Lame Adventure 366: Birds of a Feather

I thought it was an interesting coincidence that on a day when I found myself nodding out at my desk at The Grind, a pigeon that perched outside my window had the same idea.

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Where we diverged was that after it completed its snooze, the reinvigorated avian extravagantly stretched its wings and took flight. I remained in groggy land-locked captivity on the other side of the bars. It’s possible that I drooled.

The Boss had ordered me to work on a Very Important Assignment, the kind of mission with no margin for error. If it’s screwed up she’ll likely have her head handed to her on a plate. Therefore, I am under pressure to be perfect. Even if nothing is screwed up, I can foresee someone down the line getting cranky about some aspect of this project and blaming her. This brings to mind that I have a tendency to philosophically reflect on my fellow man, or on the woman that announced to me, just as an off-Broadway  play that I was volunteer ushering was about to start:

Woman (whispering): You’re sitting in my husband’s seat.

I nearly suffered a heart attack. The House Manager had assigned me that sixth row dead center seat. He’s always on top of his game. I thought:

Me (thinking): The play’s starting RIGHT THIS SECOND. What am I going to do?

Lightning fast, I spring to my feet and apologize profusely for this snafu. I envisioned her husband bolting out of the bathroom, bursting through the house’s closed doors and hotfooting down the aisle at that very moment.

The woman reveals:

Woman: I turned his ticket into the box office. He’s not here. Sit!

She finds my heart stopping terror hilarious. As a volunteer with an obligation to represent this theater in the best possible light at all times, I press my personal mute button hard to silence what I am thinking:

Me (thinking): Are you a psychotic crazy person?  Was that really necessary to say to me right at curtain?

I suffered shallow breathing well into the first act. When an ominous looking bread knife was brandished on stage, I realized that there just might be a little Norman Bates in me, too, but I digress. As I tend to philosophically reflect on my fellow man and woman, factoring in my own experiences with members of the human race, I have concluded that many people are assholes.

Other people at my company are basically treating this project that my boss is spearheading like a hot potato. No one wants to touch it. Therefore, the potato has been handed to me. Maybe when it’s finished I should ask for a title upgrade to Minister of Potato. If I were Elsbeth, my superior, I would have dumped it on me, too. I’m excellent with detail, over-educated and underpaid. What a bargain until …

Oops.

Oops.

I lose consciousness and key in 83,338 of a product that costs $1,416. The line item calculates to $118,007,080. Fortunately, I came to before hitting the ‘enter’ key and reduced the quantity to the intended amount: two.

In my next life, I hope I return as a New York City pigeon. I’d be free. I’d never be bored. I could fly, mate at will, stuff myself with street food, but best of all, I could crap on annoying theater patrons and get away with it. Hey, I’m just a doity boid.

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81 responses to “Lame Adventure 366: Birds of a Feather

  1. Judith Stockman

    Like it!

    Like

  2. Love it!

    I remind myself daily, ” You are not the jackass whisperer!”.

    Ever,

    R.

    Like

  3. Just dug through to a WHOLE ‘nuther level of self-analysis with this post dear LA Woman. If I weren’t just settling in to my normal routine after a week away with D1, D2, and the entire GRHS varsity and JV softball teams in Disney World for spring training, I would devote the rest of this morning to figuring out the deep societal ramifications of your just having laid naked your rather interesting and tortured soul. It was as if my former colleagues had water boarded you for 3 days and your alter ego was set free to take flight–apparently quite literally.

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  4. Snoring Dog Studio

    I love the everyday comedian. They think their shtick is so funny. The back story would have been interesting. Hubby found something or someone better to do, obviously.

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    • SDS, it never occurred to me to ask where he was, but I was massively relieved that he wasn’t in the building. I dreaded being the bumbling volunteer usher that disrupts the performance. Ugh!

      Like

  5. As the new Minister of Potato, V, I think you deserve a raise…

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  6. Haha! I’ve always wanted a cool title like Minister of Potato. Great post!

