Wednesday, April 23, 2008


So last night Brian and I were watching The Office. We are both severely challenged in our ability to remember when various television shows are airing, even our favorite ones, so we have decided that a better strategy for us is to rent/buy the seasons of our favorite shows on DVD. This way we can watch them in order, we can watch them whenever we want, and we can pause them if someone spills their juice (I won't go in to how many times I have told Brian that he can only have juice in the kitchen. Sigh.). We are currently on Season 2 of The Office, and last night we watched the last two episodes. For those of you who have not yet seen Season 2 you might want to stop reading now - SPOILER ALERT! In the last episode (Casino Night) the office turns the warehouse into a casino, and they spend the evening gambling for charity. The Jim/Pam romance has been heating up this season with many baleful, longing looks on both parts. I am completely infatuated with the character of Jim (played by John Krasinski) - he is now my official "freebie". I shared my love of all things Jim with Lauren the other week at dinner, to which she replied "Duh. Hello? You married him!" Whuh? No, I married Brian. The man who gets in the car and says confidently that he knows where he is going, when in fact he does not. The man who has a compulsive need to open a brand new bar of soap before the old bar is done. The man who firmly believes that magical fairies restock the toilet paper in our bathroom. That man.

But back to The Office. Pam is bidding her fiance, Roy, goodbye as he leaves the casino party early. She is a bit tipsy, and feeling good. She and Jim meet up in the parking lot, and Pam begins to flirt a little. Jim however is in a more thoughtful mood, and suddenly he looks at her in this heart breaking way and says "I am in love with you". He knows it is bad timing (she is currently planning her wedding), but he just needs her to know, in the hopes that maybe, maybe she feels the same. I think my heart dropped into my shoes at that moment - so agonizingly romantic, so tender and sweet. Pam, not surprisingly, is flustered, does not know what to say; you can almost feel her slightly drunk brain trying to wrap itself around the enormity of what has just been said. "I can't" she finally stammers out. A single tear slips down Jim's cheek, he nods his head in mute resignation and walks away. (Sob.) Cut to the darkened office, Pam is on the phone with her mother, trying to process what just happened. We only hear her side of the conversation...."I didn't know what to say" "He's my best friend" "I think I do"......and in walks Jim, quietly, purposefully and takes Pam into his arms and kisses her. My goodness. I look at Brian and say "Wow! Can you believe it?" and he says "Yes. That's us".

Rewind to approximately seven years ago. I arrive in Miami Beach for the annual Society for Neuroscience conference having just broken up with my fiance, Marc, hours earlier in California. It was a charming scene, involving me throwing my engagement ring at his head and him threatening to kick me out of his house at 2:00 in the morning. I manage to arrive at the hotel where I and my lab mates are staying; my best friend Brian has been waiting for me all morning. We take my bags up to the room we are all sharing, he asks me how I am; I dissolve into a puddle of tears, hiccoughing and sniffling through my account of recent events. "It sounds like you need a drink." Cut to an empty stretch of Miami Beach, the sun is setting, I am weaving my way through the sand dunes, my Big Gulp-sized cup of gin and tonic clutched in my increasingly drunken hands. I am half-sobbing, half-ranting (probably slurring)....."I just want someone who will love me and be nice to that too much to ask?.......someone who will love me just the way I grandfather worshipped my grandmother.....he planted her a garden and brought her a cocktail every evening at 5:00 and always pulled out her chair....." at which point Brian grabbed me by the shoulders, looked deeply, tenderly, sweetly into my eyes and said: "I am that guy".

I guess I did marry my freebie after all.

1 comment:

Lauren said...

Awwww I LOVE this post. I'm so glad that you realized I'm right. I love being right. Do you like how this is now about me?