Love and scandal are the best sweeteners of tea. —Henry Fielding

05 October 2004

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Dear readers, I may be losing my mind.

This schedule is much harder than I thought it would be. That's a lie. I had a preview of this schedule last week and all indications were that it would be just as bad as it is right now. The problem is that I started having rehearsals for Valparaiso just as this upheaval was going on with my employment situation. Thing is: I can handle the hours and the commute. What constitutes the bulk of the problem for me is the goddamned outfit I have to wear.

I look good (just to clarify) but I am damned uncomfortable. The neckties are like the fingers of Gollum around my throat, and the shoes, while gorgeous (they're Kenneth Cole from his Reaction line), hurt like Hell.

One of the girls in Accounting quit today. There is no way they are going to fire me. I'm there to stay... as long as I can stand it.

I have a story from work today: I work in an office with a bunch of other accounting staff (5 lower-level staffers like me). Adjacent to our big office is the controller's office, and adjacent to the controller's office and our office is the office of the CFO (that's Chief Financial officer for you artists). Well I was making copies on the Xerox machine in a cranny of the office when the CFO comes in to make some copies for herself. Whatever. So she's chatting to me while she makes her copies, "How are you doing here?" "Do you like it?" etc. Always stupid questions: like I'm going to say, "They're overloading me here. I just can't handle it. It's too much. Do you have something with less work?" So I'm in a good mood and I'm joking: "Oh, well they haven't yelled at me yet so I guess things are going OK."
"Oh," says she. "I'm the one that's going to yell at you."
"Ha Ha." Nervous laughter from Aaron. Is she joking? She can't possibly be serious. Why would anyone be yelling? It's an accounting department.
She goes back to copying, but then I get an idea for smalltalk of my own, and it seems like I really ought to say something. Wit seems to be called for.
"How come they have you making your own copies?" I quip. She doesn't work that hard if she doesn't have an assistant, and I guess I'm poking fun at the idea that management hasn't hired her an assistant. I don't know. It felt funny before it came out. Well maybe not funny, but witty in an office-humor sort of way.
"This is confidential" she says. "They don't make me do anything." (Beat) "No one makes me."

She left after that, and she was sort of saying that last bit as she walked away. And I thought: what an ego! I'm thinking: I don't care about you lady. What do I care who makes your copies? I don't think you're better than me, that's for sure. You obviously think you're better, but I don't even care. I'm happy to have my fifteen something an hour whether I'm copying or filing or preparing financial statements. I neither know how much you make nor care, but I know I don't want to be you, and I feel good about that. Mostly I just thought that this woman must have some kind of crazy ego to be threatened by the mere suggestion that she should make her own copies.

It's such a shame our friendship had to end.

Rehearsals are going well. I get to rehearsal slap-happy, starving and tired, but I managed to crank out good direction and lucid staging. I even have moments of clarity and revelation. Imagine what I could come up with if I weren't running myself ragged.