Freudian Slips: Save the Last Dance for Me

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Location: Irony, New Jersey, United States

Life takes us many places. It's a box of chocolates and a Hansel and Gretal trail of candy wrappers. I have filmed as an actor in The Happening, Invincible, The Lovely Bones, The Bounty Hunter, The Greek American, Bazookas, Limitless, TV's Its Always Sunny in Philly, Outlaw, New York, The Warrior, The Nail, Game Change, Cold Case, & commercial work includes The Philadelphia Eagles, Septa, Coors, Turbo Tax & Carnival Cruises. Freudian Slips spotlights irony in short story format.

March 05, 2006

Save the Last Dance for Me

It became the kind of day that felt more like an out of body experience. The strong gusts of wind literally move a middle aged man across the parking lot. His broad shoulders harness the load of a bulging briefcase but it is a saddle that grows heavier with each passing year logged on the job. The keen observer can detect stress on his once carefree face. His gait is slower then it once was. He recognizes his untimely disquiet on this anniversary date.
He remembers back to when it all started. Twenty years ago today he was hired. The drive home from work prompts more reflection. He pipes classical music in the cabin and it provides an apropos soundtrack to his memories. He dwells on the mile marker to his career and the road traveled. He tries hard to untangle the memories of a thousand clients. He recalls his rare skin disease and each of the four homes occupied by a rotating procession of wives and children. The flashbacks are much like time spent on Earth. An hour and a half later, he is home before he knows it.
Not twenty steps inside the front door, he finds waiting for him an urgent message to call work. The fire he had been battling with a water pistol finally exploded. He looks up at the clock which reads quarter till Friday night. He tries to stand tall but his eyes momentarily close to seize the irony of the moment. His mile marker lauding twenty consecutive years of service was premature because the work day was not over. He crumples that little piece of paper in his bare hand before trashing it. There was no reason to celebrate because its riddance felt like a twisted blend of damnation and liberation. When work never reaches completion, it is difficult to derive sense of accomplishment. For achievement is a dance with oneself and its song can sound no better than muddled muted attrition.

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11 Comments:

Blogger Merci said...

I'm sorry, Joe, they let a situation ride based on the fact that they left a phone message for you at your home? There are a lot of people on staff who are more than competent (and willing) to handle every situation that arises. It should have been reassigned. This is how we burn staff out, by making them own the problem. Sometimes, it takes a team (sort of a village) to make things happen, but we seem to have forgotten the concept.

9:37 AM  
Anonymous et said...

“For achievement is a dance with oneself and its song can sound like muddled muted attrition.”

I don’t know the story of what happened, but you basically have written this guy's Rx for the recovery of his psyche!

Joe, everyone dances to their own beat. If, others slip into your psyche and disturb your equilibrium, at troubled times, it’s OK! It’s part of growing. You just regroup and forge on with life. Forrest Gump says it best, S-it happens! So, start dancing, again, to your own beat and remember why you do the job you do.

10:18 AM  
Blogger eatmisery said...

Joe, I've been meaning to ask you...why do I have to scroll down so far to see your posts? Is it something on my end or yours? Just wondering.

1:32 PM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

merci,
see the air traffic control tower that never closes.

et,
this guy can barely carry his briefcase and you want him to do a jig on his feet when he is feeling troubled? lol.

eatmisery,
a long time ago in a far away galaxy I messed up my template. others have reproted the same. if I could fix it, I would. it looks good over here with no drop down and is okay for most people. there is a minority that have to inconveniently scroll down. sorry but glad you work around the inconvenience to read my writing.

1:52 PM  
Blogger PaxRomano said...

Ah I see you had a marvelous week at the salt mine as well...

1:53 PM  
Blogger Lindsey said...

Terrible situation but beautifully written about.

5:12 PM  
Anonymous billybob said...

Re: scrolling.
Joe..... I have to scroll if I am using Mozilla-Firefox. If I am using Internet Explorer, everything is fine. May be something about Mozilla Firefox that causes the scrolling problem.

5:48 PM  
Blogger Merci said...

I have to scroll, and I use IE.

6:38 PM  
Blogger Merci said...

Joe-
Just fixed the scrolling problem at my end. I had to go to the "View" drop down menu, then to "Text Size" then had to change to setting to "Smallest." Works fine now.

The default setting for most of us must be "Smaller."

I know you'll have fun with this one.

6:45 PM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

Pax,
mega dittos.

Billybob,
somebody told me it could be a browser issue before. thanks for taking timeout to comment.

Merci,
One never knows what good will come out of a story. this was totally unexpected.

7:17 PM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

linny,
thanks for the compliment. I will share with the effected party.

7:18 PM  

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