Episode 30: Rain in my Brunch

The historic U.

The historic U.

Sunday, March 15th at 7:48am:


Location: Diane’s apartment on Capitol Hill
Scene: Diane under the covers

“Tick! Tick! Tick! Tick!” my eye lids were barely peeling apart as I was forced awake from a wonderful slumber.  Was I really just at Tiffany’s with my tiara and black sheath staring longingly at George Peppard as he threw gems my way? Not quite the same scene as the movie but lovely all the same and a warm contrast to this cold, dreary, rainy morning. I yawned and hugged the covers even closer.

“Ring! Ring! Ring!” the cacophony that was my land line sounding off propelled me awake in an instant. No more Tiffany’s. No more George.

“Darling good morning and why so early”, I uttered with a deliberate slur speaking with a fully awake Jaz on the other end of the line.

“Let’s do brunch at BB&P in about an hour. Today is my last day on the show so I can finally relax. We have at least until noon to talk and catch up!” she continued.

“I will be there!” This was the best news I’d heard in weeks and a perfect time to bring out my new cowl neck cardigan from Forever 21 believe it or not.

Sunday, March 15th at 8:52am:
Location: Busboys and Poets on  14th and V St., NW
Scene: Girls sitting on one of the couches

“I have a taste for some eggs and sausage this morning.”  Jaz stated while perusing the menu. Her usual was the granola, coffee and the french toast.

“Darling, aren’t you a strict vegetarian?” I asked while Cindi looked on curiously scrutinizing Jaz with her piercing eyes through her cat framed glasses.

“Oh please, as of last week, I am a flexitarian.” She said calmly afterwards pointing out that Cindi’s new bangs looked amazing. I looked at her baffled. That had to be a made up word.

Deciding to move beyond the topic of her food choices, I asked “now that the play is over, what do you plan to do? I hope you are no longer thinking about moving out-of-town like you were a few months ago.”

 “I’m not sure as of yet. With all the Shakespearean theaters in the area I could try to hone my skills as a classical actress and see where it leads from there. My only issues are whether I will be able to make enough money and two are there enough opportunities in this area and beyond. We shall see. Hopefully I won’t have to wait until I’m old and grey to get my Tony.”

“Or you Oscar! Don’t be silly. You will be fine.” Cindi finally piped in. Her ponytail seemed to bounce with more spirit than she herself has been able to muster all morning.

“What’s going on Cindi?” I asked out of concern. I hope it had nothing to do with Aidan.

“Aidan was laid off yesterday with about 20 other associates. Everybody at the firm is upset about this. I am worried too about my job but my new case is doing well and the client is bringing the firm lots of business.”

“I am sure you will be okay.” I tried to reassure her but I also knew that many other attorneys in the city had been laid off by their firms. Trying to make light of the situation, I said, “If anything, you can always crash on my couch and or try consulting. We can be work buddies.”

She rolled her eyes, “sure, thanks. Hopefully, we will both be safe from either of those options.”

Episode 26: The Inauguration

Peace

Peace

Thursday, January 15th at 12:31pm:

 

 

 

Location: Café Asia, 1720 I Street, NW

Scene:  Diane and Cindi eating sushi at restaurant and talking.

“Ok, so I think I found us tickets to the Mid-Atlantic Inaugural Ball!” Cindi blurted as soon as she sat down barely removing her grey wool coat.

“How did you do that? I thought it was one of the invitation only events. This better be good because some people are willing to stand outside in the cold for days to get these tickets and kiss any willing behind.  So, whose butt are you kissing?” I said staring at her with a smirk.

I knew she would start off by telling me something to the effect that she was only looking out for us, that we couldn’t miss any opportunity to meet the beautiful and professional (hopefully) men who would be descending on the city all dressed up in their tux and dapper fineries. Hmm mmm…we should probably add a hopefully to the beautiful part of this scenario as well, come to think of it. Overall, new faces to flirt with are always a single girl’s dream.

Cindi started, “getting the tickets was a little tricky but it will be worth it in the end.  You, me and Jaz are going to have so much fun!” she exclaimed.

 “Suuuure, so who did you get them from?” I stopped chewing on my Tuna Maki to give her the sideways stare. Truth be told, I did not care who the tickets were from, I was just happy we were all able to attend. And I was not surprised that Cindi was able to pull off the tickets, since she was pretty resourceful when she really wanted something.

