So I’ve fallen on some hard times. Big deal. It’s not lie there’s ever any soft times to land on in life. No pillows, as my dad would say. Life’s a lumpy mattress that doesn’t fit anyone’s frame.
I’m not going to whine. I promised myself from the beginning that I, unlike everyone else I know, was. Not. Going. To. Whine. I haven’t once yet, either.
I can stand shrieking, threats of pink slips and uses of every conceivable epithet under the sun more than I can tolerate whining and self-pity. When Melanie was trying to make me feel like a piece of crap yesterday because I’d forgotten to load the ink cartridges in our office’s printers–even though by email, DM, and voice she’d been reminding me for the past three weeks–I just let her blow up. After all, she is just a skeleton. With a brain, head, and maybe even a soul, yes, but still just, at base, a skeleton.
Melanie isn’t even my supervisor, but she treats me like she is. That’s because my real boss does what Melanie did to me yesterday on a daily basis.
Last night, I started searching online. The risk of “earning” a pink slip was too much for me, to begin with, but the thought of me spending my time on the unemployment lines with a woe-is-I attitude sent me overboard. Because what I like to do when I have too much time on hand is to overthink everything, starting with my life.
Jobs, as it turns out, are boring. At least the ones I was looking at yesterday. They all have weird titles with too many syllables: “consultant,” “representative,” “specialist,” “analyst.”
Up until midnight I was pounding away at my laptop’s keyboard, trying to find out some work that didn’t sound too complicated. A job that I could understand, for crying out loud, instead of all these jargon-drenched “positions” that these so-called career experts think are lucrative.
At around 11:45 last night, my brain soaked in the caffeine my five cups of black coffee had shot into my systems, I got hung-up on computers. They sound so cool. All those ones and zeros that make all that info spit in and out around the whole frigging world. I kept running into this thing called “code,” so I decided to look up “how to develop code.”
Except I didn’t go all the way with that.
In the search engine box I typed “how to develop,” and then BAM, right there in front of me was the answer to my problems, all thanks to some weird algorithmic thingy in the system that gives suggestions. Unless it wasn’t a suggestion . . . it was an actual message. Like this was what I had to do with my life. No more ink cartridge replacements. Instead:
“how to develop psychic abilities”
So, now all I have to do, according to what I’ve read, is concentrate my mental energies on understanding the minds around me. It’s not going to to be super-easy, seeing as how I need to get over my people-are-just-skeletons belief, but I’ve got to do it if I want to go anywhere with this message.
First thing I’m going to do, irony of ironies, it’ll be at my last day at the office, is go up to Melanie and say, “You know what? I might be blonde and I might not have gotten a thirty-frigging-six on the ACT, but that doesn’t mean you have to think of me as a dumb blonde. Oh, don’t try to defend yourself. I know what you’ve been thinking. Are thinking. Will think.”
“Wait,” she’ll say, furrowing her eyebrows, “you’re, like, God or something?”
“No, I’m just me. I’m nothing. I mean that. I’m a canvas all of you just throw your paint on. All of us are freaking walking canvasses. I’m the only one smart enough to read the painting.”
To which she’ll reply, her upper teeth sinking into her lower lip, “Um, I’m pretty sure you don’t, um, read paintings. You read books, and you look at paintings–“
“Shut up!” I’ll say, turning crimson. “Just shut up!” Then, my eyes accusing, I’ll look around the office and yell, “Can’t I have my fun? For one minute, for one moment? Or do you all idiots need to think everything’s real and rational?” I’ll beam for using such big, tricky words.
No one will say anything. They’ll be thinking, though. That I need to be fired. But I won’t give them the satisfaction. I can see myself quitting on the spot. They’ll think How Could She Be So Thoughtless?
I won’t think anything of it.