One of my part-time jobs is working at the local community theatre, where my title of “managing director” sounds impressive but only means I have fewer mouse traps in my office than everybody else. I handle publicity and marketing and am having a blast learning more about the the-ah-ter (said with dramatic flourishes). And theatre people are so … well, interesting? Theatrical? Creative? Also: Actors. Take this conversation I overheard the other day from my office, which faces the main thoroughfare folks use to wander in and out.
Person No. 1, who had just walked in the lobby — It smells good in here, like strawberries.
Person No. 2, who had been there all day — There was a teenage girl in here earlier.
PN1 — Yeah, I saw the Facebook status about young people coming in and wanting to get involved with the theatre. That’s great.
PN2 — I know! We’ve had several folks get in touch with us this week. It’s great to see such enthusiasm. We really can use all the new faces and the youthful energy. She was chewing gum.
PN1 — Who was chewing gum?
PN2 — The girl who was in here earlier.
PN1, not quite sure what he’s supposed to say about the gum-chewing teenager — Well. Chewing gum, huh. How about that.
PN2 — And it was strawberry.
PN1 — What was strawberry?
PN2 — The gum she was chewing.
PN1, dazed and confused by now and obviously wondering if Person No. 2 thinks chewing strawberry gum is an indicator of theatrical skill and ambition – Huh. Well. Is that, like, a thing now? Chewing strawberry gum?
(Conversation temporarily halted by muffled laughter coming from my office)
PN2, not quite sure where she lost control of the conversation, to PN1 — What? What are you talking about?
PN1 — What are YOU talking about?
PN2 — I’m talking about the fact that it smells like strawberries because a girl was in here a few minutes ago chewing strawberry gum.
PN1 — Can we start over?