She responded at probably two or three hertz’s below an auctioneer, “well I was going to ask my boss if he knew of a way to get the tickets.  Aidan walked into my office to drop off some papers and while he was there we started talking about the Inauguration. He mentioned that he was going to two of the Balls. I asked him, how was that possible because he mentioned the ones with the hardest tickets to come by. Then he mentioned that his dad was a lobbyist who had donated lots of money to the campaign as an individual.  And so, because of the amount he had donated he was given five tickets to two events and would only attend one. So he gave Aidan all the tickets to the Mid-Atlantic and Aidan offered three to me.  So, that’s how we get to go.  Fun, huh?” She finished and I realized that all I heard was Aidan and fun and huh.

“Oh boy, I guess the excitement that day will not only surround Obama! This will be interesting. I’ve got my dress so I am game!” I uttered a spasmodic laugh and I toasted to the ball with her smiling and shaking my head, while catching a swift glimpse of apprehension on her countenance.  In a nanosecond it had disappeared. I wonder if her knowing what Aidan’s dad did for a living made his overtures less repulsive.

Tuesday, January 20th at 4:02pm:

Location: Cindi’s Apartment, Logan Circle

Scene:  Diane, Cindi and Jaz preparing for the ball.

“Darling, did you see the ambulance outside your building?” I asked Cindi as I entered her apartment simultaneously laying down my bags and Inauguration Day collectibles.

“I think my neighbor fell down the stairs. It was weird since I did not realize he was sick. Hopefully those crazy kids in the neighborhood were not bothering him.” She noted and the asked, “Jaz, where is your Ball gown?” as we both looked at Jaz who was holding up a black hippie style skirt and wrap style silk shirt.

My only response was to laugh out loud at the scene because I knew Cindi was just upset–because Jaz was recycling a few items from her closet and did not buy anything new to wear.

“Whatever! Don’t knock my outfit.  It’s fab and you’re jealous.” Jaz stuck her tongue out kindergarten style and walked towards the bathroom.

“Okay, let’s hide the skirt and find her something from my closet! We are not going to have these pictures taken for posterity with her next to us looking like a hippie. Did standing in the cold all day get to her brain?” Cindi sounded frustrated.  She was probably just trying hard to now make a good impression on Aidan and his friends. “Do you think she will fit into this fabulous black Byron Lars dress I purchased from Everard’s Clothing in Georgetown but never wore?” She continued, pulling the satin dress out of her closet.

“It’s up to you,” I shrugged. “I think there is nothing wrong with the outfit she chose. After a spiritually uplifting day as today I will not be judging anyone. Didn’t Obama say something about ‘unity of purpose over conflict’?”

At that moment, Jaz walked out of the restroom wrapped in her robe.

“Jaz babes, here are some goodies I laid out for you while you were taking your shower. What do you think?” Cindi was so determined that she just might get her feelings hurt.

“What! Hey, if you are offering, then I am taking. Hand the dress over and by the way, are you expecting it back?”  Jaz was excited while Cindi rolled her eyes and headed to the restroom to start her preparation ritual.

Jaz turned to me, “if I knew that wearing one of my gypsy skirts was all it took for Cindi to hand over one of her nicer dresses, I would’ve worn it a long time ago.”

We both started laughing. I could tell already that the evening would be equally amusing as the preparation process was becoming.

Tuesday, January 20th at 7:10pm:

Location: Mid-Atlantic Inaugural Ball, Washington Convention Center – Hall A

Scene:  Diane, Cindi and Jaz at the ball.

When we left Cindi’s apartment out of the corner of my eyes I noticed the boys she was referring to earlier. Thankfully we were able to grab a cab on 14th. They gave me the chills but that was neither here nor there. I put all thoughts of them aside when we entered the ball room.

“Hey Aidan, these are my friends Jaz and Diane.” Cindi introduced us to the tall, lanky Krispy Kreme donut tanned guy who was cute in a “golly Beave” kind of way.

