Transplanted Life
Friday, September 17, 2004
New job!
Finally got the call I've been waiting for this morning - I'm going to be the new Office Assistant at Ellis Brothers Film & Video Equipment Rental. Pays better than waiting tables, and it's more interesting than answering phones.

Well, than just answering phones. As the title "Office Assistant" will tell you, it's kind of a catch-all job. Receptionist, secretary, and trying to merge their client list, equipment list, employee assignement log, and other data into one cohesive Access database, build an application to handle it, etc.

It's a small company - I think I'm employee number eight and the only girl. The others are drivers, technicians, and a couple of guys whose jobs appear mostly to be sniffing out any film/video production in the Boston area and offering to rent their lights/cameras/dollys/microphones/everything else. It's a cool business to be near, although aside from the very occasional very low-budget independent film, most of the clients are advertising agencies filming television commercials.

The big negative is the location; in a warehouse out in Waltham. I'm going to have to upgrade by subway pass to the commuter rail and make sure I catch the 8:25 train every morning. I've tended to still be in bed at 8:30 for the last few months, and now I've got to get to Porter Square by then so I can catch another train? It also means I'll have to quit the waitressing job.

Now, it's not like I'll miss the job or that I've gotten terribly close to any of the people there; I'd just sort of figured on keeping it as a part-time job to build up something resembling savings. I'm not quite living paycheck-to-paycheck right now, but I don't really believe in stability anymore. Things can change! Say a month or two from now Carter and Maureen decide that I'm sort of a third wheel (or I decide that myself), or Ellis Brothers goes out of business, or something, you know, flat-out science-fictional.

So, I'll go in and give my notice today, work there another week, and then start at Ellis Brothers on the 27th. I'm looking forward to it, though - working regular hours will give me more time to spend with Doug and most of my other friends who I haven't had as much time to hang out with. And that's on top of the insurance and paid vacation time.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004
The Fenway area isn't quite so much fun when you're not going to a ballgame
Both Doug and Maureen managed to score passes for the Sky Captain preview last night, which made me very happy. I mean, Sky Captain in general makes me very happy. Combining old Hollywood style with cutting edge special effects - what's not to love? And that's before I even saw the movie. Which is just fantastic; Gwynneth Paltrow makes a great silver screen siren, Jude Law is an affable hero, and the robots...

It was still a valuable lesson in not going to a movie at the AMC Fenway 13 at certain times, though. Though it's got the biggest non-IMAX screen in the area, the "Screen Monster" is so named in part because of its proximity to Fenway Park. I love the Red Sox to death, so I couldn't quite be annoyed at all of New England being on the Green Line, although it got pretty crowded. The four of us (me, Doug, Mo, and Carter) were kind of squished in a corner, which was fine until a couple of college kids started getting touchy.

Now, I'm not a prude about such things. I'm probably under-sensitive to it, really, because I'm all too familiar with what's going on inside a guy's head. If I'm wearing shorts and someone wants to stare at my butt, that's fine, it's a nice butt and I'm only a year or so removed from doing it myself and not seeing the harm in it.

So the first time the train comes to a stop in mid tunnel and some guy stumbles a step and his hand lands on my breast, I kind of laugh. Why make it awkward, right? So he removes it, says oops, and the train starts up again. Some passengers get off at Copley, but most of us are heading to Kenmore. The second time, though, it's not funny, and his friend was kind of pushing his groin against Maureen. She squawks "hey!", I push the first guy's hand away while giving him a stern look, and Doug puts his arm around me, asking them if they've got a problem. Now, Doug's not intimidating by any means, but he'd raised his voice a little, enough to get their attention but not enough to make a scene. Fortunately, these guys haven't started drinking yet and can thus still realize that a scene would probably go badly for them. So they turn around and mutter something that sounds like they're questioning our sexuality.

(I wonder how they would have responded if Maureen had told them that they were right, in her case? I mean, guys may say that they think a girl's a lesbian, but they don't really believe it because they're generally not really that arrogant and, besides, it would mean they really have no chance)

So, anyway, once we crossed to the opposite side of Comm Ave and had some breathing room, I thanked Doug and Maureen even gave him a little friendly peck on the cheek, since if he hadn't stepped in, "Sam" would have had to kick their asses. And don't think I wouldn't, she said. Maureen said "I know, baby. You're small, but you're rugged." Then she wrapped her arm around Carter and gave her a squeeze, evidently not up to kissing her in public yet.

Then we got to the movie without further incident, and the movie started rocking.

Afterward, Carter wanted to walk home, since it's not a long haul to the Western Avenue bridge from the Fenway area, but as Maureen pointed out, it was dark and Doug lived in the other direction. So we piled into another subway car, though fortunately the game was only half-over and it wasn't nearly as crowded.

Monday, September 13, 2004
I'm beat.
It was one of those weekends where everyone wants a piece of your time. I only had one shift at work, but after that... Doug wants to do dinner and dancing Friday night; then Kate calls Doug's place to see if we want to hit the Boston Film Festival with her and her boyfriend. Then Nat calls me on the phone because she's pregnant and crazy and wants someone to talk to, forgetting about the three hour time difference.

To top it off, I didn't even get out of work when Carter shows up begging me to help her buy a pair of shoes! Apparently, Maureen wound up with a pair of tickets to The Lion King or something, and when she suggested to Carter that they do it up as a special occasion, Carter agreed, but after buying a dress, she realized her sneakers wouldn't go with it, and that would disappoint Maureen, and since I'm the only person she knows who knows her situation, I just had to help her.

So that was an experience. I mean, I've adjusted okay to being a woman, but the shoe thing isn't my forte. And had I seen the dress I was supposed to match? No. Oh, and Carter decides to go to Payless so that she can buy a new pair of sneakers on sale too. Now, I'm far from a snob, but we've got limited time and the store in question isn't very big...

And yet, we manage. Mostly. It turns out that the pair that is the exact right color also has two-inch heels. Now, that's not so bad for me, but I can't remember Carter ever wearing them before, so I tell her that she needs some practice. But she doesn't want anyone to see her, especially Maureen, so we have to take the train out a couple stops and then find someplace quiet - even though I point out that she's not a man any more and girls don't necessarily do well in abandoned places, I don't think it quite sunk in. I just hope that dress isn't very short, considering how she managed to scrape her knees by trying to practice in shorts.

And then this morning Maggie wants me to stop by before going to work, but when I get there I find out she thinks she's come up with an antibody of some sort for that pheremone thing and would I mind testing it? In a word, no thank you. I really don't want that stuff released into the atmosphere ever again. You want more blood, fine, but I'm not having my mind screwed around with like that again.

Then a blessedly slow day at work. Those can be nice.


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