While waiting for the bartender to finish with the other people and serve me, I take a look around the conference hall. It is surprising how many people are here, but it is not surprising that the majority of them are pricks.
I wonder. Maybe Tim is right, maybe I should just tell them what I think and then quit. Although. It might in fact be easier to just kill them and maybe I get better co-workers. I smile to myself, enjoying my cruel jest.
Leaning over the bar to see who is holding the bartender up, I see it is my boss, he is leaned in quite close explaining something to the bartender. After another few seconds, the barkeep heads straight for me, he probably noticed I was getting agitated.
"Another bottle sir?" He asks and as I nod yes he heads straight back to my boss and tells him something at which my boss then also just nods and turns to head back to his table.
"Hey." I rush to my bosses side. "What was that about?" I ask, without explanation. He should know by now I am not stupid so no explanation needed. "Oh, nothing. I was just asking him to check that you don't overdo it, remember you still have a speech to give. I was just looking out for you that is all." He answers nonchalantly. I just can't like this guy, I think.
I don't want to cause a scene so avoid the urge to knock him the fuck out or at the very least say that I want to knock him the fuck out, I reply diplomatically. "Fair enough, I have had a bit more than I usually do at these things. I can watch myself though, or you can come and speak to me if there is a problem. Ok?" I say matter of factly, with a little help from the liquid bravado already in my system.
"Sure, sure. I did not mean to upset you, Mike. I just figured you have been a bit out of sorts tonight, like how you are sitting there talking to nobody, this seemed a nice way to avoid a scene, you know?" His reply is completely out of character for him. "Ok, thank you." I say and head back to the bar to grab my new bottle of whisky.
For a second I am lost in thought, even my response, I wonder. Well, my response was fine. He hit me with a curveball just now. He said sorry, "...not mean to upset me." and what was that about me talking to nobody. If anyone needs to have their drinks limited I think it is him. The guy is acting damn weird.
Nobody. Really, does he think Tim is nobody? I knew these people were snobs but that is ridiculous. Replaying the encounter in my mind one more time as I reach the table to start our second bottle liquid strength I remember he also said I have a speech to give still. "Fuck," I say under my breath, I did forget about that, the speech was a backup if one of the other heads of department pulled out. "Fuck!" I slam the bottle to the table.
With my thoughts now focused on the speech I pour myself another drink and lean back and examine the room, what a bunch of pricks I think to myself. Why would I ever want to give a speech to people I despise. Taking a sip of my whiskey and then with a last gulp I finish my drink and poor another.
My mind is now completely obsessed with this damn speech, when is it. What must it be about? Why is there a second glass on the table? Oh, it is Tim's. Where is Tim? My mind rushes through thoughts, each forgotten as soon as an answer is attempted.
"Fuck!" I hiss for the tenth time since I found out about the speech. It is not an understatement to say that I have anxiety when it comes to public speaking. Worse is I need to go up there tell them nice things about the company and how well they are all doing.
They aren't. They are not doing well at all. My boss is cheating with one of the interns, he does not know that she is pregnant yet. The head of finance and a few of her subordinates have been taking trips to "offshore" like the accounts they must have there to store the money they steal.
Apart from the generic employee trash which every company has, the products we sell are overpriced and just plain shit. That is why I never went into sales, although human resources is a sucky job. The people who sell our services and products must have no souls.
"Fuck sakes, where is Tim? I ask loudly to myself. At least when he was at the table I was distracted from all of this tedious shit. Now all I can do is look over the crowd of people and for every face, I see my disgust rises.
I forgot what I was thinking about again. Running my fingers through my hair messing it up instead of trying to groom it. With a final sigh, I sit forward, fingers clenching a clump of hair as I rest my head on my hand leaning on my elbow as I pour another drink.
Photo by Vova Krasilnikov from Pexels
This part was definitely trickier, I think I wanted there to be more. I wanted something grandiose but instead kept it constrained and tried to have more interaction between him and the event but also establish a baseline mental state. Whether it works I don't know but there is only one part left which is word number four. Remain.