A Tale of Two Garths. Chapter 24 – I’m HUGE in Armenia!
“Stacy can I talk to you?” my manager at Stanley’s asked me.
“Um…sure,” I said. Not a good time. I was totally weeded. I had a ton of tables and was in the middle of the lunch rush and she wanted to have a bonding moment.
“Come into the office,” she said trying her best to act authoritative. Ha, this can’t be good. I thought to myself. As I followed her blond 80’s hair into the back office I was cringing to myself thinking what was happening in my station in my absence. Food is up, people need refills on their drinks. I don’t have time for this!
“Stacy, I got a complaint about you,” she told me as she sat behind her desk.
“Huh? Why?” I asked totally flabbergasted. Now, I know when I’m being an asshole. Trust me, I’ve been working long and hard all these years perfecting my technique. And I knew for a fact that I was working my ass off that day.
“The two women on table 18 said that you walked up to their table and said, “I’m busy. What do you want?”
My jaw just dropped to the ground. Bitches!
“That is NOT what I said,” I told her.
“Well that’s what they said that you said.”
“Amy, do you really think I would say that to somebody?” She just raised her eyebrows. Now I was not only pissed at the two women sitting at table 18 but I was pissed off at my manager too.
“Just so you know, even though I would think you would know me better than this by now, what I said to them was: “Hi ladies. I’m a little bit busy right now. Can I start you off with something to drink and then I’ll come back and take your order.”
Amy just sat there looking at me straight faced as she pushed a piece of paper across the desk to me.
“I need you to sign your write up,” she said.
“I refuse to sign that,” I told her absolutely confident that all my tables were burning images of me in effigy. “We want our food! We want our food!”
“But you have to,” she told me.
“No, I don’t,” I said, trying to keep my cool. “If I sign that, then that goes in my personal file and I would be admitting to doing something I haven’t done. So I won’t sign it. I have food up. Are we done?”
“…Yes,” Amy muttered after a long pause, then added “For now.” Yeah, I’m quaking, lady. I could see her face, scalp, and everything else on her body turn a lovely shade of crimson. I didn’t intent to make her mad but there was no way in hell I was signing an admission of guilt about something I did not do. Now if she had me sign a piece of paper that said I had come to work stoned once or twice I might have signed the damn thing.
I left the office pissed off. Great. Now I’m mad and I have a station full of people. I put on my best fake smile and prepared myself to not only have to make up time lost but to still have to deal with the two bitches at table 18. I went and got the ice teas they had ordered and turned the corner to see that they were no longer in my station. Well isn’t that nice. First they get me in trouble and now they don’t even have the decency to drink their ice teas. What kind of people do that?
I finished off my shift and sat down to eat the salad I had ordered when I heard something so shocking I almost spit out my salad.
“Stacy, Ashley is sick. Can you work her shift tonight?” Amy asked me. Has she lost her damn mind? First she writes me up, then she doesn’t believe me, and now she’s asking me for a favor? I’ll show her I’m not to be trifled with!
“Sure. I need the money.” That’ll teach her!
Just as I started my second shift I felt the vibration come from the inside of my waiters apron. Oh my pager. I could really use some good news right now. I ran into the women’s restroom and dug my pager out of my pocket along with some change. I picked up the receiver of the payphone and dialed the number I was sent.
“Hi this is Stacy, I got a call from this number.”
“Hi Stacy, my name is Maria. I don’t know if you remember me but you auditioned for a music video last week and I was calling to tell you that you got the part.” I was so excited! My first official acting gig in LA. Goodbye theater. Hello television! As she was talking about the logistics about where we were going to be shooting the video and what I needed to bring, I envisioned myself up against a chain link fence gyrating like the chicks you see in Motley Crue videos. I’m going to be a video vixen! This is AWESOME!
“Stacy, are you there?” I heard Maria say over the phone.
“Huh? Oh yea, sorry. I’m here,” I told her. I was so busy daydreaming I didn’t realize that she was giving me the address to the shoot.
“So we’ll see you Tuesday. 9 am,” she said before she hung up. I was elated.
Tuesday morning came and I drove myself out to the address Maria had given me. I walked in the door and entered into a large convention center type hallway.
“Hi Stacy,” a woman with a warm smile and dark hair said to me as she walked to me. I immediately recognized her from the audition.
“Hi Maria,” I said back to her as I extended my hand for my “professional handshake”. See? I can be professional if I really want to.
“Stacy, this is Jivan. He is who you are going to be working with today,” Maria told me. I took one look at the handsome Jivan and had a feeling I wasn’t going to get to climb across any cars or hang on any chain link fences. But I was wondering why they had asked me to bring the lingerie.
