Open Letters/Open Envelopes: To The Owner of the Pilsner Glass I Ran Over in the Parking Lot At Work
12 July 2012Written by Laura Straub
I’m sorry to have broken your glass. Judging from the sizeable gash it left in the side of my rear passenger-side tire, it was a footed pilsner–not a common find in many people’s kitchen cabinets. It was even more of a surprising find in our parking lot, which is usually littered with PBR and Miller High Life cans. There’s a wide array of broken beer bottles surrounding the dumpster in the north corner of the parking lot. The smaller, scattered shards form an abstract mosaic across the gravel.
I used to tiptoe around in my high-heels, afraid of getting cut open. But constant hazards have a way of blending in with their surroundings. Eventually my feet touched down even and oblivious, booted or sandaled.
Once, the perfect combination of a cool breeze and and bloomed magnolias was enough for me to leave the door open. Around eleven-thirty a tall man came in and asked to speak to the owner of the property, if there were any leases available. After explaining to him that this wasn’t the leasing office but a small business who rented a space, he wouldn’t leave. Just give me your landlord’s information, he said. There’s a sign outside in front of the building with that information if you’re interested, I explained. He looked around curiously, asked for a tour. My insides dropped and filled with acid. Will you please leave sir? I said, thinking, Please don’t notice I’m here by myself today. It took him several minutes to exit our front door. I locked it.
Later that day the Budget car rental down the street was held up at gunpoint by a man matching the description of the man who came into my office.
Today, my own unconcern heightened by time-constraints and frustration, I got into the car and put the pedal to the metal. The tire flattened in the time it took for me to pull back into the parking space. The base of your beer glass was embedded deep in a pot hole. There’s no telling if it would have caught my attention if I had been looking.