>>> The Rollercoaster of Drama
By staff writer Simonne Cullen
September 25, 2005

So I work now. Spent the last of my graduation money on a suit for the interview, and lo and behold I’m interning at an advertising/marketing firm. I have my own little desk, with my own little computer, and a community fax machine, whose location (right next to my desk) will forever prevent me from using AIM on the job. What’s sadder is that I still check Facebook every day to see what’s new with my friends still at school, and even joined a new club called “I Wish College Never Ended” and “Fight For Five” to hopefully impress upon the underclassmen that in five or six years, maybe even lucky seven, it might be something they’ll want to plan for…because the real world is not as glamorous as the fantasies you concoct while pulling an all-nighter with a twenty-page paper. “Man I can’t wait to just get a job, my own apartment, million dollar accounts, and a whole new crop of hot women. As soon as I’m through proving Plato’s theory of a perfect utopian society I am SO out of here!”

I’m in a brand new office and found myself in charge of decorating the new reception area. First thing I did was find some trendy looking vase and stick a couple of Beta fish in it. Then I bought a trendy looking candy bowl and put some trendy looking gourmet candy in it to match the color scheme of the trendy looking fish vase. Clients notice my color coordinated touch. Although I believe that my first idea, more unoriginal, of giving the office that old college feel with beer cases as temporary tables, movie posters on the wall, and futon for clients to sit on that also double as a naptime for the employees, probably wouldn’t have gone over as well. Maybe this is a sign that not only am I growing to adapt to my surroundings, but that I may also have a future in limited interior decorating.

“I thought a college diploma indicated that you recognize you have reached the level of hygiene where YOU FLUSH! Women are still justpeein’ and leavin’?”

Have you ever noticed on a Fed-Ex envelope it says, “Do not mail blood, liquid, etc.”? They had to put that on there for a reason. Someone had to be mailing a lot of liquids and creating a big enough mess for the heads at Fed-Ex to paste a warning label on their packaging supplies. Was that the Blood Donation Center shipping method of choice? Shipping our national blood supply around the country and overseas via Fed-Ex? That’s a little disconcerting. “Sorry little Joey your blood wasn’t shipped priority express overnight, it looks like you’re not really going to live after all.”

Behind a shelf in the small storage supply room I frequently enter to retrieve these Fed-Ex supplies, there’s a small cluttered desk with boxes and old files surrounding it. I’m pretty sure Milton’s in there somewhere mumbling about his red stapler.

Both college and the workplace have some things in common though. Lunch will always be a place for cliques. From first grade all the way until the day you die. And while in the work place no one is sitting at an ethnically defined table or categorized by Greek affiliation anymore, it’s still pretty much like you saw on that episode of Friends, when Ross and Joey worked at the museum together and the crisp clean white coats wouldn’t go anywhere near the smashing navy blue suits and tie ensemble. Note the sarcasm. Every office in the building (except mine) seems to be this way: designers with designers, secretaries with secretaries, financial advisors with financial advisors. As I spent my first week quietly reading my book and observing everyone in the dining hall (I mean “The Plaza Café”), it seems a trend that most people are cranky by lunch time. This could either be because they hate their job, or because everyone (men included) seem to be just eating salad. And while I haven’t found the intern table yet, I am very hopeful there will be some new friends there going through college withdrawal just like me. And possibly a hot guy who wouldn’t mind carpooling.

Then there’s the popcorn situation. I have a sinking feeling that the smell of burnt popcorn and kettle corn will follow me wherever Iwill go. Five years from now, god willing, I could be in California working at the WB studio, on the set in the middle of a line, and I’d start gagging because the director had a sudden penchant for gourmet popcorn and someone couldn’t work the microwave. Then we’ll all have to break while the burnt smell is aired out. What’s wrong with everyone, just press the popcorn button and you’re done! It’s not that hard! You’re making between forty and a hundred grand a year, don’t tell me you can’t pop some corn without having to tell the intern to contact the fire department pronto.

There’s one thing that I feel I must bitch about though. There’s a women who works on the same floor as I do, only in a different office. Without fail, everytime I go into the bathroom, she’s in there. At first I thought maybe she’s the bathroom aid, and her job is to hand me a paper towel after I rinse, but there was no tip plate near her and she never once offered me a mint much less a towel. I think it’s so weird that she’s always in there, hanging out with the porcelain.

The other day I got in there before she did and she tinkled in the stall next to mine. I heard the tinkle, but then no flush, or the flow of water to indicate a hand wash and rinse had been performed. And then she left. I flushed and washed and looked in the stall where she had been and was horrified to see that she had indeed not flushed or wiped. I thought a college diploma indicated that you recognize not only your accomplishment in your major, but that you have reached the level of hygiene where YOU FLUSH! Women are still just peein’ and leavin’? Even grosser some aren’t even wipin’ or washin’. And I’m young and arrogant enough to call her on it. Next time I am going to hide in the stall and when she leaves ask her in an intercom voice, “Did you wipe? Did you flush? Did you rinse? Repeat if necessary. Good, now get back to work.” Then we’ll see what happens. I’ll keep you updated.