June 22, 2007

So People Actually Read This Site

Posted in Lessons Learned, Office Hijinks at 6:39 pm by devilwearsbrooksbrothers

Last week I wrote about 57 Hottie feeling pretty confident that it would be almost impossible for anyone to know who I was talking about.  I mean first you would need to know where I worked.  Then you would need to know where the 57 ran, what time I rode it, who else from my firm takes it, and on and on.   

So there I am, standing on the platform of the blue line, rocking out to Gwen Steffani when I should be listening to my French lessons when I notice that 57 Hottie has joined me, standing a bit closer than usual.  At that moment it occurs to me that he is the only other person who could possibly know his true identity.  This fills me with dread for a moment, then I smiled.   

When I am writing these posts I assume, despite all evidence to the contrary,  that the only people who actually read this blog are my family, my friends, my editor and now the two people that don’t think I’m funny.  All the other hits are from people who found this by mistake. 

I let out a big sigh of relief and started to wonder if anyone has a secret nickname for me along the lines of 57 Hottie.  After all, there he was, innocent to all my secret, private thoughts that I share with all my readers, but never him.  Maybe he has secret thoughts about me.  Or about that other girl that rides the bus with the way cooler haircut.  And maybe, while I am wondering what he is thinking about, and he is wondering what she is thinking about, some else, someone I haven’t even noticed yet, is wondering what I am thinking about.       

And just as I start to shake these crazy thoughts from my head and turn my attention back to my iPod, I saw it.  Our eyes met, and he smirked at me.  A definite, honest to god smirk and the whole platform started spinning and the vision at the corners of my eyes started to get fuzzy.

I managed to get on the train, with 57 Hottie right behind me.  It was simple, I would just tap him on his back and tell him that what I write is in character and that it isn’t so much that I think he is hot as it is just that, compared to everyone else on the bus he’s hot.  Not that he’s not hot.  I’m just trying to say that it would obviously never work out for us.  Not that there is anything to work out.  It’s just that he is short.  Well, no, not short.  He is exactly as tall as me, maybe an inch or two taller.  But I just bought these really great platform wedges and since those would make me taller than him, plus the whole working together thing and then the he’s an attorney thing, you can see where I am going with this, right?    

I sucked my cheeks in and bit down on my tongue until I tasted blood fearful that I would start to try to explain myself and not be able to stop.  That I would say things completely inappropriate to say on a crowded train to someone who may or may not know that I not so secretly (anymore) refer to him as 57 Hottie.  I closed my eyes and convinced myself that either a) I was mistaken and he didn’t smirk at me or b) his smirk did not necessarily mean he reads my mind.     

I got off the train, walked behind him all the way to the office and because god hates me, got in the exact same elevator as him.  By the time it stopped on my floor my face was tomato read, clashing with the peach sweater I choose to wear that day, and sweat was pouring down my back.  

It’s a good thing I don’t have a crush on him anymore and that I have this blog to flush him out.

June 14, 2007

My Magic iMac

Posted in Office Hijinks at 5:20 pm by devilwearsbrooksbrothers

I vaguely remember a Friday night television show of horror stories for the pre-teen viewer.  I can’t remember the name of this show but it was out right around the time it was really popular to write pre-teen horror fiction.  Well, maybe it is still really popular to write mystery/horror fiction for pre-teenagers, but I digress. 

One episode I remember pretty clearly involved a young boy finding an old typewriter in his grandfather’s attic and deciding that he was going to be a mystery writer.  The twist was that everything he wrote came true.  And since, like any good writer, he was using his friends and family loosely disguised as characters, his friends and family all met with calamity and horrific fates.

Now a few years back I had started to work on a novel and in that novel was a character loosely based on a former roommate, except my character was a lesbian.  A year and a half later I my former (straight) roommate introduced me to her new girlfriend.  I laughed at the coincidence.

Then, when pretending to work on the same piece of fiction, I decided that another character, who was based on another friend, should cheat on her husband.  After all, no reader was going to believe that anyone was that happily married.  Less than a month after I typed the plot line my good friend called to tell my about the trouble in her marriage. The trouble had a boy’s name. 

Another coincidence?  Possibly.  But just in case I replaced my old iMac with a better newer version.  Well, okay, I had to replace my iMac as it was on its last leg, but still the timing couldn’t have been better. 

Why am I bringing all this up now?  Well, it would seem that my new Apple is still cursed, although how deep this curse runs and who its victim is, is not all that clear. 

