Tuesday, February 22, 2005


In Which I Live One Life, Furnished In Early Slapstick...

Crazy morning, running running. Personal soundtrack: some of that bouncy, silent-movie piano music. My life just feels like that right now.

Lots of page layouts to edit, weird stuff to fix. Meanwhile, I have a story pitch meeting just after lunch. Lunch! Hungry!

I grab a sandwich and a cup of chicken soup to eat at my desk. Sit, take a breath, prepare to eat...

Suddenly, the phone rings. I grab it and knock the soup everywhere. Chicken broth flowing, hot as lava, across the desk, over the lip of the desk, on a collision course for my lap.

I leap to my feet, knocking over my office chair and then tripping over the chair and falling backwards across it. On the way down I take a stack of story folders with me. Page layouts flutter like giant leaves. Some land in the soup, still dripping down off the desk, making a puddle on the floor. The phone receiver lies nearby and I can hear our copy editor squawking in it. I wonder briefly what it all sounded like on her end.

Like prairie dogs looking to see what's up, the heads of my staff pop up over the cubicle walls. I'm bent backwards over the wreckage of my chair, arms and legs flailing, a spatter of noodles and yellow broth spread across the desk in front of me. "It looked like you threw up so violently, the force of it shot you back and over the chair," one of my editors remarked later. When he stopped crying from laughing so hard.

I right my chair and mop up the mess, realizing as I do that all hard copy on my story pitches has been soaked through. I look at the clock: 10 minutes to my meeting! Hastily print out fresh copies, retrieve from printer.

I sit back down at my chair to make some notes. Pen is not working. I pull open the desk drawer to get a new pen--

--and a half-cup of soup sloshes out of the drawer, where it had secretly dripped after spilling over the lip of the desk. It lands squarely onto the front of my pants.

There is no graceful way to wipe your crotch, especially in a public place. As I'm blotting fruitlessly, I look up: meeting time!

Dash to conference room, where I meet my supervising editors. I'm holding a folder in front of me as I come in and I sit down quickly, so no one notices the great wet spot.

An hour later, the meeting's over, and I've become so engrossed in story ideas that I forget the soup incident. Until I stand up. The soup has dried, but it has left behind an enormous stain. An enormous yellow stain. An enormous YELLOW CRUSTY STAIN. On the front of my pants.

I try to explain about the spilled soup, but to my bosses it much surely look as though I have suffered--heck, wallowed in!--a moment of lavish incontinence.

So I'm going home to change. The way my slapstick day has been going, I'll probably get stuck in the elevator again. Or maybe while driving home I'll get pulled over. By the Keystone Kops.

From Somewhere on the Masthead

This I can relate to directly. I have spilled a lot of soup in my time...Wait, that sounds really dirty. So does "slapstick," come to think of it. Where is my mind?
and I thought I was having a bad day.......

That is one of the funniest things I've read in a LONG time. Thanks for the laugh!!
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