Cockroach Dance

I told no one about this, I swear, yet everyone seems to know. Word spreads like vermin. All eyes are up to the ceiling. As we walk down the halls of our Madison Avenue office, we hold a suspicious and trembling view of the dirty gray panels which hang, tentatively, above us. We are wary and watchful, cautiously anticipating the sudden fall.

Last night, as I typed, I only barely noticed it. Most of my attention, of course, was directed at the computer screen, so what I glimpsed was simply a shadow. It seemed to be a part of the ceiling. Had Elizabeth still been in the office, it would have fallen directly on top of her innocent head.

A good thing she had already gone because I can't stand to hear a woman scream. Not, at least, the kind of scream that this fall would have elicited.

After finishing my work, I decided to investigate. I stood from my chair, walked the few short steps around to Elizabeth's desk, and inspected the floor.

There was nothing present, nothing obvious to be seen. I stood there, searching, baffled. Baffled because I was certain: Whatever it was that had hit the ground was large. This was no piece of dust, no small particle of drop ceiling. It should have been plain as day. It should have been right there on the floor, waiting for me. Waiting for me. But: nothing. How could a piece of the ceiling hide like this? How could a piece of the ceiling just run away?

Perhaps, after all, it wasn't a piece of the ceiling.

Just as the thought shook through my bones, I sensed movement. I looked up from the floor to the white laminate of Elizabeth's desk, and watched as it scurried off. I watched, dumbly, as it did its awful little tap-dance into the dark corners of thesauruses, template guides, and back issues.

With disgust and contempt, I groaned. I groaned. I groaned. From our quiet ceiling, an enormous and evil cockroach had, like a paratrooper, like a ninja, like an angel of darkness, dropped into our comfort and changed everything forever and ever.

Tari's picture

Only a great writer can make a parasailing water bug sound eloquent, and almost funny. Without being anywhere near the scene of the accident (thank God), I have been forever changed. In fact, at this very moment my feet are off of the floor, well I guess that doesn

Monty's picture

So, did you or JA receive the assignment to rifle through her desk and papers to ensure that the cockroach wasn't lurking? I would have soooo much fun with a situation like this...plastic bugs and a strategic thread pulled at just the right moment.

Clay White's picture

C'mon, Steven," that roach is one of the standard amenities associated with living and working in ""the big Apple"". Be glad it wasn't a rat. Among the other amenities are", I'm sure, exterminaters. Get one.

Todd Steponick's picture

They watch as you read this, and match their steps with your keystrokes, so you never hear them coming.

Monty's picture

LOL @ Todd.