It is 6:00 on a Saturday, and while it is quite early, the bar is standing-room only. Aside from the bartender, I am one of the youngest people present.
A group of four -- two elderly men and a married couple I later come to find have been married 44 years -- enter separately. Expensively dressed and jeweled, they seat themselves at the bar, occupy the right angles of its end.
One of the two men, a large blond man reeking of a background in outdoor sports and years of upper management, leans forward, smiling.
"Where you folks from?"
The married couple smile back. "Englewood," the man says.
"That's the one."
There's a short-lived, genial pause as the bonhomie spreads.
"Say, don't I know you?" says the blond gentleman. "I saw you come in and I thought to myself, we've met before. Did we meet before?"
The other man leans over his wife, peers at the blond intently. "Didn't we meet Thursday?"
"Up at the Sports?"
"We were at the Sports."
"You're originally from Ohio, right?
"That's right, isn't it, Gretchen?" He draws his wife into the conversation. "We all met Thursday. You're a Buckeye. We're Buckeyes."
They raise their glasses. "We're all Buckeyes."
There is silence as the four sip their drinks. The ambient noise of the bar fills the space.
"So!" says the blond man. "What have you two been up to since the Sports?"
A World of Creation
1 hour ago