Maria led us further into the building and I had never in my life seen something so gaudy and so appealing all at the same time. I was torn. Do I hate it? Do I love it? It was like Donald Trump and Martha Steward had a love child. There were huge chandeliers hanging from the ceiling, a rose colored pastel wallpaper covered all the walls trimmed in white, and then to top it all of was the explosion of gold. Gold everywhere. Anything and everything that could be splashed in gold or painted in gold, was.
“What kind of place is this?” I asked to no one in particular.
“It is for wedding parties,” Jivan told me in his thick accented voice.
“Where are you from?” I asked him.
“I am from Armenia,” he said in a most romantic way. There was something so gentle about him.
I changed into a beautiful brown dress while Maria’s crew set us up to shoot the video. Jivan came out of the men’s room in white button up suit shirt with his tie undone just a little bit, and black slacks He looked very handsome. Maria told me to sit across the table from him and hold hands with him over the table. All I had to do was stare lovingly into his big brown eyes while he sang to me. I took one look at Jivan and looked back at Maria and told her that wasn’t going to be a problem. We sat in our seats smiling awkwardly at one another when the music started. Jivan started signing in a voice that was as inviting as his looks. The only problem was I had no idea what the hell he was saying. It was all in Armenian. For all I knew I was sitting across the table from him smiling at him as he was singing “I’m going to slap your ass and call you Sally.” I felt kind of stupid and prayed that the lyrics were kind ones.
Jivan and I got to know each other pretty well by lunchtime but things were just winding up.
“Okay people. Everyone back to my house for the bedroom shots,” Maria announced. Oooohhh. The bedroom shots. Yeah… I had done a lot of plays over the years and in those plays I had kissed a LOT of men and even one woman. But I had always managed to keep my clothes on. And now I was going to take them off for a group of compete strangers and a man I had just met who was singing me a song I didn’t understand. I was feeling a little nauseous just thinking about it.
I don’t know if I can do this.
Oh come on Stacy, don’t be such a pussy!
But I don’t even know these people.
Just shut up and do it!!
But I’ll be rolling around in lingerie!
Who cares? Nobody’s going to see it outside of Iran. Suck it up!
Great, now I’m talking to myself. The internal debate went on during the entire drive over to Maria’s house. I wasn’t getting paid for this; I was doing it for my resume and so I would have something on film.
“If you are going to act in Hollywood you must have something on film,” I could hear my agent’s voice in my head.
Okay, I’m just going to suck it up and do it. If I feel uncomfortable, I’ll just leave.
I went into the house and the crew was setting up the lights in the bedroom for the scene when Jivan walked out of the bathroom in boxers and nothing else.
Oh my God I can’t do this!
“Are you ready for this?” he asked me. But the way he asked me made me feel a whole lot better about the situation. He voice gave it all away. He was just as nervous as I was.
“Not really,” I told him.
“Me neither.” We both just stood there looking like two virgins having second thoughts about what we were about to do.
“Um, I think it might be better if everyone left and I just shot this scene myself,” Maria said as she kicked everyone else out of the bedroom.
“Stacy, the bathroom’s right there if you want to get dressed,” she said to me. Not really. But into the bathroom I went and came out in a pink teddy. Jivan did his best to not look directly at me.
“Okay, the purpose of this scene is Jivan is dreaming that you two are together and happily married. So Stacy I want you to curl up against him and lay your head on his chest.” Man it just gets worse and worse doesn’t it?
“And then Jivan you’re going to wake up from the dream and find her gone with only the wedding ring in her place. And you will be heart broken because you let the love of your life get away,” she continued. After she told us what we were going to do I felt a little bit better about the situation. I knew that ass slapping was out, which made me feel quite a bit more comfortable. Jivan and I were both so ungraceful and awkward as we climbed into bed together Maria should have taped that part for a teen abstinence video.
“Just look at these two. Look at her awkward facial expressions and the look of sheer terror on his face. You see kids, this is why you need to wait till marriage for sex. So you don’t look like these two idiots.” But Jivan and I got through it, got dressed, and hugged goodbye.
“Thank you so much Stacy. This video is going to be great. I’ll send you a copy as soon as it’s done,” Maria assured me.
Long after the day had begun, I finally walked into the apartment I shared with the girls. But before I could even rest my Armenian loving ass on the couch Claire told me Garth had called.
“What did he say?” I asked her.
“He told me to tell you he gave notice with his landlord. He’ll be here in 30 days.” I was so happy I jumped up and down. My boyfriend was actually going to be living in the same city with me. I was going to be putting my head on his chest and not Jivan’s. I was ecstatic.
I waited and waited but never did get a copy of my video I so desperately needed. But Maria assured me she was working on it when I called her and told me our video was playing regularly on the Armenian station. I wouldn’t know, we couldn’t afford cable. I was busy watching what was happening on channel 3. That was our parking garage security channel. Hey don’t knock it. People do some funny shit when they think they aren’t being watched. So I didn’t make it big on MTV. Who cares? I hear I’m huge in Armenia.
To be continued…
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