Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Miss Menthol

For those of you just tuning in, I work in a cubicle.
The duration of these first months in Corporate America has been accompanied by Miss Menthol, My Cubemate.

If I were Laurie, I would shank her every week.

This is my impression of Miss Menthol (named for her type of cigarette which I am familiar with because she frequently rushes back to our 18 square feet (thats carpet squares for our two work spaces, not total space to move in) and sits in front of her fan and flips her hair afterward, sparking questions to me as to what kind of ciggies I prefer because my clothes and hair stink like I smoke):

See all that food? On the plate and in the mouth? And how it looks like that fat little chow hound isn't moving any time soon? Yep, I think it looks a lot like her - except Miss Menthol is six feet tall, stuck in the 80's half perm and black eyeliner with bangs to her lower lashes, and all the weight she carries is in her belly like she is about to birth a Virginia Ham.

Yesterday it was a toasted onion bagel with cream cheese at 10am, salmon and steamed (but still crunchy!) veggies at 11:30am that was snacked on before she left for 'lunch' at 12:30pm.

She returned to her desk at 1:50pm to really dig into the food that was sitting at her desk the whole time.

She commented on how it smells more fishy when its cold.

I left for lunch and came back to find her still HAND FEEDING herself bites of salmon, but she had moved on to her favorite snack of the month - a cup of carrot and celary sticks. I can't be sure if she left the peanut butter off because I was so disgusted at listening to her chew ALL DAY that the headphones were shoved in my audio caves and proudly bopping my head to the tune of the minute.

When she leaves at 5pm, she hands me the box of uneaten steamed at whenever this morning and been sitting ON HER DESK since 11:30am, asking if I wanted some fresh veggies to go with. She then handed me the rest of the fresh veggies as a bit of carrot is still being masticated.

I proceed to toss the funky food and loath Cubeville.

Today I come in and her computer isn't showing signs of her presence!!!!! I do a little ass shake and twirl in the cube as I easily slide into my seat.

You see, she got an extension to her temp position but only until they hire a full timer - then she's out. Her birthday was last week and her celebratory trip to the casino has her sitting pretty on months worth of car payments (the only reason she still comes in, supposedly).

I am overwhelmed with glee and my smile is engulfing my head when I hear her clodhoppen hooves get off the elevator and that raspy half laugh telling someone to have a great day with the 'bye bye' severly articulated to be sure it sounds insincere.

She comes in and boasts that she just didn't have the gumption to come in on time and so she didn't. Whatever. I am thrilled at the idea that all her extra time at home may give me a break in the noises of the trough she calls a desk.

Alas, I am a sucka.

35 minutes was all it took and she was off for breakfast. I got to hear the crunch of the walnuts and the slurp of the milk in every spoonful of her cream of wheat.

This is normally the part of the day I bombard myself with music, but today I was expecting numerous phone calls and pop ins and its never good to be checking CBW sites with headphones on when your boss is expected any minute - so I leave the headphones in my purse and concentrate on my own breath (yoga, chakras, third eye out of whack; you get where I'm going).

I finally get to leave my desk in search of someone and come back to find she is gone again!!! Oh Saving Silverman this is gonna be an alright day!

Oh, no, I am just an overzealous romantic with granduristic optomistic tendencies.

She was getting lunch. Tuna sandwich. That she puts together herself. With crunchy lettuce, goopy spoons to lick, and bite after bite coming from her desk, across the blast from her fan, into her mouth. This forces her to breath through her nose, which, like everyone's, is playing tricks on her due to the wind outside. So shes got the sniffles due to wind, and the fan at her desk that shoots right at her face is pushing the scent of tuna sandwich right at me. Got the scene in your mind??

Here I am in the pants I wore to my first post college job interview loathing the idea of taking lunch so early in the day, planning the gym routine for the evening, still trying to concentrate on my breathing while I wait for one last phone call, convincing myself that the only reason I want to eat is that I smell tuna.

Its now 1pm here. She is STILL eating that sandwich. She didn't take off for lunch. She has had TWO cigarette breaks since she started eating that sandwich. And I am about to drop my letter opener into the back of her neck if she doesn't stop sucking the bits of fish flesh from her teeth.

It is finally late enough in my day that I can feel ok about stuffing my face with a tuna sandwich. I have been adamant about not eating at my desk and find that control over my eating is a fantastic evolution on my will power and motivation in general. She looks me in the face and says "my birthday calories that don't count have been extended all week!! I don't know what they put in these cornbread muffins but they are gud." She leans toward me, pulls out the trash can, and, maintaining eye contact, SHOVES the muffin in until it won't go in anymore and smacks wide jawed until there is enough yellow paste dissolved to try to keep her chompers from full view.

So yesterday was onion bagels and salmon and crunchy veggies; today so far we have slurpy breakfast soup and two hours to eat a tuna sandwich.

The up side is she tends to disgust me with her bloated pregnant look, need for the elevator instead of stairs, and constant mow behavior that I actually loose my appetite. Though I am still in pants from years ago and they still fit, this has GOT to be aiding my health kick... right????

1 comment:

curmudgeon said...

Okay, you need to stop with the vodka and drink beer at night instead.
That way, even though you don't want to eat at your desk, you could pay her back a little. You could start eating smoked oysters, boiled eggs, limberger cheese - then polish it all off with a nice, stale beer fart.