Sheep Submission: A Summer at Leisure World
Location: New York, NY
Web site: http://www.lauraprangley.com
Laura Prangley is the host of “Too Soon?” A monthly comedy show in Manhattan. Visit her Web site for a calendar of Laura’s upcoming gigs.
It was the Summer of 2003: the last summer before graduating high school, the summer I started socially drinking underage (sorry Mom & Dad), and the summer I had my first office job.
While my other friends were making minimum wage ($5.75 at the time) as camp counselors, lifeguards, and restaurant workers, I was to making a whopping $8.11 as a “real estate re-sales assistant.” In my mind, I was invincible. Office jobs ruled!
This affluent-sounding 9-5 job title was merely just working on Excel, photocopying hundreds of contracts, and filing. But I couldn’t complain, each hour I could brag about my additional $2.36 that my friends didn’t have.
The best part about the job was its location at the best institute ever created LEISURE WORLD.
For those of you who aren’t from Montgomery County, Md., please allow me to fill you in on the fun. Leisure World is home to over 8,500 elderly; all dispersed on 610-acre privately gated community. This community is better known to every local grade school kid as “Seizure World.” The joke never gets old, unless your grandparent lives there and dies suddenly from seizure; but eventually you laugh later.
In essence, it’s a college campus for old people with a beautiful golf-course, swimming pool, tennis courts, dining facilities, and clubhouse. It’s like the hot club spot for the 60+ crowd. Outside the premises they even have their own shopping center- Leisure World Plaza — where one of the D.C. sniper shootings tragically happened at the Crispy & Juicy in 2002.
My photo ID is proof that when I started in May, I was nothing but a ray of sunshine. The smile on my face actually was quite frightening. However, within a few weeks of sharing a windowless office with an unprecedented smelly woman who used a creepy deep whisper to speak in code to her secret lover all day, I was seeping with boredom. On occasion I would escape to a window peak at the senile as they played horseshoes, croquet, and chess.
Despite the seemingly long, dreadful hours, there was always at least one epic story a week that has stayed with me. Among my favorites was the infamous “Good Will Check.”
There was a man, let’s call him “Earl,” who was a member of a committee that met once a month.
Earl was known to be the early bird to meetings, so it was quickly noticed when he didn’t show up for a scheduled time to meet. To make sure he was alright, a crew was sent over to his townhouse to do a “good will check.”
When they arrived to his place, they found him sprawled out in his living room floor. They knew he was already dead when they saw he had a vacuum cleaning rod on his penis and a porno playing on the TV.
Unfortunately Earl died of a heart attack, leaving his family with the hardest and most confusing eulogy to write in human history.
Needless to say, I took a job the next summer as a lifeguard for $6.50 an hour. And each morning I pray I’ll never live in Leisure World.