Continued from Part 1.
A balding man in a rumpled gray suit shows me into a large conference room. He has bags under his glassy, empty eyes, which are framed by a mono-brow. He seems ambivalent, bored, robotic.
He leans in close – too close for my one-foot personal boundary rule and not far enough way for me to avoid a whiff of halitosis – and says “I’m the HR Manager, Dick Dickensheets.”
Think bad horrible ugly catastrophic thoughts, like exploding nuclear bombs and dead kittens, I think to myself. Do not laugh. Do NOT laugh.
“We’ll get started just as soon as Sage Green, our Marketing Director, arrives. In the meantime, would you like something to drink?”
Shit. Dead kittens, dead kittens, dead kittens. No, not helping. Men who wear capri pants, men who wear capri pants, men who wear capri pants. Okay, I can breathe now.
I think about asking for vodka on the rocks, but ask opt for water instead. I want him to get out of the room quickly so I can release a roar of pent-up laughter.
He exits the room, leaving a lingering trail of bad breath, and after a 30-second fit of giggles, I sit at the conference room table, tapping my fingers against the glass top and anxiously wondering whether my face is visibly blue based on my Spanx-induced oxygen deprivation.
Two minutes later, Dick arrives with Sage. Alarm bells go off – “runrunrunaway” they shrilly chime in unison. At first glance, I realize that Sage could be a man or woman or in the middle of a sex-reassignment surgery; a foreboding sense of dread about this interview starts to wash over my body.
It is wearing a tight-fitting pantsuit and a skinny tie – both in tropical fruit colors – with a crisp white shirt to pull it all together. Its hair is short, but not too short, fashionably slicked back, as shiny as a freshly waxed beamer and framing a semi-feminine face. Waxed eyebrows? Maybe – could go either way (they do provide a stark contrast to Mr. Dickensheets unpruned mono-brow). There is no visible 5’oclock shadow, although a curious bit of fuzz adorning its upper lip looks like a burgeoning caterpillar. Oxfords with laces and a slight heel. No make-up, wait is that eyelin…
“Hi Beatrice,” it says, interrupting my thoughts. It shakes my hand and says “Great to meet you,” sounding like Lauren Bacall or Kathleen Turner after smoking a carton of cigarettes.
“Good morning, Misterissus Green,” I slur, hoping he is too distracted by my muffin top to notice my poor enunciation. “You can call me Bea.”
“Well Bea, let’s get started, shall we?” Sage says in its raspy voice.
The jump from the third-floor bathroom window has left my knees bruised and my panty-hose in shreds, but otherwise my body seems to be in working order. I glance up at the mangled, dangling window screen and then look over at the crushed shrubbery I had landed in, realizing – as I survey the large, packed parking lot – that I don’t remember where I parked my car.