Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Be careful. They're watching. Delirium II

She nods towards one of the hanging surveillance cameras trained on the registers and then to the beer I'm buying. "Be careful. They're watching."
It's my first day.
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I imagine it to be a cramped little room with a hunched old man, unshaven & with coke bottle glasses, watching. Just watching. Like the Pearl Station. Reports flying off to nowhere, still watching:
The cameras pan the store. Checking customer bank accounts. Sufficient funds. That woman is not wearing a brassier. Nice. That man is stealing from the salad bar. Investigate. Only 3 outstanding warrants. The police need not be notified. They return to their regular hobby: watching the staff.
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The Hammer takes me back to show me dry storage. A narrow side hallway/fire exit with shelves overstuffed. "This is our dry storage. Where we keep the rice and -" his phone rings, he checks it - "if you need to take a call, do it back here - " nods up at a camera - "they can't see you back here -" takes the call.
It's my first day.
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Wrinkled decrepit man, staring with lidless eyes, gesticulating frantically, teeth crumbling to dust and falling from his gaping maw, drool pooling at his feet. Watching as I toil. Why is he watching?

I blinked. “Excuse me?”

“I said, ‘is there anywhere we can sit down and eat this?’”

“Yeah. Café’s right over there.”

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