We both said, hi but I guess she was taken aback when he introduced us all to his friend Nicholas who was preppy-cute with rimless glasses and a complexion of hot chocolate with an equal amount of milk and chocolate. Jaz walked away because she was still not in the dating or flirting mood, Cindi on the other hand was stuck with Aidan who proceeded to grab her hand and guide her to the dance floor while low and behold I was left with Nicholas who gladly agreed to walk with me to grab some food. I waved good bye to Cindi all the while smirking to myself because I knew she was just now beginning to feel stuck as she bopped away with Aidan who could not get his hands and legs to coordinate and move to the beat of the same song.

Episode 24: Rules and Mirrors

A study of stuff.

A study of stuff.

Monday, January 5th at 7:23am:

Location: Diane’s jr. one bedroom apartment, Capitol Hill

Scene:  Diane getting ready in her bedroom.

Today was my first day at the new job. From what I noticed during my interview for the most part everyone at the James Consulting wore DC conservative chic. You know the A-line skirt with the V-neck cashmere sweater, hair in a ponytail with Steve Madden leopard print pumps or Tory Burch flats. Some may take it up a notch with a few David Yurman pieces but that puts them more towards the conservative, in my view. Those leaning more towards chic usually opt for statement accessories from one of the local boutiques like Hu Shoes in Georgetown. Of course, there were also the “I don’t care” or the “I am just here to work and be out” folks but it would be too stressful to focus on them right now.  I had been thinking of my first day wear for the last two weeks while also keeping the three first day rules in mind. And right now first and foremost on my mind was rule number one – figure out the office uniform and take it up a notch.

I have never been a mold girl and to be honest, with my short pixie haircut, I would not be rocking a ponytail anyway and I am firmly on the anti-weave brigade. Cindi and I agreed that my choice should be a scoop necked, gray sheath from Zara which hugged the hips but not enough for others to question if my aim was to turn tricks on K Street rather than cut deals.  I was also planning to wear my black patent leather Michael Kors classic open toe pumps and my trusty Swarovski cocktail ring. Yes, it was cold outside but what are cabs for if not to save you when you make a winter shoe faux pas.

I was ready.

Monday, January 5th at 8:55am:

Location: James Consulting, 20th and K Street

Scene:  Reception area on the fourth floor.

“Hey lady, good luck!” Jaz texted me as I exited the cab.

“Thanks Darling!” I typed right before walking into the building. Thankfully, I looked up before smashing into the glass doors. It would not be cool to embarrass myself on the first day. I walked into the office and greeted Anna, the receptionist.  

Which leads me to rule number two – always be nice to the receptionist even if you are no longer interviewing. You don’t want to hang out at her desk gossiping but you most certainly don’t want her slinging dirt about you to others.

“Hi Anna, how are you doing?” pause so she can respond.

“Can you please tell Margaret Vandercraft that I am here?”  According to my schedule Margaret was supposed to give me a tour of the office and then I had nothing to do until my 11am session with the folks at HR.  I sat in one of the brown toile decorated guest armchairs grabbing the daily Washington Post – the Obamas were of course one of the topics covered on the front page.  I can’t believe they are really here in the city. “By the way Anna” I continued, “that shirt is such a great color on you.” I said looking up at her with a lovely smile after she noted that Margaret would be soon on her way.

“Thank you! I’ve been eyeing your shoes since you walked in. They are simply divine.” At that moment Margaret entered the room wearing her navy blue take on the DC conservative chic on her 6’1” frame. Only she wore a clean blonde ponytail with diamond stud earrings and grey 4 inch pumps. She looked beyond chic and did not even have on any statement accessories. Out goes my theory.

“Hi Diane, you look lovely today. How was your commute?” Margaret said formally with a well polished air that surprisingly I could not read.  As we walked down the hall, she turned and gave me a toothless smile, “here is the pantry and across the hall is the main conference room. We have 9am meetings every Tuesday in this room.  Bob likes everyone to be on time.”   

We walked by Bob’s office on our way to mine and he was in so we decided to say hi.  Margaret started, “hi Bob. I’m taking Diane around and I should be able to stop by to talk about the Sturn report in about 30 minutes. By the way, it was great seeing you at the Hudson’s New Year’s Eve party.”

“Yes the party was great. I can’t wait for the next one. I had quite a good talk with your guy Dan.  By the way, Diane welcome aboard. Maggie we’ll talk later.” And with a smile he waived us off.

Well at least his demeanor was a step up from Jerry my last boss.

“Oh by the way I forgot to mention that everyone I work with calls me Maggie. You should too.” Maggie mentioned when we turned the corner.