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  7. Can I be your French Fried Friar in your Ministry of Potato Land?

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  8. Aw, Ms Minister of Potato. When you start filling your cabinet, I should like to apply for the Secretary of Julienne Fries post. I promise to keep your ass out of hot water, and even if you do wind up in the frying pan, I’ll see that you slide out as easy as Slick Willie, golden brown with no crispy edges.
    Would you like ketchup with that?

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  9. You must have the coolest volunteer job in the world and why would that woman do that to you? What was the point? Was it fun for her to see you get all flustered like that? That pigeon looks pretty comfy snoozing on your windowsill there, V and I’ve seen him before on another one of your posts but I think he was on another sill across the way from you. Is this a pet? Do you send notes by him? Maybe you could send a note via your pigeon to your boss, who sounds at least like she’s a nice boss, with a suggestion to give you a promotion. You are over-educated, that’s obvious but I’m glad because we benefit from reading your hilarious, very dry humor. Thank you and keep me abreast about the pigeon, if you would.

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    • There’s a pigeon that’s actually taking a siesta on the sill right now, Brig. Considering that it’s flurrying outside, I’m wondering if this one might actually be ill. I do not relish the thought of having a dead bird on the sill.

      Volunteer ushering can actually be a bit stressful, but it comes with a great payoff — often excellent free theater.

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  10. writerwendyreid

    hahaha…very funny V. Although…I was convinced that once he woke up, he would head right into the super clean windows of an adjacent apartment and fall to his death on the streets of New York. I was a tad disappointed. 😛 (and I am JOKING…in case anyone is thinking of reporting me to the ASPCA (SPCA in Canada).

    Like

    • I am glad that you just channeling the memory of a Windex commercial, Wendy. If there was an official Lamb Adventures bird, it would definitely be the pigeon. They have popped up so many times on this site, Milton has begun having hallucinations that they’ve made appearances on posts where nary a pigeon can be found.

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      • writerwendyreid

        hahahaha…..I’ve never thought much of the pigeon because they’ve always been seen as the rats of the bird species. Rats that can fly. Yay.

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        • If memory serves me well, Wendy, it was Woody Allen who referred to pigeons as “rats with wings” in my all-time favorite Woody Allen film, Manhattan. That was the film that sealed the deal with me to move here.

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  11. “I have concluded that many people are assholes.” Truer words have never been spoken.

    Like

  12. i’m still stuck on potatoes and feeling like that character in forrest gump recititng all my favorite potato dishes instead of shrimp…wait, shrimp…now i’m really hungry, sugar! xoxoxo

    p.s. great post, i immediately got an image of you grabbing the the armrests and ready to bolt! LOL

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    • Savannah, they gave me one of the best seats in the house for a play that’s a New York Times Critic’s Pick — and I’m the lowly volunteer help! You bet I instantly died a thousand deaths thinking that I had absconded a paying customer’s seat! When she admitted that she was essentially yanking me, and then thought that was hilarious, fantasies of diabolical criminal acts interrupted the regularly scheduled programming of wanton sex acts that usually play in my imagination. I was truly discombobulated.

      Hey — GREAT to hear from you, buddy!

      Like

  13. Some people have impeccable timing LA, don’t they?
    I fell asleep at work once… I was actually on the phone to a customer when I did it (I worked on directory enquiries at night!) – it was a brief snooze, but long enough to forget everything the caller wanted. I got away with it by pretending my computer had frozen and had to re-enter the details again. Hopefully in the second that I slept, I didn’t snore…

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    • That’s a brilliant tale, Tom! Thanks for sharing! I love how you made your escape. I hope if I’m ever in that type of sleep-infused pickle myself, I will remember to follow your lead and just as I make my escape from being found out, I also remember not to call the person “Tom”.

