Archives for September 2011

Monday Dare: I was raised by a pack of wolves

Every Monday, I’m picking from the List of Things to Do, Places to Go, Possible Acts that Help, and Possible Fun to Have. It’s a list I made before The Project started, and I’m still adding to it. If you have suggestions, please feel free to throw them my way. I’m calling the list my Monday Dares, as I get overwhelmed just looking at the words “challenge” or “goal.”

This week: Acquire phone skillz.

I’ve never worked in an office environment, which means I’ve been deprived of many glorious opportunities. I long for the chance to stand around a water cooler giving people the point-and-shoot + wink combo while recapping my weekend. I would give anything to be part of a Secret Santa gift exchange. If I’m lucky, I might get a bottle of Drakkar Noir, which I would then spray on all of my outgoing mail. These are all things that happen in a typical office, I’m assuming.

Not working in an office has also deprived me of the opportunity to cultivate my charming phone persona.

I called my friend, Becka, at her office a few weeks ago. I always feel like an asshole when I call someone during the workday. Do I keep it short and simple? Just a “hello” and the reason I called? Do I ask about their weekend? Do I go into detail about the left pinkie toe that is throbbing because I dropped a fucking mug on it? I don’t know.

Assistant: Hello, Becka’s office.

Me: Um…………………………………………………………………….Hi.

Assistant: Hi.

Me: Um. I’m calling for……uh………………………………………….

Assistant: Becka?

Me: YES! That’s her name. Can I, uh, leave her a message? My name is….wait…’s….fuck…..ELIZABETH. MY NAME IS ELIZABETH.

Assistant: Would you like for me to see if she’s available?

Me: Oh, like, talk to her? I guess. I mean, I…sure.

After Becka got on the phone, I blurted out, “God, I wasn’t even planning on talking to you right now.”

She was too nice to say, “Then why did you call me, asshole?” but I guess that’s why she gets to work in an office and I don’t. Because she has phone skillz.

I’m not even sure how I still have friends. I should probably resort to texting.

I sent an email to Becka’s assistant later that day. Something along the lines of “I’m sorry I was raised by a pack of wolves, and I have no life training.”

She responded back with a most gracious, “No problem!” It’s clear she has LOTS of life training.

I asked to tag along with Harv this week and answer his office phone so I could acquire some phone skillz. He didn’t think it was a good idea. Probably because he’s afraid I’ll upstage him. Or maybe because he wants to keep his job.

Are you awkward on the phone? Any other basic life skills you need to work on?

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sorry i pushed you in the head

I always turn to Harv when I need advice. Mostly because the advice is free, and it’s easy to track him down. Sometimes, when I call him during the day, he says he can’t talk to me because he’s “in a meeting.” I’m fairly certain he’s just trying to play hard-to-get, so I then text him every five minutes until he calls back in a huff. I’m assuming this is how a healthy marriage is supposed to work.

Last night was no different. I needed to pick his brain. It was important.Me: I can’t think of what I should write in your anniversary card. I need your help.

Harv: Wait. Are you asking ME what you should write in MY anniversary card?

Me: Yeah. I already have “Happy Anniversary!!!” and “I still probably love you” and “Thank you for still speaking to me after four years” written down, but it seems unfinished to me. Would you be happy with that?

Harv: I don’t…I don’t know.

It was pretty clear that Harv and his impossibly high standards weren’t going to be any help, so I went back to my desk to think.

I thought about apologizing for that one time I got extremely angry during a game of Scrabble because he wouldn’t agree that “pimpin” was a real word, and I “accidentally” pushed him in the head when I was “sleeping” that night. The sentiment seemed out of place. Plus, I still believe “pimpin” is a word, so it would have been an empty apology.

Dear Harv,

Happy Anniversary!!! I still probably love you. Thank you for still speaking to me after four years.

Thank you for loving me when I didn’t love myself.

Love always in all ways, Elizabeth

photo by Bonnie Tsang