I knew from her tone that it was not a suggestion but a request. Walking, listening and sizing up Maggie had now pre-occupied my thoughts. After Maggie led me to my office, I asked “are you available for lunch today? It would be nice to meet and talk especially since we will probably be working on some projects together.”

“Hmmm…not sure. If my meeting with Bob does not last too long I’ll see if I can schedule some time with you. Are you sure you want to head outside for lunch? Your toes might get cold.”

And with that she was on her way.

Hmmmm…rule number three was now in effect – get to know the competition and find out how she works the game. I did not think I would have to use this rule after my experience at my previous job but I believe I just found the competition.

Episode 23: Strange Bed Options

A Study of a Caribbean Beach in December

A Study of a Caribbean Beach in December

Friday, January 2nd at 7:23am:

 

 

 

Location: Diane’s Father’s home in Boston

Scene:  Standing in the living room with her bags.

 

“Dad, are you ready to head out?”

I had been calling him for the last 15 minutes. My flight leaves in 3 hours but I was just afraid of the walking into another web of chaos at the airport.  I remained impatient although Carmela had accepted the mission to pull him away from his study and the telephone. He was unofficially working from home today.  I would have asked my step brothers to take me to the airport but they had already taken off with the speed of running bulls when their college buddies suggested spending New Year’s Eve in New York. It had been kind of nice just the three of us in the house over the last few days.  A rarity though they’ve been married for six years now. Carmela gave great advice on my Chris situation and I was going to open myself more to a romantic relationship with him. 

“One moment,” he called from the top of the stairs, “I just need to put on my shoes and we should be on our way.” 

Thank goodness!

Sunday, January 4th at 10:44am:

Location: Busboys and Poets, 5th and K St., NW Washington, DC

Scene:  Ladies on top floor couch sipping on hot chocolate and reading the paper.

 

“Did you all hear about the dress registry website?” Jaz lazily flopped one of her booted feet on the couch. I could tell by looking at her knees that she had a great tan from her vacation home in Miami.

“No. I’ve been a hermit the last few days. What about it?” Cindi responded.

“It’s the best idea ever! Events are listed on a website and women who plan to attend can add the dress they plan to wear with dress details and a picture to the site.  For one of the Inaugural Balls someone listed that they are wearing an H&M dress.  Now, I am all for making sure some other diva does not show up with the same dress at the same event, but what diva would want someone else to know how much they actually paid for a super fabulous outfit.”  She explained with eye rolls using her hands to express how appalled she felt. 

“Hilarious indeed!  I will have to check it out. So, Cindi how was your vacation? Your tan looks great by the way darling.” She was seating in front of me more relaxed than I’ve seen her in a long time, red turtle neck, gold hoop earrings, hair in a ponytail and a slight brush on her lips of her favorite MAC lip gloss.  I wonder who the guy is.

“My vacation was great.  The family was together with my grandparents for the first time in four years. Grandma looked healthy after a scary stay in the hospital at the beginning of the month. Yvonne got to show off her engagement ring to the cousins. We partied till the sun came up just about every night for a week. Good times.” She nonchalantly stirred her hot chocolate.

I gave her a sideways glance, scrunching up my nose Samantha the witch style. I did not believe her. “Really and what else has been going on since you’ve returned?” I continued. Jaz’s head finally popped up in my direction periscope style.

“Nothing.” She squinted at me, “just vacation afterglow. I did see Jamie Foxx on the flight back. He is so cute.”

“Are you kidding me? Please don’t let me regurgitate my breakfast. Every time I see him on the blogs pouring drinks down a girl’s throat I think classy <air quotes>. He seems like the kind of guy who would purposely ride on the packed train car just to cop a secret feel.” Jaz spat her criticism and finished with another elaborate eye roll.

“Well, I still think he’s cute and would not hesitate to get secretly copped if the opportunity knocked.” She continued with a sly smile. Jaz turned the page of the Post style section obviously trying to ignore her response.

“How is Aidan?” I was still suspicious that something was brewing with that relationship and did want to get thrown off the scent.

“My goodness, you are like my second mother! Ok, so I have been sleeping with Aidan. I’ve just been too embarrassed to tell you ladies. I should have never taken things to home base with him.  But anyways I ended it this morning and so I am wearing a happy color.” She ended puffing out her chest and smoothing out her cashmere turtle neck. “Peruvian Connection by the way.” And so was the end to the revelation.

