The delivery guy showed up at our door with styrofoam cartons full of middle eastern. I recognized him: his genial stoop and baseball cap and grey Prince Valiant hairdo. He'd delivered to us before—from this restaurant and others. I'd seen him around town for years: the Eternal Delivery Boy.*
It was an ugly night, and I gave him a good tip.
"Oh, thank youuu," he intoned in his odd nasal drawl. "You must work in the businessss."
"I did for many years."
"Yesss... You can always recognize one who's sufferrrred."
He handed me the plastic bag and turned. His hunched frame descended the steps.
If this were a Flannery O'Connor story, what would happen next?**
* And somewhere, years ago, I saw him in a strange locally made movie short that ran before the main feature. But, besides the fact that he was in it, I remember nothing about the clip.
** We actually just went inside and ate our hummus and grape leaves. Eternal Delivery Boy drove his puttery little car off into the night. But I'm not sure that rates high enough on the Ironic-and-Disturbing-Conclusion Index.