The Interview of a Lifetime
Written by: Chuck gee
Damn, it’s another boring hot day at the office. There are only three of us that work here. The other two writers are just that. “Writers”. I am both a journalist and a writer. Which, in pay means absolutely nothing, but it’s an extra title bar under my name in the magazine….The other two writers that I refer to are “Cling and Clang”. I got those names from an old Saturday morning cartoon show I used to watch as a kid. The show “H R Puff N Stuff” had on it a somewhat evil witch and her two assistants. But her two assistants were always bumbling and messing everything up. Like these two clowns that work here. They are fresh out of college and appear for all practical points and preferences ready for that big ole rat race called “Life”. Do I sound a little cenacle here? I guess I do but let’ em get a few years in them and a couple of mortgage payments and maybe a divorce or two and then let’s see if they still bounce in here everyday with their “bells on”. I have done it all, seen it all and of course, been thru it all, mortgages and divorces. All I need now is a hot cup of Joe in the morning and one in the evening when I go home to… “ME”, “me” has a nice ring to it you think?…The silence is gladly welcome and appreciated..Its official and I don’t need any fanfare, any parades or major announcements… I have stepped out of the race, off the fast train, next stop conductor…to slow ‘ville …No more of that fast life for me. I’m not beaten down or anything like that. HELL NO!… Just not interested in the “white picket fence and fine trimmed yard anymore”. Besides that, it’s all a fantasy anyway. Make believe and made up by Hollywood I guess? … And I especially don’t miss a nagging old lady waiting to not greet me at the door and asking how my day was but to have her tell me how lousy her day was. How lousy can it be? Just sitting at home watching soap operas? How hard could that of been? I finally left her and let her keep the white picket fence and the fine trimmed yard. She was soo proud of herself that I let her have the payments that went with everything too. Good Riddance…… .
And Sitting here at my desk I am surround by the countless pinging of typewriter noises. All day long I hear Tap.Tap.Tap, DING!!DING!!BRRRRWW!!! goes the margin bell and then the roller travels back to the left side of the paper…Well, it used to, the roller traveling back to the left side of the paper again that is..Let me explain… You see, I work for a small monthly editorial magazine called E-Interview Monthly” We run stories on people that are mainly “showcased” on the local evening news. We’ve interviewed everyone from the guy that picks up the weekly trash to the old man named Wilbur that’s 85 and sits outside of his apartment everyday and counts cars that go by…Well, he only counts the ones made before 1985 for some strange reason. Maybe it has something to do with his age. But anyway, you can bet if the weather is nice outside he’ll be sitting in an old white rusted metal patio chair under that tall old shade tree in the yard with his pad and pencil checking away…. “74 chrysler..Check!..”84 Buick..check!..and so and so on.. ….
Now back to the endless sound of typewriter noises…Hell, we don’t even have typewriters. This place never did. No one uses them anymore, haven’t for years, if not in freak’n decades. They have long since gone the way of the dinosaur or the home cooked meal. Speaking of home cooked meals, don’t even get me started on that. My ex old lady thought a home cooked meal consisted of “take out”. Take out that I had to pick up after work. ”Honey, I’m hungry” she would call and say right as I was leaving for work just about everyday. I never got soo tired of such an over used phrase in my life, it ranks up there right beside “I Do”…….We should have never bought a stove…I gave her the damn thing in the divorce along with the house that she soo cherished. I bet she still hasn’t used the damn thing, probably still looks brand new… But anyway, back to my story, now where was I? Oh I remember, I was telling about the some of stories we’ve run…In fact, we ran a story one time on a local guy here that used to repair typewriters. His name was Buzby…He was a decorated veteran from WWII. And He blamed everything on the Japanese. Even the fall of the typewriter. He said he helped kicked their ass on the island of Ima Jima but then they came back years later and wiped us out with pencils and took away our typewriters and his livelihood while the United States Government slept and let them do it. Oh, and I almost forgot…He also blamed the “Russians”. Odd how the Cold War affected the people of that era. He never trusted anybody. Not even the Country he helped to defend.” Their watching us”, he would whisper when I interviewed him. “Watch what you say” he would whisper too pointing to the old dial phone like it was a secret government listening device. I think maybe all that typewriter ink must of went to his head and made him a little more than just crazy…. He finally had to learn how to repair VCR’s after the typewriter market collapsed…Sad thing is, the VCR market collapsed soon after that….I didn’t have the heart to tell him that it was only due to technology and that was beating all of us and not some foreign country. And everyone would eventually be passed over by it. Him, me, and you. Think about it. We can’t keep up with this pace forever. Soon we’ll be taking orders from robots!! We all eventually will grow tired of the rat race and settle down to repairing some small piece of machinery like an old lawnmower to pass the time or we’ll end up counting cars on the highway as they pass by. It’s unavoidable. …He died before the VCR market totally collapsed. I guess the Government finally did get him…..
As you can see, I tend to rattle on. I try to keep it to the point but as a former inspiring Journalist that never got to write for any of the “big time” newspapers, I have a little more freedom to carry on with my words…They used to call it “ADD”…I call it being a“ Word Smith”. Words are my trade so to speak. I seldom have “writer’s block” I could write for days, I write so much that the Editor here has to cut up my interviews. I would rather write too much than not enough. Unlike Cling and Clang, he has never asked me for a rewrite with more words……..Now back to the typewriter noises again for the third time….We here at the “E-Interview Monthly” are so hi-tech that the editor has us to program our laptops to sound like those old typewriters..Seems he grew up watching the old Superman sitcom in reruns and dreamed of being an editor in chief like Perry White. Looks like he got his dream. I have to ask this here though. “Why in the hell did all my dreams have to crash and burn then”?? I watched old reruns too. I even wanted to rescue Holly Marshall from the “Land of the Lost”. Is that such a bad thing? I even wrote her a fan letter as a kid and never got a response. I did however get a nice 8x 10 photo of the New Mickey Mouse Club Mousekateers when I wrote them. So there!!! GAME POINT!!…I wanted to be the hero too!!… So anyway back to my other point. We pacify the old man by using the old typewriter program. So I have to listen to Tap.Tap.Tap, DING!!DING!!BRRRRWW!!!..I guess it also tells him that work is being done and the next edition will be out right on time….But I can picture him sitting in front of the old boob tube as a fat little kid that ran all the way home from school each and every day to get a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and sit his happy ass down….Wonder why he didn’t pick Superman out as a hero instead of picking Perry White the editor of the “The Daily Planet”?. He must have been setting some realistic goals early on in life….I guess I missed that memo…..make a note of that, look for early signs of life memo’s in the next life..
I also forgot to tell you my boss’s name..Well….He has many names; it really depends on how I feel or what day it is. But his real name Mr. Ed….Ed Fulkerson. He’s a nice guy for the most part unless a deadline is fast approaching and the two other so called writers are lagging behind on their assignments. Cling and Clang the wonder twins!!..He can count on me though. I may be a little older, well a lot older than the other two guys but I can crank out stories faster than Superman!!