In a Hotel
By David Caplan
In a hotel, even prayer feels adulterous,
the skyline smudged in light, a distraction
just before dusk. In the lobby
a woman tells a stranger what she will do
for three hundred dollars, what
she will do for four. Some have the custom
of opening a book randomly with a question in mind.
Some have the custom of forgetting.
At six my friend beat his father at chess,
beat his father’s friends so easily
he wondered if they tried.
At seven he shook the governor’s hand.
Don’t call it a failure; call it knowledge:
the peculiar taste that filled his mouth
as if he had bitten his cheek.
Whatever he risked did not matter, whatever
he could imagine was already lost.
Bored, the other boy coughed into his hands.
I have had a lovely busy day during which very little work got done! I met a friend from Pokemon Go who works at Marriott headquarters in Bethesda, which I knew from PoGo had a Model T in the building because the gym there is named for the car, and he had offered to give several of us a tour of the museum and display rooms. I had in my head that "display rooms" meant dioramas, but it's actual full-size replicas of hotel and conference rooms from Marriott-owned hotels all over the world, so that was very cool! Afterward a bunch of local PoGo players went to the mall for lunch at Crave.
The Sears in our mall is closing in a week, so I stopped in to see whether anything was on an insane sale, but pretty much the entire store has been wiped out and there are only a few linens and rugs plus some very ugly shirts at 90% off. Then I came home to try to get some things done before going out to meet Angela and Carrie at Lebanese Taverna for dinner, a date we've had on the calendar since December because our holiday schedules were so busy. I brought Paul shawarma and we watched The Flash (meh except Tom Cavanagh) and The Gifted (go Lauren).