TO THE PAIN

TO THE PAIN

One of the best feelings you can have playing tennis is to have your boyfriend tell you you remind him of John McEnroe. One of the worst feelings is to realize he’s referring to the temper, not the tennis.

The finals of my tennis league took place the other day, and I’ll admit it wasn’t exactly my best night. My playing was okay, but my attitude could’ve used some improvement. Not to make excuses, but I was operating on a shortage of sleep and a surplus of exhaustion. I was ready to collapse even before the first match began, and I kept thinking I was like Westley at the end of The Princess Bride, barely alive and knowing my only hope was to summon whatever strength I had and use it to psyche out my foe, then collapse immediately afterward and reveal how close to death I had been all along.

So, in my crankiness and competitiveness, I wasn’t exactly on my best behavior. Still, I have a firm belief that if you’re going to play tennis in a league, let alone in the playoffs, and let alone against me, you should know how to score a FREAKING TIEBREAKER, DAMMIT! And you shouldn’t doubt me when I explain it to you. And whatever you do, you definitely shouldn’t proceed to beat me afterward. In the concurrence of all these events, you are likely to see me at my worst.

Thankfully, me at my worst has a tendency to bring out Drew at his best. Drew at his best, in this case, meant the emergence of Catty Drew. I’m a firm believer that Catty Anyone is best enjoyed in small doses, but Catty Drew only seems to visit when I need him most. So after I acted like a five-year-old boy on the court, we cheered ourselves up by acting like thirteen-year-old girls and making fun of all the people who beat me and made me sad. If there’s one thing I learned from Mean Girls, it’s that being cruel to people is hilarious!

So to the guy I snapped at for trying to take a Gatorade break during our tiebreaker, I sincerely apologize, you annoying, horse-faced goon. I should’ve let you take the break, even though it’s technically against the rules and even though you look about ten years older than you tell people you are. To the guy I was trying to bring down by telling everyone what the weaknesses of his game were, I’m sorry, I should’ve been more mature about losing to you even though you are snotty and rude and also ugly, and even though you just have one trick shot and no real game and you smell like moldy bread. Really, I should’ve kept my bitterness to myself, and for not doing so, I was very, very wrong.

And to the guy who won the championship, my heartfelt congratulations. It was well-earned, and I hope it compensates for the fact that you have the complexion of a sixteen-year-old who works the deep fryer at McDonald’s and the gut of someone who’s had too many Big Macs. I’m sorry there was no one there to congratulate you as you accepted your prize, but I hope you slept next to that $25 gift certificate to the Racquet Shop that night and that it kept you warm and told you how proud it was of you. You deserve nothing less.

I’ll see you all next season. And really, guys, no hard feelings.

STRANGE SENSATION

STRANGE SENSATION

Yesterday, my boss got on my case (translation: sent a rambling email/manifesto which was later followed up with a red-faced verbal tirade) about filing the Mountain of Unfileable Stuff (MOUS) which had built up in the general vicinity of my desk. Much of it dates to before I started working there; most of it is virtually impossible to classify in any rational way; none of it will ever be of any use to anyone ever again. The paperwork in the MOUS is in no way related to actual, valuable paperwork, which I always file promptly and appropriately. I’m not saying I like having a MOUS on my desk, but I had made my peace with it, and we had coexisted for quite a long time, the MOUS and me.

Today, the boss was out of the office all day, and it was made abundantly clear to me that it would be wise of me to use my time to attend to the MOUS. So I spent the morning goofing off and figuring that I’d just dump the MOUS in a drawer somewhere at the end of the day, and he’d never know the difference. After I got back from lunch, I picked up the MOUS to dispose of it, and a strange feeling came over me.

I glanced at the paper on top of the MOUS. I wasn’t familiar with anything about it, but I thought of a place I could put it. It’s not a place anyone would ever look for it if they needed to find it, but in its own way, it made sense to me. I started flipping through the rest of the MOUS, sorting the crap into slightly more specific kinds of crap. Then, I made new files for each kind of crap. It didn’t even take that long. Soon, the MOUS had disappeared.

And another strange feeling came over me. Pride. For the first time in as long as I could remember, I had taken pride in my work. And it felt really good. I stared at the empty wire bin where the MOUS had been and realized that I had accomplished a task, a task that had been unthinkable just a few hours earlier.

I just hope nobody needs that crap anytime soon, because I don’t remember where the hell I put it.

WORTH GOING CUT-AND-PASTE CRAZY FOR

WORTH GOING CUT-AND-PASTE CRAZY FOR

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Defamer