“I just need to get an extension until the 15th, after that, we can pay the full amount,” I tell the woman behind the desk. He had told me to come down here to the gas company to get an extension on paying the bill. He said they would be less likely to say no if I went in person rather than going to the payphone on the corner to call, like I’ve done in the past when the bill wasn’t quite so far behind. Sure, easy for him to say, since I’m the one who had to walk the fifteen blocks in threadbare shoes in the middle of February with sleet outside to get a damned extension on the gas bill.
Can shoes be threadbare? I wonder while waiting for the woman to tap something into the keys of the large keyboard in front of the amber-colored screen of the computer monitor in front of her. When I came in here, all I wanted was an extension of a few days, but I figure asking for an extension until the fifteenth would be better. Give them something to negotiate with instead of just telling them what I really need. The woman refuses to extend me. She says I must pay at least a little bit of it right now. I feel in my pocket for the coins in there, knowing they’re not even close to enough to touch the monthly winter gas bill.
Then again, it’s unlikely Carlos* is going to have the money no matter what day I get the extension until, but it’s better to ask and do what he says than to face his wrath.
“I’m sorry, ma’am, but the computer won’t...Read More