Monday, March 5, 2012

We're The Playthings Of Destiny

Being a crime boss is quite an adventure!

In my role as head of the Organization's prostitution operation, I have all kinds of duties, some routine and some just out of the blue. I have to be ready for anything. Because sometimes the human drama can be almost too much...

Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining. There's a lot of fun in it. And I have all kinds of leeway in the Organization. Think about it: Who else gets to engineer a diamond heist, blackmail a guy twice, and smooth the ruffled feathers of a whole team of Associates (our word for hookers), all in the same week?

Really, you never know when your next challenge will be. But I'm ready! My secret is simple: Overall clean living and daily meditation. I do my best to maintain the utmost harmony, focusing my mind, body, and spirit. I'd be a wreck without it.

So there you have it, I'm bearing my soul, laying it all on the line. Hope you're impressed.

And I'm definitely going to keep at it, because keeping a full team of Associates happy and content is not always the easiest thing in the world. Maybe you'll hear them griping, "When you said 'modeling' I had other ideas about what you meant." Or, "If this is 'massage therapy,' it's a lot different from what they taught us in class." Sometimes you can mollify them with some fresh flowers for their table, but it might just take a heart to heart talk. Which I'm always happy to do, especially if I think they'll go for it.

One of our Associates, Lorelei, came to me, all hangdog about her life, and very moody. I had her sit on the couch. Of course I did what you're supposed to do, presented her a few flowers, but she just waved them off. No, she was going to need something more, this sensitive girl from North Dakota, or Arizona, or somewhere. She'd obviously had too much time on her hands, time wasted thinking, and stewing about it. To hear her tell it, this wasn't the life she'd hoped for.

Well, what could I do ... but commiserate.  It is, after all, one of the very best techniques in human relationships, to affirm the other person through identification. And naturally it is more compelling if you have, or can quickly construct on the fly a plausible back-story. As for myself, I'm from a genuine blue collar family. Those who came before me had a tough time in the Depression. There's a history of military service with my grandpa and uncles, all before I was born. And I personally have a disability, a game toe, causing a pronounced limp most noticeable during my annual visit with federal authorities, who have to validate such things.

Lorelei told me some of her disappointments, which caused me to glance down at my foot. "Oh, I'm sorry," she said tenderly, "Does it really hurt so very much?" I held back a tear and said with all the braveness I could muster, "No, I've got a few months till the next evaluation." But still, had it not been for this migrating bone in my big toe, who knows what I might have achieved? With a good toe, and a little bit of height, I could've played for the NBA!

Our talk hit an awkward silent patch, so I pulled out my ace: "Lorelei, you and I both feel like we're the playthings of destiny. Perhaps we haven't achieved everything we hoped for, but we're happy, because we've accepted the challenges of our lives, and are even now in the process of overcoming them. I wasn't always a crime boss. I had to work at it over the last month. And you weren't always a--- an Associate here. But somehow you saw exactly what your options were, so here you are, and I'd say better for it! I'm proud of you." Such poetry, I felt tears in my eyes, natural ones, not spritzed from a bottle.

I patted Lorelei on the back and told her anytime she needed to talk, of course I would check my schedule and we might be able to squeeze in an appointment. Until then, keep a stiff upper lip, don't take any wooden nickles, and remember, them's the breaks.

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