Happy Birthday, Daddy! Thanks for my car.

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Well, I did get my “one more day,” sorta.  My one day ended up being half day–the half of which took me straight to the Honda dealer car lot.  After my mom got home and ranted to my dad, who sat in silence, as my mom, pointing her freshly polished index finger back and forth between my dad and I, preached about the dangers of a single woman and unreliable transportation in Georgia.  The sermon would have been okay and short-lived had it not been for my Lulu’s “Amen” seal of approval.  So, my dad and I sat, for two and a half hours, as two ridiculed puppies, staring at their owner who is chastising them for messing in the corner.  By half an hour, I began concentrating on the new color on my mom’s nails and tried to determine whether or not it was pecan frost or a new color from OPI.  By the first complete hour, I had picked out the perfect outfit that I could wear should I try that color on the next time, I go to Queen Spa and get my nails and toes done–ALONE.  When the sermon completed, I had changed nail polish colors, twice, and had determined that I needed more colors in my closet to match my nail polish should I decide to use different polish colors on my nails.

“So, what are you planning to do?” Momma says, giving the benediction of her message.

Daddy looks up at momma with a “is it my turn to speak” pause. Taking a sigh, my daddy leans back in his chair, looks at my mom and says “I’ll take care of it.”

“You’ll take care of it?” Momma sternly questions in protest?

To which Daddy replies “Yup. I’ll take care of it.” He, then, got up from the table and walked away. Clearly, had he not, he would have been required to lay out his complete plan of action while sitting there. The topic was dropped, for now. Unsure of my exact purpose for being there. I am almost post positive that I was there to make sure I get the point that I should not, for the time being, be taking any unnecessary trips on the road without a “reliable vehicle.”

When I went to bed that night, I knew that momma let daddy “I’ll take care of it” suffice for my sake. Knowing that later that night, he was in for the complete bedroo, interrogation. I think he cracked, because the next morning, my daddy, my momma and I were up at 8 o’clock, dressed and headed for the car dealership.

We arrive at the local dealership, my daddy is dressed like Cliff Huxtable from the “Denise car purchase” episode, my mom dressed like it is 30 degrees in June –sweatsuit, jacket and all, and me, I am in a sundress and flip flops. Yup, the salespeople RAN to us.

When we got m out of our vehicles, we passed two sales men in Polo shirts and khaki slacks–passed them. We were never greeted, new acknowledged. That is, until we walked in and a bubbly platinum dyed blonde approached us, power-walking 30mph, with her hand extended the entire trip from her desk to us.

“Hi there! I’m Misty” She said before she reached us. “What can I get you in, today?” She, instantly, won me with her enthusiasm and won my daddy even more when she greeted him with a smile and hearty handshake. Misty walked us over to her desk located about a half – block from the front entrance. By the time we sat down, I knew that Misty is married, a mother of a teenage girl going through her weight loss, has been working here at the dealership for six years and attends Rock of Ages Interdemoninational Church about a block from her home, nearly 15 miles from here.

My daddy began with “we are looking for a simple, stable vehicle.”

“Of course,” Misty responds while nodding her head, frantically. I glance across her desk and notice a 16oz. silver and pink coffee mug which I can only imagine has one scoop too many of coffee. I like that mug. I wonder where she got it from. It looks custom-made.

I come back from drifting away in thought when I hear Misty say, while rising from her seat, “Let’s get the keys and take her for a spin!”Spin? What spin? Who is going to spin class? What did I miss? I glance over are my parents looking for a sign of current events. Mommy knows I missed the entire conversation between present-day “Mr. Huxtable” and “Speedy Gonzales.”

Misty arrives back at the desk with a single key and tag in hand. Waving them she says “We ready?” I do love how she talks to us like we are old high school friends reunited. We follow Misty and key to and burgundy Altmima parked next to a platinum edition black Honda Accord. When I saw it, I felt tears fill my eyes and heard angels singing. I didn’t even realize I was floating to the Honda until Misty excitingly yells “Here we are!”

I snap back to reality and slowly walk back to the Altima. I have always loved Altimas. Until, today, when I gave my heart away to a girl named Honda. The entire test drive, I felt like I was cheating on Honda. This Altima didn’t ride the same as I knew Honda would. The wheel didn’t fit the same in my hands. Oh Honda! You came and you gave without taking, but they took me away. Oh, Honda, I wish I could stop me from shaking. I need you, today. Oh, Honda.  As I was about to go into verse, daddy yells.

“Danni!  We are here for you! She is talking  to you!”

