Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,
At one of the newspapers where I worked, my favorite reporter was Carla. She covered the courts, so at mid-afternoon each weekday she returned to the newsroom to write her articles about what had occurred in the courthouse that day.
When Carla reached her computer, she would make her daily announcement. She might say, It's show tunes today! or Doobie Brothers time! or I'm in the mood for Queen!
Then perched on her chair, she proceeded to whistle while she worked. And everything she whistled was as announced. If she said Doobie Brothers, you were not going to hear the Eagles.
Then later I worked at another paper and one day I mentioned Carla's
whistling. The grouchiest reporter in the room, the one who wore dirty
clothes every day so her stench filled the newsroom, the one who shouted
at anyone she suspected of wearing cologne because she was allergic to
it but I don't know how she smelled it over herself, the one who GRITTED
her teeth so they made this horrible creaking sound, shouted, That
would drive me insane.
I LOVED it, I said. And the next time she gritted her teeth, I yelled, WHAT IN THE HELL IS THAT HORRIBLE NOISE?
I'm sorry. I won't do it again, she said.
Infinities of love,