Miras advises me to shave my beard. He says it’s not worth losing my job over. He tells me the parable of the oak and the willow in which the oak tries to resist the wind while the willow survives longer by bending to the pressure. I seem to be creating a political divide among the staff. Every day when I show up for my shift I receive praise from some and condemnation from others. I eventually lose my job when Mr. Brown tells me not to return to work unless I have shaved.
I agree to go for a ride in Larry’s car. When we are on a country road north of the city Larry puts his hand on my thigh.
He looks at me with hopeful anticipation as he names one person after another. While some names seem to tickle the fringes of my memory I am unable to recall anything concrete about any of these people.