Saturday, February 19, 2005

Where everybody knows your name...

Most Friday's after second watch agents relieve myself and my colleagues, most of first watch retires to Bailey's, a nearby water hole where the tensions of the day are drowned in cheap pitchers of even cheaper beer. I'm normally not much of a bar person unless I'm in MN but Bailey's is low key enough for even this guy to be able to relax. Today, most of first watch showed up, along with wives and girlfriends and boyfriends and significant others. We were also graced with the presence of agents from M and OD Units. Good people but I found myself starting to worry there was going to be a crowd...people do talk you know.

One jukebox, three pool tables, and a golden tee golf game do not make for an awesome place but at 4pm on a Friday anyplace that is not packed to the gills with either the dregs of society or college kids looking to booze it up on the cheap is ok with me.

Anyway, myself and the other agents discussed ongoing problems with the "guests" of the agency, as well as continuing problems with policy and procedure being handed down from, "the illuminati". It's odd how my colleagues and I find relaxation after work discussing the very things that keep us tightly wrapped all day.

I normally try to change the subject. When I am not at work, I find it counterproductive to be talking about work. However when I attempted the change in conversation today, I was again questioned about my single status, lack of girlfriend and lack of dates. This has been known to shut me up very quickly. Gratefully today when the focus was turned to me, I was in the middle of a mouthful of Duff Light. I quickly jumped into crisis mode and answered and crushed all questions directed at me. "So Jim, why don't you have a girlfriend? You need to get laid and relax." had I not known this question was coming from one of the agents I work with, who is trying to date a good friend of mine from OD Unit, I might have come up with something better than, "Ladies are not necessarily into bigger guys like myself. What's on the inside doesn't make up for the fact I get paid to throw my weight around." I left it at that. I was beginning to get uncomfortable and wanted to drop it. Somehow she got the message and let me enjoy my beer in peace.

We all talked more about work...and then about policy and then work. People jibber-jabbered as I drained my glass once and again. I was stuck in my head and thinking of why I am alone. The correct answer is the one you never want to hear. After 5 or 6 pitchers, the agents left, decided to go for diner and bowling. Everyone was surprised and disappointed when I declined. It's nice to be liked & appreciated for a sense of humor but I just wanted to go home and have some me time. My boss / best friend is not working tomorrow and therefore, understood my logic. However others thought I was somewhat of a, "pussy" for not wanting to go out on a school night.


Seeing how it is Lent I did the good little catholic boy thing of guilt and self-pity and left. I had my Friday Lenten meal, sans meat, drank some diet root beer and then took a nap in hopes of sobering up quickly. I awoke around 11pm, checked email and figured I'd post. Hopefully tomorrow is less stressful and the one from MN who got away will see the error of her ways and contact me without being so gd vague.

Happy Belated Valentine's Day H.

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