Saturday, March 20, 2010

Friday Comes a Day Late

I would like to tell you that I did not post a fiction story yesterday because I wanted to make it so excellent that I simply ran out of time. However, I would also like to tell you the truth; I totally forgot. Therefore, happy belated Fiction Friday!

The huge cyclone of activities that constituted my life for the past few weeks swung me into the San Francisco International Airport in the midst of a hazy early September afternoon. Everything was spinning at 100 miles an hour and threatened to throw me off if I let go at any point. After the interview, which frighteningly focused on my many shortcomings, I had returned home to the apartment I was renting above the garage of a very friendly retired couple. No sooner had I opened my door than my cell phone began to vibrate in my overcoat pocket. I quickly pulled out and answered. I had some sense of false hope that my interview had been so stunning and flawless that even within the time of my approximately 6 hour flight back to BWI they had decided that I was the best candidate out of the pool. However, reality hit when it was only my friend Mike asking if I was home yet. It's always good to talk to friends, but there are those times when you would rather make sure that your phone line is open. Therefore, I quickly invited him over to my place to ensure that if this call from San Francisco came in, I would be ready and readily available.

When Mike came over, we did what we always did; we watched the Orioles. We were aware that they had not been any good for a while, but when you grew up around Baltimore in the 90s, there is no way you could not be a Cal Ripken fan and therefore an Orioles fan. Since this was the end of August, we both knew that this game wouldn't change much; it is hard to make up a 15 game deficit when you only have four games left. Nevertheless, being superstitious baseball fans, we had to watch the Orioles on the same beat-up brown leather couch, pop and consume the same amount of Orville Redenbacher's between the third and seventh innings on the second Thursday of every month if the Orioles were going to have any prayer of toppling the Oakland Athletics that night.

I must admit that I had a hard time enjoying the game realizing that a call could come at any time despite the fact that it was late in the evening. Mike tried to loosen me up, but quite frankly I refused to release my tension. If you're not tightly wound, small details will slip by. The down side to being tightly wound is the fact that often times you are setting yourself up for disappointment. If every moment seems to be a defining moment, you're bound to be let down at some time. That night was one of those nights; no call came, and I went to bed wondering if that interview committee of five people would make up their minds about what it seemed to me to be all I wanted in a career.

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