I do terrible things to my secretaries.
I snap at them “Stand up straight! You look like an old woman.” Or, “How can you wear shoes without socks in the dead of winter?” Or, “What do you mean you can’t touch type!” Or, “Good grief, you can’t answer a telephone like that!”
If I smoked a rancid cigar, barked orders from behind my desk with my shoes plopped on top of a pile of memos, had three telephones, and barked, “Buy,” “Hold,” or “Sell,” into each one, the picture would be complete.
Except that I don’t smoke, have no clue what’s going on in the stock market, and am more likely to sing at the top of my lungs “Figaro…. Figaro… Figaroooo …” than to bark.
I do, however, do the aforementioned Terrible Things.
The latest, to my poor (name changed to protect the innocent) secretary Natalie. Beautiful, intelligent, eager, kind and competent Natalie.
Let me tell you a little about her. She has beautiful skin, a pretty pert nose, gorgeous long hair, wonderful eyes that look fearlessly and with great curiosity in any direction, and a handshake like … well, it was a bit disconcerting. Like squeezing a clump of faded rose petals.
Or, at least, that was what her handshake was like. Past tense. Until I began my terror tactics.