In Which Bronwyn and I Competitive Email with a (Handsome?) Unknown Stranger
It all began so boringly, and harmlessly. Bronwyn and I — secrets out, we work together — we’re coordinating a meeting for our bosses. Because Bronwyn and I are agreeable and fun assistants, we are quite open to interjecting a little bit of banter into our work emails. Once, we replied all to our entire office (CEOs included!) with a joke meant for only one person’s eyes. By we, I mean I, and by joke, I mean embarrasing and slightly suggestive typo. But we’ve moved on…
So there we were coordinating dates and times, listening to Lykke Li on repeat, dreaming about Cee Lo, when the “thread” began to pick up in pace. The gentleman we were emailing with flattered us on our original names. “Bronwyn and Ilana, how exotic!” he wrote. We were intrigued. Who was this mysterious emailer, scheduler, who had taken an interest in us? Did he like the New Yorker? Fine wines? To travel? More importantly, was he good looking? And if he was, was he manicured Matthew Crawley good looking or rugged Matthew Dillon in “The Outsiders” handsome? We decided to find out more about this mysterious fella.
At first I thought I’d hand over my Mom’s email so he could pay his lovely compliment to the its rightful recepient. I also thought that might be a clever response. “Yeah, well, thank my Mom for my original name. She’s Debbie. Are you Jewish?”
But Bronwyn beat me to the punch. “My name means white breast,” she wrote back. “Take from that what you will.”
“Will” or “Ferdinand” or “Tobin” or whatever his pseudonym should be, played along, even encouraged us. He pitted us against each other, so that soon we were at each other’s throats.
“What do you girls do for fun?” he asked us.
“Shots at bars! Reading books at bars! Whichever you like!” I shot back.
“Don’t let her fool you,” Bronwyn wrote. “She’s a lightweight, but I can hold my liquor.”
“I’ve never once vomited from alcohol, unlike some people who ruined my car’s leather interior,” I replied, all.
“That’s not fair, you spilled cupcake all over the backseat of my Dodge Neon last week, and good luck getting cream cheese frosting out of velour seat cushions.”
“Have you tried club soda? That sometimes works.”
“No, that’s a good idea.”
“Sometimes I have good ideas, you know.”
“Is this about lunch?”
“Not everything is about lunch!”
“So I’m guessing we’re confirmed,” Frank interjected into the madness.
“Not now, James,” we answered.
“I’m sorry if you’re upset that I didn’t want sushi,” Bronwyn wrote.
“Why’d you steamroll us into going for Mexican, then!” I replied. “I’m tired of playing second fiddle.”
“I think you’re both great,” said that clueless idiot.
“The whole office wanted Mexican, it wasn’t just me. Besides, David is allergic to shellfish.”
“He’s faking. Anyways, that’s beside the point. You always get your way. You’ll probably get this guy, too.”
“Look, ladies, I am just trying to nail down a date and time for this meeting,” Henry wrote in a hurried and visibly disturbed e-mail.
“Look what you’ve done,” Bronwyn replied to the group. “Now we’ll never get married.”
“I can no longer be reached at this address,” wrote someone we used to know, who we think was named Jarvis.