Mom: So why don’t I meet Re-Boyfriend this Wednesday?
CB: Okay…like, for dinner?
Mom: We should have drinks first so I can see if I like him enough to take him to dinner.
CB: But what should I tell him? I mean, I should probably tell him beforehand if it’s drinks or dinner.
Mom (impatiently): Well, just tell him that if I don’t like him he’ll go home after a drink, but if I do we’ll all have dinner.
CB (patiently): Mom, I can’t say that.
Mom: Why not?
CB stares pointedly.
Mom: I suppose I can see how it might be a little awkward.
CB: So just drinks either way then.
Mom: Right. And if I like him we can all go to dinner.
CB stares pointedly again.
Wednesday night is going to be so ridiculous.
Update: Obviously I am aware that Re-Boyfriend reads this. And obviously he knows my parents will judge him. That does not eliminate the awkward element of sending him home after a glass of wine like a loser on a game show.
Mom: So why don’t I meet Re-Boyfriend this Wednesday?
I am strongly considering becoming an assistant. Like a real, fetch-the-coffee assistant.
The problem with my current job is that I am in a "promotable position" a dubious claim supported only by my title change to "Associate". This promotion (which was the most bullshit, meaningless promotion ever, getting me neither money nor respect) was meant to demonstrate the upward trajectory of my career (HAHAHAHAHAHAHA).
Because of all the opportunity and promise here, I get paid crap. Meanwhile, genuine fetch-the-coffee assistants are getting paid twice as much as me. Literally. Sometimes more than that. Literally.
At this point, the only reason to remain on my career path is that it might be somewhat embarrassing if I took a job that not only wasted my top ten college education but didn't require that I have an education at all. I'm not sure I care about that though. Sitting through the movie just because you paid for the ticket is ridiculous.
And the week will finally be over in six minutes. As a fitting end to this bastard string of five days my space bar has semi-broken, forcing me to SLAM DOWN WITH GREAT FORCE to achieve the previously-taken-for-granted-space-between-words.
My thumb is sore. I'm going to go drink away the pain with S.
Posted by gotcha at 5:03 PM
You know what’s fun? When halfway through a job interview you realize that not only are you incredibly under-qualified, you actually really don’t want the job. In fact, you would rather be pretending to work at your desk than sitting in a strange office, fielding such open-ended questions as "Tell me about yourself," from a woman who looks like a frog with a bald spot.
You contemplate getting up with no explanation and running down the hall (she’ll never catch you) or asking for a bathroom break and then sneaking off to the elevators (you’ll never see her again). Then you realize you don’t have the balls for something like that.
You begin your more appropriate plan to insinuate that the interview is a huge waste of time.
“You know, do you actually think I would be any good at this job? I don’t have a lot of experience and I don’t want to waste anyone’s time.” You throw in a yawn for good measure.
Unfortunately, a secret sheet of job requirements exists, on which “Blonde” and “Has scuffed shoes” ranks higher than “Enthusiastic” and “Hard-worker.” This is the only explanation for why the woman continues to chat with you for an hour and a half.
You go back to an office that wants to know why your dentist appointment went so long. Even though all you want to do is eat a bag of M&Ms, you have to pretend you are unable to eat due to the aftereffects of novocaine and some time-consuming procedure.
This week is an absolute failure.
This weekend I will be attending two events with co-workers and clients that I do not particularly know or like. I am dreading this a full five days in advance because a large amount of small talk will be involved.
Not only do I dislike small talk, it actually makes me nervous. I am not the wallflower type but sober conversation for the sake of sober conversation, with people I would never encounter in day-to-day life, confuses me.
And so, being somewhat neurotic, last night I began compiling a conversational cheat sheet of inoffensive topics/questions/stories.
- Weather. Variations on the theme It’s So Hard To Dress For This Time Of Year. Segue into the inaccuracies of the weather channel.
- Cooking. “Do you like to cook?” If yes, prod for recipes, if no, exchange cooking disaster stories.
- Commuting/Air travel. “Did you have trouble getting here?” “When are they going to build the 2nd Ave. subway?” “Air travel is very unreliable.” “Did you have to throw out your mascara?”
- Movies. “You saw _______? I was thinking of seeing it. How was it?” Repeat as necessary.
- Books. “I’m reading _______. It’s really interesting. It’s about ___________.” Repeat as necessary.
- Babies. “Do you have pictures? I love babies. Ohhhhhh…he is adorable.” Maintain rapt attention while listening to the story of Baby’s First Poop and The Other Day Baby Said “Gargle”.
