The Nice Thing About Strangers

Creative Non-Fiction Short Stories. :) Travel, Oldsters, Love, and Compassion.


It is a Turkish barber shop in Vienna. A lean, dark-eyed man smokes a cigarette, even as the barber lathers his face for a shave. The barber works around the ash.

A young man in a white jacket and dress shoes sits on one of the low couches in the waiting room. He crosses one leg over the other in a triangle, his ankle against the other knee, and reaches his arms wide across the cushion behind him. He sighs the sigh of a high school student. His little brother joins him, holding his big brother’s forearm as he wriggles up onto the seat. They crack their knuckles methodically and stare up at Animal Planet with German dubbing. Against the dusk, the television lights up their eyes so it appears they are crying over the gazelles. They don’t flinch, however, and no tears fall, and they begin again the cracking.

–Vienna, Austria.

Virgin Mary's House, Selcuk, Turkey

8 comments on “Men

  1. suej
    April 4, 2013

    I love reading your observations of human life, the detail packed into a short write.

  2. joannerambling
    April 4, 2013

    So much said with so few words

  3. Arpon Files
    April 9, 2013

    Observar el discurrir de la vida humana es fácil, observar detalles ya no lo es tanto y muy difícil plasmarlos con la claridad que lo haces. Felicidades y un poco de envidia de la buena. Un abrazo

    • Muchas gracias por el cumplido. Me alegra saber que disfrutastes el haber leido mi trabajo. Seguire tratando de buscar otras escenas para compartirlos contigo. 🙂

  4. Pingback: The Top Ten Search Terms: Seek and Ye Shall Find | The Nice Thing About Strangers

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