113 Waiting for Google

On Wednesday night, Kitty returned Rod’s call and left a call-back for him. On Thursday morning, he left a second message asking her to please call that evening at five, when he’d try and pick up. Standing in the drive outside her Gospel Hostel, she called again. This time the phone tag worked.

“It’s Kitty.”

“Oh, good. Only have a minute. Can you come up tomorrow around six for drinks?” Each was practicing the sales dictum to get the appointment, then hang up.

“Sure.”

“See you then.” Kitty felt almost happy; perhaps Rod’s preacher-ly advice was starting to sink in or, more probably, she was simply getting her way. Twenty-four little hours to the top.

“Hi, Miss Doyle.” Moth smiled up at her, as she came in the office. “I’m just about finished for the day. Would you have time to help me with the resume, like you said?”

“Sure, Moth. Tell you what. I’ll go pick us up some take-away. We can have a working supper. Anything you especially craving?” Was this what benevolence felt like? Like that first golden glow from a brandy snifter?

“Something spicy. Maybe Szechuan?” He needed no coaxing, not for this, anyway.

“Is the place in the strip mall any good, do you know?”

“I don’t get it very often but yeah, it’s good. At least the chicken is.”

“OK. I’ll be back.” Chapter 113 Waiting for Google

Later at the kitchen table, crowded in amidst the array of little Chinese boxes and serving size spoons, Kitty began to pepper Moth with questions and took over his laptop. As she drew him out, posing these in a slightly different way than the standard application forms generally would, she began to realize that working alone in an office had trained him to be a skilled and independent worker but one with no reference points to the world of work outside this house, and with absolutely no self-confidence. None.

“You can certainly do a lot of things, running an office single-handed. See all the things I’ve noted down. You just need to know how to describe your skills. Break them down into individual tasks, gliss up the description, use job application lingo. Here, I’ll give you a bunch of sites to check-out.” She waited for the sites to open, to add the links for him. “Do you want to stay and work here, keep doing church related work?”

“It’s the only thing I know, I guess. Would any of these skills you say I have be of any use someplace else?”

“Count on it, when you learn to apply them differently. When I worked out of my condo at The Prospect, my job was to give presentations to inspire people like realtors, principals, church people like your Dad to do their best in whatever job they had. Now that I live here, I’ll use my speaking abilities to work for this new mission. Same skills, different space.” Woody and Tad arrived, laughed at the scene, and joined them.

“What’s going on? This table isn’t allowed to be this messy. House rules.” Woody was amazed to see Moth so relaxed.

“Making big career plans, Woody.” Kitty said. “You have any to throw in?”

“Tad and me, we sometimes talk about starting our own delivery service. Two guys and a van could maybe earn a living.”

“And when you start your own business you have a built-in office manager, right here.” Kitty nodded at Moth. “You could call it ‘Three Many Movers’.”

“Instead of too many? Good name. But us two will never get out of here. Stuck.”

“Why?”

“It’s easy. It’s what we know.”

“What’s the matter with all of you? You’re only kids, not middle-aged husbands with brats and mortgages.”

“How would we ever make the break? We’d need some money for a van.”

“Are you saving any up? You can’t have that many expenses.”

“We never seriously thought about it, it’s just a dream. Wouldn’t know where to start.” Kitty wanted to hurl paper butterflies at all three of them, get them jumping around out of their lethargy.

“I’ll get you some links, too, when I’m finished with Moth. Seriously. Put your heads together, come up with a business plan, get out of town, away from this rut. I had to, more than once.” Tad was blushing again. To hide his embarrassment, he got up to clear away the table. When he saw there was still food in the containers, he stopped and sat down again.

“Mind if I finish these?” Kitty waved him away, in disgust.

“Whatever. Then you can clean it all up. We’re busy here.” Tad and Woody polished off the contents of the boxes, tossed away the trash and took off, leaving Kitty and Moth to their deliberations.

“Thing is, we’re all afraid of our parents. Those two won’t say, ’cause they’re ashamed to admit it.”

“Is it just the three of you or are there other siblings, or cousins?”

“We have a girl cousin, Erin, who’s a little older than Woody. She’s Aunt Thea’s husband’s niece.”

“You don’t say. Who’s Aunt Thea, again? I can’t keep track.”

“She’s Mom’s sister. You see her at the morning Bible study.” Kitty remembered now; a gaunter, older version of Minnie Minus.

“Oh, right, her. So this Erin, where’s she?”

“She’s been away at college. Her Dad made her go, get away like you say we should.”

“She got lucky, then.”

“She’s back now, staying with Aunt Thea.”

“Is there an ‘Uncle’ Thea, too?”

“You mean is she married?” Kitty nodded.”There was but they got divorced after he ran out on her. Said he couldn’t stand being around all these church types all the time.” Kitty was relieved to hear that someone in the family had acted with his feet. “Anyway, Erin went to a religious college and wants to get a church job. Dad’s got her lined up for an interview next week, with Mr. Thuss.”

“What’s the job?”

“Not sure but I heard that he’s going to be hiring several assistants. Dad didn’t go into it with me.”

“Why don’t you try out for one?”

“What if Dad found out?” Moth looked horrified.

“Maybe he’d fire you, Moth, and then you’d have to do something else, right?”

“Where would I go? I live here, too.”

“There are other places, other things to look forward to, like we’re working on here.” Kitty resumed the accumulation of materials for Moth to review, deciding to add more, knowing that the real problem was fear, how to get him past that giant scary dog growling on the porch of life and into a freer and open road. “Let’s get back at it and get you started thinking, at least.”

There are very few condo buildngs with free wireless access. The majority are cable ready. Some offer additional features, such as witring upgrades.

There are very few condo buildings with free wireless access. The majority are cable ready. Some offer additional features, such as wiring upgrades.

Conspiratorially close as the room grew dark, sharing the computer and thinking themselves uninterrupted, they neither of them heard her coming. Myrtle materialized, dwarfish in the doorway, and squinted at them over the top of the screen. Moth blinked.

“Oh, Mom. Didn’t know you were coming over tonight. Was there something you needed?”

“It is my house. I can come when I want.” Kitty quickly saved links then displayed a church related site.

“Mom, I didn’t mean…”

“Miss Doyle, what are you doing with Timothy?” Kitty swallowed her dislike, swallowed hard – for Moth’s sake, for her own sake, too – and her efforts of this evening.

“Good evening, Mrs. Minosa. Timothy and I are looking up information on the internet.”

“Better not be smut.” Moth groaned. “We don’t hold with any of that. Timothy, the office, now.”