Previously on “How is This My Life?”: I meet Roy in his natural habitat. I remove my shoes. Promise to get the carpets cleaned. And get the job.
TWO WEEKS LATER… I finally show up at Roy’s for my first day as his personal assistant. It’s Monday, 11AM.
I remove my shoes. “What should we do today, Roy? Should me make a list of things you want me to work on?”
“A list, yes. But first we need to go. It’s time for hockey.”
Roy starts throwing stuff in a large duffle bag. It’s open rink in Culver City. And we have to go.
We’ve already determined that if there’s any driving to do I will be driving his car – which turns out to be a black BMW. I get in the driver’s seat and wait for Roy to get in next to me. A moment later he gets in.
In the back seat.
Next time I’ll bring my cap and gloves.
Now that he’s safely inside the car, Roy allows me to finally open the garage door. And we’re off.
We make small talk as we drive. I’m really making an effort to find this whole super-strange experience somehow enjoyable.
The conversation turns to different kinds of alcohol. I tell him I prefer gin. He’s unimpressed. Gin’s for girls. He prefers Puff Daddy’s Vodka. You know, the raspberry one.
Yes. Definitely more masculine.
It’s about that time that I hear something. Then smell something. Is that…? Puff Daddy’s raspberry vodka? I glance back just in time to see him screw a top back on a concealed glass bottle.
And this is how naïve I am. I know what it is. He just TOLD me what it is. And I think, there’s no way he can be DRINKING. In the car. While I’m driving. At 11AM. That doesn’t happen.
I change the subject.
“So what would you like me to get started on while you’re playing hockey?”
He seems flummoxed by this. “Can’t you just wait for me?”
I sit in the empty stands in the rink as about a dozen guys scrimmage on the ice. Roy’s not bad. He can skate.
There’s only one other person in the stands with me. A teenage girl. Probably waiting for her boyfriend. I imagine the conversation I hope we never have.
Her: So like, why aren’t you out there on the ice?
Me: Me? Oh, I don’t play hockey.
Her: Then why are you here?
Me: See the Asian guy? Sharks jersey? I’m waiting for him.
Me: He pays me to drive him places. And have his carpets cleaned. But that’s not like a dirty euphemism or anything. If that’s what you were thinking. I mean like real carpets. But we haven’t really gotten to that part yet. He also drinks. In the car. How bout you?
Her: I’m gonna get a soda.
Afterward, on the drive home, Roy reflects on his performance on the ice. It went pretty well today he says.
When we pull into the garage, he waits to get out until I’ve closed the garage door. I’m half way into the house when I notice Roy’s starring out the thin windows at the top of the garage door.
“Somebody’s leaving trash in front of my house.” He says it in that way the Aussie dinosaur hunter from Jurassic Park talks about velociraptors. Far off, to himself. The summation and confirmation of all his fears. Clever girl…
I join him at the window. A piece of trash has indeed blown close to his curb. Don’t worry I say, I’ll pick it up. But that doesn’t change the question, the really profound question: Who would do that? And why?
“Let’s go inside,” I say. We’ve got calls to make.
(Stay Tuned for Part III)