To which I reply, “It’s cool.” I wasn’t really  sure if that was the correct response, but it is doubtful  that it was by the clinching  teeth that can be seen through my daddy’s cheeck and the wide-eyed, shocked expression  on my mommy’s  eyes and face.

The remainder  of the test drive was performed  in silence with the occasional Misty sales jnput.  When we pull back into the parking space next to Honda, we get out of the car and while walking to the dealership entrance, I ask, “How about  that Honda over there?”  I point to Honda, wondering if everyone else can see the glow around her or hear the harps  playing  angelic  tunes in the background.

“Oh.” Misty says squinting  at the Honda.  “It just arrived here, yesterday.   I don’t  believe  I can get you a deal on that one.  But, this Nissan is a go.”

“Get the keys.” Daddy says to Misty as he begins walking to Honda.

Misty came out with the keys and we took Honda for a ride–Leather interior,  heated seats, all the works, and she was such a smooth ride.  When we parked, if I smoked, I could have lit a cigarette right then and there.

When we arrived back at Misty desk, we all sat down and Misty, immediately  pulled her calculator  to her and began typing, hysterically.   She was keying so fast that I was unaware whether or not she was actually  pushing real numbers .  She stood up, calculator in hand and told us she would be right back.

She walks back over to her desk with a frumpy  older man who looks at us and says “Perhaps  you would like something  more affordable. Do you have a trade-in? This would require  at least $3,000.00 down.” He says while shaking his head and rubbing  his sweating  forehead.

Clearly, the man had no CLUE who Milton Warren James was, or he did, whic n is why he came and us like he did.  But my daddy, Milton Warren James, was completely  insulted. He took a breath in.

“If you had $3,000.00 in hand, today,  what would payments be? Daddy asked.

“Her credit, no trade in, 5 years.  You’re  looking  at least $300 and month.” Frumpy replies

My dad looks and the me in the eye.  I nod in agreement.  We look up at Mr. Frumpy and together, my dad and I  say “deal.”  I  reach inside my handbag, grab my wallet and ask “Who should  I  make the check out to?

So, on the day of my daddy’s surprise birthday party, Surprise!

Danni got a new car.

All I Need is One More Day

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My Friday off was just that–OFF!!

I had a concrete plan of action:  Wake up, take my daisies (my mom and Lulu) to breakfast, go get a nail fill-in/pedicure for me and a mani-pedi for the girls, shop for birthday cards and gifts for Sasha and be done with it.  I had everything planned until…The Green Goblin strikes again.

it was early Friday morning.  Goblin started right away.  No hiccups, no burps, no car-farts, no nothing. Just a good day.  We load into the Goblin like Mexicans loading into a Pacer.  Breakfast at the town diner was off the chain–as usual.  Russell, the cook, is a phenomenal southern cook and a precious southern gentleman.  We ate our usual three eggs scrambled soft with cheese, shared a double hashbrown, added bacon on the side and coffee for the daisies with a mango lemonade for me.  Sun is shining outside.  Everything is awesome!

We leave a healthy tip on the table.  Myrtle, our waitress treats my mom and grandma like queens.  Now, it helps that my mom, Patricia Anne James, owns and operates Hidden Blessings, the ONLY consignment and alteration boutique in the heart of Taliaferro County.  Thanks to the limitless shotgun wedding dress expansions to encompass bundles of joy, prom dresses alterations to lengthen dresses that expose “business,” and I’ve lost a loved one, but want these items to bring joy to someone else donations, my mom is more popular than the county liquor store–and THAT is popular.  So, wherever we go, my mom and her entourage–Lulu as sidekick and me as driver–receive preferential treatment.

After the ‘itis-giving” breakfast, we, again, load into Goblin–she is purring like a cat drinking milk, while lying on a comfy, fluffy pillow, in front of a warm fireplace.  I am so proud of you, Goblin.  You are doing it today. I think to myself.  I would hate to think of being out here, with the loves of my life, stranded.  We arrive at my nail shop, Queen Spa.  I have been a patron of this establishment since they opened in 2012.  They know me by name.  Now, that Lulu and Momma are monthly regulars, they know them, too.  We are immediately greeted by Amy, the owner.  Amy is a mother of three.  Her husband, Jon, works at the salon, but he takes care of the kids, so he is rarely here–except to do nails.  Jon is strictly by appointment, only.

“Hi, Momma!” Amy blurts out.  She is universally referring to everyone.  However, she greets Lulu with a hug–she’s the only one who gets a hug in this group.  “Mani-pedi’s, today?”

