There’s a short hallway at the top of the stairs. The walls are filled with framed newspaper clippings, all starring the same starchy lady holding the diner’s pride, a burger larger then your head. Really the clippings are just there to act as landing lights for the drunks trying to find the washroom. I, like most of the clientele, have stumbled into this place seeking salty food. Being the only 24 hour eatery in a college town’s sea of bars makes it a pretty popular place.
The problem with the hallway is that it has a blind turn onto the staircase at the end of its run, a hall that’s already barely wide enough to steer down when you’ve had a couple of wobbly pops. I can only assume collisions like mine are pretty common, at least after midnight.
So I knock a pregnant lady down a staircase. What the hell was she doing out at that hour anyhow? We both got lucky, but it was before she’d even finished her backbone slide down the stairs that I noticed something funny: a man with a very round face was watching me instead of the expectant tumbler. To be fair the whole restaurant was taking in the action below the banister, but while most of the patron’s eyes seemed to be viewing a very lopsided tennis serve, the man with the round face locked eyes with me from beneath a retro ‘Drink Cola!’ poster.