It’s late at night and I am amazed that I am here on an assignment.
I am actually here to interview a few athletes, because my editor wants me to write about something I could care less about, sports. I am at a press event wondering if the first lady ever had to do something as dull as attend a press event where I can’t even elude to sex with all the sexy black guys, or flirt as I bend down to tie my shoe.
All around the opulent space, burly bodies talk to bigger reporters who all have suits and ties, compared to my black pants and collard shirt with no tie. I walk around with my recorder in hand as if I am looking for the special punch bowl. The kind that holds the punch that’s reserved for “the other” nerds in the far corner.
The room I am in is a plush atmosphere inside of a really big hotel in Chicago. PR treated me to this wonderful event, but, alas, I am learning that PR can’t do everything. They can’t make a tap dancing poodle materialize out of thin air, suddenly disperse the bigger journalists so I am not left wandering like a lost boy, or provide flavored water. PR do have limits, after all.
I head away from a Channel five reporter who glares at me as if I stole all the flavored water and stashed it in my shoe. I head into another room where giant bodies congregate, like they are mutant ants trying to build an anthill. They are all hunched over in their Jerseys, fingers swiping their phones so fast they resemble massage therapists.
I am so excited that I don’t see any reporters around who can steal my subjects away from me that I dash to a player with a hawk on his shoulder. He stares at me like he’s going to ask me if his wife got drunk one night and I’m here to claim child support.
“I’m a reporter for,” I begin, but a high pitched voice springs out of thin air behind me.
“Greetings! I’m Jessie! I’m with the Chicago Sun Times, and the Windy City Times.” I whip around to see a very tall thin black boy standing there with a pad and pen, clicking the pen as he talks. He’s new. I can tell. What sighted expert reporter uses a pen to take notes. Really?
“Excuse you. But I was interviewing him first.” I snap. He smirks as he looks at my name tag.
“So, you write for a very small north side publication, huh? I think we both can understand the importance of the Sun Times over, well, THAT.”
he’s dashingly swab, even though he is more annoying than a dirty fork. He doesn’t have any hair on his head at all. He has small golden earrings that compliment the ebony complexion. He is easily six feet tall, and he is getting on my last nerve with his dashingly good looks and his attitude.
“I think that really depends on the writers at the publication, don’t you?” I suddenly remember that he said, The Windy City Times. that’s a gay paper. Could it be that I am battling with the next queen with a pen? I hope so! My god he’s gorgeous.
“So,” he says, addressing the players. He interviews them, with me randomly tossing in my own questions, trying to get something down for tonight. After they leave us, we stand in the open room going over our notes. He looks up at me and slinks closer to me. I can’t help it, I try to remain a brat but his piercing eyes melt me.
“My notes are better than yours.” I say, my voice cracking. He grins and steps even closer to me. As it turns out, he has read my work in the Windy City Times, and has hoped he would see me at an event. I can’t help but believe I was stalked. My eyes dance over him as he shoots off random bursts of personal information, like his tongue is a machine gun.
“I just absolutely love Twitter.” he says after I explain how I promote my stories via Twitter. “so, how many followers you got?” his voice is the most annoying siren I have ever heard, but his looks keep me entranced.
When I tell him how many followers I have his mouth turns into a tunnel with a uvula at the end before uttering, “really? Is that all? I thought you’d have more! Oh my god, who do you follow? Any big journalists?” I listen to my cell announce that almost an hour has gone by and I groan aloud. He’s been asking me if I know X, Y, and Z, from ABC publication or TV station or whatever blog.
Whenever I try and talk about a subject, such as global warming, for example, the sentences swivel back to him and his need to know I’ve hung out with this editor or that editor. He’s really good looking, though.
“What about you?” I ask, wishing to get the subject off of me and who I know. “who do you follow?”
“I follow tons of editors and such.” he gushes. “it’s a great way to network with editors to really get your foot in the door.” when I tell him I don’t use it to converse with people, he is utterly horrified.
“So you don’t follow John from the Tribune and reply about stuff?” he asks.
“No. I think Email is a better way to establish yourself to someone you’ve never met.” I explain but he’s spitting out why that’s not a good idea. In other words, I am a social media ditsy who does not have a tie at a press event. I really want to go home and eat some chocolate right about now, but he’s so good looking I want to stay, even if he is annoying.
“You know what?” he says after the rambling about my Twitter activity. “I want to go out with you sometime. Wait, no, wait a minute, hold on! I want to see who you know first.” he flicks his phone then looks back at me with a smile.
I feel like I am about to have sex with LinkedIn.
“So, can we please connect? I’d really love to interact with you!”
I shake my head and hold up my phone, showing him my private Facebook profile.