Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Guess Who's Back, Back

Me and Shady have exactly two things in common: we're Americans and we're back again.

Not having a blog for 3 months (4? 5? Can anyone here do math?) was good for me. It was good for my soul. Is there anything more narcissistic than writing lengthy personal introspection for the world's viewing pleasure? I think not. And the last thing the world needs is more narcissism.

But I love blogging. It's such an easy way to connect with friends and family. And I keep having these hilarious/awesome adventures in DC that I just have to share with the world. I just gotta. So, I'm back. If you don't want to read, you don't have to. But if you want to know about my adventures of late, read on. And to get you up to speed on my life, here are two recent stories.

Last week I was at Ikea buying a chest of drawers. Oh, what a burden on my life that chest of drawers turned out to be. You have no idea. Take one completely klutzy and technologically inept girl (example: she considers a hammer to be a complex tool with awe-inspiring powers) (why is she speaking in third person?) and a piece of furniture with about 50 parts and an instruction manual that drags on for over 30 steps and you see the problem. It took me over 4 hours to assemble that puppy, with much blood, sweat, tears, and calls to various male friends as part of the process. I concluded at the end of it all that assembling chests of drawers is the punishment they make people do in hell (or purgatory if you prefer something less drastic). Or jail. Do they make people assemble chests of drawers in jail? They should. People would soon see the error of their ways, and that you may tie to. I speak from personal experience.

I am so off-topic right now it hurts!

So there I was at Ikea, and this was before I had even bought the chest of drawers, so my life was as yet a bed of roses (it's back to being a bed of roses again now that I've assembled those blasted drawers. In case you were wondering), and I was getting on the elevator going down when an older woman and a little girl hurried on behind me. What a beautiful little girl. Glossy brown skin with her dark curly hair put up in pigtails, and a beautiful white dress that had little flowers all over it. She couldn't have been more than 4 or 5 years old.

"What a pretty dress you have on," says I.

"Thanks." She looked down all shy for a minute, than looked back up. "I like your dress."

My heart melted into a million pieces on the floor and I thanked her. Than as they were getting off the elevator she turned around.

"I like your sweater too," she said, referring in fact to my very favorite red cardigan - my power cardigan, if you will. Then off she skipped with her grandmother, while I took a moment to ask God to pour every single blessing He's got down on the head of that little girl, because seriously? What a darling. I've never met such a well-mannered child. I'm still thinking about it, in case you can't tell.

That was my first story, and my second one is even more meandering and aimless! I hope you're excited!

This morning I left home early, because I needed to go to the post office before work and I wasn't really sure where the post office was, except that Google Maps claimed it's really close to my Metro stop. It is in fact in the building right next to my Metro stop, I discovered later, after going the wrong way and having to practically interrogate a street vendor who wanted payment for directions. I did not pay him, among other things because he was right across the street from the building, plus I'm pretty sure he was kidding. I needed to go to the post office to mail several things. First, an application to go live here. Isn't it fabulous? I'm moving in August, not because I don't love where I live now (I do!), but more on that later. Second, a thank-you card to my little sister's boyfriend's parents, who went to England and brought me back a scarf (and quite a pretty one too, I might add). Why they brought me a present and not my sister is another story for another time, but we'll sum it up by saying I am the networking queen, and also I give fabulous travel advice. Third, this book to a certain young man who is stationed at a military base in San Diego, CA, and who, I am well aware, will epically not appreciate the book and probably won't read it. For some reason the phrase "pearls before swine" pops up in my consciousness from time to time but again, for another time. Finally, I had to mail a tie to a certain Mr. Sam K.

Now about this tie. Some of you may be aware that, while my job title at the moment is "editorial assistant," this means in actual fact that I am personal assistant to a famous and brilliant journalist whom I shall call Mr. F. I adore Mr. F. If I could pick anyone in the world to work for, I would probably pick the pope and then The Wall Street Journal and then Brian Burch of CatholicVote, but fourth would probably be Mr. F. and that's saying something. He is the sweetest, nicest, kindest man you have ever met, and on top of that he's a ridiculously gifted writer and has his head on straight as far as understanding the world goes. He is really wonderful and I love working for him. But the thing is, like most people of genius, he is unbelievably disorganized. My job is to organize him, and it's an ongoing feat, let me tell you. I think we're competing to see who will win in keeping his office tidy. He has the upper hand at the moment but he also has several years' head start and I am determined not to be bested. I really can't stand messes. Anyway, one project that I'm still working on these days is cleaning out my own desk. The past few fellows who used this desk have been boys, and well, I love boys, but has anyone ever met a tidy one? I mean really, if you have, introduce me and let me know if he's single. Because all the guys I know have a tendency toward messiness and the guys who had my desk before me are no exceptions. You wouldn't believe the gems I've encountered culling through these drawers. Old business cards from fellows of years past. Full sets of office supplies and stationary. And of particular note to this story, a very nice and high-quality yellow tie.

What does one do, I would like to know, upon discovering a poor lonely orphan tie? I asked Mr. F. if it was his, and he said no. I asked Mike, the previous assistant who now works here full-time, and he too denied ownership. Being a woman, I haven't the slightest use for a tie, and so I resolved to pack it off post-haste to my bestest male friend, the Samwise.

See how this story is coming full circle?

So that's why I left my house today at the bright and early hour of 8:48 to seek out the elusive post office of Connecticut Ave. In the Metro station, I dashed to the elevator and was hastily joined by 4 other people commuting to work - all middle-aged men in suits with briefcases. I stood there in my heels and cute dress and pondered the wonders of the modern world, where a 21-year-old girl like me can support herself and live the life of her choosing, as was not possible at any other time in history. I expect it would make Virginia Woolf proud, so I thought, "I love being a commuter." And I do. Post-grad life is awesome.

As a final note, what's up with all my stories revolving around encounters in the elevator? I think there's something about elevators, like a microcosm of human society where suddenly you notice everything about the people around you for 10 seconds, and then never see them again. Like elevators are this liminal space of deep pondering in the midst of the work day. Maybe that's just me?

1 comment:

  1. As I read this I couldn't help but think of Dorothy's advice - "Why? Do you know anyone?" line. haha

    Tess, I'm so glad you're back!! I feel connected already :)

    Also, the little girl sounds adorable!!