“Hmmm…the big reveal finally. We knew there were holes in the story you told us a few weeks ago.” Jaz nodded in my direction.

I shook my head, “maybe for 2009 we will have to work on getting you a serious man.”

“I know. You are probably right but we shall see.” I knew deep down she was in it for the chase and there was no chance of her staying in a relationship for more than the three month mark.

 

Episode 14: Back Together Again

u-street-washington-dc

Saturday, October 11th at 12:34pm:

As I was pulling into the only available parking spot on K St. that I could locate after about ten minutes of driving around the block, I got a call from Jaz who I expected was already at the restaurant since she had left her home in Columbia Heights thirty-minutes ago. We had made plans to have a girls-day-out with Cindi and decided to start off with brunch at the new Busboys and Poets restaurant on 5th and K St. followed with shopping on U. St.

“Diane where are you?” Jaz sang happily into the phone.

“I just found parking a block away from the restaurant! I should be there in less than five minutes. Cindi will be about fifteen minutes late since her morning of pampering at the Four Seasons in Georgetown is taking longer than expected.” I said excitedly since I too was in a great mood and just happy to have my two best girls back and available to hang out. It had been over a month or so since we all hung out together. Cindi had been working major hours at her firm getting ready for a trial that was now thankfully going to settle and Jaz found out George, her boyfriend of eight years had been cheating on her using Match.com so she had just taken a break and gone home to visit her family.  Drama!

“Darling, did you get us a table? I heard from my friend Janice that the restaurant was packed when she stopped by yesterday. I was afraid that we might have to wait a while for a table today.” I said while locking my Jeep and walking towards the restaurant. Noticing how much gentrification was already evident in the surrounding neighborhood.

“No worries. I have that department covered. I am at our table now. I figured I would just sit and wait for you both knowing full well how crowded BB&P can be.” Jaz reassured noting our nickname for the popular local restaurant, bookstore and poetry hotspot.

It was great to hear that Jaz was in a better state now that she had been able to visit with her family. Even though she was quick to note that they were driving her nuts and she had to make her quick escape when they tried to recruit her to help manage her brother’s campaign for republican Representative to Congress knowing full well that she was a democrat.

Saturday, October 11th at 12:40pm:

“So, how are you doing darling?” I asked Jaz, “at least you look rested and tanned,” I continued also noting her cute, brightly colored outfit. She was fond of oranges, browns, yellows and other bright colors that went well with her honey complexion.

“I am well and glad to be back. I have some good news but I will wait until Cindi gets here.” She explained while looking around at the artwork around the restaurant. This location is surely now our new favorite hangout!

“Now, I am curious, but I can wait. I need to take a beach trip soon to reinforce my summer tan before my paleness wears in.” We both giggled over my last comment. Being part Jewish and part African-American and leaning more in skin tone towards my Jewish father did not obviously bode well for keeping a natural tan in the winter.

“Hey Divas!” We looked up to see Cindi looking happy and glowing probably due in part to an hour long massage and freshly moisturized face.

Saturday, October 11th at 12:59pm:

“Ok Jaz, we’ve just placed our order so you must tell us your big news.” I asked impatient from waiting.

“I got the lead part in a spring 2009 production at the Studio Theater!” she exclaimed.

“Awesome! I am so glad for you. You definitely deserve some wonderful news in your life.” I noted as we all high-fived!

“Now I am definitely in a dessert mood!” Cindi exclaimed.

“I will second that.” Jaz piped in.

“Can I tell you both a random story?” I said anticipating their full attention. “So, why did I go to Champs with Janice a few days ago and was hit on by a guy named Joseph. I’ve never before been hit on by a guy with the same name as my dad. He was cute, fine and tall with a great smile and a great conversationalist. Just the way I like them, but I could not stop thinking that if we were to ever get intimate and he said ‘who’s your daddy?’ I could never answer him and would have to die a thousand deaths!”

“Whoa! Never thought of that before. Did he have a middle name? You could always answer that, if you ever got to the point where he would ask you this question.” Cindi said while chuckling.

“I have no idea! I just did not want to go there. The thought was nauseating!” I said also not being able to stop laughing.

