In the laundromat a young man was sitting in a plastic chair in front of my machine, reading a backlist Hilary Mantel novel. I had stepped out to run some other errands, in the twenty minutes of sloshing and spinning. His presence annoyed me — who does he think he is, the King of the Laundromat, on his plastic throne? — but the annoyance was tempered by recognition of my former young self, a person who would curate her laundromat reading because she felt like it made her look like she was an interesting person.
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