Current Occupation: Writer
Former Occupation: Not a Writer
Contact Information: Jay Duret is a San Francisco based writer. Some of his stories and creative non-fiction can be found at www.jayduret.com. He welcomes feedback – including taunts, dares and marriage proposals – at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The two women were sitting at one of those high-hat tables in the open area in front of the bar. They were on stools that were so high their feet couldn’t touch the ground.
The louder one had blond ringlets that hung down onto her shoulders from under a small black cap. She was wearing a very short skirt and managing the high stool and short skirt required her to squirm.
The one who wasn’t the louder one was still pretty loud because she had to shout over the loud and cheerful bar noise. She had a dark green and blue tattoo sleeve down her shoulder almost to her elbow.
“Mishie”, the louder one said, “I can’t stand the bitch.”
“Oh no. This about your boss again?”
“I can’t believe her.”
“Whaddid she do now?
“So today everyone was running around like crazy cause there was an RFP that was due and no one knew where the appendix was and Kathy was freaked out cause she was responsible and so she loses it, I mean completely loses it, and she starts running around and sticking her head in people’s offices – just charging in even if they were in meetings or on the phone – and accusing people of taking the appendix and then she comes running up to my desk and starts screaming about what did I do with it.”
“I don’t even work for the bitch any more and I had nothing to do with the appendix.”
“I thought you did work for her.”
“No she had me transferred over to Finance last month which I was more than fine with me – did I mention she was a bitch? – but I still sit outside of her office cause there wasn’t any space in Finance and so when she wants something she still asks me for it just like I worked for her and I am such a chickenshit that I do it anyway cause I hate it when she starts to scream. She has these little bags of skin on her neck and when her face gets red they get all wobbly and jiggly and it freaks me out.”
“Her neck gets wobbly and jiggly? Did you really just say that?”
“You know what I mean. Like on a turkey.”
“That’s what bothers you?”
“Don’t get all that way on me. She is what bothers me. The bitch. I am just saying that when she starts yelling you don’t want to look her in the eyes or see her big dumbass red face so one time I just looked down a little and that’s when I noticed the neck business. And I wish I never had cause now all I can see is her neck wiggling.”
“I am not sure I need to hear much more about the neck.”
“I know! I wish I had never seen it but now I can’t get it out of mind. Its like one of those stupid songs that get on your mind and you can’t get rid of it.”
The one who was not so loud laughed and said, “the bitch’s neck is Gangnum Style!” Then she crossed her arms at her wrists and pumped them up and down like she was holding the reins of a galloping pony. She laughed at herself but she stopped short when she started to slide off the tall stool.
The louder one said, “Oh you have to see her in action.”
“I will pass.”
“Anyway she is screaming about the damn appendix and her neck is all red and wobbling and I am trying not to look at her but it’s pretty damn hard when she is right in front of me with her nasty neck twitching but then I notice that she has got this batch of papers in her arms and I see that she has the appendix on the bottom of the stack.”
“I know. What a bitch. How she ever got her job is a mystery to me.”
“So what did she say when you told her?”
The louder one smiled a Cheshire smile. She squirmed about, adjusted her skirt and then took a long sip of her drink. “Who said I told her?”
“You are kidding. You just let her scream at you?”
“I wanted to see what would happen.”
“You are crazy. I could never do that.”
“Turns out I couldn’t for very long, but it was long enough so that pretty much everyone in the office was looking at us.”
“Oh my God. What happened?”
“After a minute of two I broke down and reached out and grabbed her stack of papers out of her arms.”
“What did she do?”
“She was surprised. I mean, she was shocked. She even stopped yelling for a minute. But then she started up again even louder. She is saying ‘What do you think you are doing?’”
“And you are still looking at the neck?”
“Trust me, there is no way not to be looking at her neck.”
“So what did you?”
“It was turning into a real scene. Everyone was looking at her screaming at me, though they were pretending not to in case she saw them looking. Finally, I said real loud, ‘will you stop screaming, please’ and she said even louder, ‘I am not screaming!’ and I said ‘excuse me, yes you are’ and she said ‘I need that appendix!’ and I said ‘isn’t this the appendix? You had it in your arms’ and she looked at me like I had slapped her.
“What did she say?”
“She didn’t say anything. She just snatched it from me and stormed off back into her office and she slammed the door.”
“She must have felt like a jerk.”
“So I am sitting there trying to get myself organized when somebody started clapping and the next thing you know everybody in the office is clapping.”
“Whoa! That’s gotta make you feel good.”
“Yeah, I am feeling like I am quite the hero. People are coming up and saying ‘good job’ and that sort of stuff. But after a few minutes I start to get nervous cause I don’t want get canned for making the bitch look bad.”
“She wouldn’t dare after everybody saw what happened?”
“I should have just pointed it out and not made a big deal.”
“You did the right thing.”
“I wonder. I don’t trust that bitch. She can find a dozen ways to get even and no one will ever know.”
“That’s why they have got lawyers.”
“Oh right. That’s going to help me.”
“I doan know, but Izzie in Accounting got herself a lawyer last year when they were about to throw her ass out and she is still there. Maybe you better see if you can get her name.
“Trust me, if I am talking to a lawyer its cause I am going under for the third time.”
“Don’t worry. She won’t even remember. It’s Thanksgiving! Everybody loves Thanksgiving! By the time she gets back, she’ll have forgotten about the whole thing.”
“Mishie, I hope you are right.”
“I am. You’ll see. She’ll forget the whole thing.”
“But how about me?”
“What about you?
“All weekend I am gonna be reminded of her.”
“Why? You aren’t working, are you?”
“No, but its Thanksgiving!”
“There will be turkeys everywhere and they all have those necks and whenever I see a turkey and I will be thinking of Kathy yelling at me.”
“Oh. I feel your pain.”
“Damn that neck business. Damn it.”