February 27, 2010

Someone Jacked My Fist

I had a job interview yesterday. It was a phone interview.

I think I've mentioned before how much I hate the phone. I find it so hard to gauge what the people on the other end of the line are thinking. Without body language cues, I simply can't judge if they're laughing with me or at me. And, yes, they're usually laughing. For some reason I amuse people, especially when I'm not trying to. It's all a little bit out of my control over the phone. I don't have the (much appreciated, trust me) added control of editing, rewriting, adding popular culture references and Dooce caps that I have here. Phones are no fun. Writing is fun. Talking to people in person is okay. Phones are stressful.

I'm left with the general feeling that I made a fool of myself. And I'm reminded of that episode of Friends when Chandler had to do a job interview... Do you remember it? He was completely unable to have an adult conversation until Pheobe coached him.

She did such a great job that he nailed the interview until the end when the interviewer told him that it went well and he relaxed and confessed that he'd had trouble not laughing when the interviewer mentioned the word 'duties' over and over again, which Chandler, being completely unable to have an adult conversation, heard as 'doodies' and, as such, found deeply funny. And in that post-interview juvenile confession, he lost the respect he'd gained by nailing the interview.

I feel like I'm a bit too much like Chandler, only minus the Pheobe factor.

But then I feel like that after almost any social interaction.

Fun with social anxiety. Whee!

So, yes.... we'll see what comes of that, won't we?


The other day I was dropping off some dry cleaning at the little mall down the street. It was raining and snowing (yes, both at the same time) and messy and, really, I'm not going to march down the street carrying a men's pin-stripe business suit, so I drove. As I pulled into a parking spot, I noticed a man standing awkwardly in the drive. He was watching me in a way that made it clear he was waiting for me to get out of the car so he could ask me a question. He looked like he needed directions.

I grabbed the men's pin-stripe business suit off of the passenger seat, opened my door and attempted to step out of the car gracefully. Stepping out of anything gracefully is a challenge for me on a good day. This day was slippery and wet (heh) and I was holding a men's pin-stripe business suit, which I was trying very hard to keep dry, in one hand; so naturally I stumbled. I took a step back to steady myself, fairly sure I was about to fall in the slush, just as the man turned and started towards me. He saw me take a step back, he noticed the alarmed look on my face and he stopped, put his hands up in an open palmed, CALM DOWN gesture and said, "Whoa! It's okay. I'm safe. I'm safe."

I gazed back at him, wondering to myself if I should bother explaining that I wasn't afraid of him, I was afraid of falling in the dirty parking lot slush and ruining the men's pin-stripe business suit I was holding (men's pin-stripe business suits are expensive!). I decided not to bother and continued to gaze at him, waiting for him to get to the point.

"Um," he said, obviously sorry he decided to approach Overreaction Woman (the world's most annoying super hero). "Um, do you have any loose change you can spare? I'm looking for two toonies."

I gazed at him some more while I did a mental check of my pockets. No change. I never have change. "No," I said.

"Okay," he backed away slowly, hands still held up in an open-palmed, CALM DOWN gesture.

I shrugged, turned and walked into the mall to drop off the men's pin-stripe business suit at the cleaners.


After a long day at school, I arrived home, opened the door and set down my backpack in preparation for taking off my boots and coat.

Buddy ran into the room, "Mommy! Mommy! Someone jacked my fist!"

I squinted at him, "What?"

"My fist! Someone jacked my fist!"

I thought about it for a second, trying to give the words some kind of meaning. I failed.

"What?" I asked.

Buddy looked at me with pity, obviously feeling sorry for me, considering my extreme stupidity. He slowed down his speech so that I could understand, "Someone... Jacked... My.... FIST."

Nope, still didn't make sense. "Someone whated your what now?" I asked.

"You know!" he told me, although I think it was pretty obvious that I didn't. "My Fist! My Gogos Fist. I had it at school and someone jacked it."

"What do you mean, jacked?"

"He stole it! He took it from my Gogos tin. Simon told me he did, because Simon is in his class so he knows. He said he'd get it back for me."

"Oh," I said.

Are you familiar with Gogos? They've exploded in popularity at the boys' school. They're these weird little guys the boys use to stage epic toy battles. It's a similar idea to Pokemon or Bakugan. Fist is one of the characters. He has a fist for a head (of course he does).

I explained to Buddy that he had no way of knowing for sure if the boy in question took his Fist. I explained that he might have his own Fist. That there is more than one Fist in the world. I explained about innocent until proven guilty. I explained that Fist might have just fallen out of his bag anywhere. I explained that he can't really accuse someone of 'jacking' without proof.

This story has no punch line or even an ending... I just wanted to share it to illustrate that IT has started. My son is coming home with newfangled terminology that I'm too over the hill to understand. I believe it's all down hill from here, isn't it? This is the beginning of the end. Soon I'll be muttering to myself about the good old days and saying 'Is that how the kids are saying it these days?' and 'I remember when...' and 'We had to walk. Uphill BOTH WAYS'.

I don't know why I'm surprised. I turn 35 in a few months. This was inevitable. Where did my youth go? I had it right here just a minute ago...

Help! Help! Someone jacked my youth!



mommy4life said...

Right there with you sister! I'll be 36 next month and I know I am starting to feel the years. I was in my 12 year old daughter's room the other day and listening to her radio and I found myself thinking "What is this? They call this music?" Sigh!

Thanks for the laugh out of the "jacked my fist" line.

I also share in phone anxiety. I often call it phone phobia. I fear of saying the wrong thing, even with my closest friends.

Kirara said...

You know what? Actually you are fine as long as you get your kids to teach you the lingo - same as any other societal situation where you would have learned it (like, for example, being young). ;) Just hang out with your kids - they'll teach you. Bonus if you start using it yourself.

Kirara said...

I should say - my mom did this when I was a teenager and all my friends thought she was the coolest mom ever. Alright she also made them cookies but still.

scrappysue said...

life sure is funny when it's happening to someone else. what's a toonie?

great to talk to you today!

Lizzie said...

i hope the interview turns out well! thanks for the funny Friends clip. totally forgot about that one!!!
have a great week.

Quirky said...

If it makes you feel any better, I'm 29 and still wouldn't have understood "jacked my fist". (Also, toonie? Am I just behind on ALL the lingo now?)

I know exactly what you mean with the phone. I hate hate hate using it! Even for something as inane as calling out for pizza. Online pizza ordering was the best thing that ever happened to me. Good luck on the job prospect though!