2006-04-06 @ 4:06 p.m.
Well, no real surprise there. Art and Journalism, two things I excel at anyways. But do I have a job in either of them? No. Funny how that worked out. Not being able to get a job in the field you're good at. Instead I've worked in sales, which I hated and now I'm working with mentally ill people.
That's not to say I haven't had a few forays into the things I was good at, like a couple years as a graphic artist for a newspaper. But that was only on a computer and my creativity was so suppressed because it was at a Catholic newspaper. So it was like no witty, you can't make Jesus naked on the front page of the newspaper. That would make people angry. See what I mean?
I also wrote for newspapers for many years, but that didn't exactly make me rich. For the first five years, I wrote for free. Wasn't that nice of me? I was a movie critic and I'd go see a movie, pay for it, write a film review, drive out to the newspaper, hand it to the typesetter and then excitedly wait for the newspaper to get published. THAT was my pay, seeing my illustrious name in print. Yippee! I did finally manage to get some pay for my articles. $25/article. I felt like an absolute millionaire. $25!! Woo! And then when I moved back East its back to the old "thrill of seeing my articles get published" thing.
But now I just work with crazy people. Well, I've actually ALWAYS worked with crazy people....they were just undiagnosed, you know what I mean? Isn't that true for everyone? Isn't there someone in your office or retail outlet or where ever you work that is just a little bit whacked and yet they are still walking around either making important decisions about your financial future or making your life a living hell while still able to go into the nearest bathroom stall and snort coke or walk around the office with a garbage can on their head or even try to shred their tie in the paper shredder so they'll have confetti for the upcoming Mardi Gras (...just don't tell them its already happened, otherwise they might go truly postal and stick YOU in the shredder).
Like the severely anal retentive office manager who probably literally knows the location of every single staple in the entire three story building. I like her. She's always been nice to me, but try to do something spur of the moment? Oh my god, the reaction this woman will have. No frooking way. We must have order. We must have schedules. We must have minutes from all meetings. We must also call her immediately if there is like a single drop of pee on a toilet seat so she can put on her Hazmatt suit, complete with mitts and goggles and de-contaminate the entire bathroom area with three kinds of chemicals.
And its probably not a good idea to ask her something twice. I've had my work cellphone for a year and a half now and still have no idea how to use it. Why? Because she explained it in microscopic detail the first day I was hired, which of course I was unable to retain because I am a techno-phobe. All I remember is how to turn it on and off. Since then I've attempted to ask her a couple questions about the phone, but will she help me? No. She tells me our training was completed on the first day of my employment and that should have been adequate. So chances are I probably have about 427 messages on the phone and don't even know it.
And the two Jennifers I work with. Let me reiterate, I do like them, but it might be in the way that Lindsey Lohan liked the cheerleaders types in "Mean Girls". I mean, I try to be cool and hip in their presence, because I truly want them to like me as a co-worker. And what's that other thing? Oh, I don't want them to see me as one of the crazies. But its been an ongoing process and I think its been going better. Jennifer #1 even gave me a big thumbs up during our recent meeting with our big boss, which of course felt good. Am I becoming one of them? Maybe. Are THEY normal? Well.....
We have weekly prep meetings for our group where we discuss what we will be doing for the upcoming week. Now it seems that these two are both incorrigible gossips. And being somewhat of a geek, I've never been on the inside track of the cool girls gossiping before and I feel like I'm walking on hallowed ground. Do I feel guilty about it? Yes. Have I joined in giggling about other people? Yes. I guess its part of the Mean Girls initiation thing though and I so want to fit in, so I sit and listen to the gossip during the first 10-15 minutes of our meeting (its only the three of us) and I will squeal and giggle right along with them and say "me too" if they ask me if I agree about someone.
The thing is....what is wrong with me? Is acceptance by 20 something girls that important to me? yeah, I guess so, damn it.
And what's weird is that we talk about our clients. We don't bad mouth everyone, of course. But for instance, they let me introduce a little bit of art into our group last week, you know, since I'm an artsy type. I suggested that we do collages on good and bad things in our lives. The idea was to take a big piece of construction paper, divide it in half and then start cutting out magazine pictures that denote good and bad. Now I was slightly perturbed because Jennifer #1 didn't quite leave enough time to create a decent collage. People were just barely done cutting images before the group was over, so people were asking if they could finish and discuss them next week. Fortunately the answer was yes, and I gathered them up to bring to my cubical for safe keeping.
Okay, so we have this one male client who is a little unusual. He never stops talking and its a lot of random off the wall stuff and a couple of weeks ago, he just randomly announced he "usually gets a crush on the group leader". So the next week at our meeting we had to rib Jennifer #1 about her biggest fan. She took it in good humor and just said that it was good that he announced it aloud, so at least all the cards are on the table. I know all about clients getting crushes on you.
So after everyone left I was gathering up the collages on the table and this guy's collage was divided in half as requested and on the BAD half was a cookie and a polar bear. And on the GOOD half was...ummm. Ok, this was very "Silence of the Lamb"ish....a bunch of women's hair cut from magazine ads. No faces, just the outline of their hair cut away from their bodies. At first I couldn't even tell what it was, but than Jennifer #2 grabbed it and said, "Ewww, this guy has a hair fetish!!". And then we recalled from the meeting how much he had complimented one of our other clients in the group who is just recovering from cancer and just got her first wig. He kept saying, "Nice hair."
So this ended up being the first 10 minutes of our meeting. Jokes about the Hair Fetish Guy. Except it got really graphic, because Jennifer #2 said he'd probably be wondering if Jennifer #1 pubic hair matched her eyebrows while she was leading the group. I then, inexplicably joined in and said I was going to secretly lick my finger and smooth it over my eyebrow like a secret handshake when she started the group, to remind her what the Fetish Guy was probably fanatasizing about. Well, this just sent everyone into gales of choking laughter. Why? I don't know. It's kinda sick, wasn't it? Yeah.
See how nicely crazies and normal people play?
But also see how important it was for me to fit in with my co-workers? Its not often you hear the words "pubic hairs" uttered during a meeting at work, and I was actually kind of taken aback. Me!! Can you believe it? The woman who does naked snow angels and obsesses about penises getting squinked out by the words pubic hair during a meeting?
So I'll be interested in what the Hair Fetish Guy's explanation is, as to why women's chopped hair makes him happy.
Incidentally, on my happy and sad collage. On the sad side are pictures of George Bush, Dick Cheney, a crashed helicoptor in Iraq, guns and Bill O'Reilly. On the happy side are pictures of flowers, a close up of a guy's ass in tight jeans, a peace sign, Jill Carroll returning to the U.S., a woman getting a massage, a piece of chocolate cake, jazz music, a print of one my paintings, the words "Let them eat cake", "healthy", "Breathe", and "love".
Maybe being myself and not trying to fit it, might be something I can aspire to in the future. Yes?
Lyrics by Lennon/McCartney. All angst copyright by awittykitty