Calm in the Chaos
There was a brief conversation between two guys in a restaurant bar. They were the only ones there. One was waiting on a pizza to go, the other finishing his up. It was a series of songs over the sound system that sparked the conversation. The songs predated most people currently alive and the one guy joked the only thing missing was Dick Clark announcing the next song.
They each ordered an extra beer they hadn't intended. One guy had survived a horrendous day at a low-paying terrible job. The other was coming to grips with retirement not being all it was cut out to be and the fact his college student son racked up $1500 in partying bills on the old man's credit card.
Two strangers who made each other laugh while talking about all the miles they'd put under their belt over the years. There was chat of rock-n-roll and why good beer was hard to find in France. Reflection of Matt 'Guitar' Murphy who died and The Blues Brothers. Talk of places long forgotten and nights of bewilderment.
Soon the one man's pizza was ready to take home and both had finished their beers. They parted ways, probably destined to never cross paths again. But in a country on a downward spiral where every man must fend for himself, the brief conversation was a respite from chaos, an oasis of civility.