The One About Electra
Tuesday, Augut 21, 2001

hokey smokes! it’s Tuesday!  

so i was at work the other day, working really hard by the way, and the phone rang and broke my concentration.  well, not really.  the phone did ring, but i didn’t really get side tracked or anything. in fact, i didn’t even realize that the phone was ringing or that my “mad work skillz” had taken over and that i was, out of complete robotic habit, answering the telephone.
that is until, i heard myself say, “Kelly Signs”  

which kind of confused me at first, so i tore my eyes and brain away from the computer screen and found myself clutching a can of Pepsi to my ear.
wow! that’s cold! ha ha!

but what was that annoying sound?
the phone!  

so i scrambled for the unforgiving noisemaker, spilling my drink in the process and watching as the computer keyboard sparked, smoked, and shorted out all in a matter of two seconds. one, two, kablooie.  

i finally answer the phone. “Kelly Signs” i say, while distractedly mopping soda up and away from any drawings or notes that have the potential to be important.  because that doodle that i had drawn on the back of that business card was killer! it would have made a cool tattoo or something!  

“um, tattoo? hello?” huh? not the voices again….
oh yeah! i’m on the telephone!

“Kelly Signs, this is jaimie, can i help you?”
“good morning…” she starts. her voice was wicked perky so i figure she’s a salesperson or something, and i go back to cleaning off the monitor and printer vaguely wondering how i managed to spill pop that far and… high? geez, the calendar is soaking wet, and it’s a *wall* calendar. wha?

“bladdy bladdy sign bladdy for our business blah…”
what is that chattering? derp! customer.

“i’m sorry, what company is this?” i ask (to buy some time while i start tearing through a roll of paper towels). i continue to sop up the cola flow that is now making a break for the fax machine…which is of course, ringing.  

“this is Electra from bladdy bladdy…”
GHEEEEEEEDEEEERP! the fax machine starts spitting out paper….right into a puddle of Pepsi!  i switch the phone to my other ear and slam some paper towels down just in time to save the fax from it’s near watery death, when i realize that the chick on the phone just said her name was Electra.

“are you serious?” i ask.  

i’m stunned.  i mean, she’s gotta be a celebrity right? nobody names their kid Electra, do they?  it’s a pretty name and all but really, i mean, you know? there’s only two things you can be if your name is Electra…
1. professional wrestler (wrastler, for you southerners)

2. exotic dancer

HSGC: “Electra, your occupational aptitude test results are in. let’s go over them ok?”
Electra: “sure, ok.”

HSGC: “let’s see, you wrote that you’d like to be a lawyer or a mathematician, is that correct?”

Electra: “yes ma’am. i find that the criminal justice system is…”
HSGC: “and it says here that you are rather good with numbers…well, i’m sorry, there aren’t any jobs for you.  but here’s something that seems right up your alley! American Gladiators needs another female gladiator… can you joust?”  

so while that scenario is playing in my head i reach for a pen to write down her name and whatever else and of course my arm barely hits a notebook that was on my desk.  the notebook moves a ‘smidge’ to the right and softly taps a stack of diskettes which of course slow motion domino themselves toward the now half full can of Pepsi.
(hey laura! i said “half full”!!  that makes me an optimist, doesn’t it? sweet!)  

“um, well yes, i am serious about renting a sign.”  

there goes the rest of my cold beverage. a tidal wave of cola that drowns every object within 10 miles (convert to kilometers if you live in some other place) of my desk. and to add insult to injury, the empty can does this amazing super-fast-forward pinball maneuver in which it bounces across the desk hitting everything and anything in it’s path until finally hitting the ground with that hollow clanking sound that only an empty aluminum can makes.

“i’m sorry,” i say, “we don’t rent signs anymore.”  

drip. drip. drip.
i look around and see that everything is destroyed. the phone is soaked, it looks as though i’ve wazzed in my pants, and the copier is spitting out page after page of what appears to be a puddle of Pepsi giving me the finger.  i (very calmly) hang up the phone and wring out my shirt.  i walk to the shelf to get another roll of paper towels and hear the ‘squish-squish’ of my Pepsi-sodden shoes.  

on the way back to my desk i wonder how on earth it got all over the walls and… ohmygosh ceiling?  

then the phone rings. oh dear god no…
i rush to the phone just in time to hear my boss (who has been in her office during the Pepsi/Electra fiasco) say in a sing-song voice, “I’LL GET IT!”
so i stop.

only i didn’t stop.
for on the ground was the very empty, very round, very dangerous-should-be-painted-bright-fluorescent green-just-in-case-a-moron-spills-her-drink-and-then-forgets-about-the-can-only-to-trip-on-it-later Pepsi can. so i pull a stooge vs. banana peel act where i fly arse over tea kettle and land flat-backed with the wind knocked outta me.  and i’ve got either cold blood leaking out of my head or there’s Pepsi on the floor seeping into my hair. at this point i can’t figure it out. i just lay there.  

my boss comes out of her office, “hey jaimie, who was on line one?”
“Elhectrah.” i gasp.
“oh. that’s an odd name. what did she want?”
“Elhectrahhh try….kill…me…”

“oh, ok. hey, why is the floor in my office wet?”  

next weeks epitomb: jaimie accidentally breaks her desk. hilarity ensues.  

jaimie “that’s what i call a “sticky situation”!” pickle


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