Something weird happened between me and Orange Ball. No, nothing that you’d have to pay to see, but kind of like a reverse Stockholm Syndrome: I WAS STARTING TO BOND WITH THE BALL. I knew I had to give it back to Chris—and soon—not only because I was afraid of growing too attached, but I never know how far I can take these things. Some people only have so much patience when they’re on the receiving end of pranks! I will never forget when I worked at the Tina and Eleanore Company, my one co-worker Collin ate a Hot Pocket every night. So another guy, Bob, decided, “Hey wouldn’t it be funny if we took Collin’s Hot Pocket out of the freezer and hid it?” I of course thought this would be the best idea ever because who I am to ever say, “No, one musn’t pull pranks on another colleague.” So I encouraged Bob to do it and Collin absolutely had a Hulk-caliber freak out, almost busted out of his shirt to make room for all the rage. He was beyond-pissed, slamming shit around in the kitchen, and we were all afraid of him for a little bit after that.
I also have a mildly adverse reaction to Hot Pockets now, too.
I didn’t want to see this happen to Chris. I don’t like it when men yell. Unless they’re on a stage at Warped Tour making Henry hate his life.
So I decided last night that today would be the big reunion. But not after posing Orange Ball with Michael Myers.
Aaron originally had the twin to Orange Ball, and he agreed to sacrifice it for the prank’s sake. I knew that I wanted to cut the ball in half and place it in this little coffin that my friend Octavia sent to Chooch two Christmases ago.
(Not because she was sinisterly insinuating! It came with a zombie doll inside. God!)
However, Aaron CONVENIENTLY couldn’t find the ball in his office yesterday. Was he telling the truth and now there’s a Chris-wannabe out there on the 10th floor? Or is Aaron PLAYING BOTH SIDES? I may never know, but what I did know was that my finale now needed to be modified and I was not happy about that. I went over the possibilities again and again last night, but I knew that unless I could come up with a similar ball, I was fucked and this was about to be the worst prank in Law Firm history.
(Considering I was busted five minutes into it, I’d say it already took that honor.)
Today, I skirted the astonishing amount of Brookline crazies and walked several blocks to the nearest CVS, where I found a foam basketball set in the kids aisle. Of course, because it’s a drug store, it was over-priced at $8 (EIGHT DOLLARS!) but I was desperate and bought it. (Not before witnessing kan irate ex-hippie flipping out because the equally-irate cashier wouldn’t honor his coupon; I hid out by the nail polish, so that explains why my total bill was over $20, sorry Henry.)
I cold hear Henry in my head saying, “Please don’t put actual money into this stupid prank” but I had to finish what I started, which is how Chooch wound up with a miniature basketball hoop and no basketball. I cut the ball into pieces and once I got to work, I rubbed some of the ball shrapnel in fake blood and placed it all inside the coffin, with a note written in blood.
Then I sent one final email from Orange Ball to Chris, with the above picture attached and a simple message of “Check under Lee’s desk.” Moments later, Chris emerged from his office and I heard him behind me saying to Lee, “Orange Ball sent me under message. We have to look under your desk.”
(I really appreciate that he continued to play along after the flimsy veil was blown off my anonymity before I even really started.)
Right away, Lee exclaimed, “THIS IS NOT ORANGEY. IT’S THE WRONG TEXTURE!”
But Chris still feigned horror. I got the real “Orangey” out of my desk and tossed it to him, causing a collective eruptive of “NOOOOO!”s to fill our quadrant. That ball is not very loved around these parts.
Here are some reactions to Chris and Orange Ball’s reunion:
- A weary: “I know, I heard him bouncing it.”
- “I heard that damn ball and immediately clenched up in anger.”
- “WHY DID YOU GIVE IT BACK!?”
- The start of a high-five, which was retracted once the owner of the hand realized that the ball guts did not actually come out of the Orange Ball.
I also got several, “Of COURSE you have a miniature coffin. Why wouldn’t you?” (“It’s my son’s,” I kept correcting)and, in mocking tones, “Of COURSE you randomly carry fake blood in your purse because you never know when you’re going to need it.”
Needed it today, DIDN’T I?
Some people were really impressed with my effort, but I’m sure there were just as many if not more who were annoyed at this complete waste of Company time.
I think I’m going to keep the coffin and remains on my desk as a permanent installation. After all, I didn’t pay $8 just to discard it in a dumpster like a dead hooker.
Orange Ball, I kind of like you now. Come visit sometime! (Just not through the air, at a fast pace.)