Friday, June 01, 2007

My Official Interruptor

When I finally get around to hiring my entourage (Q: does one hire an entourage or do they just sort of appear, like groupies with skills?), I'll need to include one person whose sole duty is to drag me away from irksome duties.

Say I'm on the phone and I urgently need to get off the phone for a reason I don't really wish to share with the other party (use your imagination) and I can't think of a legitimate reason to cut off the conversation, or perhaps the other party is someone I can't afford to offend (the provost, for instance, or a mother-in-law). I'll simply press a button and my Official Interruptor will come on the line and insist that I take a call from the Nobel Prize committee, which is seeking my advice on the next recipient of the Literature prize. This would require having more than one phone line, but I'd have my entourage take care of that.

Or suppose I'm in a meeting with a committee that thrives on hashing out the same old tired issues without ever doing anything about them. I could press a button on my cell phone (which would require having a cell phone....I'd have my entourage take care of that too) and my Official Interruptor would burst into the room and say, "Can't keep Mr. Spielberg waiting. The helicopter's just outside."

Or suppose I'm teaching a class in students refuse to read or write or talk about reading or writing or do exercises designed to improve their reading or writing and I just can't bear to drag them through another lesson on the comma splice; at just a glance from me, my Official Interruptor would burst into the room and inform the students that the Health Department is investigating an outbreak of a mysterious virus that attacks only those under the age of 30, so everyone over 30 will be permitted to leave the room while the rest will have to remain under quarantine until further notice.

How long would that stay in there before someone tells them they can leave? That's a job for somebody else's entourage.

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