Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Dear Ms. Giaofrano

"IT Solutions Center, can I get your name and NKU ID?"

Dear Ms. Giaofrano,

When I picked up the phone today at work and heard your voice, I knew this would be a long call. You greeted me with a screeching "OH! Finally! A human voice!" and I knew your problem would not easily be resolved. I begrudgingly minimized the article I was reading before you called and listened to you mindlessly babble on about how computers are out to get you for the next 5 minutes.

Ms. Giaofrano, I want to help you with your problem once you stop talking.
Please, Ms. Giaofrano...
Ok? Now what seems to be the problem?

Uh huh.
Sure, I can help you with that once I just get the...
No Ms. Giaofrano, I do not have a "degree in computers".
Ms. Giaofrano, when you yell at your dogs, can you please take the receiver away from your mouth?

Joe, the guy at work with one arm,
What? I mean he openly talks about it, it's ok.
Ok, so Joe walks by pushing a cart with a huge load of printer paper, nearly touching the ceiling. He's trying to compensate for that arm. No, I'm not trying to be mean, I'm just stating the facts. I'm the omniscient narrator here, that's what he's thinking when he decides to push a cart with far too many boxes of paper.
Anyways, without thinking much about it, I notice out of the corner of my eye that the cart is wobbling quite a bit. Too much in fact. Because one of the 40 lb boxes falls off onto my head as he's passing.

After frantic apologies, Joe leaves with the cart, still wobbling along. I wince as I rub the back of my head. Ms. Giaofrano's high-pitched voice still ringing inside the walls of my brain.
She's still on the line. And she's still talking about how when she was at NKU for undergrad, it was much easier to register for classes. "No computers necessary. Just cawl the numba. Then they set ya up with what you want."
Ms. Giaofrano, what you need is to open the internet. It's that little blue icon on your desktop. No Ms. Giaofrano, its the desktop on your computer. Then go to the NKU homepage and click the register for classes link.
You haven't actually applied to NKU yet?

Ms. Giaofrano, listen. You're obviously going back to school at the ripe age of what? 55? 60? because that 20/20 special on the Recession "scared some sense in to ya". You're scared that the new manager at the florist is going to get rid of the old faces to replace them with all of the bright energetic college students out job-hunting.


I know you're scared Ms. Giaofrano, I'm kind of scared myself. This new era is daunting. It's as scary for me as it is for you. We both worry about getting lost among the sea of faces, of not expanding to our full potential. You worry about understanding computers, I worry about understanding age.
Ms. Giaofrano, how much do things change? Do you lose your childhood dreams with each new year? I don't want to grow to be jaded Ms. Giaofrano.
I know Joe made it this far. And look at him, he still find some way to try to compensate for that arm he doesn't have. I always ask him if he needs help, but he always says, "Ah, yeah, well you know I can probably get this. Thanks though!"
The next 5 minutes he spends half squatting, half walking, bent back trying to hold all of the files at once, beads of sweat forming at his temples.
As unnecessary as it is, I kinda admire that about him. He's always pushing himself like that. Taking unnecessary risks.
Hm, I never realized that before...

Oh no, I'm still here Ms. Giaofrano.
Has the software finished downloading yet?
Not yet? ah gotcha. Ok, we'll wait.

You know, I also know that you're scared about finding that certain someone. That nice man who used to come in to get flowers for when he visited his ill mother used to come in all the time, and you used to have the nicest chats with him.
But now he never comes in anymore.
I know, I'm worried myself. I can never seem to set my sights on the one that ends up working out. And in a weird way, it's comforting to know that this stuff isn't always resolved in our younger years. I'll have that many more years to gain wisdom from the different women I encounter. A patchwork of different encounters, faces I know on that level.
No Ms. Giaofrano, I'm not advocating sleeping around!
Ok well...
Yeah but...
You're right Ms. Giaofrano. I can't get too content in thinking that way or I'll never settle for just one.

It's done downloading?
Ah ok great, now click the "Finish" key.
No, that doesn't mean we're finished completely...
Well we...
I still have to have you...

Ms. Giaofrano, I think we'll be just fine.

I know you're scared Ms. Giaofrano, but computers aren't so hard once you get the hang of them.


redneckzilla said...

This is probably one of the finest blogs you've written.

You're gr8

Austin said...

I do believe my writing idol just complimented my writing.


L. Laws said...

i like this.
yes, i was skimmingly blog stalking you.