21 October 2008

Faking the Little O

I never understood faking an orgasm. That's like ordering dessert and not taking a bite. Pointless. The Big O is sacred. The little o...well, that's another matter.

I decided to try a new tact in facing the dreaded Monday. I was going to fake optimism. Couldn't be that hard, right? Paste on a smile and seize the day. Criminy. If it were that easy, we'd all be doing it.

The daily challenge is, of course, traffic, which is a fascinating thing. It deserved to be studied. There's something quantum about it; whether it's physics or mechanics, I'm not sure. But, when I'm Oprah/Bill Gates rich, I'm going to sic some scientists figure that shizzle out. We all know there's no rhyme or reason to it. And today, it screwed me. Even though I went faster than I promised myself I would (especially since we are nearing the end of the month), I ended up behinder. Every second counts when you are a commuter. And when you are going to be stopping at the slowest Starbucks on the planet, you need lots of seconds in your favor.

Today, I entered the Trancas store and found only a couple in front of me. Unfortunately, they were German tourists (no offense intended to German tourists). They did not quite get the concept of Starbucks, American math, our coin system, or placing their order at the same time. Four, count them, FOUR minutes standing there as they were schooled in the finer points of what a venti is. Now, the rub was, there were two more baristas behind the counter. These baristas are trained to be like reverse ninjas. Instead of you not seeing them, they don't see you.

Today was the first day I was late (without the excuse of having no water...and even then I was only five minutes late). Today, I was four minutes late, and my boss gleefully announced it when I walked in. He meant it with a sense of humor. I just thought, "If you had any idea how hard it was to be this on-time, you'd keep that *funny* to yourself."

Then he told me the internet was still as it shouldn't be. My sixth marathon call to Verizon. The girls in the office gave me looks of sympathy. This is when they keep quiet and count how many times I throw the phone and not-swear. In return, I don't put the on-hold "music" on speakerphone. I keep my pain to myself.

Today, I was handed the black hat. (Or what a former client called the "rubber bands", in reference to rudimentary castration. He was fond of saying, "I see Miller's brought her rubber bands to the meeting today," or "Be sure to set your rubber bands on the table when you talk to him.") I understand the delicate nature of a female "assistant" (even when I served as a "consultant") having to take a male vendor/colleague to task. Even I don't enjoy it. Much. There's nothing less un-fun than having to address little things like: Did you submit the (lone) bid and get it approved before you hired the subcontractor who happens to be your friend...in Nevada? No? Well, next time you might want to...and get two more bids while you're at it! That's fun, especially when they want to take another twelve minutes to reintroduce themselves and let me know how things were done before I came into play. What they don't realize is that I put down the phone, walk away, pick up a document from the printer, think about what I want for dinner and reorganize my purse while they are doing that. It's amazing how far an uh-huh can take you in a conversation.

Fortunately, the day didn't get any crappier. Just painfully long. The optimism I attempted to fake with a pasted on smile was replaced by lines of frustration where the Botox should go. The drive home remained long. Dinner was eaten quietly as I listened to a good friend cry softly over my earbud, suffering from her own frustration. I stared at the glass of wine for a long time before I finally drank it. Wondering how I might manage tomorrow. Placing bets on how long it will take me to get my latte. Questioning the meaning of life. Remembering to re-charge my iPod.

I suppose the only thins worth faking are politeness and interest. Did I hear you say uh-huh?

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