I am once again facing down the task of re-writing attorney biographies.  Now, before you skim down to the bottom to see if I jokingly wrote of someone’s untimely demise just days before it actually occurred, that is not what I am about to tell you.  My life can be horrific at times, but it isn’t that bad.

So there I am, innocently reviewing biographies for glaring errors when what to my wondering eyes should appear but a really bad picture of 57 Hottie.  This couldn’t be.  Not only was 57 Hottie an attorney, but now I worked with him.  That’s two rules, people.  He may as well be from Michigan, although judging by his profile my guess is he is not.  Tears welled up in my eyes.  I clicked off his profile.  It was all just too much. 

After emailing all my friends the terrible news I returned to the task at hand.  I coasted through a couple dozen profiles until I came upon it. 

Asshole’s bio.   

I could taste vomit in my mouth.  The A-hole that I told Old Boss not to hire and that I hoped was homeless and living in suburban station is now someone I have to avoid on the elevator.

Maybe my mother is right and my list of rules exists solely so I never have to get seriously involved with anyone.  And maybe my cosmic retribution for throwing away a-hole’s resume is that I now have to work with him.  But maybe, just maybe there is a Twilight Zone Twist here and I have created this law firm where I work by typing on this computer. 

This could either mark the start of something very interesting or the beginning of the end.    After all, if I do have some power, there is no way it won’t go straight to my head. 

June 7, 2007

Ah, To Be Young Again

Posted in Office Hijinks at 10:03 pm by devilwearsbrooksbrothers

As the start of my very last year in my twenties grows closer, I have been doing a lot of reminiscing.

Since I was about 13, I have had older friends. Part of the reason for this was that I have a much older sister that I idolized and worshipped when I was younger. I tagged along after her and her friends and forced them to like me by threatening to tell my parents what they were doing.

Sure, having much older friends has its perks. For instance, there are no pictures of me wearing New Kids on the Block paraphernalia since all my cool friends told me NKOTB sucked and instead introduced me to Duran Duran and the Ramones.

At the same time, I missed out on a lot as well. Like my prom. Okay, I don’t really feel like I “missed out” on going to my prom, but I didn’t go because I spent the long weekend at the shore with my college-aged friends. And I never really got to be 20. By the time I was in my early 20s my friends were all in their mid to late 20s (some were even in their early 30s) and they just expected me to act their age. Or maybe I did so in an effort to fit in.

So I was sitting in one of the many orientations I had to participate in for my new job. Across from me were two girls in their late teens/early twenties, both from Ivy League schools, both spending their summer working for the office.

Without getting into the whole idea that these girls were wasting a really expensive education to spend the summer typing, or even investigate the possibility that this summer was less about gaining experience in the working world and more about getting their MRS degree; what really worried me was that they weren’t going to have any fun.

After all, isn’t college the time you get to goof off and get really lame but fun jobs? Like life guarding at the shore or working for Disney as a summer intern? Isn’t there a radio or TV station somewhere between here and Vassar that could use their phone skills?

While I wasn’t about to try to send away these invaluable workers during my first week on the job, I wasn’t going to stand by without a good explanation as to why they would forgo a summer living in a dorm-like hotel, pouring fountain drinks and flirting with hot guys.

They both sort of shrugged their shoulders and offered that they are thinking about being lawyers.

Fortunately for the young-ins, our instructor walked in before I could lay into them about how college wasn’t a time for deciding a career. College was a time for taking really interesting, albeit useless courses like, JFK Conspiracy Theory, going to frat parties and developing really bad taste in music. Maybe that is the real difference between Ivy League students and the rest of us. Maybe they start planning the rest of their lives while the rest of us plan our schedules to keep our Fridays free.

Then I remembered partying with Harvard guys after Head of the Charles and took that all back. People aren’t born that good at flip cup. That sort of skill takes practice. And that much practice requires missing a lot of morning classes.

Still, watching them take notes on time entry did leave me feeling better about my own 20s. While I will never be young enough to get away with ridiculous fashion whims again, I can tell you what it is like to spend a summer in Wildwood, living in a two-bedroom dump with five girls and a guy. And sure,it may be too late for me to make a huge, uncomfortable scene breaking up with a boyfriend in a packed bar, as many girls in their young twenties are wont to do, but I have fallen out of my fair share of bars. That has to count for something.