Jenni’s first reaction to my last post (in which I detailed the habits of each of our employees) was “Wow, you took it really easy on Jamie.” Whether the response was triggered by Jenni’s wish to have someone else besides herself be the object of my verbal abuse or she was simply looking forward to a laugh or two at Jamie’s expense, the fact remains that my relatively positive review of Jamie’s workplace behavior was nothing short of a disservice to you, the reader. In an effort to protect Jamie from the harsh realities of a life where random people are made aware of her pension for wearing four shades of purple tucked into “work UGGs,” I left out many of the details that make Jamie such a joy to work wi… Who am I kidding? I mean I left out the details that make her so entertaining to work with.
The list of entertaining things about Jamie is so long, in fact, that when describing her to people who have never met her before, I often explain that she would make an excellent candidate for a case study. A real, live, walking case study in what, I do not know, but nonetheless her oddities make for outstanding observation.
One of her most amusing traits is her knack for developing numerous short-term obsessions. This summer it was tomatoes—and not just any tomatoes. They had to be fresh tomatoes directly from our Uncle’s farmstand. Now of course it wouldn’t be that big of a deal if it were just a preference for a homegrown tomato, but it was the extent to which she preferred our Uncle’s tomatoes that threatened to tear our family apart. Commutes of distant relatives were being re-routed on days when Jamie "needed" a fresh tomato delivered to her. There simply was no “no.” However, as summer turned to fall, her tomato obsession gave way to that of avocados (a repeat of her spring food obsession… C'mon, at least be creative).
Since March I have worked with/babysat Jamie almost every weekday, and perhaps her most physically and emotionally taxing fixation for me to deal with this year has been IKEA. There were mornings when Jamie got to work… Okay, afternoons when Jamie got to work dead set on immediately leaving for IKEA—which is a solid two hours away, mind you. I quickly realized that its just plain easier to go with her than to put up any sort of a fight. “Why can’t this grown up, mother-to-be just go by herself?” you might ask. Again, excellent material for the case study that you may want to log away somewhere.
Anyways, upon surviving Jamie’s atrocious driving and successfully arriving at her Swedish infatuation (no medium other than experience could ever do justice to her horrors behind the wheel, so I will not even attempt to explain them here), she immediately reverts to a child-like state of wonder, frantically searching for her next “find.”
Seriously? Slow down.
Thinking that having a pre-outlined shopping directive would help keep her focused on the task at hand, the last time we made the four-hour round trip with the goal of returning home with six outdoor folding chairs for her and Josh’s new patio and nothing else. As I loaded the tenth chair into the back of her car, I vowed to never set foot in an IKEA with her again.
No, I will not help you. Act your age.
The unfortunate thing about that vow is that Jamie very easily found another (possibly worse) thing to do when she feels like taking a random day off—antiquing. Never again.
Pictures must be sent for Jenni’s approval before any purchases are ever made. You should see how long it takes her to grocery shop…
Now I don’t want to make it sound like all of Jamie’s somewhat bizarre qualities are bad. For one, she is excruciatingly honest. I’m talking zero filter, “no I don’t like your new haircut” honest. The immediate thought running through her head is always exactly what you are going to hear, and while this can create many awkward situations when she opens her mouth in public, at least you know she is well intentioned.
Just the other day I asked her if she ever thought about how funny it was that we were all grown up and playing “work” together every day (I mean think about it... I'm currently guest posting on a Mommy Blog. Not exactly what I envisioned as a normal part of my adult workday). She looked at me as if I was crazy to even think that there was anything remotely strange about grownup siblings working together for an online women’s boutique and exclaimed “No, I always imagined it would be this way!”