After years of serving diligently in the never ending rat race of my professional life, after months of brown nosing, after weeks of after hours and over time, working weekends, sniveling and bowing, smiling and dining, showing up at all the right dinners, losing all those golf games that I hated playing in the first place so as to make the clients look good, and telling my boss he was the “force of change in an unchanging market” I have finally been given that promotion I always wanted to upper management.
The only thing is that job offer is in the Rio de Janeiro office. Yes we seemingly have an office in Brazil.
I told my girlfriend Stacey Peruzzi and while she was of course heartbroken I will only have to be there for a year and we think we can weather the storm of a long distance relationship. I told my friends and they decided it was a good as excuse as any to throw one big party.
And so here I am standing in the middle of a big room with all my friends wearing this stupid party hat trying to think of something worthwhile to say. Charlie Jay through a mouthful of cake and Alice Montana at his arm shouts at me to give a speech. I carry my beer bottle in a mock toast to him. I mutter something about how hard it is to be going away and leaving all you guys here. I hear The Turk snicker loudly in the corner of the room along with the Shamrock crew and Old Billy Flanagan aka The Merchant who guffaws in response and start hurling abuses at me to save the theatrics and get on the plane already. Lovely bunch on friends on that side.
Matt Hoffman seems to be lost in conversation with Tara Conner on the sofa in the back oblivious to my heartfelt speech so I guess their reasons for the coming to the party don’t particularly involve me. My own cousin J. Hoover “Two Time” Sinclair seems to be waiting only his turn to give a grand speech on my impending departure. Hansel my Hollywood megastar friend couldn’t come all the way from his 5 star lifestyle but managed to send me a life-size doll of himself which I seriously doubt I am taking to Brazil. My dad seems to be studying the proceedings the same way he watches Meerkat Manor with interest. I close my eyes for a second and somewhere I see the smiling face of The Leprechaun Whippleskin laughing insanely at me.
So this is one part of life I am leaving, for all their faults these people have meant the world to me, they even got me a going away present. Excitedly I unwrap it with all due haste only to discover that they have gotten me a Bissell Flip It Wet/Dry Vacuum. State of the art no doubt, converting from dry to wet hard floor cleaning with a single flip. Here I am going away to some distant country and they got me a vacuum. You got to love these guys.
Not the greatest of presents but they could never resist a great Catch!