Four Matching Men

I saw them as I was driving down West Alabama. Four white men in their thirties walking along the sidewalk wearing matching blue shirts-all with backpacks weighing them down. My first instinct was to stare, which I did as much as possible while still attempting to drive my car. I decided to pull over so I could see what this odd group was up to.

I raced out after them as they headed off towards the mall entrance a few hundred yards away. I followed as nonchalantly as I could. They bobbed in unison as they went up the stairs to the covered entrance. They opened the doors and the air conditioning rushed out to greet them.

As the automatic doors started to close, I slipped in behind them. They walked quickly ahead, practically in lockstep, like they were late for something. They went up the escalator and turned off in the direction of the Macy’s. I pulled in closer as they veered off and dispersed into the Men’s athletic section. They proceeded to gather and comb through the lone Nike running pants rack, pulling out black pants and holding them admiringly up to each other. These men were on a mission and I was in need of a button-down shirt for work, so I skulked off and left them to it.

© 2021 Jeff E. Brown. All rights reserved.

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