by Stanley Lieber

Tom regarded his silver hair in the mirror. The coke had all turned black. Here was an opportunity for a joke, but Tom demurred. He was doing that a lot lately. Demurring. It was not like him to stand around and reflect. But, well, he was just so damn pretty.

Tom touched his fingers to his lips and then he touched the mirror. Planting a little kiss, like in the old days.

The pink triangle badge on his polo shirt illuminated. It was time for the conference call. He finished up at the sink and made his way over to the neutral backdrop. Joined the call.

It was more of the same. He hated to micromanage but he couldn’t help himself. His employees were just so stupid. Stupid enough to work for him, anyway, which he figured entitled them to his abuse.

Nearly thirty years had passed since he had taken over.

He found it impossible to respect any of them.