Once upon a time, after Thanksgiving break, or holidays, however you see it, I arrive at work to find my co-workers going about normal Tuesday stuff. Everything is going great and right on schedule.
Around noon, one of my coworkers steps out of her office and while standing next to my desk, strikes up a conversations out of the blue, and this is how it goes: “I know a song that gets on everybody’s nerves, ever…” Sorry, force of habit. This is really how our conversations went:
“Hey Nathalie, guess what?!”
(With an overly exaggerated excited tone of voice and smile) “What?”
“I got married!!!”
Now you must understand we are talking about a career-focused woman, very mature and serious who loosely referred to her boyfriend as “dude”. So upon hearing the news, my natural reaction was as follows:
“No, you didn’t.”
“Um, I did. I’m married now. I got married on Wednesday before Thanksgiving.”
“No way… Is she serious y’all? Did she really?” (My other co-worker stares wide-eyed and as if saying, “Don’t ask me, I’m not the one that eloped”)
“Ohhh… well congratulations hehe. Great way to get the family together, I suppose.”
“Oh no, we just went down to the courthouse. We didn’t tell our families. It was an intimate event; just us two.”
“Well now, umm. Congrats again.”
This is when I proceed to turn around quickly in my chair and type gibberish onto an e-mail just to simulate I am far too busy working to deal with the ginormous foot in my mouth. I guess a wedding gift would be appropriate as a peace treaty. I’m going to bet that’d be better than raising a white flag with the word “Sorry” on it.
Next day Wednesday. The new Mrs is absent from work all morning. My other co-worker asks if I have heard from the new Mrs because it is very uncharacteristic of her to miss work and not call. I deny any knowledge of her whereabouts or happenings of the previous day that might have led her to miss work this day. But, naturally, I’m thinking, “Oh boy, I did it now! She’s probably sitting a home eating a gallon of ice cream saying, ‘I can’t believe Nat didn’t believe that I’m married. I’m such a horrible, terrible wife.’ What have I done?!” At that instant I hear my other co-worker talking to the new Mrs on the telephone and saying, “Oh, your doctor’s appointment ran late? Ok, no problem. See you here in a bit.” I still hadn’t put two and two together, all I’m thinking is: Phew! One less thing on my conscience.
She finally arrives, around noon, and strikes up a conversation with our Shipping & Receiving lady in the office right next to mine. (I just realized, noon to me is like midnight to Cinderella; all my charm disappears.) Now, I have a report that needs to be turned in to Shipping & Receiving, but I do not want to interrupt and create yet another awkward office moment. But, I need to turn this thing in. So, I knock twice on the door and slip my arm in just enough to drop the report in the lady’s inbox without having to enter her office and forcibly make eye contact with the new Mrs. But, apparently, the new Mrs is a glutton for awkwardness. She summons me into their discussion with the words, “Hey Nathalie, take a look at there!” From afar they look like black and white photographs. Can you guess of what? Because my light bulb had not turned on yet at that point. I’m thinking, “You know? She’s aware I’m a photographer and really have a passion and good eye for this. I’m sure she just wants my expert opinion about her ph- sonogram?!?!” With a deer in the headlights look I instinctively ask the new Mrs:
“Say, who’s peanut is this?”
“Um, well, I’m pregnant. So, that’s my baby, uh, peanut. Yes, my baby”
I blankly stare and the two visibly excited women. It’s hard to tell when she’s serious and when she’s kidding! She’s got that dry sense of humor that extremely difficult to sense! After about three seconds of eerie silence, I take a gamble and accept this as truth as well. Correct!
I speed walk away knowing I will probably be the only co-worker not invited to her baby shower.
“The Most Interesting Woman in the World”