The Traveling Salesman

It doesn’t matter what you need, The Traveling Salesman’s got it. A dozen long-stemmed roses for Valentine’s Day after all the shops have closed, an ice cold beer on a hot day or a Smith & Wesson with the serial number filed off: doesn’t matter, it’s in the boot of his car. Before the advent of the twentieth century, it was a horse, and there was a time even before that in which he was just a man, walking from place to place.

He drives up in a black ’69 Monaro as you walk along the side of the road, rolls down the window and beckons you over. As you approach, you can hear the sound of The Passenger coming from the car’s radio, coming so clearly it’s like Iggy is sitting in the front seat.

Whatever it is you need, he offers it to you, there and then. The price of it is always exactly how much money you’ve got on you, down to the cent. He never haggles or gives a discount; it’s always sticker price with The Traveling Salesman. If you take him up on his offer, he gets out and pops the boot of the car. Whatever it is you need, it’s there.

Then he goes, leaving you standing by the road with whatever you just bought in your hands and the rumble of his engine in your ears. He never stops, and he never visits a town more than once – at least, not until he’s visited them all.

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~ by Electro-mechanical Man on May 2, 2011.

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