By Jon Mayren
Fifteen minutes ago, I was supposed to be at work; work being, essentially, the personal assistant to the wife of my CEO. Fifteen minutes ago, I was supposed to have already been at my desk, running through their last-minute changes to their schedules and preparing their itineraries for the day.
Since I’m such a vital part of their daily routine, work begins at their house now, and I meet up with them at 8:00am and then catch a ride down to the actual office in Midtown.
I hate their house at eight in the morning, their house all the way up on the fucking Upper East Side.
At 6:15am, when I leave my house to go to this job, I hate this job, but then I remember, I need this job, so I put on a smile, an all-white teeth smile, to go with their all-white townhouse. I guess they have a sense of humor though. Everything in that house is so goddamn white, except their sinks. Their sinks are all pink. White everything, except for pink sinks; pink Italian marble sinks.
How does one make enough money to have a mostly monochromatic Manhattan house?
My CEO and his wife founded a small investment firm with her inherited wealth. I had started six years ago there as a “Business Coordinator” with hopes of making it to “Sales Associate” and then climbing to “Business Analyst” and from there, well, six years ago, I thought from there, the sky’s the limit.
After six, long, years, I have not made it past Business Coordinator, and now, I guess I’m not even that, really, because I’m just their personal assistant at this point; a personal assistant who is now, the worst cardinal sin of all, late, and stuck on the subway, without cell phone reception, so I can’t even let them know why I’m late. They’re probably snickering right now and saying that I was hungover after a wild night out.
Last night, what did I do? I spent 2.5 hours at the laundromat, because on weekends, it’s too packed with people. I did splurge though and used a facial mask treatment before bed, so I guess that’s pretty rambunctious for a Thursday night. Now, Friday morning, I am dewy-skinned; dewy-skinned and so goddamn late to this goddamn job.
Oh my god, why is the train not moving?
Forty-five minutes ago, I was supposed to have already stopped by Friedman’s to pick up their power breakfast. What are they going to eat now after their 6:00am P90X?
Will my text messages make it through if I raise my hand higher in the air?
Will they be in a mood? And will this cost me my job? This is the third thing I’ve messed up on this week for them.
What are they going to say? How long does unemployment run for now?
Oh great; the AC just went off. Now, I’m hot AND stuck. This is the worst kind of “Summer Friday”. What a shitty metaphor for my life.
My life, which, is consistently not glamourous.
Let me illustrate this by properly introducing myself; my name is Miranda Pockets. My Tinder profile says that I’m 30 years old and from a deep Queens neighborhood that transplants have never heard of, and actually, that’s about all my profile says, because some guys are really fucking weird on the Internet, so it’s better to keep it brief. I have only one picture up and it’s of me in Central Park, on the path by the lake, wearing a nice green sun dress, which is so touristy and cliché, I know, but the late afternoon sunlight frames my freckled skin well, so I thought that was the most flattering foot to set forward. But, I’m not that popular on Tinder, so I may be wrong about that photo. It’s the photo, right? Or is it the flavor text? Maybe I shouldn’t say I’m from Queens. I should say I work in Manhattan, instead.
I don’t know.
I hope it’s just the photo that needs changing. I’d rather rethink the photo than rethink the profile blurb. The profile blurb, to me, is the “personality” aspect, and I like to think I still like who I am; Miranda Pockets, from Pomonok.
I want to believe that I grew up to be somebody I wanted to be, despite not having any of the ‘things’ that I wanted to have by this point, like a career, a family, or social mobility.
Six years. I have been at this job for six years and now I’m worried about losing it because I’m late.
Why did I ever think that I could ever move up from a coordinator role at Dhole Capital Management?
All I am is a pet to them; a lovely little Shih Tzu to the Havishams.
You don’t give pets business accounts to manage. You don’t give pets, promotions. When they say things like, “Oh, isn’t she so clever?”, they say it like I’m the dog who’s learned to bring them the morning paper. Bringing the morning paper in, is not the kind of access I want. This is the top-most level I will reach with them, and it’s the bottom-most level that I want to be at.
I’m 30 years old; is this all that’s out there for me?
I don’t want to start over, but, I think I have to. I can’t stay a lapdog for the rich, forever.
So, let me start over; to re-introduce myself, hi, my name is Miranda Pockets. I grew up in Pomonok, Queens, which is south of Flushing, right by the bowling lane. I turned 30 years old last week. I went out for a fancy lunch by myself because I didn’t want to see my friends and their kids. I have no real career prospects right now, but I’ve got both eyes open for opportunity. I know that sounds like an Instagram mantra, but I have no idea what I’m doing anymore, and TV has taught me that hope is a good thing to hold on to.
So, I’m holding on to hope that tomorrow is better than today.
And this is what I decide for myself, right now.
Jon Mayren pushes a personal agenda of anonymity, because Jon Mayren feels that in the case of Jon Mayren’s work, the reader is best served in the experience by starting with a clean palate.
The image in this piece was taken at The High Line, in New York City, in 2017, and is titled Pause.
For inquiries, please write to: writerJMayren (at) gmail (dot) com.