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Kristin Rose

Writer

23

2

99% Perspiration

The city was in the midst of a sweltering heat wave.  On this particularly withering August afternoon, my  landlord was trying to wedge a refrigerator in the door of my apartment building just as I was headed out.  Since the door was blocked, I couldn’t exit, so instead I offered my help in getting the fridge in the door.  It was a very tight squeeze. The refrigerator was new, and came wrapped with protective styrofoam and cardboard, making it even harder to fit through the door.  As I grabbed a corner of the styrofoam-padded fridge, the landlord tipped it back on the 2-wheeled cart that it was on, and angled it carefully through the door. Feverish air seeped through the gaps in the doorframe as the fridge made it’s way awkwardly through.  Success! As the landlord pushed the bulky appliance past me and into the well-lit hallway, I noticed that his arms were wet with sweat, and that I could smell the sweat from under his arms.  I had never seen my landlord physically exert himself before - this was quite a change from his usual business-like sterility. I realized for the first time that my landlord wasn’t just a professional in a suit, he was also a guy with real muscle, capable of heavy lifting and sweating.  A flush rose within me as I considered this new perspective.  As my landlord set the fridge down in the hallway with a gentle thud, he turned to me to thank me for my efforts, and then, out of the blue, asked, “Would you like to accompany me to a fundraising gala, tonight?”  

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