Friday, September 21, 2012

The Pleasantly Awkward

Every day at 5:07ish, the janitor comes through my office to empty my garbage and chat. He's of Eastern Asian decent and, if I were to hazard a guess, I would say he's Chinese though my guess could be completely incorrect. Most of the time, I can only understand every fifth word he says but he will persist in gaining my understanding. Then he will wipe my desk (and occasionally my monitor) with a rag that smells like it's been dampened for many days. For a time, I would do everything I could to get out by five to avoid this interaction, though I would prefer to stay later and work until I'm satisfied for the day. I feel guilty for avoiding him because I feel like I'm being a jerk but the whole situation seriously stressed me out.

One day, I was forced to work late and he came in, chatty as usual. He said something that surprised me (I can't remember now) and I spun in my chair in shock. The arm of my chair caught on my phone charging cord and pulled when I spun, sending my phone flying toward the floor. The case broke open, the battery spilled out, but the phone remained unshattered.

"Oh! Oh no!" the Janitor yelled, clearly believing that this unfortunate turn of events was his fault.

"No, no, it's okay. Everything is fine. Gorilla glass! It's good! Unbreakable!" I replied as I gathered the pieces.

"Oh, no, no. Not okay, not okay," he said, as he pushed my hair aside and started massaging my upper back, "See, now good."

"Uhhh..." I sputtered, determining how to handle this situation. My first instinct was to cry out in terror and immediately reprimand him. But then my stereotyping kicked in and I was thought well, he is Asian so he is naturally blessed with his hands. And he was; that upper back/shoulder massage became the highlight of my day.

"Okay, okay, good? Yes, it's good? Some people, can't touch. You want massage anytime, I give. Some people you can't touch," he said. I had the idea that he had attempted this move before.

He left and my normally sore back felt better than ever. I returned to gchat and messaged my friend with the story.

Katrits: um, that's super weird Bexxx
Me: i guess...lol
Katrits: he can't just do that!
Me: yeah, but it felt nice. is it weird that i'm looking forward to seeing him tomorrow now?
Katrits: yes. definitely.

Friday, September 14, 2012

The Whisper that Killed a Job

I've been involved in a number of awkward situations at work recently, ranging from the mildly awkward, to the pleasantly awkward, all the way to what-the-fuck-were-you-thinking awkward. We'll start with mildly awkward, which might actually be mildly-but-job-hindering.

First off, my boss mentioned that there might be an opportunity for a lateral move in my company. Because these are the first questions that everyone asks, the answers are, no there will likely not be a raise (though I would try) and no, it will not be considered a promotion. At this point, my boss has told me of the position and mentioned to the other guy, Mike, that I'm interested in learning more.

I hardly ever see Mike because he is always on the go and I mostly keep to myself in my little box office, blasting super raunchy rap and Celine Dion songs. Every time I had seen him, it had always been pleasant and there may even have been some office-laughs shared (these are special laughs that happen sometimes when jokes aren't actually funny or when you almost walk into someone). Since this lateral transition was discussed between men behind my back, there have been some tenser than normal moments where Mike and I both know the other should say something. Should I mention something? What do I say? Just say something!

But by the time my brain gets to, "Just say something," the moment has passed and I'm wishing him a pleasant night as we walk from the elevators.

Last week, I was dropping my refillable water cup* off in the kitchen before I went into the bathroom (because I never bring anything into the bathroom that is not absolutely necessary) and I saw Mike there, alone, ripe for conversation. He looked up at me, widened his eyes and opened his mouth like he was about to say something very important. I panicked, let out a quick and especially breathy, "Hey," and spun around, nearly sprinting to the loo.

Now, I should mention Mike is a very dapper dresser; he always looks like he's just stepped off the pages of GQ which is just about the highest compliment I can give a corporate man. His suits are always perfectly tailored and his shoes are always shined. I will NEVER reach this level of togetherness but, this day, my outfit was extra horrid.

It was raining out and I didn't feel like wearing rain boots because I couldn't stand the thought of rubber that day. Instead, I opted to wear my absolute grossest flats - these suede flats that used to be a beautiful shade of emerald green but were worn into a filthy-seafoam color. These will be just perfect for today - they're so fucking gross, who cares if they get wet?

In another twist of fate, I hadn't done laundry in sea turtle's age so I was running pretty low on work friendly clothes. I threw on a blue, patterned tunic and a pair of leggings (which are banned in my office, though I don't respect the ban) and noted that the tunic and the shoes weren't even close to matching, and that the leggings sported a tiny hole in the knee. I briefly considered coloring the spot in with a Sharpie but decided no one was going to see me in my box anyway.

