Tormenting Miguel

Posted: February 10, 2010 by S. Trevor Swenson in Me & Mine
Tags: ,

I have an old high school friend; Miguel.  Since high school Miguel has lost/been fired from over 70, yes SEV-EN-TY jobs.  He was fired from a shoe store after just 3 days. I don’t know how, he wouldn’t tell me. I like to picture him trying to jam some fat lady’s fat foot into a shoe way too small and breaking some toes.  He was fired from a Starbucks because “They expect you to be fast”, Movie theaters, book shops, car rental companies etc. have all given Miguel the axe.

I have begged Miguel to let me write a book about him or even better shoot a short documentary film about him.  So far he has refused.  In fact, he even gets a little angry when we (my friend Brendan and I) ask him.  Suffice to say, Miguel has many financial problems due to the many and frequent lapses in employment. Lately he has been down in the dumps and I have tried to befriend him and cheer him up a little.  He really isn’t a bad guy.  He is waiting to hear from the Postal Service, which will probably be the perfect job for him, as it is literally impossible to be fired from the Post Office.  I have suggested several jobs to him, although he has worked at (and been fired from) most of the places I recommended.

Last week I came home after killing off a nice bottle of wine and saw him online.  Maybe the wine had triggered my often sadistic sense of fun, but I sent him a message telling him that I might know of a job for him.  He was very enthusiastic and excited. I should pause here and say that Miguel is very VERY homophobic.  I don’t think he hates gay people, I think he is quite literally afraid of them.  I think he may have been fired from a movie theater once for making off color remarks about gay people, in FRONT of gay co-workers.  In addition to being perpetually late, and slow, Miguel is quite possibly the most inappropriate person on earth.  He isn’t a malicious person.  He just gets nervous and freaked out by gay people (men)

The fictional job I had in mind would put his sensibilities to the test.  I told him, my friend Robert works in a gay bar here in Manhattan, and that they may be hiring (That part was true) The job description was cleaning the bathrooms while wearing leather lederhosen.  I even came up with a fake salary etc. etc.

Sadly the plan backfired.  I never expected him to accept the “offer”, nor to get so excited about it.  He wrote and called me constantly for two days asking if I had any more info about the “job”.  “Did you tell them about me?”  “When can I start?”  I had expected him to be annoyed and repulsed by the offer.  I felt bad that I had gotten his hopes up.   I had to tell him the “position” was filled.


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