I am doing research

11 Aug

Monday. A slow day. I watched the hands on my watch tick, hours became minutes, minutes became seconds, seconds became lapses. I can’t believe how I am spending my Monday – reading silly articles online, looking at cat pictures, and the occasional Too Cute on Youtube. I must admit: that Corgi pup melted my heart. 

All that took the whole of 10 minutes to do, and soon I was back to twiddling my thumbs. I had to maintain my concentration, but just staying awake was getting harder and harder to do. Maybe that huge lunch wasn’t such a good idea. Thanks to science, I now know that the brain is feeding me Melatonin because the stomach needs more energy to digest all the food I managed to shove down my throat. Thanks, brain.

Outside, the clouds are shifting quickly. I vividly remember the sun spraying my eyes with death beams 10 minutes ago, but all that’s left of it is a shade of yellow smearing through the cracks between the overcast clouds. 

The tabs on my browser are shifting rapidly as well. The symphony of keyboards drown out the whispers from the far end of the office. Unlike everyone who seems to be using most of their keyboards, the keys I am using are Alt and Tab. Juggling between cats, silly articles and Corgis is no easy task when your back is to the boss’s office. Do you read keenly and have a good laugh? Or do you slightly tilt your head so your eyes can scan the edge of your vision to detect imminent danger?

That is a tough choice, and on a slow day like this, the lure to read deeply to have a good chuckle is concrete. After an intense debate, I decided to look at funny pictures. Just as I am getting into it, a voice screeched from behind, “what are you doing?”

“Fuck,” I nearly blurted out.

What I dreaded really came to pass My boss was as tall as the Statue of Liberty behind me. She raised her eyebrows, “are you doing anything important?”

Determined not to look like a complete tool, I uttered the greatest lie a writer could use at work, “I am doing research.”

She arched forward as if to look at the picture in greater detail, squinted her eyes and turned towards me with a wtf look, and waited for me to explain.

“Shit, I haven’t thought that far ahead,” My brain informed me.

I gave the best poker face and looked at her sternly, pointed at the picture, “we need to do research on museums, and this is exactly what people are like at a museum. I am trying to get a feel of it. Inspirations.”

I had no idea what I said. She, however, did. Her face began to relax, eyebrows returning to their natural resting positions, mouth nearly uttering an “oh”, but the voice wasn’t there. I kept my poker face up, looked at her dead in the eye, waiting for her next move, like a chess master who just made a master stroke of a move and staring down their opponent. 

She said in a moment of clarity, “OHHH, right, for that wine thing. Good work. Carry on.”

In that moment, I knew I won Monday.

What I was looking at:

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