The little voice inside my head goes, “Don’t be a geek, don’t be a geek, don’t be a geek …”
“Hello?” In the instant after she answers, I come to realize I am completely unprepared for her. Her voice is disarmingly sweet, childlike – nice. It has likely not changed since her prepubescence when God-only-knows-what happened to her, since the rest of her began growing faster, much faster, than any child should. Did she choose to go on speaking as a child because she found it advantageous for her to put men like me, who think they know something of her, something of her history, of her industry, at ease even before the manipulation through wheedling, through pleading? How can I know her motivation? I can’t. But I do know it’s effect.
I am nineteen again.
Hello, I’m Brian, and I’m with <bleep>. I hear you need a modification to your account?
“Yeah! Yeah, thanks for calling! I really appreciate this,” she gushes in the over-the-top flirty manner that has gotten her everything she’s ever wanted, except maybe the sense to understand when an over-the-top flirty manner is completely unneccesary. Closer to the truth perhaps that it’s really gotten her only everything I think she’s ever wanted. I know that right now, I’m prepared to give her anything I think she wants, and if that’s good enough for her, it’s good enough for me.
No problem, it’s my job.
“So how are you doing today? How’re you dealing with these Santa Ana’s?”
Invitation to small talk. Tread lightly here!
Well, I’m not in Southern California.
“Oh! Where are you?”
I’m in San Francisco. We don’t have Santa Ana’s here.
“Oh? Isn’t there a desert there?”
Actually, no. But that’s a common misconception, that the Santa Ana’s are from wind blowing in from the desert.
Uh oh. You intend to return her warm-heartedness with the accusation that she’s got a misconception?
Think about it a second, it’s Fall, right?
Very nice: “Think about it a second.” There’s no way that could come off as patronizing.
Well, it’s cold in the desert now.
Danger, Will Robinson!
Yeah, so you can tell the Santa Ana’s aren’t hot because the wind blows in from the desert, ’cause the desert’s cold right now.
Well played, Aristotle. Lower her defenses with your command of the syllogism. That always works!
Yeah, so the real reason the Santa Ana’s are hot is because of the adiabatic process.
Syllogism followed by a process with a Latin name you remember from a physics lecture delivered over twenty years ago by a short, gray, and angry Dutch professor. Did you write down this bit of arcane, useless knowledge hoping for the chance to impress some lovely young lady by springing it on her during the course of casual conversation? Congratulations! Your time has come!
Right, so the thing is, cool air at high altitude descends, but descends without expanding. Which implies the temperature of the air has to go up, because the total quantity of heat hasn’t changed.
That sounded rehearsed.
“So how’s my account coming?”
Translation: I could give a rat’s ass about the True Origin of the Santa Ana Winds. I was just trying to make conversation. I don’t like you now.
All wrapped up, I think. Give it a try, if you still have problems, call us right back. Ask for Brian.
A guy can dream.
“Okay, will do! Oh, and Brian?”
Now that was uncalled for.
Really, it was no problem. My pleasure in fact.
The little voice inside my head goes, “You’re a GEEK, You’re a GEEK, You’re a GEEK!“