Thursday, September 10, 2009

M. takes her shawl and drapes it across her cubicle. She is mostly hidden from me except for the hole that goes over a person's head.

M: "We are getting a divorce," she says.

J: "Is this a trial separation?"

M: "Yes."

The divorce has come about from me wielding a giant black and yellow umbrella in M.'s direction. I do this to block her unwavering need for attention, and it works!

M: "Jake, I can see you." (M. looks at me through the head hole of her shawl. Her fingers are wrapped snugly through the hole, giving her the impression of a small child spying on her parents.)

M: "Can you see me looking at you, Jake?"

I take the umbrella and pretend to poke M. in the face with it, through her little sneak hole. She retreats. After awhile, she says, "Jake, let's make up."

J: "OK."

We go back to our normal work relationship, which again, is like a married couple who should really be divorced.

Just like any married couple, we fight over money. I try to give M. the $5 I owe her for licking a poo envelope the other day. I include an additional $2 for the coffee M. has bought for me every morning for the past two weeks. M. refuses to accept it.

I leave the money on her desk. A few minutes later, she tosses it back at me. I walk over to her and place the cash next to her keyboard. "Will you please just accept this?" I ask. "You worked really hard for this $5. You licked poo!"

M: "OK, I'll take it."

I walk back to my desk.

M: "Jake, have you seen my airplanes?"

J: "What?"

M: "My paper airplanes. Watch."

M. fold the cash into a simple paper plane. She attaches a paperclip to the tip of it and sets a penny in the cockpit. Then she chucks the airplane at my desk.

I unfold it and hand it back to her.

J: "This is your money. You earned it fair and square."

M: "OK, but have you seen my cranes, Jake?" (Getting all hoity-toity.) "I don't know if you know how great my Papier-Machet is, but mmmmmmmmmff... I took a class from a master hhhhhaaaarrrrr... when I was in Japan. Mmnnmmph."

After several back and forths, I see two dollar bills laying on my desk. M. holds the $5 bill in her hand.

J: "Is this a compromise?"

M: "I realize I earned this $5, Jake. But think of the coffee as a gift, OK? Yes, it's a compromise."

J: "OK."

And we live happily ever after (in our separate cubicles at work).

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