Thursday, February 18, 2010

Midgets and Mac Trucks

I was having a conversation with a colleague this morning that began with my complaint about my personal space being invaded.  I arrived early to my classroom to find that my desk drawers and my supply drawer had been left open by some unknown entity and it appeared to me that my belongings were exposed by someone in search of something mine.    So not the way I hoped to begin my day.  
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The back story is that I've been in a bit of a funky mood, stressing over finances and issues with my mortgage.  I've already asked folk to gather boxes for me - - just in case.  Emotionally, I'm a loose canon that is loaded with tears and at any moment, the fuse will ignite. 
Okay, back to this morning's convo.  So I was explaining to the teacher that I was feeling a little cooky about complaining twice in consecutive days and that I was worried (ever briefly) that he might think me a little anal about personal space- - a comment also made directly to the administrator in charge of room use for night school.   See, I don't mind "my" room being used by other people, but I do mind when my desk is rearranged, when my drawers and cabinets are rifled through, and when I no longer feel in control of my work environment. 

And then, just as quickly as I had recounted my complaints to my colleague, I laughed and added "Maybe I should let him think I'm crazy and unstable. At least then no one will come near my room (or near me, for that matter).  I proceeded to twitch my head as though I had a tick in my neck and blink my eyes sporadically.  It must have been quite a sight, because she shared my laughter.
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The conversation moved on, as it always does, to other random things about living.  I mentioned that I drive an invisible car.  Yes, it would seem that silver is the new clear, because I have been hit by drivers and pedestrians alike and no one acknowledges having seen the car before impact.

Admittedly, I'm a little eccentric.  I returned to the prior discussion about my opened supply drawer.  I have a "thing" for office supplies.   I have carefully selected the loose binder and paper clips from the bins at Staples.  I hoard pens and pencils of every kind - especially after I lost one too many refillable fancy (expensive) pens I had purchased.  I could spend hours in a stationary store looking at the papers, journals, and notebooks, though I have never held on to the same book long enough to fill it with my rambling and observations.   I currently have three active notebooks about my kids and yet every cute quip Chi has made is scribbled on the nearest receipt, coupon books, or envelopes easily accessed from where they were strewn about my car. [Another colleague found it amusing when I arrived at work early to transcribe each note into one of the three tabbed divisions of my notebook that read Chi-isms, Ya baby, and Mama.]

Switching topics again, which this colleague gets and my brothers have always told me they can't stand because they are linear thinkers, I returned to the vehicle discussion.  She shared why she switched from a navy blue SUV to her white one.  And the white one?  She keeps it dirty so that they can see it well in the snow (LOL - I love her humor!).  She said her husband thinks she might be suffering from a Napoleon-complex - you know, big truck to compensate for small-statured woman?  

And then I remembered a sight I saw everyday in high school.  From my seat on the big cheese I could see parents dropping off their kids.  This one 4-wheel monster truck (probably an F-150 or some such BFT) stopped everyday near the bus terminal and the faculty parking lot.  The stairs on this truck stopped a good foot from the sidewalk, almost two from the street. And everyday, from my vantage point on the bus, I could see a tiny girl with short, curly blonde hair catapult out the door and onto the sidewalk.  She looked shorter than I, she could've been a midget or little person, I was sure - - heck, I'm an inch over qualifications for that title myself.  I am, by the way, only three inches taller than the guy who played the Umpaloompa on the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory movie.  I vowed never to have a vehicle that dwarfed me more than my God-given 4'10" height did naturally.

My colleague let out the greatest belly laugh I'd heard in a long time and her smile encompassed her whole face.  Suddenly I felt a little better myself.  Talk of midgets and Mac trucks is great diversion from concerns about pilferers during night school.  And since I must be a working mama, I'd like to have a good time at my job.
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