- Shoes. “I love your shoes. Where did you get them?” Segue into my inability to wear heels due to height, segue into my boyfriend being the same height as me, segue into how comfortable flats are. Women only.
- Advice. “What do you know about _____?” Maintain wide-eyed expression while listening to long, garbling, most likely incorrect explanation of basic phenomenon. Men only.
Then when the uncomfortable silence comes, which it always does, I must remember to maintain a pleasant expression and, at the end of the night, express what a wonderful time I have had.
What is scary is that some people really do enjoy these types of things.
S. was introduced to her co-worker’s crush at a party during Fashion Week. The three of them partied into the wee hours of the morning, and eventually decided to go back to the boy's hotel room.
Unfortunately for the co-worker, somewhere along the way S. had developed a crush on the boy as well.
By the time they wound up at the boy's hotel room, it was clear that the co-worker was on the losing end of the boy-battle but she still wasn’t going to back down without a fight. She flopped down on the hotel room bed, turned on the TV and settled in, thinking that if she could not hook up with the boy, at least S. wouldn’t be able to either.
“Oh my God, I don’t feel good,” S. said suddenly. “I have to go home right now.” She leaned against the wall and looked faint. The co-worker, somewhat alarmed, gathered her things and walked to the door, prepared to walk S. home and/or take care of her. But as soon as the co-worker stepped into the hall, S. slammed the door behind her and locked it.
“Finally,” S. said.
“So she’s been really nasty to me this week,” S. told me with a confused look. “I don’t understand what her problem is.”
I started giggling while S. asked “What? What is it?”
Finally catching on she said “Well, it’s not like he liked her anyway. Come on.”
I am so happy she is my friend.
This showed up in my inbox this morning, with the subject line "Indecent Proposal". (Seriously! I know.)
Ummm, any interest in a friends with benefits relationship? I can give you 250 per session, and we'd meet 3 times a month. I'm 32. If interested we can discuss further. Hope you're not offended. I'm private and discreet.
I can completely understand how someone might think I would be amenable to that sort of thing, especially after this post. But how does he know what I look like? And why would he think my rate was $250 when I have SPECIFICALLY referred to Jessica Cutler’s $400 price tag? Is it because he refers to the situation as “friends with benefits” as opposed to “hiring a hooker”? There’s no discount for that.
It has to be Miss New York! It has to be!
This is why I have cable.
Posted by gotcha at 5:09 PM
This blog has led people to approach me about various business endeavors, a fact which has become steadily less exciting.
The first time a literary agent e-mailed me, I threw my hands in the air, yelled repeatedly “I am the champion,” grabbed a bottle of vodka from the top of Re-Boyfriend's refrigerator and took a triumphant swig.
Later I discovered that the agent was only interested in meeting with me if I had a fully formed novel to show her. Apparently, I should have been keeping one stashed under my bed, just in case. Unfortunately for me, I had been too busy getting drunk and bitching about my job to write The Great American Novel, or even, as would be more likely, a crappy piece of chick-lit.
The next time a literary agent e-mailed me I was prepared. “I do not have a book at this time, but I am in the process of writing one. I’ll be sure to e-mail you when I have something for you to look at.” I gave myself a time frame of a month. That was April. Do you know how many words are in a novel? A lot.
Then television/film people started e-mailing me, asking if we could “chat”.
Excerpt from a “chat”:
“I’m thinking you have a really great voice. I mean, it just speaks to so many people.”
“Thanks.” Pause. “So, you would want me to write a script?”
“I think your blog could translate really well to the small or big screen.”
“So you want me to write a script.”
“I have a lot of connections out here and I think I could help you.”
“So you want to be my agent.”
“I’m not an agent, but I could find you one.”
When I would finally ask, very directly, what exactly they did want from me, the person would reiterate that they only wanted to help. Then they would tell me to seriously think about whether or not I wanted to get involved in “The Industry”. When I Googled their names and found nothing related to The Industry, I had to believe that 1) I was their very first project or 2) They were attempting to take advantage of me in some way that I can’t even understand because I know nothing about The Industry. Then I would stop returning their calls.
Though useless in and of themselves, I viewed these incidents as positive indicators of things yet to come. I would finish (read: start) my book, and/or figure out what the hell those producer people wanted. I started to view my office job as temporary, something that would eventually be replaced by an at-home/coffee shop/going out job, one that mostly involved me toting around my Apple laptop and drinking.
Then came another call from producer people. And these people actually made sense. They possessed the ability to speak clearly, and they used it to tell me both what I needed to do and what they were going to do. Plus, when I Googled them, actual television/film projects showed up under their names, a basic criterion for trustworthiness that, before them, had never been filled.