So while Mike looked like he'd just finished modeling Tom Ford's latest suit collection, I looked like I was one of those people who lives below the subway and was just happy to be above ground in the rain because I was going to use it to shower and wash my clothes later.

The worst thing that came out of this split second of frumpy idiocy is that I probably do not have a chance at the lateral move anymore. The best thing is that I vowed to look my best absolutely every day (known to most people as being a regular human who respects the way they look) and I have actually stuck to it. I know I said this happened last week but it was really like, two weeks ago so this is huge for me. I've even worn make up EVERY DAY. I mean, it's usually just mascara but still. I'm actually enjoying it!

And this week, my goal is to force myself on Mike - in that upstart corporate way - and get moved because I am already getting a little bored of my job. In my defense, I've been here for an entire year now which is practically a lifetime in my work life.



*I use a water tumbler like this plastic one, except that mine has red accents and a red straw, and it's a huge hit! People kept asking me where I got it and now I've seen at least four other people with it. Yes, even subway underworld people can start office trends.



Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Nipple Smiles

Wow, how long has it last been since I posted? Over two months? That has to be a new record for me. Sometimes bloggers explain this with things like, "Forgive me! I've been traveling from country to country, filming tv spots and learning three different languages each time." Or sometimes, "I just started this new relationship and we are so enthralled with touching each other, I could not give it up for a second!"

But I haven't been doing anything particularly exciting. A couple of months ago, I burned my nipple cooking. I was topless and had the frying pan going. I reached really far over to grab something on the other side and a (literally) searing pain hit my nip. I yelped and leapt back in terror, glancing down at my poor nipple which looked like someone had drawn a black line with a Sharpie across it.

Later that day, my boyfriend's sister texted me her daily pic of her kid. I had been trying to slow the onslaught of these pictures for some time, with no avail. The kid pictures were always done in a mass text and stupid people who own iPhones always want to mass text back. Unfortunately, on my Android this shows up as a unique text (not part of a group text) from a number I usually don't know which is incredibly annoying. One time, it got me into some hot water.

Anyway, I decided to use this scorching opportunity to try to slow the deluge of pictures. After I got my daily baby pic, I chose the mass-text reply option and wrote out my burned nipple story, sending it to whomever received the mass texts - knowing that her other kids' teachers and respectable adults were often in the group. Of course, I wasn't counting on Boyfriend's parents being in on the mass text and thus, receiving my XX story.

His dad texted back pretty quickly, "That is quite the story Bexxx. hows everything going besides the scandalous injury?" and his mom followed with, "I'm sure everyone that [sister] sent that picture to will love your nipple story.... i certainly did!!! I'm also glad to know you're keeping [boyfriend] entertained!"

But [sister] saw right through me, "No matter how many nipple-related reply-to-alls you send back, u cannot get off the baby photo recipient list.... sorry about your boob tho...it probably looks more cheery now that it has a happy smile."

For those of you who are wondering, my boob is better now. A light scar decorates the nipple, but it's hardly noticeable. I considered using Neosporin on it but Googled, "neosporin nipple" before doing so, in order to ensure that it wouldn't burn my nipple off. The results were terrifying - it was mostly new mothers talking about how their children had ravaged their nipples while breastfeeding with teeth. I am even terrified now, just thinking about it. So yeah, in addition to the scarring just from giving birth, ladies get to look forward to savages feasting on nipple skin. The miracle of life!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Love is an Indecent Proposal

It's hotter than balls here in New York, yet for some reason I'm preparing to ride my bike in this murder-heat to meet some friends at dba in Brooklyn. I am fortunate enough that I don't really sweat on my body too much so when I dismount, my clothes will just be lightly sprinkled with sweat. My face, on the other hand, will look like a large, rotund ice cube that was left out in the sun to melt to its death. As you can imagine, it's an incredibly sexy look that has all the boys running to get some. Appropriately, "Love is Like a Heat Wave" just started playing from my "Greatest 64 Motown Original Hits" record.



My sweat follies aside, I am currently in Stage Two of getting my boyfriend to propose. Stage One was letting him know that it was time for him to step up and get er done and I let that go on for 6 months. Since the window is closing (as I said I want to get engaged in 2012 but not in December because I already have enough going on in that month) and my ring finger remains unadorned, clearly it is time to step up my initiatives. There was a brief Stage 2.0 where I planned on pulling away and distancing myself but it is difficult when we share the same 280 sq ft apartment. Where the fuck am I supposed to do my distancing?

