It’s the morning buzz at the office with everyone munching away on fat cakes and all. We are walking tiredly from the kitchen with a cup of coffee for me and hot water for Tumi, because she is in some kind of a diet. I often feel sorry for her tummy, because it is severely victimized by all the bitter stuff she takes. The other day, I spotted vinegar on her desk for drinking purposes. Just imagine!
Anyway, back to our walk into our open plan office which means there are hardly any secrets. Everything you say or do is for the world to see. I am a witness of that trauma: there was a certain day, in which I was informing my friend telephonically about this huge secret, but fortunately not evil, only to be asked about it the next morning by Thuli. I was so distraught. And then the other day as I was telling Petra about some great achievement of which I expected her to jump. Guess what? She just said she already knew. I wondered how, because I never shared the news with her. She continued and confessed eavesdropping my telephonic conversation the other day. How nice!
Ok, as I was still caressing my coffee down the passage, I felt Tumi’s elbow nudging my ribs so strongly that my heart almost stopped and my coffee, if I never defended it, would have stained the mat – poor cleaners. The next thing Tumi was whispering rather loudly, inquiring me if I had noticed how cute the new guy in the office was. And I asked, ‘what guy?’ She almost fainted in amazement due to my ignorance, or is it lack of good taste? According to her it is hard not to notice this guy.
Now I knew that, there were two new guys sitting in the office in question, and not one of them ever stroke me as cute. But judging by the comments of Tumi I made up my mind that there was definitely a third guy that I haven’t noticed. So I made it my assignment to hunt down the third guy and see what was driving Tumi so crazy. She was going on and on about how this office guy always greets her…with a big smile. Apparently the smile is so wide that even his last molar can be observed from a distance. Time passed and I still bumped to the two office guys without noticing any good looks from neither of them. I wondered what happened to the third guy.
Fortunately for me or rather sadly, because I’m sure I grew a gray hair or two after this day, as I was walking with Tumi to the ladies or kitchen (I can’t remember) we bumped to one of the two office guys, the taller one, by the door. After they have fondly and smiley greeted each other we passed him. Then Tumi elbowed my poor ribs again (oh! office guy, wonder if you will ever know the negative impact you have on my ribs) and said, ‘that’s the guy.’ “What guy?” I cried. ‘The office guy,’ she cried back. After absorbing this for a moment I managed to utter my amazement “the cute office guy?” She nodded with every muscle on her face cracking out a smile. “But I see nothing except an ordinary white guy!” I murmured. ‘Well! That means there is something wrong with you’ she boldly stated. That statement stroke my worrying nerves into action. I was convinced something was terribly wrong with me. How can I not notice a good looking guy…? I mean I was a young single lady and I failed to notice a potential guy.
Work-wise fighting to reach the never reached target, I decided to work late the other evening. So was Tumi, office guy and Thuli my desk neighbor. We all sat quietly at our desks, with only the ch-ch-ch sound from the keyboard, was heard. The next sound was from footsteps which were belonging to the now famous office guy. We all caught a glimpse of him as he disappeared to his closet office. Thuli started, ‘have you ladies noticed how cute that guy…’ before she finished, Tumi jumped out of her chair and breathlessly said, “you noticed?” Thank goodness Tumi is used wearing her high heels otherwise I would be writing – the office guy and a broken leg story.
‘Yes I have. He is actually very cute but in a youngish way’ Thuli added, ‘and he always greets me with a smile’
‘Me too’ Tumi just had to emphasize that.
Tumi is said to have been leaving the office (her desk) very late, lately around eight pm. She insists that she has been remaining behind only because she wants to reach her targets. However with this office guy story I don’t believe her for a moment. I bet she has been trying to aim two birds with one stone.
‘Guess who he asks for stationery’ Tumi beamed (she sits next to his office anyway, so no wonder she is his sole provider). And I don’t see the positive side of that one because at the end of the day, she has to go and face the hard look from the secretary begging for stationery… alone.
‘When everybody is gone he comes to me for all his needs’ Tumi continued. I can’t help but hope that there are limitations in those needs. ‘And he always flashes a wonderful smile, and I would blush and play hard to get. And imagine Thuli…she…’ pointing at me ‘does not see anything in him.’
“Yes. I still don’t. It’s only an ordinary white guy’ I said.
They both agreed that something was definitely wrong with me. There goes my trauma, but I decided to laugh it out.
