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in the last two weeks, i've met with two coworkers from two different offices. they have the same title and the same duties and are both located in the bay area. they are both articulate and opinionated and experienced in the ways of legal accounting. they are good friends.

one doesn't talk about her life outside work. one can't stop talking about it.

the one who doesn't talk about her life appears to be the ambitious one. even when she's not in the office, she is usually available by email or even by cell. she doesn't seem to understand that i'm reasonably content with my job as is because it allows me to have time with my family. she thinks, "okay, so you have a beautiful little boy at home now, but then... ?" she is serious and no-nonsense, but she types her name with a tilde at the end, sort of a funny little flourish.

the other one is a redheaded texan with two kids under the age of four, a redneck husband and a love for nascar. i know she's got lots of other activities going on -- school and side businesses. i know she knows how to quail hunt and paint murals. she likes to lecture me about leaving audit trails. she snorts when she laughs. she is, as the other puts it, a-mile-a-minute and it's hard for the rest of us to catch up. she is confident about what she can do and doesn't seem to really have much of an eye on the future (minus the whole schooling thing, of course).

i like both of them and both of them like me... but i have to admit that they often leave me at a loss for words. they make me feel like a little country hick. "you've never worked at another law firm?" they ask me (not simultaneously), shocked. normally i don't have a problem disclosing the fact that i started at this place right out of school and that i'll be hitting the 8-year mark in a month, but with them i feel a little shy because unlike most, i feel like they'll actually do the math. (not that i'm particularly sensitive about my age or anything like that, but...) i feel like they hang up with me and call each other and discuss my shortcomings. i feel like a combined-and-tempered them is what i want to be and that maybe the two of them taken individually are a little overwhelming. i feel like i have probably dissected them more than they have ever been dissected before. i feel like i must have more free time at work than i ever realized.

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