Wednesday, August 09, 2006

State of emergency

This morning, I got to the office around 7:30(ish) and proceeded to drop my laptop off in my office, reheat my Starbucks, and went to the mail room to check my mailbox. Broomhilda, our illustrious receptionist, has apparently gone on strike as far as checking the fax machines and distributing the overnight faxes – so I picked up the gauntlet and started sorting through the two inches of faxes, stapling them, and putting them in the mailboxes.

And then I heard her. Waddling up and down the hallway, swishing polyester pants around her thighs, calling my name. “Liz! Liz!” She got louder and louder the further away from me she walked down the hall.

“Yes, Broomhilda…I’m right here in the mail room.”

She entered the room with a look of sheer panic in her eyes. “Liz, I need your help!” she cried, gripping my arm until her knuckles were white.

“What’s wrong?”

“Do you know how to make an English muffin in the toaster?” she asked.


“You put it in the toaster oven and hit the ‘toast’ button,” I replied in disbelief.

“Oh, good. I’ve never fixed an English muffin before in a toaster.” And she waddled away.

The woman is sixty-one years old and has never fixed an English muffin in a toaster oven? Or even used a toaster oven? How can this be?

As I walked up the hall from the mail room, I was met with the stench of burnt bread. I went into the kitchen to investigate and she scurried out with a death grip on her coffee and her English muffin. Looking at the toaster, I discovered that she had it set on the lightest toast setting possible – and still managed to burn the sucker.

Obviously, toasting isn’t her strong point. And neither is answering the phones. Methinks we have a situation here.

Jim, who works in the office next to me, came rolling into the kitchen behind me. “Hey, youze got a recipe for that English muffin thang? Cuz I’d like to add it to my recipe collection right behind my famous recipe for boilin' water.” Smartass. Everyone thinks they're a freaking gourmet cook.

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