Posts in Intern
The intern packed up her carpetbag and rode away. I felt like we should hug but we didn’t – hugs are best left out of print shops. She made this before she left:
Go, my young grasshopper, go and use the life-skills I so generously shared with you.
That’s a true story.
Nobody needs to see a photo of us taken in February.
The heat broke like a fever and I’m left shivering in my hot pants and (court ordered) tube-top. I think it’s time to head out to the shop to see what that intern has been up to while I’ve been at the lake.
Summers on Cape Cod before the invention of electronic mail (or personal computers) meant low-tide foraging, wiffle ball and handwritten letters. Letters were elaborate and could include drawings, mix-tapes, whipper-snappers, and live specimens.
I learned that the more letters written, the more received, so rainy days were spent diligently embellishing the news: Picnics with the Kennedy’s, shark hunts, ghost encounters – all sort of true.
There was (and is) no mailbox at 29 Freezer Road and so the day includes a walk to town for the newspaper and a visit to the post office. The post officers knew us by (last) name and quickly slid the day’s mail across the counter.
The Intern has been pulling orders with a smile on her face. How does she do it it?
My job is to bring them to the post office. I am tempted to fill the boxes with live specimens and whipper-snappers but I will restrain myself.
We have a New Andrea.
The Original Andrea got a life and only wants to email me about hypothetical cold-press coffee dates and cramps. They grow up so fast.
Jen’s on vacation and that means two things:
1) I am crying less.
2) I (the intern) have (has) more work to do.
The reps are faxing in their Christmas orders because they want to remind me that this Summertime happiness I feel is fleeting.
It’s good to keep me grounded.
Oh, and here’s why my work environment is not safe:
On the back of the Atari 2600 there was a difficulty switch. “A” was normal but “B” made dragons move impossibly fast
and shrunk trampolines.
Flipping the switch meant a game had been mastered. Mastered.
Those were simpler times.
I opened the door to the shop last night and was greeted by an avalanche of bicycles. Two of them had no kickstands and were tangled with the lawn mower. I would have moved the mower and bikes easily but I was blocked by a giant roll of bubble-wrap.
I wonder if the interns that emailed looking for work have any idea my days contain such physical obstacles.
I almost forgot why I even went into the shop… It wasn’t to get bruises and swear – was it? No! I needed to lay out some new Mother’s Day cards!
I had to set my type by candlelight because the lightbulb burned out over the big cabinet and I couldn’t replace it without using the ladder that was wedged between the weed-wacker and the card-carousel.
I didn’t even ask Jen how she got all these boxes for New Zealand
to the post office. Maybe Henry the Dog helped her. Or Loretta, she’s pretty strong. I couldn’t help anyway because I was busy taking a sponge bath. Andrea says sponge baths are for 80-year-olds but I’d like to see an 80-year-old get into my kitchen sink.
No, I wouldn’t.
The hot-water-heater decided it was time to rust through and I don’t blame it a bit. It really is the most boring household appliance. If it were a person, I’d hate it.
So, I boiled some water on the stove for my bath and as I squatted in it, I thought to myself, “I wish I had curtains on my windows.” and “Is this funny or sad?” I decided it was funny but only because the new hot-water-heater is coming on Monday.
Proposals were requested by a public entity (m-m-mysterious!) and WHO ARE WE not to respond?? We felt it our duty (doodie) – as citizens – of this great state, to answer the call.
What follows is a step-by-step account of the creation of the proposal. Zeichen Press style.
1) Do I look bitter? I’m getting into character.
2) Brrr! This type is as cold as my heart. Here is the part where lead type is put into something called a stick. Sometimes reading backwards makes me so angry.
3) Now that cold, lead type is locked up into a (cold, metal) frame using fancy (cold, metal) things called quoins. This whole thing is very heavy and sits flat on a proof press. Ready to do my bidding.
4) I load up my brayer with black ink so I can roll it across the type.
5) When I’m sure that my type is evenly inky, I roll this over it. *Notice the vice-grips. I don’t remember why I put them on there and am now afraid to take them off.
6) Isn’t this magical? Ink + paper = awesome.
7) (I would show Jen printing the pages for the guts of the proposal but I felt too fragile to withstand another one of her icy stares.)
8) Printing done.
9) This is where Andrea is shackled to the table and sews the pages into little books while I throw olives at her head.
10) And this is where the little books are finished.
I suppose other people will email their proposals. That’s cool, too.
The Big No-Coast show is only 5 days away.To prepare ourselves, Jen and I are watching hour after hour of training videos. We have found that the only way we can really get into the spirit of a craft show is with a Dolly Parton soundtrack. But I’m sure that’s true for everyone.
What a lucky day I’ve had! While on a Nature Hike* we discovered something remarkable: A squishy mass of hair and bones that was once inside of an actual owl!
Oh, Mother Nature, you are so full of treasure! Dissecting this was like a dream come true.
Teeth and a beak?! Yum! After using two sticks to pull apart the wad of regurgitation, I felt like writing a card. Woot, indeed.
*Hahaha, Andrea! I Uppercased it!
I’ve never met a middle-aged man at a BP in Grantsburg and given him money for a Kitchen-Aid mixer — until now! The ZP intern was the recipient of the gift. She cried and looked like she was just crowned Princess Kay of the Milky Way.
It was beautiful.
I spent the last 56 hours holed up in my room (cell) uploading content for the new Zeichen Press website. And just to make it interesting, I didn’t shower or change my clothes. I DID leave once to get a new iPhone because my old one decided it would rather be a hot plate than a phone.
So be it/good riddance.