turns.

"Two gorditas, a bag of chips and a drink for $3.69," the round man wailed in the icy rain. "They used to advertise it for $2.99, but he said that promotion is over. So I just got the chipotle."

The daredevil box?

"The chipotle," he stressed. "They had a chalupa, but ... " His disappointment was palpable.

A thin man spoke:

"Can I talk with someone who knows what they're doing? We asked for this without cheese but with guacamole and potatoes. This is all wrong." A listless woman stood next to him but looked at the floor.

The wait for a taco spun out. From the hottest place in this Circle, someone moaned of 500 things on the menu.

A man wearing a skull t-shirt sat down and untied his cloth backpack. He pulled out a deck of cards and started shuffling.

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