Janice had said she was sorry, said that she had tried to find an option during normal business hours, but, still, Janice had absolutely fucked my Saturday morning. Such a goody-goody, Janice, just because Corporate said they wanted CPR training done “as soon as possible” after someone in the Rockford office had choked on pie, doesn’t mean you book it for a Saturday. Also, I don’t know how they do things in Rockford, but, here, we chew our pie.
Sitting lifeless in the minimum amount of makeup, I couldn’t pinpoint it exactly, but knew that this must have somehow been Janice’s fault that the guy was late, and that I could have slept another six minutes, and that my cold sore was being weird. When he stepped through the door, though, I almost forgave her. I almost forgave Janice when I saw his granite jawline and perfect cheekbones, radiating with this folksy kind of aw-shucks handsomeness where you could just tell that he never had to pay for sex.
But, no, Janice also forgot to bring the bagels; so, no, she does not deserve forgiveness.
Also, Janice, you sinewy raisin of a bitch, you think you could have given me a heads up that he was legit gorgeous so I could have actually been good about my cold sore medication all week? I would have actually showered, put on all of the makeup, and worn the party bra. If he doesn’t take me out, Janice, doesn’t let me lick every inch of his taut bronzed body, I’m holding you and your entire schoolmarm wardrobe responsible.
He introduced himself, said his name was Ryan and I heard nothing else. He was getting my good side: the dimple side, the sore-free side, the side with the beefier nipple. I couldn’t help but notice that his khakis—something cheap from a Meijer or a Wal-Mart—were just screaming, “Rip me off; I’m very replaceable.”
With his eyes fixed on me, he was droning on about CPR and dead people. I sort of opened my mouth a fraction of an inch, seemingly unconscious, but I knew exactly what I was doing. Janice glanced over at me with her resting scowl face. Shut up, Janice, if I’d had a bagel my mouth I’d be doing that right now. Really, though, Janice, this is between Ryan’s khakis, me, and his most specific fantasies, and not you and your puritanical craft-circle values.
When Ryan asked for a volunteer I stood up and stepped to the front of the room because I take what I want. He demonstrated some maneuver on me, something for people who are breathing loud or maybe about to eat pie. Those hands, they had this raw power behind them, and I couldn’t help but let out the faintest, most workplace-appropriate moan.
Janice interrupted our tender, public moment with a question. Ryan took his life-saving hands off of me and listened as Janice said that she knew we had already covered the chest compressions piece—of which I personally couldn’t recall a thing—but she said she had remembered how cable news said that if you did chest compressions to the wrong Bee Gee’s song that it could kill the person instantly. Dammit, Janice, what you should be worried about is killing the mood instantly when we’re practically at second base.
I went back to my seat. He was going through first-aid protocols and calling for help now. “Ryan,” I said, “Kelsey, longtime listener, first-time caller.” He smiled with, like, a gorgeous palisade of teeth. “Instead of talking to strangers and that whole, you know, freak show, can’t I just call you?” I picked up my phone. “What’s your number?” I flashed a sly little grin. “You like Mexican food?”
The room simpered through an uncomfortable laugh and, flatfooted, Ryan looked away. “Okay, it’s test time,” he said, possibly too aroused to remember his own phone number or if he liked tacos.
The test was ten questions and we had twenty minutes. I starred at the worksheet and realized exactly how little I’d listened the last hour. Ryan was packing up the CPR dummy and I crept up behind him and stuck him good with the beef nipple right in the side of that firm American Heart Association polo. He spun around and we went through the questions. He basically just gave me the answers and I took my reward. “Hey,” I whispered, “when you’re done indirectly saving lives today, you want to go to Don Miguel’s?” He sort of looked down, super aw-shucks and deliciously hot. “I always just get, like, so drunk there.”
Janice chirped up with some grammar-related qualm. What an absolute asshole. I left my test with Ryan; I guess I had passed. Back in my seat I made a promise to myself that I would destroy those khakis before the end of the night and, further, if one of those sloppy Rockford pigs came into this office, wolfing down pie with abandon, well, I might be technically CPR-certified now but I’d be useless and would have to walk away in any emergency.