Now Stage 2(.1 technically) is constantly proposing to him in public places. It will always be in front of friends so everyone can share in the joy of my proposals. I've already told Boyfriend this plan and he said he will just keep saying no as a Real Man (TM) can never accept a proposal from a woman. My theory is that he will tire of my proposals and man up to end the madness.

My first attempt was at Tobacco Road in the Theater District where a dueling pianos show was happening. First off, this was pretty entertaining as the pianists take requests from the crowd (requests accompanied by varying bribes - with the higher bribes receiving first billing) and my first play was a $10 request dedicated to Channing Tatum of Shania Twain's instant classic "Man! I Feel Like a Woman." As soon as it was submitted my piano player put it on and I was SO PUMPED, even though the other piano player pointed out that people can usurp songs by placing a higher bribe during the song. Of course, no one usurped because, who would do that to Shania?? FYI, my dedication to Channing was not read. 

Anyway, later, I had my proposal idea and I wrote out a request for Meatloaf's schizophrenic love song, "Paradise by the Dashboard Light," and scribbled "Boyfriend will you marry me?" in the dedication line. I attached nine singles, took off my oversize cocktail ring and had Boyfriend bring my request up to my piano player. The entertainer looked at it for an extra moment, tried to play it only to realize it was only for $9 and there were higher bribes waiting their turn. 

A couple songs went by and then the worst happened. A towering Korean dude placed a $50 request to take over the pianos for a song. In broken English, he explained that this song was for a girl in the audience who had rejected him six months earlier for "some bullshit." He said he hadn't practiced in awhile then broke out a lovely classical tune that was incredibly boring. Everyone clapped politely as the pianists returned to their posts. I was nervous that my romantic moment was preemptively usurped before it even had a chance to shine. 

My player started off with a little intro to Meatloaf; something along the lines of "and this is one of our favorite songs to play." I recognized the opening chords and clutched my cocktail ring in my hand, the petals from the bedazzled flower digging into my palm. Then, nothing. The song finished and he never read my dedication, just like Channing Tatum never received my first dedication. If I had actually expected something from this proposal, I probably would've been devastated but I was just mad that I had paid nine AMERICAN dollars for a palm imprint. 

So, my next proposal opportunity awaits. The best part about this is that now I have an excuse to always wear my cocktail rings.


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Perils of Eating Healthy

As I've mentioned before, I'm trying to be healthier and lose weight but my main hobbies are drinking, eating and lounging. Not necessarily in that order and preferably all at once. Because of this, along with my Samoan genetics, I am currently at my fattest ever which is annoying in a city that is mostly filled with the slender and fashionable. While my preference for losing weight would be to just start doing coke and smoking cigarettes, I cannot afford the coke and smoking makes my entire body feel sick. Also, I'm that horrid kind of fat that is too big to squeeze into a tiny seat on a subway without having a cheek on someone's lap, but too small to qualify for any weight-loss surgeries.

So, I'm doing this the old fat-shioned weigh, with healthy food and exercise. I'm still super lazy and, foodwise, I like to bring frozen broccoli to work to cook up in the microwave. I LOVE broccoli so this was a clear solution for an easy, healthy lunch until one day, one of my superiors said, "Dear God, what are you making in there? It smells awful...like a sewage treatment plant." "It's broccoli!" I protested, shocked that it smelled terribly to someone else, but embarrassed, especially when I saw the looks of agreement from my other coworkers.

I stopped cooking the broccoli at work and started throwing it in the microwave at home, only to find that when I ate at my desk, it would stink up my mini office. "Hmm, it smells...interesting...in here today," a visiting coworker mentioned, hours after I had eaten my broccoli. Frustrated, I bought some Cherry Vanilla scented lotion which I immediately slather on after eating greenery. This worked wonders and became a popular scent amongst the dudes in my office.

Today, I made some kale chips before work for a healthy snack. I put them in a resealable bag, then wrapped them up in plastic bag and threw them in my purse. When I sat down on the subway, I heard the girls next to me pause their bubbly conversation.

"Oh my god," one said, "do you smell that?" she asked, turning towards her friend.

"Yeah, did you *fart*?" her friend replied, using the kind of whisper reserved for discussions of bodily functions by ladies in public.

"No," the first giggled, then paused. Out of the side of my eye, I saw her gently nod her head and shoulder toward me. "I think it was this woman next to me." They burst into hushed laughter.

Indeed, my kale chips emitted a smell exactly like a fart and I was now that person on the subway who smelled like a fart. Later, I was the person in the elevator who smelled like a fart. Plus, I have some beans for lunch which will probably result in actual farts. But, this is the price I pay for past indulgences.