An inmate nicknamed "Big Bird" climbs the water tower in the center of a penal compound and refuses to come down until his demands are met. His fellow inmates recount the man's loneliness, the mystery of this loner who has decided, and in face of the punishment that is bound to come, to wait it out, to challenge authority all for the sake of, as it turns out, a Big Mac sandwich.
This story for me was actually really beautiful and sad and the humor of the piece, which was ample, was needed in my opinion to offset the true hopelessness felt by these men that is seen in the way they plod through their daily routines and gossip like country club women might do about things as mundane as sweeping and changing of jail cells and rec yard politics.
Overall, I liked this enough to read more by Richard Stratton. That says a lot.