As we left work on the elevator last evening, a writer/director/man from my department asked me, “how are you?”
I explained to him generic details of my day like how, “I was busy”, and “I answered emails”, and “I had a bacon/chicken/melted cheddar cheese sandwich for lunch”. He nodded his head in acknowledgement.
I continued talking. “But overall, I’ve been feeling a bit,” I paused. With my hand on my chin, I leaned against the elevator wall. My mind wandered to the topic of love, and how I recently can compare it to free falling from a bed, landing on a sharpened sword that penetrates your heart. As I was about to utter the words, “tragically depressed”, the elevator doors opened and a elderly gentleman hobbled on. I ceased speaking.
“Were you about to say something really serious?” my writer friend asked me. He smiled. We both started to laugh.
With the prompt “how are you”, I almost blindly spilled deep dark feelings. I literally [as opposed to figuratively] zoned out and wasn’t paying attention to what I was saying. I blabbered like an unstable therapy patient.
This morning I rode the elevator with the VP of our department, Jack. [this name was made up for security purposes] He saw I was holding a Fedex envelope and said, “FedEx delivery?”
“Yes,” I said. I then felt the compulsion to explain the entire story of what I was mailing. “My college housemate, MaryEllen–who lived with us senior year– she didn’t live with us junior year because she went abroad to France the Fall semester and I went away to Prague for the Spring semester so she had to live with strangers.” Jack looked at the elevator numbers to see what floor we were at.
“Well, we were supposed to go to a concert together. Have you heard of The Airborne Toxic Event? I told her, ‘MaryEllen you better get tickets the day they go on sale. That’s when I’m getting my ticket”, I said. I even wrote it in my calendar. Jack smiled with his arms crossed.
“So the day comes to buy the ticket and MaryEllen forgets. The next day, the concert is sold out. Can you believe it? Now I’m stuck going alone to a concert. Not that I really mind going alone. I’m actually going to a Noah and The Whale concert alone next week. Have you hears of Noah and The Whale? MaryEllen and I ended up buying two tickets for the next day’s concert and I therefore had to sell my lone ticket on StubHub.”
“Was it hard to sell?” he asked as the doors opened.
“Not at all!” I told him, holding out my hand for a “high five”. He gave me a high five with his pointer finger.
These scenarios make me realize I am the type of person that likes to share information about herself. I like to get people’s opinions on certain subjects. I like to discuss how people feel. This stems from receiving a Jesuit college education. In a mentor group sophomore year, each student was encouraged to talk for five hours straight about how they feel when they wake up in the morning.