Sunday, December 11, 2005

my friend Camille

Suddenly, I realize, it's almost 2006, which means that Camille and I have known each other for three years next March. We met when we worked as seasonal temps for a nonprofit in Soho, arranging visas for international students to work at summer places like Dippin Dots at Six Flags-Atlanta and 2 Slavs-1 Truck Moving in Astoria. Basically, we talked to a lot of people with thick Russian accents while trying to discern if these were all legitimate businesses. We worked in a windowless conference room, all five of us girls, four of us NYU grads, and we listened to a lot of Justin Timberlake "Rock Your Body" and used our lunch breaks to go on job interviews or buy some yogurt and Diet Coke or just keep working through lunch so we could make an extra six dollars and fifty cents, before taxes.

Camille joined us after Tikva left to tour with the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and there was an office party on her first day. We stood around by the reception desk drinking wine out of plastic cups and I remember talking to Camille in her black suit and thinking, "I don't think we're going to get along. She seems so...direct."

And then we became really good friends. She is hilarious and acerbic and she's a master at making fun of the insane and questionable (a recent example is an entry on her blog with a picture of the Kenneth Cole T-shirt that says "I HAVE AIDS" and, underneath, Camille's words, "I want to help but I don't think I'll be wearing this.") For the last couple of months in the conference room, her presence was nothing short of a blessing. Which is really just to say that we laughed our asses off in between having honest and serious conversations. Always, I am caught off guard by how honest she is, and sometimes, I've been offended. But she never says it to offend you, she's just speaking her mind, so really, I think, why should I be hurt? She is a genuine person, ties with my sister as the least artificial people I have ever met.

We lost touch over the past year and met up again yesterday. We went window Christmas shopping in Union Square and ate vegetables at Angelica Kitchen and got pedicures at some place on First Avenue while we read People magazines out loud and said things like, "What is the deal with Tom Cruise? If he's not crazy, there is no excuse."

The best part was walking east away from the park. Camille's dreadlocks were on top of her head like a princess and she wore a tiny sparkly headband that looked like a tiara. She hooked her hand through the crook of my elbow and we walked like that together, navigating around street grates and piles of icy snow, and I thought, "We have known each other for years, now we are like old friends. I didn't even know how I had missed her until I saw her again."

4 Comments:

Blogger Morris said...

You should tell Camille how you "really" feel about her. My guess is knowing her for so long, she will either admit to feeling the same way, or accept you for the way you are. You really have nothing to loose!

Mr. Morris
Ask Morris

6:52 PM  
Anonymous The Camille In Question said...

Who is this "Morris" person and who -pray tell-asked him anything ?

Anyway back to the topic at hand. Ms. Sarah, thanks for the kind nod but I must make a few corrections here.

1)My suit is a nice khaki color. Black suit makes me sound like an undertaker.

2)There were only four girls in the office at a time, but I think I remember there being a small gay Latin boy looming around from time to time. I think he chaperoned the foreign students back from the airport, but then he got a real job. Am I crazy, here?

Anyway, that's it. I miss you all the time and I think I've just gotten so used to you being gone a lot that I hardly ever think to call or email. Now that I can trace your every move on this blog, I will bug you a lot more.

Love,
Camille

9:17 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Maybe the way I wrote this was confusing...because I "really" love Camille but I have no intention of *really loving* her. (Although, if I did, I'm sure I could find a completely inarticulate way of telling her -- and she could find a no-holds-barred way of telling me to go home.)

Camille, there definitely was a Latin boy who spent a lot of time at the airport. I remember making a conscious effort to have a crush on him. I think the social possibilities of the office were sort of...limited.

10:16 AM  
Anonymous camille said...

yikes! *really loving*?
morris really made things awkward.
friggin morris.

1:47 PM  

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