I’m walking down Lexington Avenue towards Grand Central Station. For some unfounded reason—maybe it’s because TLC’s No Scrubs is bumpin’ on my playlist—I have a spring in my step, and I actually say to myself, “Shit man, I run this town,” feeling extra bossy. At that exact moment, God says, “No bitch, you broke,” and I slide forward on the traction-less heal of my right boot, which is worn down to the skeleton of the sole due to the inclement East Coast weather that validates the West Coast as the ‘Best Coast’. I fall forward, effectively eat shit, and scrape my knee. And what do passersby do? They form an orb of avoidance around me, and traffic moves on as usual, if slightly diverted because of my clumsiness and lack of reliable footwear. The Universe will always put you in your place (Watch yourself, Kim Jong Un).
I got up, brushed myself off (because I’m still a pimp), and kept walking, smiling to myself as I recounted in my head how many times I had duck-quack/DJ-scratch moments here in Midtown. And what I mean by that is this: I think I’m lost.
Sure, there was that one guy who rode to work, in a three-piece suit, on a Razor scooter (Why can’t I be that guy?!) and the other, rather portly gentlemen who was riding down Lexington on a moped with blue limousine-lights along the body, but, for the most part, Midtown’s pretty homogenous: just a hot mess of gray suits (& tie!) and heads looking down at smartphone screens, hauling ass from one block to the next. No one looks up, and no one looks around. You look anywhere but forward and you’re roadkill. And that’s just on the street! In the office, they’re equally homogenous in attitude, ego, and outlook. I, however, am the one raisin in the otherwise pristine cookie, and I’ve committed some serious faux pas since being transplanted into the fray.
Because the internet seems to be so fond of itemized lists, I’ll go ahead and laundry-list them fo’ya:
1) The first time I stayed in the office past 7pm was to have an ‘editorial meeting’ with our Editorial Director. As he spoke on how we needed to qualify our content before whoring it out on all these different platforms, I was eating a strawberry Poptart—because that’s acceptable—and the rosy-red jelly clung unmissably to the sides of my mouth; I know this because he definitely wasn’t looking straight at me when he was talking to me.
2) My right shoulder is slowly sliding off my body, caving under the weight of my purse + laptop inside, transporting it back and forth, to and from work. So, finally, I said “fuck this!” and started bringing my red Dakine backpack to work. Mistake. One day, as I was leaving the office, my boss stopped me at the elevator to introduce me to two clients. I had my puffy jacket and a red half-dome strapped to my back… I looked like a Ninja Turtle in a parka. Not only that, but I was also carrying an open bag with a massive box of tampons in there, and the contrast between the blindingly pink packaging in the dulled black-colored bag made it all the more visible. Of course, I shook their hands with THAT arm, so out opens the bag! Fuck my life.
3) One of our sales associates once walked into my office to speak to me while I was eating (never a pretty sight), and it was only after that I’d realized that I was talking to him with a strand of string cheese hanging off my effing face.
4) I once told my boss that we needed to get an email production schedule established in advance because I needed to start working out (and I wouldn’t have time to if I was on-call 24 hours a day) … “Ok…”
5) A team member from the UK office came over and brought Cadbury Roses for the office a few months back, and I just annihilated them. My boss, being the chocolate fiend that he is, was just. so. sad. I regret nothing, though.
6) This didn’t happen in the office, but I was really braindead after work one day. I approached the turnstile at the subway entrance—and you’d think that almost reflexively I would pull out my Metrocard and swipe it because I’ve done it so many times—walked up to it, thought for some reason that I would have unhindered passage through it, and I just SUH-LAMMED into it. And now I can’t have children. Because the turnstile happens to be at hip-height. And this was during Rush Hour, so that’s an extra +5,000 pts of embarrassment.
7) There is never NOT a time when my desk doesn’t look like a Tupperware graveyard