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Thursday, January 05, 2017

The Workaholic

Place: third place in Creative Writing

From the first moment he saw her
He was hooked, sunk and smitten.
Passing the chic design dress shop on the corner
He saw stunningly beautiful large hazel eyes, she was
Tall and slim, had a certain wispy elegant beauty
In the way she moved about the window showcase.
She was wearing a silky smooth pale blue dress
Complimenting her figure and long legs.
A strand of blond hair kept falling onto her forehead
Covering her eyes, she kept pushing it aside.
Surrounded by fashionable mannequins
That she arranged in different poses around her.

She sorted out the various decorations
Hanging them one by one until the design was complete.
Stepping back, she examined her work and was satisfied.
Susan Edwards was an established visual designer
Of displays, store windows and sales floors.
Oblivious to anyone watching her
She continued to decorate the storefront window
In her signature style, but in holiday fashion
And she was gathering quite a crowd.
It was incredible how eye-catching her display was.
She knew it would be the talk of the neighborhood.
Day after day Brad walked past that corner to catch his bus.

He was so engrossed in business matters that
He hadn’t noticed this goddess before,
That was, at least until now.
Stepping out from his office building he meandered
Down the street until he paused, right in
Front of her showcase window.
He watched her for a few minutes,
Engaged by the grace and beauty and creativity,
As she carefully moved the mannequins about
Engrossed with her display, she didn’t hear him enter
When he spoke, Susan jumped, apparently startled
That anyone would interrupt her, invade her world.

“Hello, I love your exhibit. You have created a warm atmosphere.
Your neutral colors are stimulating and inspirational.
I love the way you accented the area with throws,
And with these cushions and flowers and paintings.
‘Why did he have to interrupt my concentration?’ she thought to herself.
She didn’t ask for his opinion or appreciate being interrupted.
“I’m sorry, but I am busy. Perhaps we can talk when I’m not so harried.”
He wanted her from the moment he had looked at her.
She was beautiful, intellectual and ever so classy,
One might even say that she was a bit sassy.
Not accepting a rebuke, he said “Have you noticed
Every holiday revolves around food? Stop what you are doing!”

Accept my dinner invitation in the name of the Holidays!”
“My name is Brad, Brad Williams.” He said immediately. “And yours?”
Speaking in a buttery smooth yet commanding voice,
His white teeth showed in a reckless boyish grin.
At age 49 he looked delicious with his salt and pepper goatee,
Dressed in an expensive dark suit wearing an expensive watch
A diamond ring consuming his finger.
Yes indeed, he was delicious, she said to herself.
The one thing that riveted her attention was the unmistakable smell of money.
The designer was unable to resist his charm.
“My name is Susan, Susan Edwards,” she responded with a smile.
“And you look like you won’t go away until I say yes,” she told him.

“So my answer is Yes, I do accept.”
There was a triumphant ring in his voice as he said, “Great.”
Her stomach started to growl like a caged beast.
“I haven’t had a break all day, so I appreciate the invitation,” Susan said.
“There is a real good restaurant not too far from here.” she suggested.
Without giving it a second thought Brad agreed.
Grabbing her coat, she reached for his arm.
As they stepped outside she wrapped her cloak tighter around her.
It felt like snow was coming. “Brrrrrrrr…” she said as she
Snuggled against his warm body to hide from the wind.
Dizzied by her closeness, Brad inhaled the sweet scent of her perfume.
To their relief, they finally arrived at the restaurant.

Brad immediately called over a waiter to take their food and drink orders.
This dinner invitation was the first of many that followed.
He knew he wanted to marry her,
She would be his trophy wife!
He needed her to enhance his image amongst peers and strangers
And to move up the corporate ladder
She fit perfectly into his plans,
Like a mannequin on a holiday throw rug,
But he wouldn’t make any effort to be a part of her life
Little did she know, there wouldn’t be any more time for fun or frolic
Life with her would change him into a workaholic.
Susan was falling in love with Brad,

She loved the steady surprise gifts of jewelry.
She was willing to forsake her career
In place of marriage to this wealthy man.
After several months of courtship,
She accepted his proposal of marriage.
Then began her private hell, with frequent outbursts of jealousy,
Accusing him of having affairs with other women
Demanding that Brad should spend more time with her
And the children than he did.
The annoying endless rounds of social events,
The hypocritical smiles she was forced to display,
His rattle of compliments did not even make her feel appreciated.

They had two sons but he had no idea how to love a child.
The cold suppers that wasted in wait for him
As his excuses increased day after day,
Disappointments after disappointments,
A closet full of bored evening gowns and a lonely mink coat
With nowhere to go and nothing to do
She became often cold and unfeeling,
Always in a bad mood, complaining, complaining….
She didn’t want an absent workaholic or life-of-the-party guy,
She just wanted her own idea of Brad.
Brad was now President of ‘BRW Technologies.’
His response was always the same, time and again.

“Have I not provided well for you and the kids? Look at this Fifth Avenue apartment,
The life of luxury you lead! You have a maid that cooks and cleans,  the best schools for the kids.”
“Do you ever say you love me?  Or prioritize ME?” Susan sobbed. “I’m lonely.”
“Then go back to your window designing and keep yourself busy. I can’t be making money
And hold your hand all of the time. I thought you understood.”
Brad raised his voice, not caring if the neighbors heard him.
“Damn it Sue, nothing I do or say ever pleases you. You should count yourself lucky.
I am the President of my Company. I achieved that with a lot of hard work.
I didn’t have a magic wand to make it happen. It was sacrifice, time and discipline.”
“And what about me? Didn’t I benefit you among your peers?” she cried.
“You have everything any woman can want and still it is not enough.”
“I was only a toy for you to show off.” Susan sobbed

“I am tired of this shit, your constant whining,” Brad screamed.
“I am not a workaholic because I love my work so much,
It’s because I despise the rest of my life with you.”
“I’m leaving.” he snapped, opening the door. “You’ll be hearing from my lawyer.”
He slammed the door loudly behind him, not waiting one more
Second to hear her response for he truly did not care.
Susan stood there shocked and speechless, not believing he had left
Her two children were crying as they clung to her, confused and scared.
Brad’s relationship with his wife had deteriorated beyond repair,
The glue that held them together had finally dried up, no longer holding vows together.
Thus Brad’s greed for power and his Workaholism killed their seven-year old marriage.

Posted by 12mimi22 on 01/05 at 08:20 AM | Permalink
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