Jeff Smith 6 p.m., Feb. 27
- Community Blog
- Do I Dare Belong?
Cut the Check First
I'm driving a Prius hybrid that doesn't belong to me with a man that may or may not be having a heart attack...
It's Thanksgiving Eve and I want to be at home relaxing. I miss my family already and the fact that I am working isn't helping the situation. Two weeks ago I took on a contract job with this attorney helping him work on four briefs. Four briefs in two weeks due at 7:30 this night before turkey.
I arrive at 2 p.m., as per the usual, and surprisingly he is calmer than I thought he would be. This could be due to the fact that I, along with his other assistant, have been busting our asses, working long hours to help him. Granted, I am the one who accepted this position, but flights from San Diego to Kansas are not cheap and there are some events in life that just can't be missed. Among those things are weddings and babies. As it turns out, this has been the year of blessings for both and so my funds call for a boost to compensate my airfare.
I almost quit the third day of working for him. He, like most attorneys I've worked for, has a hard time listening. I don't know if it's because I'm young or female or just that they think I'm incompetent overall, but their listening skills are all comparable, so it may be them. From the time I arrive to about 5:30 we are cruising along at a fair pace. I tell the attorney that in order for us to meet our 6 p.m. deadline, he cannot keep interrupting us with asking inane questions or telling us how slow we are going. He says he is dizzy. I tell him to stop walking in a circle like he is a dog.
Six o'clock, cut, print. All the attorney has to do is take it to the copier and then to FedEx. I feel relieved and I pick up my bag to go home. Then he asks me to go with him. His is my employer at this moment, although I feel like I could quit and not come back. His face is pitiful and somewhere in the pit of my stomach I know if I don't go, he will not meet his deadline.
We arrive at the copy company without any issues but then as we drive to FedEx he begins to have pain in his chest and arm. I don't know if he's being dramatic or having a heart attack. He pulls over and instructs me to drive. It's dark. I don't know where I am or how to navigate his car that makes virutally no indication of whether it's running or not, but somehow he successfully directs me to FedEx. I begin to pack the briefs in their respective boxes and he is yelling. Pacing and yelling and telling me to call the copy company because we don't have the right copies. He is wrong of course.
I try to explain that we have the correct filings and that in four minutes not only is FedEx going to close but he will have missed his deadline. He runs outside and I look to the FedEx employee who air gives me the sign of the cross and calls me an angel. I faux call the copy place. I tell the attorney he has lost his mind. I show him the cover pages to the briefs. He says he is sorry. I tell him to go wait in the car.
The project is over. The deadline has been met. I want to quit, but think about the future flights I want to take. He says, I'll see you Monday with a question in his voice. I say, You'll need to cut a check first.