Lulu especially loves the attention.  With her suffering from Diabetes, we have to be especially careful with her pedicures.  We had a scare about 15 years ago–we had to watch that big toe for over 3 months.  Ever since then, I was the designated “pedicurist.”  I am all too happy to relinquish that title.

I walk over to Jon’s desk.  “Hey, Honey.

“Hey, Lady.”  Jon responds.  Jon is so cool.  He has silky, jet-black hair that is spiked up in a right-angle part from his forehead to the center of the top of his head.  He has dreamy black eyes–is that even possible to have black eyes?  It has to be possible because Jon has black eyes.  He has a tanned glow and speaks perfect English.  So perfect, I might add, that he often laughs at me when a hint of country drawl comes out.  “So glad you are on time.  How is your day going.”

“Perfect now.”  I respond.  “Everything is marvelous.”  While continuing my conversation with Jon, I watch as Amy and Lisa, Amy’s niece, lead Momma and Lulu to spa massage seats four and five.  Amy has Lulu by the arm, cupping Lulu’s left elbow with her left hand and wrapping her right arm around Lulu’s back.  I come here for so many reasons, but one of them is that, here, they love on my loved ones like I love on my loved ones.  Once Lulu is successfully seated, with toes in bucket of aqua blue water, I concentrate back on Jon and my fill-in.

Perfection!  Jon fills in my nails–black base-coat, and blue metallic top-coat.  I am ready.  Mid-fill, Jon escorts me over to chair number three and I slither my way into the comfy, khaki, leather seat with the high back and wood-grain arm rests.  Everyone in Queen Spa knows I like my water hot enough to see steam.  My water is wonderfully heated blue.  I opt for pedicure number two–the deluxe package–Massage! Massage! Massage!  I melt away with my back pressed, lifeless against the back of the spa seat.  Everything seems perfect as I close my eyes and float up the first level towards an out-of-body experience.  Just as Utopia is within view…

“Why did you give me a water pill when you know we were going out?” Lulu and Momma are struggling in an attempt to grab Lulu’s walker, maneuver Lulu out of the seat, dry off her feet and place her into a standing position without incident.  Meanwhile, Lulu is still fussing at Momma, while Momma scrambles.  It is at this moment that I debate and contemplate to acknowledge the scene or continue through the gateway to mental paradise.

“Momma, I’m sorry.”  Momma replies, apologetically, “You have so much fluid on you.  I had to get it off before you regress into..”

“But you know we were going back home.” Lulu sharply interrupts.  By this time, Tina, MY pedicurist, Amy and her niece, Lisa, are all kneeling and fondling by Lulu’s hands and feet.  Jon is unsuccessfully attempting to concentrate on step five of eight of my fill-in–so much so, that Jon just skims the cuticle of my middle finger with his electric power drill-file.

“UUUUGGGHH!!!”   I belt out in a frustrated sigh with my eyes still closed.  “Next time, I will leave you home!”  I open my eyes, reach and grab the towel resting on the foot rest of the spa chair, pull my feet out of the now, lukewarm, blue water (making as much noise as humanly possible) and swirl myself around, drying my feet as I place them one-by-one on the floor.  If I was ever going to have an out-of-body experience, I am definitely having one, now.

Together, in a group effort to prevent “cleanup on aisle four,” Amy, Tina, Lisa, Momma and myself, scurry Lulu to the universal restroom.  We are lifting, pushing and arm and waist guiding her, so frantically, that we practically have lifted her off the floor and are walking for her.  We make it to the restroom.  All nonfamily members exit the chamber.  While Momma is pulling down underwear and lifting skirt, I, and my hygiene-correct thought pattern, am lining the stool–which looks, well, universally used.  I place the last group of tissue squares on the round of the mock-porcelain, but very plastic seat.  I am just out of the way when I hear a “Whoop!”  As Lulu plops down on the seat and pours nature’s water into the toilet bowl.  Now, that the crisis is over, Lulu lays in to Momma.

We spend three minutes of pee-timeloudly, on the pitfalls of water pills and travel versus the pitfalls of anti-water pill days.  Each opponent is interrupted by the mediator, me, yelling “Can we all please keep our voices to a minimum!”  Each pleading is followed by a loud-whispering “Can’t nobody hear us in here!”  Lulu completes her business.  I hand Lulu the tissue, she wipes herself,  Momma lifts and I pull–up the underwear that is–I move all lingering toilet bowl tissue lining into the water and flush.  All three ladies in the restroom wash our hands, and being sure to use the now moistened, clearly not Bounty paper towel, I open the door and we walk out, as a group who returning to a stage preparing for an Encore.

