Johnny I

Johnny walks down to the store. He eyes the standing barrels along the porch. These are for sitting he thinks. He tries the door but its locked. A fly buzzes around his ear. Johnny swats at the fly and sits on a barrel and looks at the town. He pulls a dead dandelion from his pocket. It’s somewhat crumpled. Johnny tries to straighten it out but the stem has darkened around the bends and the crumple remains. But the store door clicks and a woman opens it from the inside. She flips the closed sign in the window  to open and squints at Johnny. Johnny puts the flower back into his pocket. He gets off the barrel, straightens his shirt, and fixes his hair with his fingers. He’s blonde in the reflection. 

Johnny looks warily around the shop before approaching the counter. Foodstuff in tins and boxes fill the aisles. A slab of pig lay on wax paper on the counter. “Can I help you,” asks the woman. She’s middle aged, with curly grey hair, and a serious face. “Yes I’m wondering if you know why some things are and others are not.” “No. I don’t know,” she says with a scowl. Johnny puts his hand on the pig. “May I buy this pig?” “No. It’s too expensive.” “I have money.” “How much money?” “Not enough, I’m afraid.” Johnny touches the pig some more. “I’m wondering if I may touch this pig for the money that I have. It’s just for a little while.” “How much money do you have?” “Ten minutes of touching, I think would be enough.” “How much money do you have?” “Not enough, I’m afraid.” Johnny frowns and takes his hand off the pig. “I’m very sorry to have bothered you,” he says. “Go away,” says the woman behind the counter. Johnny frowns some more. He looks longingly at the pig. “Maybe there’s a way we can deal with each other without the pig,” he says, hopefully. “No. It’s not possible.” “I have money.” “How much money?” “Not enough for that.” “You’ll have to leave.” “I realize it. Only…” Johnny puts his hand back on the pig. “I wonder if we can talk as people, face to face.” “Please go,” says the woman. Johnny frowns some more. He removes his hand. Back outside Johnny stands on the porch looking at the flower in his pocket. He puts it back and walks down the road. The woman from the shop sticks her head out the door. “Pig Toucher!” she screams. Johnny quickens his steps. He makes a turn at the next corner and finds himself beside a bar.