I Am So Spoiled

Today, I’d like to talk about work.  Sort of.  I have worked for Boss for about five years now.  I will follow him from one company to the next as our working relationship, while unconventional, works well for both of us.  Much of what I do is book travel for him.  He lives in Kansas and since our work involves designing things for airports in various cities outside of Kansas, it makes no sense for him to stay in Kansas.  You don’t get much work without schmoozing clients and to do that, you must actually go to the client.  As much as I love to travel, even I would have a hard time being away from home that much.

Because his time almost exclusively involves being away from the office and from home, someone needs to keep him grounded and organized.  That person is me.  I’ll wait for you to stop laughing.  I spend most of my days looking at flights on Delta, checking out hotels and booking rental cars.  The customer service agents for these companies know me well.  Once I type in his frequent flier numbers, they answer the phone with an “Oh, hi Jimmie, what can I do for you today?”  It’s ridiculous. 

A few years ago we had a flurry of booking then cancelling then changing then re-booking a trip.  It happens often.  I never think my work is done on a given trip until he arrives and gets settled into a hotel – changes are part of the process.  This particular week, though, I booked a car for his Vegas trip.  Except I booked it in Kansas.  Whoops.  Two weeks later, I booked a car for his Texas trip, also in Kansas.  He called and said, “You know, booking a car in the wrong city was funny the first time. It’s not the second time.”  Mostly he was ticked because the only car left at the rental lot was a baby blue super girlie SUV and he had to drive to his appointments feeling completely emasculated in his foofy vehicle.  It took me a while to live that down.

Now let’s talk about Administrative Professional’s Day.  It happens every year in the spring.  Truthfully, it is another of those Hallmark holidays designed to get people to spend money on other people for virtually no reason at all.  If you don’t, those other people get all bent out of shape, claiming things like “You don’t appreciate me!” and flouncing off in a snit.  Score one for Hallmark.   

This year one of my co-workers who is extremely thoughtful sent a message to Boss about Administrative Professional’s Day.  He said:

Should we do anything for Jimmie? I know we don’t need to “spoil” her, but I figure she may appreciate a small gesture.  Then again, to pay her back for booking you a car in the wrong city, we can get her a spa gift certificate to somewhere out of state. 

To which Boss replied: 

We probably should do something. It’s in a couple of weeks, right?  Surely we can come up with something to embarrass her completely. 

I’m such a lucky person.  Thanks Heavens this is what I got because I did hear rumors of singing telegrams . . . .

Used to, I was the one who took care of the gifts on Administrative Professional’s Day.  I made sure that everyone in the aviation group received at least a small token of appreciation and a nice card.  No one was left out.  It would have been awkward for me to send myself a gift and card and Boss understood this, so every year he would do something nice for me (most likely because his girlfriend reminded him).  One year I received a necklace, the next some very fine chocolates.  My favorite year was the year we were on a business trip in Las Vegas and he offered (read: I made him) buy us tickets to Cirque de Soleil’s Mystere.  I was awed; he was mildly entertained.  And if you’ve never seen a Cirque performance live, I highly recommend it.  Last year we were on another business trip, this time in San Diego, and I wanted to go to the zoo.  Unfortunately, the business poop hit the business fan and the zoo never happened.   

I took this blow graciously (after throwing the mother of all fits); however, my graciousness did not allow me to let him forget the failure to buy me presents.  So when his vacation rolled around that summer, his girlfriend who knew that I had planned most of the vacation called to ask if I had any special requests.

“Buy me something pretty,” I said, “since Boss ditched me in San Diego.”  I have a mind like a steel trap, y’all and had no issue with throwing him under the bus. 

“Okay, great,” says Girlfriend, and she comes back with a lovely beaded bracelet from Costa Rica.  She was quite excited about the colors and the charms, just knowing I would love it.  She was particularly charmed by silvery palm trees and couldn’t wait to show Boss what she had purchased for me to get him out of the Jimmie-imposed doghouse.


“Those are not palm trees,” said Boss.

“Sure they are,” said Girlfriend. 

“Nope, honey, they aren’t.” 

“What are they then?” she asked.


Oh, she’s so cute.

This year I got to help plan his vacation again.  I told you, I’m nothing if not a planner and I love this stuff, even if I don’t get to go.  This year Girlfriend, wiser than she was last year, bless her naive sweet soul, bought me another bracelet from the wilds of Belize.  Isn’t it pretty?  Methinks we have started a trend.



2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Martie
    Sep 06, 2011 @ 21:46:33

    I think I like this girl….what’s her name again? I’m sure you wear these trinkets proudly whenever Boss IS in the office. HILARIOUS! You should take those “palm trees” off and make him some super-smart cuff links! Bwahaha!


  2. Will
    Sep 06, 2011 @ 22:34:13

    Let’s hope she never decides to buy you a plant for your desk…


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