Thus far, this has been an irritating week commute-wise. Although it is part of my charm to come into work twenty minutes late every morning, this week I have had extra assistance in the Department of Tardiness from the MTA due to signal problems plaguing the downtown 2 and 3 express subway trains. Usually, I hop onto the express train at 72nd Street, and ride it to 14th Street where I transfer to a waiting 1 local to take me the rest of the way to The Grind. Yet, this week, every time I have done my trademark hop onto the express, it’s been crawling like a constipated snail from one stop to the next. It has been moving so anemically, local trains that arrived after I boarded the express have not only passed my train like it was standing still – and indeed my train had been standing still, but my moving-in-inches express train failed to catch up to the local trains that have bypassed my train.
This activates my ire as well as my gastritis. Logically, I know it would benefit my overall health and well-being if I were not inclined to not “sweat the small stuff” . It would also behoove me to make a genuine effort to leave earlier, but I don’t have a choice in this matter. If I recall correctly, my astrological sign is Disgruntled.
Furthermore, on Terrible Tuesday, as my practically paralyzed express train was doing the equivalent of Tai Chi moves from one station to the next, it dawned on me that in my haste to get out the door, I forgot to bring the quart of skim milk I pour on the bowl of organic, lightly sweetened tree bark-flavored cereal I had planned to eat at my desk. Inside my head, I used the Lord’s name in vain — such a convenient time to be an atheist.
When I finally arrived at my place of employ, We’re Not Happy Until You’re Unhappy, a full half hour late, the first person I encounter is my musician sidekick, Greg. He’s looking cheerful. I announce:
Me: Signal problems!
Greg: Sure, that’s what they all say.
I growl at him.
Greg: I got you something.
Me: I hope it’s a quart of watery skim milk!
I approach my desk and see this welcome sight.
My foul mood instantly evaporates. Greg is looking at me, smiling slyly.
Greg: You know, it’s that tea I told you about last week, Assam Hazelbank.
Me: Oh, yes, that tea … my second guess!