He woke up in the morning, and brushed his teeth. He noticed he was late and hurried through the shower, doing last-minute chores as he struggled to put on his tie. He was tall and fat, with a shiny red scalp and curly blond-gray hair that he combed over poorly. He wore clean but rumpled clothes and looked somehow pitiful and amusing at the same time.
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As he went to work, he did a quick inventory of what needed to be done. The new forms were going out today and he knew the boss would have his ass if he filed it wrong. There was a new syntax in which the client specified complaint then he had to sign that he had witnessed the complaint being made or reported, then he had to give all this other stuff about who his bosses were, and the relative importance of the complaint. It was annoying as hell. He also had to finish a new report on how the market response was slowing in their division, and tactics to drive consumer opinion upward.
His job was essentially listening to the consumer complain about faulty manufacturing technicalities, then report why it was that the company wasnít doing well based on these complaints. The only thing he really managed to come up with was that the manufacturer had no idea how to anticipate the client, thus making all kinds of problems. He worded it nicely enough that the bosses never caught wind.
Though his job was shit, he talked and drank with old college buddies a night or two a week, keeping up his social life. He was pretty outgoing and social, but not so that he was loud and brazen. It was more along the lines that his presence drew people to him, and when it did, he was amiable to conversation. He was talkative, but paused every now and again to hear the listener and reflect on their opinions on his life. Though it seemed a pretty selfish way to have a conversation, the people never noticed they were being led and he was happy to unload.
The telephone book was open, and his index finger rested on a name.
He went to work, and talked to a few colleagues before starting up for the day. The phone rang about every five minutes after that with complaints and grievances, and he dealt with them. He grew irritated at about one out of every ten people, and just hung up. He would always feel guilty after doing so, and would call them back with a phony excuse as to why the phone disconnected. He was a nice guy, and though he lied to save his ass he got along well with the others.
It clicked right. No problems.
He got out of his car after work, and took off his tie. He went to go outside and noticed his cat hadnít eaten. He smiled, and poured a bowl of food. He then changed, took a shower, and went out to his car.
He wasnít expecting it. It hit him in the right thigh. Blood. Lots of blood. He shouted in surprise, then surprise became pain and he kept shouting.
In the Yellow Pages, which were left open, his name was John Smith.
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Another one I wrote a while ago.