Obviously I was going to be Carrie Bradshaw very, very soon but with less shoes because I’m not a shoe girl and no Aidan because I never really liked Aidan, and a much smaller apartment. And hopefully not very much like Carrie at all except for the whole writing and having fun thing, because she kind of annoyed me and Miranda was my favorite anyway.
Bringing me out of my Sex and the City reverie were the words of one of the producers: “And of course, the really great thing is that you can keep your job now and do this, it’s not like you’d have to leave it.”
I almost laughed at the way she said this, as if keeping my job were a positive thing. But then her comment sank in and I finally realized that no one was offering me anything that would amount to a new job. Even if I did have the next crappy chick-lit book, or became involved in The Industry, it would only be a way to make a few bucks on the side. While this is not anything that I would say no to, it is also not exactly living the dream. I hung up thinking I had better reinvent the dream, or replace it with a more realistic one, like being an instant millionaire from internet stock trades.
So now I’m going to drop in to my boss’ office, just to see how his meeting went yesterday. I have to start sucking up since it appears I will be here much longer than anticipated.
P.S. My new apartment is fucking gorgeous.
Posted by gotcha at 11:30 AM
This weekend I got marvelously, dramatically sick. While this is not fun under the best of circumstances, it is considerably less fun when you are temporarily staying with your boyfriend and trying to appear sexy while nauseous. Since the roommate was gone for the weekend, I feverishly decided to put on my pink Barbie doll-esque underwear and lie on the sofa, sneezing and shivering. It did not occur to me that this was less sexy than it was bizarre.
By Sunday I had abandoned all attempts to look even mildly attractive and had made a fort of tissues and Vitamin C drops on the sofa. I lay there in Re-Boyfriend’s blue plaid pajama bottoms and white cotton undershirt, as Re-Boyfriend occasionally patted my thigh and made "helpful" suggestions.
“Hey baby, why don’t you go wash your face?” he said, sensing that showering would be too much to ask. “That’ll make you feel better.”
I thought the logic behind the healing powers of facial cleanliness to be dubious at best, but the next time my bladder forced me into the bathroom, I dutifully opened my face wash and went through the necessary motions before returning to the fetal position in front of the television.
About fifteen minutes later Re-Boyfriend prodded me with his foot.
“Hey, seriously, why don’t you wash your face?”
I looked up at him resentfully.
“I did wash my face,” I told him. “This is just what I look like right now.”
Plan A having failed, Re-Boyfriend moved on.
“Well, I’m going to go downstairs and get myself some breakfast, and bring you back all sorts of stuff that will make you feel better,” he told me. "I promise. Doesn't that sound good?" It did. His somewhat condescending/cooing tone was oddly comforting in my delirious state, though I suspected he was not so much trying to take care of me as attempting to make me feel better for his own selfish reasons, ie. having a fun little friend to go to Central Park with.
"Do you want anything in particular?" Re-Boyfriend asked.
“Ooooo...Fruit Punch Gatorade.”
He returned ten minutes later holding out a package of Benadryl.
“But I don’t have allergies,” I told him, confused and wondering where the hell my Gatorade was.
“Yes you do," he answered matter-of-factly. "Come on, you know you’re not really sick.”
Was he serious? I had no response besides the death glare.
“CB, just take it. Just take one.” Pause. “Just take half of one, it'll make you feel better.”
“Benadryl makes me sleep for days,” I informed him from my prone position on the couch. “And I do not have allergies. I am sick. I really hope you catch whatever I have so I can sit by smugly while you vomit and tell you that you have allergies and --”
“I got you Gatorade too,” he interrupted, holding the bottle out like a desperate peace offering.
Somewhat mollified, I thanked him before retiring to his bedroom, where I spent the rest of Labor Day weekend staring wistfully out the window and trying to convince myself to eat. I was periodically interrupted by Re-Boyfriend opening the door to kiss my forehead and ask if I thought going to dinner/a bar/the park would make me feel better. Each time my orgy of self-pity and sweaty sleep was interrupted, I responded with less kindness (“No, no…I think I have to stay here. Thank you though.”) and a growing snappishness that even the forehead kiss could not completely stave off, (“I. Am. Sick. I am NOT going to be fucking FUN. Just go somewhere WITHOUT ME.”)
I had hoped this weekend would feature me in my underwear cavorting about with a wine bottle in hand, cooking pasta and having sex on the sofa. Instead I seem to have unintentionally painted a more accurate picture of domestic life, with little sex or speaking. Perhaps it is for the best. If we ever live together in a more permanent fashion, we can only be pleasantly surprised.