20 December 2005

naughty, naughty union

i am conflicted. about the fact that i'm not actually conflicted, but really think i should be. maybe when i go outside and see the carnage this strike is wreaking, it'll hit home how it's not just a snow day for everyone, but hey, so far it's meant that i don't have to go to work.

it's a terrible thing, the strike. crippling the city. and i'm not as callous as i seem. but the resemblance to the snow day feeling has been exact - last night, checking ny1 for news, it was that same lurking hope, the prospect of a day off glowing somewhere in the distance.

note, of course, how this is *completely* different from how i anticipated the possible strike last friday. friday being the day of the lullabye reading, the culmination of a week's work on my part, and a week's sleepless, agonizing, soul-wrenching work on the parts of rami and brian (writer & director). that reading was also a *huge* important deal, the chance for the artistic director men (bb&w, let us say) to see lullabye and decide if they/we ought to do it. in the end, only w of bb&w was able to come, and we'll see how that bodes for the play's future at our little theatre, but still. and we didn't know that thursday night. but coming back to the office after the last rehearsal, seeing how far the play'd come and how wonderful the reading was possibly going to be, the prospect of not getting to have that presentation drove me toddlery fits of frustration. my relief friday morning was huge.

this week, though, it's the week before vacation, when day by day co-workers slip off to their families, and the staff diminishes till it's probably three of us friday. my boss, for example, leaves for paree this afternoon. sure, there are things still to be done. and i don't love the fact that my work e-mail seems to be forwarding. but when meg woke me up at 7 and i checked the radio, i can't say i wasn't relieved. i can't say turning off my alarm and getting back into bed wasn't fun.

and yes, i woke up and listened to reports of people walking across the brooklyn bridge in a ten degree windchill. to people driving in down broadway because they weren't allowed on the highways for carpool rules, going one block every five or ten minutes. but i'm hanging out with kate and apo and the kittens, and i'm wearing a cut-up t-shirt and watching the west wing. (those last parts feel a lot like college. i knew i was doomed when i discovered this midday west wing thing.)

of course, my lack of guilt for my lack of consternation about the transit strike isn't the hugest thing. probably writing about this, my selfishness in the face of 7 million people's pain-in-the-ass, rather than my being completely unsure of what to do in the face of a not-friend's grief - someone i in many ways barely know, but someone who i do like and care about - when i said 'my heart goes out to you' it was truer than i knew it could be, the actual feeling of my heart going out of my chest and sort of hovering around him, wanting to help. but what can i actually do? he has, i know, plenty of friends. dear friends, good friends. and i'd been too lazy/too much of a wuss to extend myself in friendship before. so now that this has happened, and i want to reach out, it's probably the last thing he wants to hear, right? (hey, i know it's lame it took this to get me to write, but i do really want to be friends - give me a break.) but that's the problem with grief - i never have any idea what the last thing is that someone wants to hear, i never have any idea what to say. maybe the last thing in the world he wants to hear is that i've been thinking for a while that we really ought to be friends. or maybe it would somehow be good. but it still feels like a selfish gesture to make, like in order to make myself feel better and less helpless, i need to reach out. but maybe it's just about reaching out. it honestly feels like that - i could easily go about my life without doing anything to help. but i want to help, to put myself out there for whatever use i can be. i just wish i could stop second-guessing, to stop wondering if it's really for me or for him.

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