“You live here?” He pushed a rusted chuck of—something—aside. Pulled into himself a little, yeesh. Should call it Tetanusville.
“Why? I mean”—looking around—”how? It’s so”—he scowled, swallowed, needed a drink, and a shower. “So…I don’t even know. Sad? Depressing? Dangerous, for sure.”
Pulled another chunk from the loaf, spooned some tuna onto it, making a little glob sandwich. Paused before the bite, set his hand down, followed the other’s gaze, shrugged. “I don’t know. It’s home to me. You can get used to anything. Why do you do this?”
Gesturing with the sandwich wad towards the mic. “Ask people questions. Did you grow up wanting to do that?”
No. Not at all. Wanted to work in news, yes, but not like this. Had imagined himself behind a heavy oak desk greeting each new day with a beaming smile, perfect hair, immaculate suit. Hello folks, looks like it’ll be a beautiful Monday, but I’ll pass it over to Gary for your weather updates. Gary? Gary would make some quip about how it was indeed a beautiful day, might want to call out of work, grab the wife and kids, head to the beach. Ha-ha-ha, funny stuff. “Not exactly.”
“But here you are, talking to me. Why does it surprise you that someone would live here?”
“Not just live here, but spend any time here at all.”
“But you’re here right now. Been here about an hour asking me stuff. How much will even make it to print or air on TV? A minute? A hundred words? Some blurb about a man that lives in the scrapyard, boy, can you believe it? And move on to the next segment?”
Print, ha, hardly. Fodder for the online edition. Editors were throwing anything they could think of at the wall and hoping something would stick. Trying to find traction with any audience. Were starting to get desperate, hence the scrapyard interview. Next thing he knew he’d be talking to cats and dogs. What’s that, Whiskers? Meow-meow-meow. Someone would read it.
“Think anyone will care?”
“About this interview.”
He didn’t know. Maybe. Might get a couple of comments, someone saying their heart goes out to that poor soul. Another saying he should get a job, then a fight between them. Oh god, this was awful. He needed to think about a new line of work.