Part Four/Chapter Twenty-four- Daisy

One thing I’ve never quite gotten over about this new job is how short the commute to the office is.

The website owned and operated by my boss William Sherwood, Twisted Mind, was based in Brooklyn; only a twenty minute bus ride from home.

The beauty of this job was I didn’t always have to be in the office. Well, maybe that’s due to the fact that Mr Sherwood hired me as project manager.

Sofia told him how much I love video games and still oftentimes play them (not so much anymore, sadly. At least not after I’ve fully recovered), so he gave me a trial run, so to speak, and after finding my skills more than satisfactory deemed me worthy to be his right hand man. So to speak.

Here’s something I hadn’t learned until after I had come home from the hospital. Mr Sherwood had been a recipient of the Weismeister internship as well. And, like me, almost fell victim to their corporate hostility. As a result he went back to school and once concluded, started this company by himself.

It used to be stationed right out of his home, this company. Funding had been generated and the website brought in millions of hits, as they continue to do so with the help of links being emailed to friends and colleagues.

The content of the website is not safe for work but from comments left by viewers, some of the videos have actually aided in livening up the work environment.

There is another company who is producing similar content as ours but in the form of green and blue stick figures and doesn’t necessarily take a jab at anyone in particular. Their content is heavily filled with drug use, prostitution, and murder.

Our content is blatant with its humor, even if it were filled with the content similar to our “competition.” For instance I’m working on a cartoon about Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky; the likeness of both is staggering. We should be getting sued for defamation of character, but that would mean that not even a former President has a sense of humor. It shouldn’t be allowed but the one about Bush Sr has yet to bring any government agencies knocking down the office door…yet.

Walking into the office coffee in hand, I was the last to show up. There were no “you’re late? Dock of pay” rules here. You got paid all of your hours unless you weren’t in the office. If you aren’t in the office and wanted to work from home, unless its a case of being sick, you had to put a request in at least three days in advance. Sometimes you could ask the day before but you had to catch Mr Sherwood in a good mood. That wasn’t rare.

I immediately got to work and finished the Clinton cartoon in less than an hour. So I began another one that involved Bush Jr, finished that in under two hours.

I had to stop what i was doing for the bi-weekly meeting but that never lasts long. By its conclusion it was lunch time.

There is a deli a few blocks away from the office that I’ve grown to love since I began working in this neighborhood. It’s owned by an Italian mother and son duo who make their sandwiches fresh every day.

The menu changed almost every month. There was a set list, sure, but about a half dozen new sandwiches made an appearance.

One thing never changed in my ordering habits or the menu: the Cuban sandwich. Each monthly anniversary since my mothers death I have ordered the sandwich; it was her favorite. Sal, the son, knew this tradition. He and his mother gave me the sandwich for free along with their condolences.

Instead of returning to the office I decided to eat lunch in a park nearby. The day was spring-like; too beautiful to stay cooped up indoors.

There were mothers with kids in strollers, fathers teaching their sons to throw a baseball or football. Dogs barked. Children ran about. Spring wasn’t the season but it sure felt like it.

“Johnathan, is that you?” A voice said. I looked up from my sandwich to see a young woman, brunette, slim and short, approach. I knew her but not formally. She had been one of the few who had accepted a friend request on MySpace and have corresponded with frequently.

This was the first time someone online had ever initiated contact with me offline.

She sat down and crossed her legs. She wore a skirt with black stockings; business attire. She was quite striking. I fancied talking with her online and had made a mental note to pursue the possibility of a date, or perhaps just coffee to keep things light. It seems an easier feat now since she formally presented herself.

It’s a bit odd though, her being here. She lives in Morningside Heights and works in Soho. If memory serves today is a work day of hers.

“What brings you to this neighborhood?” I ask. “Today was just too beautiful to be at work so I requested a sick day.” “Won’t you need a doctors note for verification?” She shook her head no. “A friend of mine is supposed to be meeting me here with her one year old son.”

The possibility of her knowing someone within the vicinity had occurred to me but she’s oftentimes mentioned how little she enjoys venturing into Brooklyn. In fact, a lot of Manhattanites seem to dislike it. How small minded of them.

I finished my meal as we chatted some more. Just as her friend approached Daisy, the MySpace girl, gave me her number.

“Call me later tonight. We’ll hang.” She said and then rushed into the arms of a darling little blonde boy.

Another proverbial lightbulb. I assessed my relationships with both Wendy and Sofia. Over the course of my hospital stay, my mothers death, and Ralph’s unfortunate setback they have equally made their mark.

Wendy has worked up my last nerve. I have been growing ever so tired of the little things she does.

Sofia seems to be getting the same treatment but she is at least bearable. Actually she’s not too bad.

At least with Sofia I’m not hassled about my whereabouts, unlike with Wendy. I do not appreciate having to detail my days’ itinerary for someone. Sofia allows me to be independent which has drawn me back to her.

She’s more than just a bedmate; I may care for Sofia but the fact that she cannot have children renders such emotions obsolete.

I once got Wendy pregnant. She had an abortion the week following the news. What a relief. She is not fit to be a mother. She’s too reckless with her spending, she’s irresponsible. To top it off, she can’t cook. Wendy was becoming more open sexually which is why I keep returning her phone calls and text messages.

Sofia is the opposite. It seems that age is beginning to slow her down despite still only being in her early thirties. She hasn’t lost her looks. In fact she looks younger than when we first met.

She prepares wonderful dinners. She’s loving, warm hearted, she soothed me whilst mourning the death of my mother having experienced such a trauma herself. She’s a joy to watch with kids and knowing she cannot have any of her own saddens me. She refuses to adopt. She considered it at one point, even put her name on the list. But upon learning of the wait time she dismissed the idea entirely.

Sofia and Wendy and complete polar opposite women. One would make a fantastic wife and the other, although still young, has proven her only useful tool happens to lie when she isn’t talking. Or doing much moving.

The proverbial lightbulb grew brighter as I imagined Daisy’s face.

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