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i'm definitely going to the office next week. everybody in the office is talking to me about it, and asking if i'm excited and saying how much fun it will be... everyone, that is, except for terrie. she says nothing about it to me. in fact, she doesn't say much to me at all, just like always.

i teased sam about missing the trash can, and he looked at me for a moment in silence and then said, 'debbie, you're hot.'
i say, 'right...'
he says, 'no, i'm serious. don't you believe me?'
he writes it on the counter, in pen. debbie is hot. then he gets a customer and i try to scrub it off. it fades, but it won't go away completely.
sam leaves early, because he's sick. he stops to talk to amit on the way out, and after a minute, amit calls me on the intercom. by the time i pick up the phone, he's hung up. i walk over to him and he says, 'never mind. sam will ask you himself.'
sam comes back to self-check with me, and i ask what the question is, but before he even gets a chance to answer, terrie comes over to self-check and says, 'go home, sam, before we put you back on register.'
he starts to say something to me, and she cuts him off. 'you can talk to her later.'
so he heads to the door, and i abandon self-check and chase him. 'what?' i ask, 'what was the question?'
he says, 'ask amit. he'll tell you.'
so i ask amit. he says he can't tell me because sam told him not to. 'anyway,' he teases, 'it's bad...'
'so tell me.'
'it's real bad.'
'what is it?!'
'it's about this.' he makes the twosome hand motion.
i get scared. he could just be teasing me, like always. it could be something completely different, and he could just be saying it because he likes it when i get flustered and deny things about me and marie and jeff... or he could know about marie. marie is friends with sam. maybe marie told sam about that night, and sam said i'm hot because he knows i slept with marie, and sam told amit, and they wanted to ask if it was true, but sam told him not to. i don't know what to do... finally, i decide that i'd better figure out exactly what sam said, before i figure out how i should react.
i go over and beg amit again. after an hour of alternating between running self-check and begging amit to tell me, he finally gives in and says, 'it's just that sam went home early, so i asked if he was really sick, or if he just had a hot date for tonight. and he said he didn't have one, but he'd like to ask you out. i said i'd call you up and ask you, and that's when you heard your name, but right away, he told me not to do it, so i hung up.'
i can't even decide if this is the truth, or just a story he made up to shut me up. and i can't decide if sam is telling the truth, either. i think he's just joking... but i don't know for sure.

i went on break and terrie ran self-check. when i got back from break, she was on the phone. she stepped out of the way to let me run it, but didn't go far, since she was still on the phone. for a long time, i tried my hardest not to eavesdrop. then, i heard her say something about 'house' and 'money,' and i immediately thought of christine. i switched to trying my hardest to eavesdrop. terrie says, 'i called her work and she's in at 6 tonight. i'm going to go there, and tell her i need it. and if she doesn't have it on her, i'll go back the next day. and the next... i hate to bother her at work, but i'll do what it takes.'
i don't know who or what she was talking about, but i want to think that she was talking about christine. i want to take that as evidence that christine is still alive and well, living around here, and still working at the same job she had last i talked to her. if terrie wasn't terrie, i would just ask her... i want to know how christine is doing, and if her conflict with her family is resolved, and if she's still with rice girl. (for the record, i hope she is. rice girl is HOT and she makes christine happy, and i want to know that she's happy.)

amit, kiera, tyrone, and non-pregnant kelly tease me about rashid. kiera tells them how rashid 'couldn't keep himself off her ass last night.'
i tell her, 'i don't know what you mean by that, but NO.'
they keep teasing, and at one point, i say, 'no. we're just friends. he doesn't like me. i don't like him.'
'no, you don't like him,' kiera tells me. 'they're the ones saying that. i never said you liked him. i'm just saying that he likes you. and he follows you around. and he wants to get with you. i honestly don't think you return those feelings.'
hmmmm... well, at least i don't have to be straight any more...

then keira says something about how he waited around for me, a half hour off the clock. i said it was only because he needed a ride.
keira asks, 'what kind of ride did he need?'
everybody starts laughing. i'm sure that i must be missing something, but i don't know what, so i try to answer the question anyway. 'to his house. because the bus didn't come that late.'
they laugh even harder. amit makes one of those it's-over-your-head motions. i hate when i know i'm missing something, but can't figure out what. kelly asks, 'no offense or anything, but do you come from a really small town?'
now i'm completely lost, but i say, 'sort of...'
kiera says, 'awww, she's got no idea. ride, debbie. ride like you ride a guy like sex.'
i get it now.
'no, not that ride!' i say, and they all laugh and amit says, 'sure...'
kelly says, 'ok, leave the poor thing alone. her face can't get any redder.'
i feel dumb. i tell them i'm going home now, and kiera teases, 'will rashid be waiting for you? will he have left messages on your machine?'
'no,' i say, and leave.

i asked molly (and aaron) if they thought rashid liked me. they didn't know, but they wanted to know why i asked. i said that people at work were just teasing me about it, like 'debbie and rashid, sitting in a tree,' and i wanted to know if they just liked to tease me, or if there was any evidence that he actually liked me.
molly asked, 'who said that?'
'a bunch of people,' i said.
she asks, 'marie?'
'no,' i answer.
'oh. it sounds like something marie would do.'
'yeah, it does, and i hardly even know her,' aaron agreed.
it would, if marie didn't know i was gay. but now, if marie wants to tease me, she'll tease me about being gay. she'll call me fruity, or ask me why katie holmes isn't pretty. since that day, she has never teased me about anything remotely straight, and i like it that way.
'no she wouldn't,' i tell them.
'sure she would. that is SO like marie.'
'no,' i insist firmly. 'marie would NEVER say that to me.'
it comes out sounding so certain that they realize that maybe i know something they don't, and they look at me expectantly, waiting for an explanation. i'm not ready to give one. i need to change the subject... i say the first thing that pops into my head: 'so aaron, when am i going to get to see your new bong?'
they crack up. they both know i have zero interest in seeing his new bong. i've never even seen his old one. in fact, i probably wouldn't know a bong if it hit me in the head. drugs are not my strong point.
but it gets them talking about bongs and weed, and from there, we move on to monkey ball. aaron brought over an extra controller and the three of us play for a while. amit comes over and asks if i have any ps one controllers. i have one, and i let him borrow it. we play monkey ball a while more, and then they go upstairs to her room.

i think i want marie to come over. well, right now i don't think that, really. but i know that when i see her again, i'll think that again, and every time i think that, i get really mad at myself because i still haven't finished unpacking my room. when i'm here, though, i always decide that it's best if marie doesn't come over, and i don't bother to clean. so i think i'm going to clean. i'll go to bed now, and wake up before work (i don't work til 5) and clean up this room, so that when i see marie at work, i can ask her when she's going to visit me.

i wonder what it would be like if marie lived with me.