The Loneliness of the Long Distance Sales Rep

Tony fiddled with the knot on his tie. Cheap acrylic, like his suit, it didn’t add any veneer to his appearance.

Tony sat in the passenger seat of his company car. Toyota Auris. Excellent mileage. A comfortable ride up and down the motorway, servicing the clientele. In the footwell, the detritus of his service station lunch. Sandwich wrapper, crisp packet, doughnut crumbs and a screwed up serviette. His feet, shod in a pair of £25 loafers, scuffled against the rubbish for something to do.

He thought about Lynne. He loosened the knot on his tie, unfastened it completely, pulling the tie from his collar. He sat and wrapped it around his fingers, thinking about Lynne and the hard disappointment in her eyes.

They’d met at a company do. She was in logistics. He was young enough to still believe he could make area manager one day. She was keen on his ambition. Twenty five years later, he was still on the road and Lynne was disappointed.

The world looked slightly different through the passenger side of the windscreen. He thought about quitting, about other possibilities. He wasn’t fifty yet.

Tony wound down the window and dropped his tie to the ground.


In response to a photograph seen on Twitter.