The Man Chair

It’s part of my job at Voyages—an upscale boutique catering to women of a certain age—to make polite chitchat with the white-haired gentlemen who sit in the Man Chair parked outside our dressing room. I offer the men pint-sized water bottles and smile—wanly—when they tell me, I make the money and the little lady spends it.

You look fine, they say when their ladies venture out to view themselves in the three-way mirror. Then the men in the Man Chair turn to twenty-year-younger me with lust in their eyes and I wish I could vaporize them.

Rita Ciresi is author of the novels Bring Back My Body to Me, Pink Slip, Blue Italian, and Remind Me Again Why I Married You; the story collections Sometimes I Dream in Italian and Mother Rocket; and two award-winning collections of flash fiction, Female Education and Second Wife. Twitter: @ritaciresi. Website: