The Convenience Store

“What’s ‘up guys? How you been, Terry? Long time no see.”

“James! Buddy! I was just talking about you, dude! Telling Terry about you fixing to graduate.”

“Yeah! Congratulations, Jimmy! That’s fucking great, man. You decided what you’re gonna do yet?”

“Oh, hell no, man. I got to get out first. What brings you back here? I thought you had to work.”

“This trucker dude broke the dock plate this afternoon and we couldn’t unload so they let us go early.”

“How the fuck do you break a DOCK PLATE?”

“The dude backed while the flange was out. Ripped a huge hole in the back of his truck. Fucker was pissed.”

“Shit, man. That’s harsh. What you been up to, Clay?”

“Aw, you know, man. Chillin’, smoking some bud…”

“Haha! And beatin’ off. Right, Clay? Hahaha!”

“Only when I think of you, blue eyes. Only when I think of you. So Jimmy. You still with that Amy girl?”

“Yeah. She’s supposed to be coming by after work to take me away from you freaks. We’re seeing a movie later.”

“How long you two been together now? Almost a year, right?”

“Yeah. But, you know…”

“Know what? You’re not thinking of dumpin’ her are you?”

“I don’t know, man. It’s just she’s talking ’bout getting married and shit like that. I don’t know what I want to do.”

“Look, Jimmy. Don’t do anything stupid alright? Amy’s a great girl. Don’t end up like Clay here dreaming about my mom.”

“Your mom is hot, dude.”

“And I will beat your ass if you say another word.”

“I’m just saying…”

“Seriously, Jimmy. Amy’s liked you since eighth grade, and she’s a real good girl. She’d do anything for you.”

“Heh heh. Anything?”

“Shut the fuck up for a minute, Clay! I’m being serious here. Just think it through, OK Jimmy?”

“I will, Terry. It’s just…”

“Just what?”

“I just feel… a little lost you know. I don’t know what’s supposed to happen after graduation.”

“You’ll get a job is what’ll happen. Unless you want to join the army or some stupid shit like that.”

“Would that be so stupid, though? Mickey joined up and he got a pile of money for college.”

“That’s Mickey, though. His dad wasn’t about to let him do anything else. Kid was born to be a jarhead.”

“Yeah, but that money’s gonna come in handy later. Mickey says the Marines are put him through school.”

“Have you seen how much it costs to go to school? Mickey’ll be lucky if that pays for his first year.”

“Yeah! And even then the boy’s too stupid to make it. Probably shoot himself.”

“Lay off, Clay. Mickey’ll be fine. Look, Jimmy, you’re too smart to join the army. Get a job. Go to school.”

“And marry Amy and have lots of sex.”

“Shut up, Clay!”

“Yeah, Clay. Lay off Amy, alright? That’s my girlfriend, OK?”

“Shit guys, I was only joking. Hey. Want me to see if I can get Nic to let me take out the trash?”

“Dude, do you still do that? Why not let Terry just BUY you the fucking beer? He’s legal. Why you wanna steal it?”

“Oh, come on, guys! Nic don’t care. He knows we’ve been sneaking beer out in the trash for years now.”

“Yeah, but that ain’t cool, man. Nic’s a pretty god guy. I don’t want to see him get in trouble.”

“Me neither, Clay. Look, I’ll just go pick us up a six pack…”

“Jesus, when did you two get so chickenshit? Fuck y’all, man, I’m gonna do it.”

“Clay… Godammit…”

“Ah, let him go, Terry. This is all he talks about all week. ‘Sides, Nic knows what he’s doing. he told me.”

“So why is letting him, then? They gotta inventory that stuff. If it’s short, Nic has to pay out of pocket.”

“Heh heh. I know, but… Don’t tell Clay I told you this, but he pays Nic back during the week.”

“No shit?!? That little fucker! He was just telling me before you got here about how he’s the ‘master thief’ and all.”

“Haha! I know, man. I know.”

“Hah! That little shit. I swear to God that boy’s going to get his ass arrested one day. Heh! Idiot.”

“So how’s it been going at work, Terry? Really. Is your boss still being a dick?”

“He’ll always be a dick, I suppose, but it’s getting better. Did Clay tell you I got a raise last month?”

“Really? That’s cool, man! Was it a bunch?”

“Nah. But it does bring me up to the same level as the other guys.”

“That’s good, right? At least they’re not punishing you for being a dropout anymore.”

“Heh. Yeah, I guess you could say that.”

“So what are you guys gonna be doing later? Just hanging out here and drinking? Waiting for Clay to get his ass beat?”

“Nah, there’s supposed to be a warehouse party later. We’re gonna check that out, then maybe go to the midnight movie.”

“What are they doing this week? ‘Rocky Horror’ or ‘Heavy Metal’?”

“It’s a whole bunch of stoner cartoons this week. ‘Fritz the Cat,’ ‘Bambi vs. Godzilla,’ and the like.”

“Sounds cool. Maybe I can swing by after dropping Amy off.”

“HAHAHA! Check it out, dudes! I got us a 12-pack of Milwaukee’s Best and a carton of Marlboro’s!”

“Where the hell did you get the cigarettes, dude? I thought they kept the smokes up front?”

“There was a whole case of ‘em in the back room. When I popped the beer into the trash, I just… swoop!”

“Clay… Dude. You are either seriously insane, or dumber than a sack of rocks.”

“Fuck you, too, man. Who wants a beer?”

“Not me, man, but can I bum a smoke? Amy’s trying to get me to quit.”


“Here man, take one of mine. These don’t stink as bad as those Marlboro reds. Amy won’t smell it on you.”

“Thanks, Ter. Clay? What time you got?”

“‘Bout 9:30, dude. Why? You gotta be somewhere?”

“I told you when I got here, dumbass. Amy’s coming to pick me up. She should be here by now.”

“Dude, the only woman I think about is Terry’s mom. OW! GODDAMMIT!”

“I told you, motherfucker. One more crack about my mom…”

“Jesus! Alright already! Fuck, man, that’s going to leave a mark!”

“Serves you right, dude. Besides. My mom thinks you’re a creep.”

“Hah! That’s just ’cause she ain’t seen the real me yet.”

“And she ain’t gonna, neither, you pervert.”

“Hey Jimmy. Sorry about raggin’ on Amy earlier. Tell her I said “Hey” will ya?”

“It’s cool, dude. Just show her a little respect is all.”

“Aw, you know I love you guys. Terry, too. Even if he is big and ignorant.”

“You little…”

“Missed me, Tarzan! HA HA!”

“Look guys, there’s Amy now. Y’all have fun at the party. Maybe I’ll catch you later?”

“Sure thing, man. You know where to find us.”

“Yep. Just look for Tarzan’s giant head. He ain’t to easy to miss.”

“Terry? It was good seeing you again, man. Give me a yell when you get some free time, OK?”

“I’ll try, man. But you know how work is. Good luck with your finals, and think about what I said. Talk to Amy, too.”

“I will, bro. And thanks again. I really mean it. I’m gonna miss you guys after graduation.”

“You take care of yourself, James. Tell Amy I said “Hi” as well. And y’all have fun at the movies!”

“Will do. Later guys!”

“Hey sweetie! Was that Terry back there? How’s he been doing? We haven’t seen him since his daddy died.”

“Aw, you know Terry. He just does his thing. Work and mom, work and mom. Clay’s about the only friend he has left.”

“Clay. Hmph. That boy. So what’s y’all talk about while you were waiting?”

“Oh, you know. The same old shit. Just another night at the convenience store.”