If asked they would have
claimed to be suffering a kind
of delayed PTSD directly related
to their service in the war,
as if that service would excuse
their current behavior: sacking the
bar, pinching the woman and
expecting free drinks in return
for dubious services rendered.
Which war they were supposed to
have served in was unclear, though
there were oblique references to
Kuwait, burning oilfields, jungle
fatigues and Mama San whorehouses/
bars, suggesting a kind of fantasy
island place of engagement imagined
after far too many nights watching
cable TV movies and Survivor show
reruns, under the influence of street
drugs and no label supermarket beer,
than from actual combat experiences.
They claimed to have scars to prove
their assertions but weren’t about to
show them to “just anyone” and “besides
they had better things to do with their
time than suck up to some limp dick,
stateside, assholes.” Assertions generally
made as they were being escorted by
force out of whatever establishment
they happened to be in at the moment.
Unfazed by such unceremonious
treatment, they swore eternal allegiances
to each other as a band of brothers,
three stooges in search of an audience
perfecting a routine so old it has already
become a kind of classic.
Under the Table:
by James Claffey
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