The double-wide cubicle in which my work-day body resides is no longer mine alone.
As I mentioned to the receptionist: there go the sleepovers.
Welcome to the silly end of the 48th floor.
They’ve parked an intern in my space, you see, just over there, an earnest fellow with a hopeful expression and sensible shoes.
I have promised Marketing that I will try not to interfere with his view of corporate America.
I have until January to keep this promise.
Look at him over there, diligently working. I don’t often turn around to see what he is doing, but the clack-clack-clack of the keyboard is both encouraging and depressing. Having worked in an office since the Eisenhower Administration (in which I proudly served!), I know youthful exuberance when I hear it.
Shh. Do you think he is listening in on my phone calls?
Shall I test him?
It hasn’t rung, but I pick up my phone anyway. If he’s paying attention, it will be his clue.
I secretly root for Intern Boy.
“Yes, this is her,” I say.
“No, no, pretty good, actually,” I say. “I really should be wearing my face mask – risk of contagion and all that – but so far no one’s said anything.”
I laugh. “Sure it itches,” I say. “I mean, you don’t get something like this without experiencing the itching. I even had to get rid of my old headset. I think they moved it to the desk next to me…”
“What’s that? No, no,” furtive glance toward Intern Boy inserted here. “I’m sure he’ll be fine. He looks pretty robust to me. But I’ll keep an eye on him.”
“No problem. Sure. We’ll talk again if the seizures return. OK. Bye-bye.”
I hang up, trying to wipe the grin off my face. I glance over at Intern Boy.
Earbuds from his iPod firmly in place, he is checking his FaceBook page.
Intern Boy: one. Pearl: zero.
1 hour ago