I must not be meditating correctly. I sat in my car for an extra five minutes in the parking garage today before work. I must have looked like I was killing myself incorectly. I was just waiting for someone to tap on my window and go, “Hey idiot. The car is supposed to be on and in an environment with no air.” But I just sat with the car off, collecting my thoughts, praying for a Higher Power’s will to be done and for someone to show me how to not have a bad attitude today.
Then I went to my next spiritual sanctuary, Starbucks. My little moment of tranquility always begins with buying something at the Bucks in the a.m. I know. I’m a bad, American consumer, fooled into buying/food=comfort.
I got in line and they did that assinine thing that saves no one time but playcates the masses of having someone come around to the line and write down what you want on a drink sleeve in magic marker. They don’t then pass it off in order for someone to make the drink…they just hand it back to you. You hand it to the cashier. The casheir can’t read the writing. You end up repeating yourself. It takes longer.
Anyway, I dropped my wallet at the counter, change and dollars (I’m rich!) spilled everywhere. Then I dropped my cell phone and then I knocked over some coffee grounds on display. (Wow! So glad I meditated first.)
I tried to good naturedly with a smile on my face, like a cartoon character say, “Arrrh!” But it must have come out like a primal scream. The counter guy said, “Whoa. Take it easy.” There is nothing that makes me want to take it easy, less, than someone telling me to take it easy. It makes me want to abandon calm, cool, reasoning, like Bobby Brady did in the episode where he punched Buddy Hinton in the face. (Have I referenced this before?) Or when Mrs. Brady tried to reason with Mrs. Hinton and she got hot under the collar and she screamed, “Shut up!” to the image of her husband in her head saying, “Calm. Cool. Reasoning.”
I remained flustered and said, “I’m fine.” He said, “Take some deep breaths.” He actually stopped ringing me up, was not putting hot water in my cup, and started taking deep breaths in order to help me. That’s it. I said, “Please. Stop. I know about breathing. It’s just one of those days.” He wasn’t letting me trash his day and he insisted. “Somethings on your mind.” What isn’t on everyone’s mind at 9a.m. as they make their way into a skyscraper, stripped of all things beautiful on a nice 80 degree day in Los Angeles? He said, “Whoever this guy is that is giving you grief. He’s not worth it.”
So now, this guy sees me as some girl having boyfriend troubles. Boy troubles usually make me cry, or get drunk, or kiss an old friend. They do not make me drop my wallet and knock over displays. I said to him, “I have a boyfriend. And he is great.” And then I wondered why I had to justify this. Then I wondered that maybe I’m too tight-lipped and socially prude. So I said, “It’s just that…I don’t want to be at work today.” And he looked at me blankly and said, “Oh. Well. Ha. Can’t help you there.”
I felt like I’d said something too personal. He seemed creeped out. What is the etiquette? It’s fine to discuss possible relationship problems? Do other people do this? That is not boundary-less? Or did I just talk about some deadly sin, like “If one of you admits that working is drudgery, you’ll shatter the whole foundation of everyone’s spirit.”
Then in the elevator a man my father’s age was looking me up and down. I used to ignore this but I turned to face him. He said, “Well, you are certainly dressed for a hot day.” I have a blue tee-shirt on (boycut, not revealing) a knee length cotton skirt that is supposed to look raggy but it’s just a style and flip flops. I work on the web at a TV company. No dress code. It’s not the ’80’s. He scanned me and said, “Lightweight dress” (skirt not dress, how long do you have to be on the planet to know the difference?) “Thongs” (he means flip flops). Then he said, “Your hair is up.” I was grossed out and trapped in a box speeding up a building. I said, “I can wear whatever I want to work.” He nodded. I said trying to add some dumb elevator humor, “The A/C is pretty chilly up there, so it doesn’t really feel like a summer day.” He shouted to me as I exited, “Well, that’s why most women have sweaters at their desk!”
The doors closed before I could tell him, that like most, women, I have a sweater at my desk. I never use it when I’m cold because it never matches what I’m wearing. I love how he knows that ‘most women’ have sweaters at their desks, but he doesn’t know the inherint difference between a dress and a skirt.
When I got into the office, my friend told me that when he went to Starbucks, he had the same Barista, as I did…and the Barista dropped a bunch of cups and when my friend said, “How are you?” the Barista gritted his teeth, bearing down on the cup with his magic marker, “Same old shit, man. Same old shit.”