There you are.
I do not yet know your name. I don’t even know if you are a boy or a girl. But I know that you are out there somewhere, and also, inside of me — in a way. For one day I will be in a position to take care of you.
Just as you will take care of me.
If you would have asked me, even a year ago, if I thought myself ready for this task — this blessing — I would have scoffed. Imagine — Daniel Kibblesmith! Responsible for the well-being of a recent college graduate with experience and aspirations tenuously connected to the most menial of my own daily duties? “I’m too young,” I would protest. “Wasn’t it just yesterday that I was an intern myself?”
But somewhere, in that curious womb of fate, you were there — giving me a tiny kick.
I write this to you now, in hopes that these are the days you will one day ask me about. What was it like for me, your future immediate supervisor, to be an up and coming professional, working 9-5 (roughly) as a copywriter for a popular shopping website? Was I happy before I had you? Certainly, for I would only be ready to welcome you into a workplace where you would be loved, in addition to being used effectively, and — expected on your end — proactively. But know that I am happier now, with you in my life, just as I will be happy to have assistance synching my Google calendars to an Android-powered phone, which you’d think would be easy.
As my professional duties begin to swell and expand, so too do I feel you in there somewhere, growing closer to the day when we will finally meet. In each cup of coffee I get up to pour myself and mindlessly tote back across the office, I see your face looking up at me, slowly forming across its rippled surface, and hopefully, taking note of how much milk I’ve added. With each lunch break I spend on a personal errand — picking up new eyeglasses or negotiating a conflict with my cable provider — a tiny voice speaks up from somewhere deep inside me: “Couldn’t someone else be doing this?”
Unlike your post-grad peers with (shudder) unpaid internships, you will want for nothing. As your caregiver I will ensure that you receive an hourly stipend of $3.78, a vocational training wage which I will assure you is perfectly legal in the State of Illinois (please see attached Form 1099-Q). How will you spend your earnings, I wonder? On a bagel and coffee at the deli around the corner, during one of your three 15-minute allotted daily breaks which you may consolidate into a single lunch-hour if you so wish?
Or perhaps there is another in your life — a boy or a girl whose heart you will win with stories of what it must be like to empty wastebaskets and relabel MP3s for such an important man. The love that I give to you, you will share with them, often by leaving your phone on during movie dates, in the event of an emergency, and in accordance of our agreed-upon definition of what qualifies as an emergency.
On Wednesdays, when my growing influence will allow me to work from home without scrutiny, I will find you waiting patiently on my doorstep, having rung the doorbell 13 minutes ago when I was sleepily standing motionless in the shower. My home will become yours, and you will be free to clear off any potential work surface you wish to make your own. Should you come across them, those Netflix envelopes need to be mailed back, actually. Thanks.
My intern, I cannot wait for the day I finally look down at your scrunched up, yawning face, eyes opening and blinking experimentally in the sunlight for the first time since your previous night’s graduation party. And yet I know that when our time together draws to a close, I will sign the letter of recommendation you write yourself for me, in the deep blue-black ink from the fountain pen you’ll bestow upon me as a gift, to thank me for the eighteen months of invaluable life experience, minus those two weeks you will have attended the SXSW Festival, well-prepared by my long, overly-specific story of consecutive attendances of Coachella ‘04 and ‘05. That is, of course, unless you’d like to stay on as a part-time employee.
After all, there’s a new intern coming soon, who could use a role model. I have a feeling they’ll even look just like you.
I Will Always Value Your Contributions Here,
Daniel Kibblesmith is a writer, cartoonist and filmmaker, sometimes for Groupon. See more at kibblesmith.com
The Humor Section features a piece of original humor writing each week. To submit to it, send an email to Becca O’Neal