“Guys in this city suck anyway!” Jaz noted. Thankfully, our chai lattes arrived as a welcomed distraction before she became too sullen.

Saturday, October 11th at 2:38pm:

“Let’s all take my car to U. St.” Cindi noted. It sounded like a plan because after my buckwheat pancakes I was too full to drive.

Our first stop was Dekka, a co-op boutique featuring independent designers and artists.  It is a great place to go if you are a Diva looking for a one-of-a-kind wardrobe addition. And since our goal was hanging out later that night at the Layla Lounge in NE, we definitely needed diva divine stand out in the crowd outfits. So, I purchased a cute, short, navy blue dress from the Yo Soy fashion line with chain links in the back which allowed me to show off my legs. All that yoga had to be good for something!  The color went well with my left over summer tan. Jaz was still obviously hesitant about getting back on the proverbial dating horse but she still could not resist buying a silver, chiseled textured cuff from Golden Plum Designs Cindi being who she was opted for the sophisticated ruffled open front Fiona dress from Moojoo Ken.

We ended the shopping trip people watching for a few hours outside of Mocha Hut. I could not wait for our evening of fun. With the three of us together there are bound to be great laughs but hopefully not too many gaffes.

 

 

Episode 3: Lima or Bust!

(First Timer? Read from the start)

Monday, July 28th – 7:45 pm

By the time I got to Lima I was so ready to hang out with the girls! As I arrived, the maître d handed me a complimentary drink with white foam on top. I had no idea what the drink was… it seemed like they were celebrating a Peruvian holiday and it was part of the festivities. The crowd was more than usual, so I had to pause for a bit in order to locate Cindi and Jaz in the crowd.  They were not on the lime green couches outside so I had to walk inside to find them. There they were sitting on the stools with a pitcher of my fav mango mojito. The pitcher and Jaz’s orange ruffled shirt would’ve been hard to miss in the crowd inside.

“Hey Loves!” I said walking quickly over to them since a Diva would never run in crowd.

Kiss Kisses to both of them. I missed my girls. I sat down tossing aside the complimentary whatever it was they handed me outside. Not that I was a lush by I knew already what would hit the spot.

“Jaz, I love that color orange on you. Those sandals are simply divine.“ Her shoes were a simple below the ankle gladiator with gold leather straps with orange, red and purple crystals. “Where did you get those?”

“Girl these are just another purchase from my trip to Italy last Fall.  I’ve been getting compliments on them all day.  So what is up with all the work drama?” Jaz inquired.

“Ahh. Yeah. Sorry I could not talk earlier – now spill it. What is up with you and crazy Maryanne?” Cindi chimed while removing her cardigan.

After my first sip, I told them about the entire day. I was so relieved when the story was over. I have to admit, I paused about whether or not to tell them what Maryanne said about me stealing Sam’s job. This was the first time I was beginning to realize that she might have stayed on at the office in-house happy hour a month ago to celebrate the closing of a deal. I thought Jerry and I were the only ones left in the building that night. I am not sure I wanted to tell the girls what happened that night and what I thought Maryanne might know. Or by now everyone else at the office, since I was still sort of embarrassed. I decided for now not to tell them.

“Girl, I am so glad you made it through all that drama. That girl was trouble from your first day. Let’s toast to a great night of fun and moving on.” Jaz yelled out excitedly. We all raised our glasses and then high-fived.  I just wanted not to think about it anymore.

Cindi gave me a hug and then she called out, “ladies, y’all hear the music downstairs? Thank goodness for mojitos. I think I wanna go find me a cutey.”  She got up to head out.

“Girl, you look great. Are you losing weight?” I noticed a difference in her.

“Yeah girl. My spinning class is working its magic.”

“I can tell. Your muscles are beginning to look cut. If you wanna go dance, I am right behind you.” I got up and we headed out. When we got downstairs Cindi disappeared into the restroom and came back with her long hair flowing. I called it her man-catcher look. Since, for some reason men, no matter what their nationality like long hair.

“Cindi why did I know you were going to do that.” I looked are her smiling while shaking my head. My own hair was a short pixie cut. I liked my hair short and easy to manage. Her response to me was some crazy salsa move. Before she got on the dance floor, this Hispanic looking guy grabbed her hands and started twirling her around. Surprisingly, she moved well in her striped Ann Taylor slacks with Brooks Brothers fitted short sleeved dress shirt. Even in her professional wear she still looked like a sultry diva.

