Tuesday, day two - I arrive at the office bright and early, but don't make it to the safety of my cube before today's volley starts.
There she is sniffling at her desk, her mascara pooling under her eyes like a linebacker ready to make the play, the Trauma Queen. I try to sneak by praying my business attire camouflage will cover me, no luck I am spotted.
"I am just having the worst day of my life!" She sobs and interprets my furtive looks for escape as a sign of interest and continues on. "Dave was out all night with the guys and came home smelling of smoke and perfume." I chuckle to myself in my head, come on, like I would fall for that trap so easily. There is no safe comment. If I bash Dave she defends him, if I try to come up with another reason he came in smelling like another woman she continues adding evidence of his deception.
Seeing her strike miss its mark she reloads and aims again. "He swears there is nothing going on, that it was some girl that was with Scott." I manage to restrain myself from pointing out the obvious. Scott spends more time getting ready than any woman I know, he loves to shop, he loves watching football but doesn't know a thing about the actual game- he hasn't dated a woman in the last 3 years. I think he bypassed metro-sexual and is playing for the other team. I go for the sympathetic smile and brace myself for what is to come. For the trauma queen is no amateur, she is a seasoned soldier in this war and knows just a little drama isn't enough, ah and here it comes.
"And I was so upset thinking about it that I tripped and fell and I think I sprained my ankle- does it look swollen to you?" Oh man, I hope she did it at home or we will be subjected to another "be safe in the workplace" meeting. We are accountants for God's sake not nuclear plant workers. How many physical dangers could we possibly face daily? Beheading by paper cut? Death by stapler?
I spy my chance for an escape in another unsuspecting co-worker just walking in the door. "I don't know for sure, but I think Jim sprained his ankle last month, Hey Jim, come here for a second." Ah the green soldier, the new guy blindly comes over as I make my escape. Yea, I feel a twinge of guilt because you are never supposed to leave another soldier behind, but hey all is fair in love and war. This is war and I have just won another battle at the office.