Fragments From a Friday Night Civics Lesson

…as spoken by myself (and others)—sort of—this past weekend:


Texted to my boss (whom I’m representing): “Hi, Boss-Lady. I’m wandering around City Hall, drinking a Jack & Coke.”

My friend the programmer, who gave me the booze (in response): “You realize that you’re not the first person to drink alcohol in this building, right?”

Me: “I do now. Hey, is that the Chamber of Commerce CEO over there?”

My friend the programmer: “That’s her all right. Well, gotta go…”


The Chamber CEO: “Oh, you made it. Thanks for coming.”

Me: “Yep. Now introduce me to everyone. My one friend left and now you’re the only person I know here.”

The Chamber CEO (struggling with P.A. equipment from a presentation I missed): “Ow, my shins! What? Oh, uh—maybe we can meet the Mayor later.”

Me: “Sweet. Hey, do you need a hand with that?”

The Chamber CEO: “Um, I guess so. Help me get this stuff up to our new office.”

Me: “No problem. My, what a cute little speaker you have.”

The Chamber CEO: “Okay. Well, the elevator’s over there. The office should still be open. Don’t get caught by the security guard. She’s only four feet tall, but she’ll flip you for real.”

Me: “Righto.”


My boss (belatedly texting in response): “You’re having fun without me?”


The ParaLegal: “What is it that you do?”

Me: “I’m a code monkey.”

The ParaLegal: “Very interesting!”


Me (yelling across the room): “Hey! I’ve got something to say to YOU.”

The Print Rep: “Who, me? Why?”

Me: “You never called me about doing design work. You’ve now joined the long line of people in my life who said they’d call and then never did.”

The Print Rep: “Oh.” [To the Chamber CEO]: “Who’s that guy?”

The Chamber CEO: “Just one of my marketing people.”


Me: “What’s this charming yellow concoction?”

The Barista: “A sample of Limoncello. It’s great for those occasions when—”

Me (downing it): “Can I get a Newcastle? Thanks.”


The ParaLegal: “What is it that you do again?”

Me: “I draw pictures all day.”

The ParaLegal: “Very interesting!”


Me (to the Mayor, a one-time urban planner now selling his book about business and government): “Pleased to meet you, Mr. Mayor. I’d love to buy a copy. You know, I wanted to be an urban planner once myself.”

The Mayor (looking at my business card): “But instead you ended up building websites? What happened?”

Me (putting down my beer): “Oh, well, I bombed an urban planning class in college 14 years ago. Worked my ass off and still got a D.”

The Mayor: “So…that’s what pushed you into web design?”

Me: “No, actually I became an English major. I write really well, actually—better than any other web developer you’ll ever meet.”

The Mayor: “I see. Well….the books are twenty bucks.”

Me: “I’ll…be right back.”


The Mayor’s Assistant: “Hey, isn’t that my Newcastle?”

Me: “Uh…I thought it was mine.”

The Mayor’s Assistant: “Well, if you drank from it, then it’s yours now. It’s just that I’m getting over a cold, so…”

Me: “Well…crap.”

The Chamber CEO (pointing us at the camera): “Smile for the newsletter photo!”

The Photographer: “Say ‘cheese,’ guys.”


The Featured Speaker: “Dude, don’t be a wallflower. There are women dancing over here!”

Me (looking up from my iPhone): “Uh, okay.” [I sling off my leather jacket and slither across the dance floor.]

The Featured Speaker (and his Female Entourage): “Yeah!” [and then when I stop abruptly near the DJ] “No, don’t stop!”

Me (to the Featured Speaker): “Sorry, man. I have one set of moves, and that was pretty much it.”

The Featured Speaker (to the Chamber CEO): “How you doin’?”


The ParaLegal: “What is it that you do again?”

Me (soberly): “I lose drinking games.”

The ParaLegal: “Very interesting!”


The EmCee: “And third prize in the raffle goes to…that guy!”

Me: “Hey, nice—an island cruise. Should I go to, like, Tahiti or something?”

The EmCee: “Um…it’s for the Channel Islands.”

Me: “It is?”

The EmCee: “Sorry dude. Take it up with the CEO if it’s a problem, okay?”

Me: “I think she bailed.”

The EmCee: “Bummer.”


The ParaLegal: “What is it that you do again?”

Me: “Damn, why did I have to park three blocks away?”