journalman's Diaryland Diary


Impressed at DOB, Justin, and Troinka


It’s funny how people in large groups tend to resist change.

Today at a local government office I frequent, the powers at be decided to change the manner in which their central appointment ticket-dispensing system operates. While the value of the change is debatable, and certainly has yet to seen, the change itself was very simple. It was easy enough to follow.

At least it would be easy to follow on an individual basis.

When it came for today’s throng of often-sidecast independent-mercenary-government paper runners to comply, however, the result was pure bedlam.

People had their arms up in air, there was confusion plenty, a few gathered in small circles here and there, in hallways mainly, with arms crossed bitterly debating the sanity of upper management for messing with things.

At one point I saw a woman pleading, “But I CAN’T say ‘please transfer my ticket’! I’m not capable of saying that!!!”


The Commish summoned 2 upper-executive-assistant types out of Queens borough to moderate traffic flow and explain things. Crossing guards for crowded hallways who happened to be extremely well versed in department procedure. One of them was a goner by 10 AM. The construction-paper-runner-sharks don’t mess around. They ate her alive instantly. She was a visible trainwreck.

The other, however, knocked my socks off. She is without a doubt the most impressive ‘loyal soldier’ of an employee I have ever seen.

THE DESCRIPTION - I am not attracted to her in the least. In fact it’s mutual. She’s a lesbian.

And while I have a number of lesbian friends, the woman, and my friend Lassie is the only other woman like this I know, is a POWERDYKE.

In a city office of multicolored commissioners, black employees, brown and black paper runners, and white bow-tied architects, a strong-spoken, thick, blonde spikey-haired, broad shouldered, beefy armed rubyfruit goddess (who could also kick your ass) is cool enough to command respect.

Her job essentially was ‘change manager’... be the person to urge the bewildered herd into a new system.

She was a joy to watch. Like a gym teacher from the Olympics.

She spoke to crowds of angry citizens in a calm and clear and genuinely charming way. She took the time to answer questions, was sweet as could be, and knew all the right answers. She was confident.

She got it. She oozed it, reciprocally. Big, beefy black women who typically work in the NY office followed her around with keys, opening doors for her, except she would then hold it open for them all to pass through first.

I walked out of there by 3 PM, after the woman expertly handled just about every conceivable issue with a smile, and I saw a woman ask her “Wow, I can’t believe you’re still smiling.”

She looked at her and very naturally asked, “yeah. Why not?”. And then winked at me as I walked out the door.


I think I can be that good. I marched back to my office, and you better believe I was that good. I even stayed til about 8:30, and plan to stay that late or later for the rest of the week.

I’d love to be that good. That together.

In the mean time, I’m going to make sure we make enough money to pay for the right person to be that good, and to stay with us forever.


Justin, an NYU mate, and the man who taught me about Dr Dre originally a decade ago, has agreed to temp in my office until I find a permanent, full-time replacement. He taught me two other things: how to roll a blunt, and separately how to successfully cram for an exam.

Nice kid... probably has fifteen inch biceps... he got into law school and just never bothered to go. Has a bit of family money and works every now and then as a sportswriter and a paralegal. He’s a good guy; my mother even likes him.

And that’s saying a lot.


She’s that girl, you know. Lived across the street.

The loner. The bookworm.

Socially awkward. Barely tolerates peoples’ company.

Loves to read the classics and cook. Cooks so incredibly well. Everything.

Beautiful. Blonde. Made me feel special because she’d only open up to me.

Self-titled ice queen. Ruthless bitch. A point of pride for her.

Sparkle, unfortunately, wasn’t that girl who went to finishing school. She is bad in public; I’d never allow her to work in my office for example.

It’s possible she taught me to be irrational. Awkward. Emotional. Maybe she even damaged me some. Left me craving her classy equivalent.

Despite the illogic, and despite how many times we’ve said we would never speak to one another, we’ve said we’d be friends forever one more time than that.

Except last night, I learned something that may curtail that.

Sparkle told me, in tears, that there’s a decent chance she has cancer. She hadn’t even told her mother, the only family she’s ever known, about it yet.

I’m going to help her get through this. She’s special.

11:23 p.m. - 2006-09-27


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