I was nearing a low self-esteem due to this commotion but thanks to Jade and Petra who rescued me. I decided to tell them about Thuli, Tumi and the office guy triangle, and how crazy the girls were about him. I asked Jade and Petra if they thought the office guy was cute. From a distance they have noticed two ordinary white guys and none of them stroke them as cute. So they too also thought there was a third guy. Petra immediately embarked on a mission of hunting the cute office guy. She went to the printer nearby the office to wisely eye them. She came back very discouraged. There was nothing there except the two ordinary white guys…one taller than the other. Even Jade didn’t see any cute guy. So I was relieved. There was absolutely nothing wrong with me. Only the two girls were crazy. Maybe I am too mature for my age. Out of the office guy examination a hot topic was born. We took a closer look at the guys in the office and outside to score their looks. We made so much noise that the manager came out and distracted the conversation, saying that we must work. However I secretly think he was envious because he was not in the list.
The Friday of the following week was extremely hot. People revealed what they had. I wore ordinary – extremely ordinary. Tumi was wearing a maroonish dress with tight upper body, and two layered lower body. It was a very short dress but at least she was wearing it with these new fashionable laced black tights called leggings. I remember when I first saw these tights at Jet; I was shocked at their display. Their idol was wearing them with a mini skirt, as I stood there amazed at this disgusting sight, a male sales man asked me if I could wear like that. I immediately said no. I thought it was something that should be won underneath. (To your surprise I wear them nowadays – like the idol)
Thuli was wearing a deep pink short dress…very short (others considered it a T-shirt – except me of course). We were all astonished by her dress in high heels, but she looked gorgeous (I must admit). Tumi also looked gorgeous. But Tumi’s friend Oan jokingly said she must not wear like in matric dance at work. I secretly thought she was not joking.
Every male in the department had something to say about the dresses especially Thuli’s with no leggings. All those long firm legs, were outside. A guy called Pastor visited our department non-stop and Bobo confessed that, he can’t capitalize that day – with girls showing off like that.
After lunch a huge thing happened. The office guy took a big step, stepping into our department. I was glued to my screen capitalizing, when at the corner of my eye I noticed a strange shadow by Thuli’s (as she sits opposite me) desk. I lifted up my head to have a full view. ‘Oh my goodness!’ my mind screamed, ‘it’s the office guy at Thuli’s desk’.
My eyes darted around the department for a witness. To my misery nobody seemed to be noticing. Jade was not in at all and Petra was not in her desk. Irene was capitalizing and Tumi seemed focused and glued down to her computer like stereo type (if that’s suitable). She pretended not to notice anything, but I’m sure she saw everything. Because the office guy passed by her desk, hence she was bragging about giving him the stationery.
‘Tumi’ I called her just to rub it in. It was clear in the past week that both Tumi and Thuli were eyeing the office guy. She slowly turned and her face went sour.
‘Oan’ she cried. ‘Look at what Thuli has done’ Oan stood up, and after observing the situation said, ‘Yhaa! Thuli knows how to smile and charm. She looks the guy in the eye. You played hard to get, and now you have lost.’
‘That’s how it’s done in rural areas’ Tumi said.
‘This is Jozi. Let go of rural areas doctrines and let Thuli teach you new ones’ Oan added.
I was a leader of the drama. When Petra returned I gladly filled her in. She could not believe that the office guy was here in our department. The topic went on about how Thuli out ran Tumi. Oan and I just kept on cracking and joking till Petra stopped us saying this should be traumatic to Tumi. We emphasized that this was a big joke for Tumi as well. But when Tumi was investigated, she agreed with Petra that she was hoping for the best. I then accused Petra of instilling ideas into Tumi’s mind.
The drama continued when Thuli escorted the office guy out of the office. After a poison from Petra, I’m sure Tumi dropped a tear or two at this point. It’s so ironic how Tumi and Thuli both wore their inviting dresses at the same day. I’m sure the office guy observed them while they were busy passing his office and made his selection.
I heard that Thuli got a kiss on the cheek downstairs and the exchange of numbers. It was the office guy’s last day in SA, he was returning to Australia. The SMS romance has started; let’s hope it will grow to something special. I tried to advise Thuli to give the office guy a reason to return but she did not take me seriously. Maybe Tumi should have considered the short office guy. By the way the taller one’s (main one) name is Chris.
Based on true events…
Tell next time.