So my new job requires that I dress a bit more like a grown up, no more scooting into work fifteen minutes late with my hair wet and my clothes in a state of disarray. I’ll wait while you get over your shock. I have always day dreamed about being one of those women who always have it together: the right accessories, the flawless make-up and the stylish hair. I would take just one of those, but the truth is that when faced with a closet of stuff I always reach for the soft, frayed t-shirt that hugs my body in a familiar way, the jeans that hit the tops of my tennis shoes just right and maybe, just maybe a pair of earrings that make me feel a little dressed up.
This morning I knew I had to do it right, there would be Senators and Assembly People, CEO’s and Task Force leaders. I also had appointments with several key people at the company I recently joined. I showered knowing exactly what I would wear:
I bought it for myself at a Babystyle near Seattle over the holidays. I had set out the nylons I would wear with it- a sassy diamond pattern, and my current favorite earrings. Everything went perfectly, no runs or snags in the hose, no breakfast smears on the dress, and my hair actually slipped behind my ear and whispered, “Shh, don’t say or do anything, we are just going to fall into place and look exactly the way you want.”
Avery actually galloped over to me, rubbed my leg and looked up at me with breathless excitement, “‘S ‘dat, mama? ‘S ‘dat?’
I laughed and told her how her sister had the same reaction one spring day to my freshly shaved legs.
“Mama, made an effort baby, she made an effort.”
Anyway, the story. The title: Did he just…
I had a meeting shortly after getting to work. It was with a person in the finance department and let’s just say me and numbers, we ain’t too tight. I figured I’d meet him once and kind of be done. I waited in the lobby for quite some time, when he finally called me in I was primed for his numbers talk, anything to stop reading the Patient Bill of Rights poster on the wall.
We sat down and began a conversation that could best be described as fits and starts, through it all I smiled, relieved to not be sitting with jeans puddling at my ankles and a not quite long enough shirt gripped between chapped fingers, cuticles ravaged, because somehow wearing that dress and perfect accessories compensated for not following much of what he said.
I remember at one point suggesting he send me an email as other things came to mind. It was really an exit strategy on my part. He said he wasn’t too keen on email. I nodded, trying to appear deeply interested and said that sometimes I relied a bit too heavily on it. He sat forward in his chair and confessed to not being good with email. Then he said, “I’m always looking for someone to help me with email. A tutor. A private teacher.”
I laughed. “Well, I don’t know that I’m a great teacher as far as the organization of email goes. It’s more a chaos I enjoy losing myself in than anything I have a real mastery of.”
He leaned in closer, “I could call you. Or you could call me. We could talk again if you’d like.”
“Oh, of course. I think that’s a great idea.” Barreling forward somewhat oblivious, I asked a few questions and after a bit of back and forth we wrapped things up. I stood up to leave and shook his hand. We walked toward the lobby and I was already thinking about making a call on the way back to my office.
“Yes?” I asked turning around.
“Amanda, you can call me. Maybe you could come around again. We could, ah, we could talk about the, well, anything really. We could talk about whatever you like… If you’d like. Would you like that?
“Sure, I’ll give you a call in a few weeks.”
“Great, great Amanda. I’ll talk to you then,” as I walked to the door he watched me, standing in the middle of the hallway. Opening the doors and stepping out into the frigid January air it hit me…Oh. My. God. He hit on me. The numbers guy totally hit on me in all my 6+ months pregnant glory, granted, the silky belly was hidden beneath a trench coat, but still…