I don’t really know who started the whole “Doomed Tuesday” notion in Egyptian culture. Tuesdays always seem okay to me. Well, today, for example, is a pretty much laid-back day at work. We have a full training day. No more angry clients, no more rush and most importantly no need to act nicely to anyone. All I have to do is sit down; nod every now and then, act knowledgeable and interested in what is being said, and participate in whatever activities that cute coquettish Cairenne trainer asks us to do.
So, sweet Tuesday is about to come to an end by the last slide in that dull PowerPoint presentation, and I remember that I have to send out a few emails. So, I tell my mates that I will fetch a cubicle to finish some pending work, I shake hands with a few while discussing what happened throughout the day, and have some other mates follow my lead to finish some of their endless to-do lists as well.
Do not let me fool you! Not all of us are that business oriented. Let’s take Mr. B as a good example. He joined the company same time as I did. We had the same training, got to have the same manager, unfortunately got sometimes to sit right next to each other and ran into one another in the same corridors. Mr. B is your traditionalist Egyptian young man; he thinks he owns the place with his silly jokes, and endless stories of self-proclaimed romantic conquests when he was supposedly starting off his career in the States regardless of the fact that he has neither achieved a strong career nor had a good degree. Now, Mr. B, who also happens to be his mama’s sweet little boy, is looking for a bride who should be white, pretty, decent and can make a delicious Seneyet Batates. According to this not very long list of pre-requisites which I got to discover from his constant remarks, Facebook posts and of course his sneak peeks to other girls’ curves at work, I knew that my turn has come up on Mr. B’s list. Had I known that Mr. B was going to pick a Tuesday to make his move, I would have definitely adopted the Doomed Tuesday notion.
I can smell his cigarette stink before I see him clinging onto my computer screen trying to come up with any small talk. I act aloof, put on my glasses and act serious as I try to concentrate on which emails I should be sending first. “Nunu, what’s up?” Mr. B says in the cheesiest tone ever thinking that he is winning me over, but I wish he could know that he lost me after the Nunu part. He goes on about random topics. I keep my answers short but friendly. He asks why I won’t be joining the team for a hangout after work. I apologize for having a doctor’s appointment. He tries to act sorry that I’m not feeling well and offers me a ride to the hospital instead of going alone. I laugh and thank him. He then brings up the much-awaited for topic; marriage, but he is too smart to shove it directly in my face. I’m also too smart to give him all the rejection reasons that will make him stay. So, I quickly put on the independent, ambitious and feminist mask that scares all of his likes away. He takes the bait and wishes me a nice evening and leaves. “Good riddance!” I think but still a bit cocky that my mojo is still on even if it is working with the wrong dudes.
Wednesday: He Is Just Not That into You!
“Only three days to go till the weekend!” That’s the very first thought I get while trying to convince myself to get out of bed. I get dressed, fetch my heavy handbag full of snacks and hurry to start my shift. I casually say Hi to my colleagues who are looking as drowsy as much as I do. A friend approaches me saying, “I have a something to tell you urgently after the shift.” I nod with a smile and hit the Ready button to start my work schedule.
My friend’s words start haunting me and I start making assumptions about what she’s about to say. Is it because I left yesterday without saying Goodbye? Did she hear anything the manager said about me? Is she going to quit? All of those nagging questions start popping inside my head while dealing with the angry customers. I, then, start hating on my friend for giving me a lead to a story that is eating up a piece of my mind.
Finally, the 9-hour shift comes to an end, I pull my chair next to my friend’s and tell her to fill me in the news. “I know that Mr. B was really trying to impress you for weeks. He asked me to marry him yesterday after offering to walk me home yesterday after we left,” she says waiting for my reaction. Amused as you can imagine I must be at that moment, I ask her for more details. It turns out that Mr. B asked to marry both of us on the same night and same hour. Luckily, he got the same answer. For a moment, I become more agitated as it is all reminiscent of High School sappy stories. All of a sudden, Joe, another teammate overhears our conversation and decides to tick a bigger bomb! “Mr. B has been asking me along with other people in the team which bride he can choose between both of you,” Joe says and I feel sick to my stomach about this weird fantasy about not just consulting others about my friend and I, but my simple mind could not grasp how he has got the nerves to ask both girls for the same thing at approximately the same time. I think about escalating Mr. B for his mere immaturity, but then I remember that he got rejected by two girls on the same night. That’s enough punishment for him, I guess.