I would be lying if I told you I remember anything about the day this picture was taken. It’s 2010 now, so this picture was taken some ten years ago and a lot has happened since then…but I keep thinking there should be something here in my memory about this…
I don’t remember that store, I don’t remember picking out the hat, or who took the photo.
And why I chose to take center stage in a photo from a moment in my life I can’t remember, even with photographic proof of its existance is curious.
Catty and yet self retrospectively, I might say that all the girls in that photo were sometimes stupid and slutty.
I don’t remember the girl on the left. Her ability to sell magazines — completely non-existent– makes me forget her as default.
That one in the middle is, well I’ll call her Bri. She’s eighteen years old in this photo, gorgeous, and bouncy — a mag crew’s favorite new hire in the universe.
The one on the far right is Debbie (who is a whole other blog). We stole her from her job as a bartender at one of Leona Helmsley’s hotels in Columbus, Ohio and convinced her to be our boss’ secretary.
We (as in the whole mag crew) corrupted Bri so absolutely.
I don’t remember where she was from. I kind of hated her.
Well, Love/Hate. Just before she fucked my boyfriend and lied to my face about it, her and I were great friends.
I didn’t hire her, but I totally trained her to sell the shit out of magazines. She was sharp and everyone knew it but no one was putting her across.
I was bent on winning another contest at the time and wanted to go pick up my quota before lunch and be done with it, I didn’t want to be dragged down with learnin’ some new little bright eye…
…but I took pity on Bri, because she acted sooo innocent and everyone believed the act so I thought she just needs to see how I sell magazines.
It was lunch time and we were in Brendan’s car which meant we had a half hour gas station break.
I spent it with Bri. I took her to the pumps where I immediately spotted a young stud with a sporty car, filling up his gas tank. (Key here is, pretty men don’t get hit on, girls are WAY too shy, and I knew this, so I always sold the shit out of mags to pretty men).
“Hi!” I grabbed Bri’s elbow and made her run up to him with me. “We’re in a contest! Do you want to help us win? If you don’t help us beat the boys, tonight we’re going to get pied in the face! Help us!” (Jump, bounce, flirt, smile, wink) “Oh my God, your car is sooo wicked cool, you must be really successful at your job!” (Lounge, touch, shimmy, grind) “Bri, show him your contest list!” (Jump, smile, leg kick) “Oh my God, you probably already get Maxim, huh? God I bet you get so many girls, you’re so cute, this car is so amazing! Oh my God! You must be soooo good at what you do….you must make so much money…Bri show him how many points he can help us with if he gets Car and Driver.”
So now she has an order on the day, she’s two weeks into the job, Brendan no longer completely hates everyone because there’s still time to make our car average if this new girl can at least pull it out and get five today.
“Alea,” Brendan pulled me aside, “Take Bri out with you and get her going, get some orders.”
It was another hot day in Florida. I remember getting dropped off in some apartment complex.
Brendan’s rule as car handler was neighborhoods in the morning, if you have five by lunch you get apartments at night.
Bri was getting spoiled by being dropped with me in apartments. As a new girl with two weeks she counted towards our car average but she hadn’t had her first five yet, so in Brendan’s car that meant two things, one, he hated her and wanted her to die, second, she would never see an apartment complex.
So the sale at lunch really made him happy I guess.
We split two orders that drop.
When we met Brendan at pick up he said,“O.k. you two stay in here and split it up. Go alone for the rest of the night, though. I’ll check on you, right here at 6:30.”
Bri came back that drop with three and ended her day with eight sales: It was her “High day,” her “first five day” and her “first seven day” which a person’s first seven sale day also equaled a “steak dinner” on Belo’s crew. (Mine was in the revolving thingie in Seattle, that’s for another blog).
So that day ended well, I remember. Our car was high on crew, I was in the front seat, all was well with the world and Brendan shared some beer with me on the way home.
(Please pretend like there’s a segue here.)
I can’t blame Bri and my boyfriend for sleeping together. They were both so hot!
She was young, but I know she knew better, I knew she was lying when one day, in the bathroom before morning meeting she said, “If I was fucking him I would tell you.”
This in reply to the whole crew finding out the morning my boyfriend left for a few weeks that he had carried on with some other girl, a girl I actually did hire and also trained to sell the shit out of magazines (and in a minute will be telling you about the time her, Bri and me all went to Miami and met Blondie).
I remember thinking, “You just did tell me, Bri.” But I was reeling from too much information already that day.
Mag crews, just like any group of people, maybe more than other groups of people, always strive to protect the status quo. Everyone kept quiet what everyone knew. And that included me and my boyfriend.
My boyfriend was the boss’ son, I was a contest winner. We were together. That was it. Didn’t matter how much it wasn’t working with us, it worked for the crew.
We both did what we did with other people and tried to keep it quiet.
We lied to each other so what does it matter that Bri lied to me?
One time before all of it was out in the open, my boss sent me to lead my first and only spur crew.
I got to pick two girls who would go with me. I picked the two that would make me the most money, it wasn’t my fault I also happened to want to get close to the two girls I remember being pretty sure my boyfriend wanted to make the sexy time with.
I did just totally admit to that. I kept my enemies close to me, I thought that’s what I was supposed to do?
We were being sent to Miami, (a whole other blog, trust me, which involves getting lost in Hialeah, having to stay the night in a hotel where the front desk guy cussed me out and called me a stupid, fucking American as he was handing me the room key, having to sneak in one of the girls because we only had enough money for two of us to rent the room, the weird, yellow-sweat stained guy who opened the door to peer at us, the non-locking door, the only channel, porn, no blanket on the bed) to work the University of Miami.
So back to the Love part of the Love /Hate.
We were working these awesome rich kid dorms at U of Miami.
The student parking lot was filled with Boxsters and Beamers.
The dorms filled with head’s of states kids and ambassador’s kids and Saudi national’s kids and by noon all three of us had ten sales each and that’s with working for two hours. Cake money.
We called it a day.
Our hotel was on the A1A and we were going to go back, change into our bikinis, get some Cuban coffee and go lay on the beach when we heard that Blondie was going to be at the Jackie Gleason theater that night …. literally right down the street from our hotel, we could walk.
Tickets were fifty bucks, we went straight away and bought them.
We were like the only girls there that weren’t boys and weren’t gay and after the (most awesome) show, Bri ran outside, around the building to where the limos were and struck up conversation with one of the limo drivers, she worked out an invite from the drummer, and then she hailed me and the other girl to jump in and off we went…
…to an exclusive, roped off section, in a night club, in Southbeach, with Blondie. Bienvenido a Miami, poppy.
Photographers were asking us, “Who are you?”
“Hahahaa we sell magazines, now about that bottle of Dom, you’re standing in the waiter’s way, move MTVeejay person so he can pour me a glass, ugh.”
Drummer dude was working it on Bri, trying to convince her to go on tour with them. I was like, “GO BITCH ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?”
But I guess Bri’s daddy issues aren’t / weren’t as big as mine and / or it’s true what she said, that she wouldn’t leave me and the other girl alone for anything in the world.
Drummer dude gave Bri a hundred dollar bill for a cab. We went home (what other people call a hotel), changed into our bikinis, went Domified / Blondified swimming in the ocean.
We laughed about how awesome we were.
The next day we went shopping and Bri bought this outfit with what was left over with drummer dude’s hundred dollar bill. I wonder if she still has it.
And I kind of wonder how she tells this story.
Because you KNOW she does.