June 27, 2008...1:28 am

Just like a free show

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“One advantage of talking to yourself is that you know at least somebody’s listening.” -Franklin P. Jones

I sit in front of a very sweet, very caring very elderly secretary at my office. And everyday I consider sending her flowers, candy or a card as a thank you for the entertainment she provides me with throughout my monotonous day by spinning endless monologue into the dry air conditioned atmosphere of my dull, run-of-the-mill place of work. I’ll call her Sally. Things tumble out of Sally’s mouth and bounce off her computer screen with a force that makes any listener understand she just had to say them, audience be damned!

Often I hear “Oh, phooey,” “rats,” or “darn!” But sometimes Sally delights me and those surrounding me with a more in depth narrative, such as running commentary as to whether she did or did not lose a particular document. Fascinating. She politely gives me status updates on how her tasks are going. “That’s not right,” or “Good job!” So considerate.

Sally also makes phone calls. The time which Sally dedicates to each phone call is what really impresses me- she really drives her point home, and for that I give her credit. We have an instant coffee machine in our kitchen which dispenses a hot liquid at best described as tolerable and somewhat reminiscent of actual coffee. Sally drinks a decaf cup-o-crap once a day, every day, because that’s just how things are. And when the decaf runs out, a sly smile spread over her thin lips as she aims her pointy finger at the office phone to call the person in charge of this machine and let him know. This takes about five solid minutes. 

“Hello, this is Sally. I’m calling to report a problem with the coffee machine.”

“No, the machine is working. The problem is that there is no more decaf. And, you see, that’s a problem because decaf is what I drink.”

“Yes, my advice would be that you replace it as soon as is convenient for you. Because the decaf, it’s out.”

“Please know I realize I will have to wait. I’m prepared to do so. I just wanted to let you know that there is no more decaf. And that’s what I drink. I’m at extension 555. Please call me with any updates. On the decaf, my drink of choice.”

“If it had to wait until tomorrow, of course I would understand, but it would pose a bit of a problem. As then I would not have access to a cup of decaf, which I have not had yet today.”

“Yes, thank you, 555.”

I feel like I should be paying a cover. 



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