Gun-totin', Chronic-smokin' Hearse Initiator (ludickid) wrote,
Gun-totin', Chronic-smokin' Hearse Initiator
ludickid

About the three people on the cover of the Oriental Trading Company's Spring 2003 catalog

The one on the left -- no, on your left, as you look at the picture -- is Karen. Karen is 43, but she can pass for being in her mid-30s with a lot of makeup and without the neck shawl. (She thinks the neck shawl covers her wattles, but really, it makes her look like a woman in her mid-40s who wears neck shawls.) She has good taste in haircuts and bad taste in men; she still hangs out at bars near college campuses and tries to pick up seniors. She's been divorced two times and her teenaged daughter can't talk to her for more than three minutes without rolling her eyes. She has an easy laugh and she's by far the most competent professional in the office, but she'll never make it past vice-president for the never-spoken reason that she's a woman. She likes Phil Collins and things that are peach-flavored or -scented. She used to be a big reader until she realized that it turned people off. Karen didn't really want to pose for this picture, but she doesn't want to jeopardize her reputation as a team player. She has an explicable fear of being buried alive. Her parents are British, and call her "our Karen", which annoys her.

Rich is the one in the middle. He used to be called 'Dick' when he was a teenager, but he changed it in college -- not because of the phallic teasing, but because he was then and is now an advocate of the power of positive thinking; he believes that using the name 'Rich' will cause wealth to flow to him. He is a salesman (or, rather, a 'sales executive'), and a pretty good one, though some of his clients silently notice that his collars do not fit well or that he has a tendency to sweat a lot. Rich is 38 and married with 2 boys, in whom he will be disappointed if they are not athletes. Rich himself is fit, but not athletic -- he is quite short, and only seems tall in the photograph compared to the two women. He describes bacon as his "weakness", and will be shocked to discover he is right after his first heart attack. Rich doesn't really listen to music; like most things not involving personal gain, it falls outside his sphere of attention. He is sure he doesn't like rap music, though he's only ever heard it in commercials, and a college roommate of his played Zappa for him once and he still talks about how crazy it sounded.

The last person in the photograph is Maggie. 'Margaret' is what most people call her but she has introduced herself to people as 'Maggie' since she turned 50. She is a receptionist/administrative assistant for the company and appearing on the cover of the OTC catalog is probably the best thing that has ever happened to her. Her husband left her eight years ago, but she still wears her ring, for reasons she finds difficult to articulate. Her husky voice is the subject of fun around the office, although she is not aware of this. Maggie -- let us call her Margaret, we have known her long enough -- is a hypochondriac and has dozens of self-diagnosed food allergies; her latest is gluten, and during a slow patch today she will surf the internet to determine what exactly gluten is so she can begin avoiding it, or at least talking about it. Maggie's son runs an auto towing service and is a part-time professional wrestler; they are devoted to one another and she is forever amusing her co-workers with stories of his exploits in the squared circle. She likes classical music and looks down at lowbrows like that snooty Karen who like pop.
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