He awoke early on Wednesday morning.

He stood in the bathroom assessing himself in the mirror. It had been a very long time since had cared about such things. It had been at least three months since he had had a real haircut and he had quit shaving a month ago. No one at his office cared what he looked like, as long as the work got done. As he had taken to spending more time in the mountains, his appearance had gradually evolved into that of a typical trail monkey. He wore expensive hiking boots, nylon trail pants, and more often than not, cotton flannel shirts.

It was too late to cut his hair. He pulled it back and held it so that it was tight against his head. It made the right side of his face look better, but exposed more scarring on the left side. What he needed was a hairstyle somewhere between his scraggly, homeless look and the buttoned-down lawyer cut. Besides, the only way he could pull off that look now was to bind his hair in the back with a rubber band. And despite everything he had been through, he was not and never would be a pony tail guy.


copyright joseph e bird, 2015