      Like

  14. When I lived in Chicago, I had a little baby pigeon who lived in a nest outside my window. There were many times I wished I could have snoozed along with it, but instead I had to study for grad school. O, to be a pigeon. They are nasty but at least they get to rest.

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  15. Just thought of this idea… maybe you could ask your boss for a birding break everyday for you to go out and stretch your legs, breath some fresh air (?) and watch the birds in Central Park. Then maybe you’ll feel more refreshed and energized. Your boss would appreciate the increase in productivity I’m sure. 😉

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    • Considering how far Central Park is from my lower Manhattan office, Arti, I highly doubt that that idea would fly with my superior. Therefore, my birding will continue to take place from the confines of my desk behind bars. Yet, I do like your suggestion very much.

      Like

  16. At the beginning, instead of sleeping like the pigeon, I was thinking you nodding as a pigeon. But I don’t like that would look good as a theater volunteer. Meanwhile, would the new Mister of Potato like some limoncello?

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  17. You’re kidding yourself if you think a pigeon’s life is easy! Not only does the wretched avian rat subsist upon humanity’s leavings and is avoided by all of God’s non-predatory creatures except for crazy old ladies, but like all New Yorkers, the pigeon must contend with the daily threat posed by the thousands or possibly even millions of C.H.U.D. you have living in your sewers.

    AND you’re a volunteer usher? You’re some kinda theater dork. That’s really cool, though–I like theater a lot. We’re going to start taking our kids to age-appropriate plays soon (Henry Miller, etc.).

    It sounds like you get to see a fair amount of the show as an usher. I imagine it’s probably just the times around intermission that you might miss.

    Oh, and the “my husband’s seat” lady was AWESOME. As I’m sure you know, her phrasing was no accident. One time at a cafe, the waiter came up to me and said, “Are you using that chair?” I looked behind me to see if he was indicating an empty chair. He wasn’t. I looked down at my own chair before asking, “This chair?”
    “Yeah,” he said, “We’re closing.”
    I was simultaneously pissed and yet in awe of that masterfully dickish move.

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    • That waiter belongs in the WHOF.

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    • Smak, you’ve written many inspired (you even excavated C.H.U.D.!) comments on this site, but this one really is in a league of its own. Just now, it occurred to you that I’m a theater dork? I volunteer usher because that allows me to see shows (the entire shows) often in excellent seats for free. Truly nice work if you can get it (the positions are actually pretty coveted). That’s great that you’re planning to take the Smak-ettes to the theater, but I was such a film-whore for so long I suffered third wall issues with live shows until I hit 40. At that point I could finally relax my always wired brain enough to get as deeply into a play as a film. It occured to me that the timing of that woman confiding who initially paid for that seat was intentional. She must be a joy to live with. Maybe her brother is that waiter. I loved that story. Thanks for sharing!

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  18. If it’s any consolation that pigeon looks a bit depressed to me, Lame.

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    • It was sleeping Kate. After it finished it’s siesta it stretched its wings and seemed to be feeling pretty refreshed when it took flight — unlike stale, cooped up me nodding off at my desk.

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  19. Even better if the woman had said, “That’s my husband’s seat, but he won’t be joining me. The poison should be kicking in, oh, just about now. Take a seat, dear.”

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  20. I’ve never had an inner weasel. Does it tickle?

    Like

  21. Like Calahan, I thought death was going to be involved. Like they had season tickets and her husband is dead but she still keeps their dates, something tragically romantic. But she went with just weird and annoying.

    I want a nap. I’m at work and I ain’t got no window. My head may hit the keyboard soon.

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  22. Feds often give early outs on days before holiday weekends. This happened to be Easter–a religious celebration of which you are likely familiar. Just revelling in my good fortune.

    Like

  23. Off topic …. one of the best for this day from many years ago.

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  24. Best line: It’s possible that I drooled.

    Like

  25. Ha like Calahan and Maggie I swear she was going to tell you a tale about his unfortunate demise somewhere, what a trip.

    Like

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