Jaz and I moved on the sidelines. “Girl check out my new phone.” She showed me the new Verizon Blackberry. 

“Wow, that’s like a minimum of $130 a month!” I blurted out. I tended to be a conservative spender.

“I know but with all my freelancing gigs I need a way to answer emails.”

“Hey Diego, these are my friends Diane and Jaz.” Cindi came over smiling and perspiring. Diego was cuter up close than I would’ve thought. It so happened that he had four equally cute friends who were also friendly.

Jaz and I perked up immediately as we all returned to the dance floor.

To be continued …

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Episode 2: Dirty Job

mojito1

(First Timer? Read from the start)

Monday, July 28th –  5:45pm

In continuation…

After, slightly getting over my shock at Jerry’s directive, I took a minute to look outside my office window. Being on the 10th floor had its perks and getting a window office was one of them. It was turning out to be a nice summer day. I kept wishing that I could be outside playing somewhere. I had to just sigh and sit down trying to crane my head in the direction of Maryanne’s desk noting that she was still not in yet. Seriously, it was 9:30! Maybe she would quit and I would be freed from having to do Jerry’s dirty work.  It did not help that she was regularly late and that she hugged the watercooler for hours discussing everything but work.

She finally came in at 9:40, but since I had to prep for the morning meeting, I figured our “talk” would have to wait. HR already knew about her termination. I just had to be the one to tell her to her face. We had the meeting in which Jerry upset me again. It was beginning to look like his day for crapping all over me. I had to step away and use my lunch as manicure time. I just needed to get away and a quick trip to Tysons and the Modern Day Spa was definitely the lunch I needed. 

I snuck out of work resolving to talk to Maryanne when I was more relaxed. As I walked into the spa, I was happy to see that my favorite manicurist Ti was available. Our routine – I talked, she listened and complimented like an unorthodoxed therapist. I always wondered if she fully understood what I was saying. She always just nodded and smiled. Oh well. She finished my strawberry sweetheart color and massaged my hands just the way I liked. I gave her a nice tip and the session was over. I felt better and my nails looked fabulous. 

An hour later, I was back at the office and it was time to speak with Maryanne.

“Hey Maryanne. Do you have a second to come into my office? I need to speak to you.”

“Sure.” Maryanne answered.

As she entered the room I readied myrself for a potential smack down or the instant need to dock and dodge flying objects. Instinctively, I wanted to be ready for the unexpected.

“Hi Maryanne, Jerry and I were talking this morning and at his bequest we have decided to let you go. We’ve appreciated your work throughout the years but the mistakes in the last few weeks have been too much to overlook.  This latest mishap was irresponsible and has probably made us loose the deal. We have to let you go. Sorry this had to happen. I know you have been here for a few years and I wish you all the best. Please report to Agnes in HR and she will help you with the exit proceedings.” I said it just the way I had rehearsed in the car. I finished and only after the fact I realized that I was instinctively pressing my nails into my hands waiting for the worst to happen.

Surprisingly, just when I finished Maryanne stood up, hands on one hip as she bent over forcefully placing her other hand on my desk causing me to press a little more against the back of my chair. Crap she was going to hit or spit on me. I thought to myself. “Who do you think you are firing? I know you stole Sam’s job. I am so through with this place anyway. You can keep this ridiculous job!”

“Stole Sam’s job?” That one through me off a bit.

And with that, she walked as briskly to the door as her mermaid cut knee length skirt would take her, pausing briefly as she pulled the door and firmly slammed it behind her.

And like that the drama was over. It was now all up to HR to play clean up crew.  I called Cindi. Voicemail. I sent her a text message.

6:20pm:

I had 20 minutes left to my work out. I was sweating now and in my groove. Out of my mental lull, I was now paying attention to the news. The same old stuff was on … the police check point in Trinidad NE is still working, the rest of the week would be hot, Obama and McCain were focusing on the economy. I decided to listen to the radio.

6:55pm

I just finished my shower and my phone was already ringing.

“Hey chica! I just got a new phone. Are you ready to roll?” It was Jaz. “I’m at the Verizon Store on 13th and F. Heard from Cindi and she is on her way too.”

“Girl, fifteen minutes for makeup and dressing and I am so there!”

 To be continued…