After receiving new water (for the water already in the spa-pedicure was ice cold) we dunk our feet back in and complete our relaxing spa–day.  Once complete, I pay and head outside to Goblin who is directly in front of the Queen Spa in the handicap parking spot–the one handicap parking space.

“Girl, you will not believe the fiasco that unfolded in there.”  I say to Goblin while unlocking my door and sitting down.  I chuckle, stick my key in the ignition–nothing.  The smirk of crisis diverted quickly leaves my face.  I embrace my steering wheel, bow my head, resting my forehead on my wrist.

“Lord, please let her start.  All I need is one more day…

 

Laughter is the Best Medicine

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I finally make it to Travis’ shop by 7:30pm.  The latest “as Taliaferro County turns” is recapped by 8:00pm and the wine glasses are empty by 9:00pm.  I walk outside and try, again, to crank up The Green Goblin without incident-unsuccessfully, I should add.

“Lawd, Honey!” Travis says while walking over to me–now head-bowed deep in please start prayer.  “Wave the white flag on this car, already.”

“Amen.”  I say, lifting my head from the steering wheel.  “And the white flag helps me at the moment because?”

Chuckling, Travis responds “Hell, I don’t know.  Perhaps you can place it in the air, let the wind catch it and drift your way home.  You’d probably make it there before this thing starts.”

By this time, Travis is completely posted between the open door of Goblin.  He has more of a look of sympathy for me then amusement in his last comment.  I, again, rest my head against my arms which are now embracing the steering wheel and begin the please start prayer.  I look up at Travis.

“Is that what we are doing, now?  We are mocking me in my time of need?”

“Well, darling, what do you expect me to…”  Travis’ statement is interrupted by his ringing cell phone.  Travis never has used any other ringtone outside of a normal factory-installed or a telephone.  I can tell by the smile illuminating his face when he looks at the caller id that the party on the other end is none other than his beloved Denise.

“Hey, Baby.”  Travis has the most affectionate names for people at all the right times.  It must be a superpower to be able to make everyone around you smile and feel loved.  “Uh-huh.  No, I’m on my way.  Well, I was.  But right now, Danni is laying 90 degree prostrate before the Lord in prayer.  Uh-huh.  Ha! Ha! Ha!  Ha!  I know!  Ha!  Ha!  I told her to wave a white flag and let it…yup…Ha! Ha!..drift her way..ha ha ha ha!”  Travis has himself in tears laughing and joking.

Head still bowed on my arms–“You know.  I have heard laughter is the best medicine.  I’m so excited that I filled your prescriptions, today.  ‘Cuz you two make me sick.”  I raise my head with a smirk. I bow my head again, close my eyes really tight and turn the ignition, again and Goblin revs up.  I look up at Travis.  “See, she got tired of being the butt of your joke.”  I roll my eyes, with a smile, and reach for my door handle.

“Alright, baby, it looks like Goblin lives to fight another day.  Travis says to Denise, on the phone, while not moving out-of-the-way so that I can close the door. I’ll see you when I get home.  Okay.  Love you to.”  Travis pushes the end button on his Samsung Galaxy S4, which he purchased under duress when his previous iphone locked up and had to be restarted–losing all of his important information.  He had to wait weeks for family, friends and clients to call so that he could, once again, program them into his phone.  He still doesn’t have them all programmed.  Each time one of his long, lost callers call, Travis repeats the rage of how he lost all his numbers and is still trying to recoop-so he’s glad you called.  Travis leans down.  “Alright, sugar.”  He says as he gives me a kiss goodbye.  “Call me when you get home.  Love you.”

“Of’ course, Luvy.”  MUAH.  Thanks for the drinks and the laughs. I say while pulling the door closed.  “Love you, too.”  I watch Travis as he walks to his silver, Mitsubishi L200 and gets into his vehicle.  Once Travis is securely into his vehicle, I push the gas, place Goblin in reverse, back out of the parking space, place Goblin in drive and drive off.

Okay, Goblin,I need you to get it together.  We have too much going on for you to act up, now.

