21 December 2005

maybe i am just a selfish girl. day two.

yesterday i "worked from home"* and saved my three-mile strike walk for getting to the the office holiday party. (the irony of 'the office is closed. the party is on' escaped no one, don't you fret.) it was a really lovely party, and i have to take a couple of sentences to relish it. in simple terms of general partiness it was great - it was a lovely catered thing in a lovely apt. with lovely cater waiters and lovely soft lighting. but it was also great in terms of reminding me how ridiculously lucky i am to have this job - i got to chat with each artistic director for a bit, to answer their 'so how are you liking the job's with my honest profusions, and earnestness always sells well in these cases. i forget that my sense of getting to know them can't be evenly reciprocated, that though i'm already moved in for the long haul, to them i'm still the new girl. but they're both wonderful, gracious men, and it's amazing and refreshing to realize they like me, will probably grow to like me more - to be in a job i love, that i feel i can do well, where i can meet and surpass my boss' expectations (and when my bosses are these still-rather-impressive men), well, it's new, and it's awesome. and in terms of the party there were also the make-your-own ornaments and the champagne and the donna karan gift bags. i took a cab home not because i didn't want to walk, but because i was too laden with swag.

so that was Strike Walk One. strike walk two was this morning, somehow also three miles, as work and the party are equidistant from my apt. and here's where i think there's something wrong with my head - yesterday it was a snowday thing, one the couch with k. and the kittens. today, though, i was properly inconvenienced - i mean, no candle to the brooklyn bridge contingency, or the out-of-city commuters, but this was no sleep-in laze-around strike day for me. and i know (and point to my head to emphasize the localized isolation of this sort of knowing) that the strike is beyond annoying for just about everyone. yet there i was, kinda sweaty in my down coat, hurrying with and against the crowds down fifth avenue, and i just thought it was pretty.

well no, not pretty. it was cold and annoying and my nose was running. people are stranded and losing work and some might be going to jail. but the last two days i'd been looking out my bedroom window, inspecting the sidewalks for more traffic than usual, and there wasn't really anything to see. but this morning as i walked to work, the sidewalks were brimming. fifth was somehow designated for bikes heading downtown, and there was something... special about it all. hundreds of people, in sneakers and with scarves around our mouths, on bikes and scooters and rollerblades, making due. doing something different. and all together, at the same time. it's a tiny slice of the poetry people've described from the blackout a few years back - the cooperation, the novelty, the sense of something special and strange. the sense of the city, the people of the city, transformed. it's minor, i know, and nothing near the scale of the blackout or the poetry i'm trying to impose. but among all those businesspeople on their bikes, in their sneakers, in the middles of their inconvenient pain-in-the-ass commutes... there was me, thinking it was all pretty damn cool.

*amadeus is a fucking long movie, by the way. the director's cut, no less. but an interesting test case for the theory that everyone in a period piece looks ambiguously period, except the romantic leads, who look like they're from the period in which the movie was made. so we ask you, how would amadeus have gotten those blonde highlights, and whence all his hairspray?

1 comment:

John said...

I do have to say that what you've said above in many ways mimicks my thoughts on the whole matter. I took a few hours to walk 5th and Mad in midtown east during the strike, places I usually hate, and enjoyed it immensely. And as annoying and cold and insulting as the walk from 44th and Broadway to 9th and C has been...yeah...I kinda liked it too!