Thursday, June 27, 2019

Nurse the Hate: The Story About The Bag



I used to work with a woman at a radio station that was involved in some sort of doomed off shoot department.  Within moments of her employment, it must have stunk of failure.  She must have known this was a short term job.  The radio station, like all corporate concerns, had become enamored with the idea of getting their hands into more "revenue streams".  It was decided we would put on events instead of just promoting those put on by actual professionals.  For example, instead of just taking advertising money from Belkin Productions and let them put on the show (because that's what they did for a living), we would instead hire three people on the cheap and then have them put on a major concert while the sales staff was saddled with selling sponsorships.  The low paid employees shoved into cubicles had no real idea of what the fuck they were doing, and the sales staff had little understanding of the world and currency of sponsorship sales.  It would be like if a car wash started to offer transmission repairs because they dealt loosely with "automobiles".  "Well, we wash 'em.  We know cars!  What can be so hard about dropping in a tranny?  The cars are already here!  Let's go buy some tools!"  Like I mentioned, this enterprise was doomed to failure.

During this brief working relationship with this woman, two things became evident.  1.  She was a self professed pagan, or at least that's what her mangy old car bumper sticker proclaimed.  An otherwise quiet young woman, I don't know why she felt it was important to proclaim her pagan beliefs to all, but perhaps that's what she felt was special about herself and made her stand out from others.  A theory floated around that she might just have bought a used car with the sticker already on it, but one day her boyfriend came to pick her up in his car which gave no doubt to his intense interest in fantasy books and gaming as well as renaissance fairs.  He had a beard before beards were fashionable, and frankly that chunky little fella had well out kicked his coverage in ensnaring the mousy female companion.  My guess is that he was an absolute beast at video games and could likely dominate a delivery pizza.

2.  This woman always carried and fiercely guarded a backpack, never letting it drift from her sight.  Now I will grant you that most of the radio station employees seated around her were assholes, but none of us were thieves.  She must not have felt this way and would move the backpack at times to a more strategic location near her feet to ward off potential snatch and grab thefts.  I picked up on this behavior and was soon fixated on this backpack.  What could possibly be in there that was so important?  Reflecting back, maybe she was guarding some magic runes or enchanted relics of some kind that were of great importance at the Great Lakes Renaissance Fair and her no doubt active social life therein.  It was hard to imagine though as even now I can't recall ever hearing her speak.  Maybe she really shone in a group of trusted friends.  I became so focused on this backpack that I wrote the song "What You Got In That Bag?" on the "West Virginia Dog Track Boogie" record about this situation.

For no real reason, I thought about that backpack today.  I wondered about her mental state, going to work daily in a place where she felt threatened and unsafe, and likely open to ridicule from the others about her esoteric interests and beliefs.  That is a tough way to spend five days a week.  People are much more fragile than they appear.  I regret not being more genuinely inquisitive in this woman and finding out whatever odd yet interesting things she was up to.  Life is hard enough without feeling you can't reveal your true self to others for fear of being torn open.  She and her ill-fated department were only there a few months before being quietly ushered out shrouded in inevitable failure.  It's too bad I never took the time to find out more about her.  More importantly, I could have found out what was in that goddamn bag.  That's probably the biggest tragedy of all.

6 Comments:

At June 27, 2019 at 10:36:00 PM EDT , Blogger l.tomblin said...

*Coast to Coast

 
At June 27, 2019 at 11:05:00 PM EDT , Blogger Greg Miller said...

Hey, you’re right!

 
At June 28, 2019 at 11:22:00 AM EDT , Blogger Cy Zibrik, MPA said...

Don’t know if you ever came across Big Jim, a bouncer/doorman at Sudsy Malone’s back in the day. One night I gave him and his girlfriend a ride home. Later I noticed they left a backpack in the floor in the backseat. So I got back to Big Jim as soon as possible with the backpack. It contained his weed, of which he offered me some as a “reward” for returning his stash. I politely declined.

 
At June 28, 2019 at 12:27:00 PM EDT , Blogger Greg Miller said...

People need to keep as vigilant an eye on their bags as that woman did

 
At June 28, 2019 at 1:56:00 PM EDT , Blogger AZ said...

If only you had asked to let you take a look.

 
At June 28, 2019 at 2:13:00 PM EDT , Blogger l.tomblin said...

I have listened to Coast to Coast ATLEAST 2,000 times! I’m glad you shared the back story/inspiration. You should do this once a month for a different Cowslingers tune.

 

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