Wednesday, August 18, 2010

jerk and the chicken

Chef Janitor, despite all of my protests, decided to bring me in a plate of his famous pulled chicken (a left-over from his weekend job as a summer griller for horny older women).

"No, really," I said, recalling our conversation before the weekend. "You don't have to bring me in food!"
I cringed at the wild ideas swirling around my head - is he the kind of person who would poison food, or lace food with a drug that would render me unconscious so he can have his way with me? 
Self-deprecating as I am, I still have to wonder about who is and who is not a threat to me.

Still, the weekend passed and most of the week before we caught up to discuss my impending meaty lunch.  I had almost convinced myself that if he did, in fact, bring it in, it was surely safe to eat and that I would be very gracious about it. 

From across the room, in a bright orange T-shirt, with a shit-eatin' grin on his face, he eagerly waved at me to come and talk.  I didn't move from my cubicle, knowing he would have to come this way sooner or later - after all, my trash can was still full! In an instant, there he was, pointy teeth and and a couple of days growth on his face.

"Oh, heyyyyyyy," I coyly received him.  "What's up?"
"Well, I gotta tell you something," he said with a kind of defeat I hadn't yet seen from the perpetually positive dude. "It's about your pulled chicken."

Here is where I must admit that even though I didn't really want to eat meat brought into work from the janitor, I felt somewhat disheartened to hear that something could possibly be wrong with my lunch.

"Someone ate it," he said sadly.  "I left a big tray for you in the fridge in the cafeteria with a note on it that said 'please leave.'  But someone stole it and ate it. They even took the tray with them."

"Someone ate my chicken?" I said baffled by the gravity of the situation (and also by the fact that he thought I would eat an entire tray for myself at lunch.  "The bastards!" I said, loud enough for my supervisor to hear, causing him to poke his head over the cubicle and give me a look.  Suddenly, the meal I didn't want to eat was eating me up inside by its absence. 

"I'm really sorry and I'll try to get you more," he assured me.
"That's okay," I said, thinking that eating strange meat cooked almost at week ago is not a necessity.

"Well, next time," he said. "I'll even put your name on it."

Thanking him and seeing him off, I glanced around the office and pondered who would have stolen my precious meat.  Really, I was just looking for an empty seat.

Whomever ate that chicken is probably unconscious and suffering greatly somewhere.

Monday, August 16, 2010

keeping things clean

My janitor (I call him "mine" since he's developed a nice and creepy relationship with me since I began working in July) could just be the most important person at the company. Just ask him. He'll tell ya.

I made the mistake of smiling at him at some point in my first few week on the job. The thin and fit, 50 year old maintenance man whom I'll call "John" because it sounds identity-protecting (even though his name really is John) dubbed me "Smiley."  I'll just state that at no point in my 30 odd years of life (especially in a professional working capacity) has anyone every called me that. I beg to differ that I put out a kind of vivacious, bubbly personality that would render me full of smiles. Sure, I enjoy laughing and carrying on (just ask my former colleagues). Usually I enjoy myself to the point that it gets me into trouble. But that's only if its with people I know. And seeing how this office is quite possibly the most sobering place ever, the janitor who just met me would never know that!

Yet, just three weeks into the job, John, who has those kind of teeth that come to a point and form a "V," calmly sat down at my table in the cafeteria and began to talk. Ad nauseum. He regaled me with tales about prostitutes and chicken barbecues. Judges and fingerless laborers. The Navy and bi-polycarbonate plastics. Totally obscure and random things. Certainly not office lunchroom material to share with a stranger such as myself.

And just last week he cornered me near the time clock and told me all about being a bartender/cook at a picnic over the weekend where all the old ladies there were flirting with him. As he's telling it, I'm picturing the movie "Cocktail." But this guy is no Tom Cruise. Yes, he is short and full of himself, but he doesn't have the charisma of a guy who jumps on couches and picks up young women. "Oh, wait, he's working on picking me up," I thought.  He offered to bring in some pulled pork from the picnic for me.  I wanted to run away.  Get to a safe place.

"Maybe my desk," I thought. "No. Not there.  He'll only follow me there and stay.  Doesn't this guy have any bathrooms to clean right now?"


So instead, I just stood there and listened and nodded.  With a God-damned smile on my face.  Damn it.

Friday, August 13, 2010

what's in a name?

To All Staff:

Linda (you know, Linda? She's the half-deaf woman who sits next to you at work and can't understand a god-damned thing you say because there is an always present age or hearing barrier between you two?) will be out of the office for the rest of the week. Please make arrangements to have your time soured elsewhere.


Your Boss

Thursday, August 12, 2010

that time i choked to death on a coffee coolata

Today I imagined how awful it would be to aspirate to death while drinking a Coffee Coolata from Dunkin' Donuts.

There is that feeling, when you get to the bottom of a drink that requires a straw, that you are tempting fate. Especially with those icey coffee drinks that require super suction as you near the end. I'm terrified that I wont be satisfied unless the cup is empty, but I'm also fearful that one last pull could be my last if an ice chunk breaks free and zips up the straw and into the back of my throat, followed by a stream of milky chocolate, just like Augustus from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

I surmised that not only would I suffer the embarrassment of being the girl that choked to death on a drink, but I'l also be the girl who died while drinking a sickeningly sweet, obnoxious girly drink from a chain restaurant.

I considered retiring from drinking such drinks. Said I'm not going to go out like that. It's not worth it. Definitely. Not. Worth. It.

But they are so good! Espcially when they hit the back of the throat on a hot day. Fate be tempted. I'll have another.