Yesterday was one of those work days where I had zero appointments scheduled and about three specific things that had to be done. I also planned to go to the grocery store at lunchtime. I even showered and got dressed first thing in the morning in anticipation of actually leaving the house.
I don’t talk about my job much. It’s not super-exciting, but it pays the bills. I get to work from home, which isn’t always a good thing, but it’s still better than going to an office most days. One would think working from home that my time would be my own. It isn’t. The job is deadline-driven and can be very demanding.
I write proposals. As my friend Carol has said, “Ew, it’s like you have to sit and write a book report every single day.” The proposals are accompanied by complex Excel spreadsheets, too. Not government grant proposals (thank GOD), but proposals describing services being requested of my employer, a clinical research organization (CRO). Also known as a contract research organization, a CRO isn’t a pharmaceutical company, it’s a company that provides a very wide range of specialty services required by pharmaceutical companies to facilitate the whole drug and medical device development process.
I have to do other stuff, too. All related to the proposal process and all subject to often unreasonable deadlines. My days are very unpredictable. Often I’ll have days like yesterday when I have an empty calendar and plan to get A, B, and C done, but then D, E, F, and G pop up, all demanding urgent attention.
It can get a bit hectic. Often, like yesterday, I’ll barely be able to step away from my desk. It’s especially frustrating when I plan to go someplace at lunchtime, like the grocery store, but am just not able to leave. And I really NEEDED to go get something to fix for dinner.
Once I finally did get out of here, I was already a bit irritated. It had been a hectic, stressful day.
So, imagine me in my already-irritated state getting caught by a long-ass traffic light within sight of the supermarket. The store I frequent is near Arundel Mills Mall, a mega-mall that is always a busy place. On the corner opposite where I sat, was a group of about eight youngish men in business attire. One was waving a large, red flag. Three held up a banner that said some crap like “God’s marriage is man + woman.” One held a sign that read something to the effect of “honk if you agree.” He was flanked by two others who were waving their arms to get people’s attention.
Just seeing those guys there upset me. But what shocked and irritated me more was the number of people honking. There were more drivers not honking than there were honking drivers. But still. It pissed me off.
I will not go on and on about why I support same-sex unions. I just do. Period. And I am vehemently opposed to folks who play the God-card to protest gay marriage.
I am not a religious person. I do not think religion should play a role in politics. I truly believe two people, whether they are of the same sex or not, should be free to marry or otherwise commit themselves to one another.
Fortunately, I didn’t have to sit there stewing for long. When the light finally changed—I was the first car in line, by the way—the small group with the “honk” sign started waving their arms at me.
I very purposefully pulled off slowly, flipping them each the bird as I went. I made sure each of them saw me, too.
I didn’t get much of a reaction, but nevertheless it felt REALLY good.
It didn’t dawn on me until much later why those guys were there. There’s same-sex marriage legislation in the works here in Maryland that just might make same-sex unions legal in Maryland. The Senate has already approved the bill, but it still has a long way to go.
I’m keeping my fingers crossed. I’ll be sure to uncross them and wave if I see those young men again.