The other day I was engaged in something like water cooler chatter with co-workers (minus the water cooler). We were gathered around a basket of goodies someone had sent my boss as a thank you, and included in said basket was a bag of lemon drops. One of my fellow scavengers commented that she had to have them because they reminded her of her grandmother, who always carried an infinite supply of them in her purse. There was a brief round robin exchange of everything we could mentally pluck out of our grandmother’s purses (Tums and hand wipes for me), before we moved onto something more meaty: weird ass food that always made its way to family gathering spreads. You know what I’m talking about, that dish that no one likes, but for some reason has became mandatory, and let’s be honest, we’d be disappointed on some level if it ceased to make an appearance. I think these dishes are actually designed to be terrible to create a shared sense of loathing and heightened camaraderie.
Not so much that (but I’ve had the song stuck in my head all morning). More like this:
I’ve stumbled upon an odd little pocket of propriety in the most curiously small place: the elevator in my office building. During my first couple of months as a rider, I thought the niceties were a fluke attributed to a handful of cheerful ladies, accidental encounters with people who happened to be having a good day. But the longer am I here, and the more trips up and down I take, I have slowly come to realize that the elevator has created its own ultra-polite subculture with very clearly defined etiquette. Perhaps someone forgot this essential piece of my training when I came on board, but I’ve slowly caught on. I know what you’re thinking. “Maybe the people in your building are just really nice people.” This would be a logical conclusion, and while I wouldn’t disagree, per se, I am not afforded the same courtesy elsewhere. For example, it is completely optional to acknowledge a pleasant smile and hello in the hallway, but the elevator? You might as well get off on the first available floor.
I am a runner; the kind that likes to train for long distance races, gets excited about tempo runs/PRs, and looks forward to Sunday mornings when I join the ranks of my fellow weekend warriors to do my longest run of the week. If you were looking for an approximate time of the sunrise for any given period of the year, I could give it to you because I’m usually up running pre-dawn and anxiously start to await the return of natural light around February. The internet is not devoid of people blogging about running, and while I’ve tried to go there in the past, and on some level kind of, sort of, want to go there now, for some curious reason, I just can’t. “Now wait, a second,” you’re saying to yourself. “Sarah, you are writing about running, darn you!” What an astute reader you are. Yes, I am writing about running, but only to tell you why I can’t write about running.
Until this past January, I was your typical office worker, complete with a long commute, a cubical, weekly meetings, the whole nine. While I haven’t ditched the desk job or the meetings, my situation has changed drastically; instead of commuting 90 minutes each way in my car, I am now walking 0.8 miles each way. Additional feature updates included with the new gig: a shared office (no cube) with a real window that lets in real natural light, and a flexible schedule, complete with a laid back boss who doesn’t keep tabs on my exact time of arrival or departure. Today I took and hour and fifteen minutes for lunch. I am a liberated woman.
Airline travel is seamless and magical, until…it isn’t. There is no middle ground here; you either slip into the airport on a cloud and emerge via your 3 connections with all your luggage in tow, even lighter than when you first left it, or you fall through some hellacious trapdoor and find yourself sequestered in the world’s smallest terminal with no hope of rescue and no accessible caffeine. If Starbucks hasn’t found its way to an airport wing, it’s likely you could find the fibers of someone’s HAZMAT suit lingering somewhere.