Today has been…a day. I’ve been spending most of the day unsuccessfully negotiating two completely different travel bookings for two completely different trips – just when I get the hotels sorted out for one, the flights I was about to book for the other go pear-shaped – and sorting out an ongoing work problem which has called upon input from five completely different time zones.
Towards the end of the day, I remembered a similar moment from another job I had 20 years ago. For a couple years, I was part of the support staff for a very small television production company; or, to be accurate, I was half the support staff. The other support guy, David, bonded with me early over how outrageously busy we were; we took to calling each other “Mulder” and “Scully”, partly because his name actually was “Mulder” and partly because we often felt as put-upon as they did.
On one especially busy day, I grumbled to David that “I must have had a past life where I did nothing but kick puppies or something.”
He burst out laughing, then sighed. “If that’s the case, then I probably had a past life where I did nothing but eat baby sandwiches.” We both sighed and got back to work.
A couple days later, I got to the office and found David missing, and a message on our answering machine. I listened – it was a very harried-sounding David, telling me a long story about mayhem at his apartment. “First the plumbing went bust, so called the super, but then he said I had to go make sure that the front door was unlocked so he could get in, except it wasn’t, and I forgot my key, so I had to get my roommate to try to let me back in, but he couldn’t find his own key, and I just heard that the subways are down, and…and….it’s just gone all puppies and baby sandwiches. I’ll be in soon.” I was still laughing when David finally showed up, and we used “puppies and baby sandwiches” as an in-joke for the remaining two years we worked there.