We’ll Have Time–Famous Last Words

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I finally decide to give up the ghost for this day.  Perhaps, the next time I come to work, I will have the mindset of doing absolutely nothing. Maybe then, I will conquer the world.  Well, with the weekend here, maybe, I will have an opportunity to work on some of my Danni-Do list.  Let’s see:  clean my room; wash clothes so that I can stop buying new underwear from Wal-Mart every three days when I run out–since I only buy them in packs of threes and on day two, I tell myself to wash clothes and on day three, the Wal-Mart-panty cycle begins again–and then I will–OH! CRAP-A-LA-KING! Saturday is the big birthday thingy for dad.  Son-of-a-Bin Laden in a Handbasket!  Totally forgot! Well, on the bright side, this my short week at work–I work half-day Thursday and am off Friday (but I work a Saturday to make it up–but a quiet Saturday it is.) So, at least I get an extra day for something. Wait! I helped plan the party specifically for this weekend just so I will have my “extra” day to work on extra stuff for the party. I dash out of the office. I let Roger leave when I leave. Shondra is gone, I’m leaving so, unless I want to leave Roger here as Mr. Howell’s personal do-boy, Roger should leave with me, too. With Mr. Howell downstairs and no adult supervision, Roger will end up doing so much for the downstairs that my work will be an afterthought, anyway.

I try to crank up the green goblin, but she is just not talking to me this afternoon. No, Lord. Please not today, Lord I have been putting off getting a new car for the past 8 months. The Goblin and I have so many fond memories. She’s the perfect semi-secret stalk agent get-a-way car for me–tiny and dark. I try the ignition again. No response–I sigh. PLEASE, Oh, Father God. Not now, Lord. I am doing everything I can, I promise I will look for a car, tomorrow, if you will just answer this ONE prayer for me today. I need you, now, Lord. I just need… Leaning my head against the wheel, with eyes closed tight in prayer, I turn the ignition again. Sput! Sput! I push the gas. VVVRROOM

“Hey, Goblin.” I say while rubbing my hand against the dashboard. As I put her in reverse, I close my eyes, again, but this time with my head back against the headrest, towards Heaven. “Sorry, Lord, I need to be more patient. In Jesus’ name. Amen” Maybe not a new car this weekend. She’s still working, right? I got to do something. After that last dud-no-show-no-call stunt I pulled with Rufus last time, I don’t think a steak t-bone will get the job done this time. “I’ll deal with that issue, tomorrow” SPUTTER! SPUTTER! “Come on, Baby. PLEASE, make it until tomorrow.”

I waste no time–from reverse to drive, I speed out of the parking lot and head straight for town.

Let’s see. What are my stops for today. Go get my toes and nails done; stop by Travis’ shop and pick up dad’s gift; take Dae-Dae for haircut; get card; call Sasha and make sure she needs nothing; finally, pick up mom and Lulu (my grandma on my mom’s side) to get their nails done. First, I call Travis.

“Hah-Lo.” Travis answers.

“Hey, Bey-Bah. Are you ready to see me, today?” I ask. Travis has THE premier original art gallery and interior decorating business in the county. For my dad’s surprise birthday party, he put together an original art piece that captured all the aspects of my dad’s life. He said he had it done based on family photos I gave him. I’m so excited about this.

“Hey, Honey-Bunny! What time are you looking to come?” Travis says. He always sounds so cheerful.

“Early enough that a black woman lingering around an art gallery doesn’t seem suspicious, but late enough that wine and dinner isn’t out of the question. So, about 6:30-7ish?”

Laughing Travis agrees and we hang up the phone.

I look at the time and realize that 6:45ish is right around corner. Oh, well. I can get everyone’s nails and toes done, tomorrow. We’ll have time.

“We’ll have time”–famous last words.

Boss-Paralegal Counseling Session. Price–1 King-Sized Kit Kat

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I look over at Shondra, relaxing in my over-sized chair in my office.  There must be something very powerful about this chair.  Whenever anyone sits down in it, they begin to speak as though I will be able to solve all of their problems.  It’s almost as if people come in, have a seat and instantly, we are “Paging Dr. Danni.”  I feel for my boss lady, sorta.  She not only has the cares of her world on her shoulders, but she has the cares of the world around her resting in the palms of her hands, as well.  Regardless of whether she is stressfree or a worrylord, she still radiates control and poise.  It is amazing how, even her slouch has a “come hither” appeal to it.  Wait!  I’m sounding to girl-crushy.  Wait!  Shondra is actually talking about something.

Danni, please.” Shondra says persistently.  “I swear.  Talking to you is like talking to a two-year old child with balloons in her hands, or better yet, a cat with wind blowing and loose grass around.

