Honest Work
By: M. A. Stirnaman

The elite prefer the Yellow cure. It comes in a completely biodegradable package, is endorsed by the most important online influensters and has the unique benefit of giving your bowel movements a rose shade of gold. It also costs more than your rent.

The Blue used to control the market. Investors boasted about their points the way parents showed off their children. One man carried small pictures of the fiscal year’s results, flipping open his wallet and letting them unfurl almost to the floor in a string of plastic pouches. With one hand on his hip he’d stand there, groin thrust forward, a proud smile on his face and his only happiness swinging almost obscenely.

Yellow suddenly raised their prices one day. Coincidentally it was the same day that they closed half of their plants.

Wallet man’s wife and kids found him shortly after, mourning his loss with his spreadsheets open, a glass of eighteen year old scotch and a forty five caliber hole in his head.

I sell Red.

It doesn’t have the branding of Yellow or work as well as Blue, but boy is it cheap. The middle class eat it up. Neighborhoods of multi-family homes where there are more signs bewaring you of dogs than there are actual dogs are my territory.

“Online sales is where it’s at,” they tell you. I call that uninspired, lazy. If you’re not pounding concrete then you’re leaving money on the table. Craig A. Pie doesn’t like his money on the table. I like it best when it’s traveling from your dirty calloused hands into mine.

“Ma’am, is your husband home?” I always ask even though I know the answer. They appreciate that.

“I’m going to save you some money today.” Tell them, never ask.

“That’s a beautiful flag there.” My south is rising again.

“The car is perfectly fine for collateral. It’s not like we’re going to take it.” Payment plans, the ultimate fix for the poor.

My briefcase feels a little lighter as do my feet as I step out onto the sidewalk and survey the rest of the virgin block just waiting for my silver tongue seed. The best part of the whole world being sick is everyone’s a customer.
The leather seats in my car cuddle my ass, but I still feel sore. I curse myself at the time and grab my Yellow bottle. It stays silent in my hand. I can’t help but laugh as I look into the bottle like a telescope and see nothing.

I think I’ve got some Blues left but someone might be watching.

“The Reds?” you ask. Those don’t work. I sell products, not medicine.

Don’t feel sorry for me. They’ll find me with your money in my hand.