“I’m so sorry.”  I say, assuringly.  “I’m back.”  To comfort her and guarantee my undivided attention, I turn my chair around, place my hands in my lap and nod, approvingly.  Yes.  All attention is now on Shondra Howell…Wait.  When did I get that spot on the wall?  Has it always been there?  

“I think I am about to try to rent out Knotch’s space.  She is rarely here anyways.  I think it would be more beneficial to utilize the office as a virtual office.  What do you think?  I mean, I’m paying for her, anyways.  So, technically, it’s my office and I can do what I want, right?”  Shondra pauses with a long sigh of discontent and stares up at the ceiling.  I can tell this is my cue to interject some statement of wisdom.

“Shondra,”  I say as I turn my eyes and concentration on Shondra from the spot on the wall that turned out to be a small knat-fly.  I know this because when Shondra sighed in the air, the spot fell, moved or flew away. “I am unsure at what you want me to say.  It sounds as if you have already gone through the rationalizations on your own.  True, it is your office.  True, you have other options available, but I think you are more concerned with looking like the bad guy than actually kicking Carolyn out.

Not much is said about Carolyn Knotch.  She is basically just a title on a door.  Periodically, she will come in and collect her mail.  Her office is downstairs. Next door to Keith’s office.  Periodically, Judge Hambrick will come in and use her office for a meeting or “other” rendezvous.  Knotch became partner after she helped a Falcon player win custody of his children after he caught his wife cheating with one of the cheerleaders.  The case practically purchased her office.  Now, like Keith, Carolyn’s fame is dwindling like residue ice after a snow-storm.  I am beginning to think the downstairs is for the temp-to-perm positions.  Outside of Larry Howell, (who, clearly, isn’t going anywhere) any one who comes into this office, with an office downstairs, has one foot in an office and the other in the unemployment office.  I suppose that is why my office is upstairs–to make it harder for me to leave.

“That’s why there are so many names in this one-man–or woman–establishment.  Sure, Carolyn and KEITH had great cases, but they are one-hit wonders.  Now, they clean up your scraps and you have to work twice as hard to pay for EVERYONE!.”  God must have deemed this my opportunity for a brief come-to-Jesus meeting–and I am taking IT.  So, I continue.  I can tell she is really considering what I am saying.  It is really resignating with her.  She’s doing that tongue-in-cheek thing.  Yet, another thing that makes Shondra awesome.  Most people fidget when they are nervous, put on the spot or thinking.  There is a clear, concise tell-tell sign.  Not Shondra.  You can barely tell her tongue is in her cheek.  She basically just rubs the tip of her tongue up and down her lower incisor–subtle and oh so smooth.  But, since I have her attention, I continue.

Shondra.  The fact is, we can have one hundred different names for this firm–and if you keep at it, we will be there soon”

Shut up” Shondra interjects while chuckling.

Laughing with her and thrilled that I lightened the mood, I continue “But, no matter whose name is on the front of this building, this is still your firm–without you, we don’t exist.  I like my premium, Indian weave too much to just let you go, easily.  Carolyn is different from Keith.  Keith really wants to make it.  He is really trying to put forth effort.  He has no control over the cases, but he does have initiative.  Now, Carolyn.  That chick has a rich, Korean short man in her life–this is a hobby, a retired judge-mom and a college Dean as a dad–this place is a hobby.  She stops in to say that she came, but nothing was there for her–and she leaves.  You paying for her pit-stop is all you are doing.  So, yes, I say rent it out as a virtual office.  Why do you have to tell her?  Do it for the Vine!

“You so stupid.”  Shondra says while rising from the chair.  “I ain’t gone do it.  LOL!  I see what you are saying.  I just hate to feel like I am being taken advantage of.  I take my job so seriously.  I can’t imagine being a grown woman depending on everyone else to make my ends meet.  I thought I saw potential in her.  I dunno.”  She says while sighing and exiting the office.  “I guess I have a virtual office for rent.  You’ll work on that advertisement for me, will you?”

“You can count on me!”  I say sarcastically, with a smile and two thumbs up.  I yell out,  towards Shondra, who seems to be walking suspicously slow through the vestibu—Roger’s Office. “But, keep her name  on the door and on the building.  If something happens, we can split the payments three ways.  Of course, I say three because.” 

“Quiet, Danni!” Shondra yells back.  

We are so professional around here.  I pause and look at the clock. You got to be kidding me!  Four-fourty-five–Where did my time go?  I look down at my King-sized KitKat.

One KitKat, one boss-paralegal counseling session–paid in full.