Carrie Reinhold’s First Job (Part III) – A Team PCPB Original Story

I was enjoying myself for the first time since Lisa, and I went to that movie last night – My goodness, that felt like an age ago by this point. The director apologized a little for barking at me on set, “Carrie, I’m sorry if I came off as a little short tempered. You’ve been doing a great job out there.”

Even though I was still a little ticked about the way I was treated, I also appreciated that she was being nice again. I did say “Thanks.” Mom always taught me to remember my pleases and thank you’s.

We were at Pizza Hut. While not my favorite, I’ll take pizza when I can. I was so hungry I was trying hard not to eat all the pizza. I had to make sure everyone else got theirs.

Sadly, the good will didn’t spread to everyone during our supper. One of the kid actresses asked me, “How do you stay warm in this cold weather?”

Honest answer: I don’t. However, I told her, “I’m wearing two pairs of sweat pants.”

Greg just had to chime in, “Sweat pants? What do you need those for? I work in warehouses with jeans on, because I’m a badass.” Okay, he didn’t say that last part, but Greg had this obnoxious tone where it felt like he punctuated everything he said that way. If you replace “bad” with “dumb” or “Jack”, you’ll get what I think of Greg.

Dinner didn’t last long, and we made it back to the house to resume filming. One thing struck me almost right away: I had to go to the bathroom again. All the Pepsi I drank at dinner caught up with me. One of the actresses was already using the bathroom. So I decided to venture off on my own and look for the little girls’ room.

Almost immediately, our host busted me. “Excuse me, what are you doing?”

“I’m trying to find the bathroom.” There was no point in lying. I had an honest need.

“There’s only one bathroom, and it’s being used.” Our host said in a tone that sound quite PO’d. I decided to wait around for my turn. Eventually, I did get to use the bathroom. Then it was back to the cold.

It was back to filming, and I was desperately hoping we wouldn’t get another six hours of this. We did a few takes, but the director was again unhappy with them. Every time we did a take, I was hoping it would be the one she was hoping for so that we could go home.

I saw the actual house owner come over to talk to the director. I couldn’t make out what they were saying, but the director looked annoyed. He came over and told us, “I just spoke with Catherine. We can’t use this house anymore. We have to call it a day.”

The crew started tearing down equipment and packing things up. I raised my hand, “So what time do we meet tomorrow?”

The director sighed, “We ran a little late tonight, so Catherine says she wants to talk to me before we can use this location again. So I’m calling tomorrow off.”

Even though I didn’t hear anyone say it, there was a collective groan. We all had to pitch in and carry stuff back to the van. The good news is we didn’t have to walk that narrow path anymore. The bad news is it wasn’t exactly easy carrying heavy equipment after a long day of being on my feet for hours on end.

Greg, who did quite well at his job of hurling insults at people and occasionally pointing the camera at things, got another jab in, “Hey Carrie, get the lead out.” Hey Greg, with this cold weather, you can… There was a small penis joke in there somewhere. That’s why I missed Robert. He would have thought of something funny.

Once everything was packed up, Annie volunteered to take me home. Annie turned to me and said, “I’ll be sure to drive gently.” I couldn’t tell if she was kidding or not. Not that it mattered, there was less talking on the drive home. I was so tired I almost fell asleep.

I arrived home. After the day I had, I could barely move. My legs were in such pain from the way I had to walk that every step felt like a struggle. After being in that cold, parts of me had no feeling – especially my face. That was a great pairing – parts of me had no feeling, and what feeling I had was pain.

Dad saw me walking around in this state and said, “Carrie, why don’t you smile a little.” I loved my dad, but sometimes I hated him.

After making it to my room, I took off my heavy clothes, put on my jammies and fell into bed. (And yes, I forgot to wash my face and brush my teeth. Sue me.) Unlike the previous night, I slept like the dead that night. A bomb could have gone off, and that couldn’t have woken me up.

Sunday morning, I wasn’t in the best of moods. I began wondering if the job on Kiddie Town was even worth it. I was miserable from the lousy day I had, every part of me was sore, and I was trying to forget about Adam. Somehow I woke up before Lisa. When she spotted me, she asked, “Hey sis, what are you doing up? I thought you were working today.”

“So did I, but they cancelled. I guess they decided yesterday was enough.”

“Sorry?” Lisa didn’t seem to know if I was angry or happy about having the day off. “But hey, you can see The Price is Right Live with us now.”

That’s right! The Price is Right Live! I was so sure I’d be working that day, I completely forgot about going. After the weekend I had, THAT would be the perfect way to wash that taste out of my mouth. Time to forget about Adam. Time to forget about my sore legs, and the cold! Time to start thinking about Plinko and the Mountain Climber and the Big Wheel. This was going to be fun.

Mom and Dad woke up. After Mom had got over a similar shock Lisa had at my not working, I told her, “Hey, I found out I can make it to The Price is Right Live tonight after all!”

“That’s wonderful! I’ll see if I can get you a ticket after church.”

Boy was I ever excited to be going to The Price is Right! It wasn’t going to solve my problems, but it sure would be fun. I was so excited about going, and I couldn’t even focus on what the preacher said in church. Look, the Man Upstairs knows how excited I was about this show – surely he’d understand if my mind wandered a little.

When we got home, I was never more excited to be home from church. Normally that time meant laundry, practicing my instrument and watching TV, but this was something special! I said to Mom, “Hey Mom…”

That was all she needed to hear to know what I was talking about. “I know, Carrie, I got to get you your Price is Right ticket.”

Mom got on her computer and was shopping for tickets. I was so excited to be going. I couldn’t wait to see my favorite game show as live as I was going to see it. While Mom was shopping, she had a look on her face. This was not a look I liked.

“Carrie, I don’t know how to tell you this, but they don’t have any more tickets.”

I think the idea was so awful I went into denial mode. “You mean they just don’t have tickets with you and Lisa? I mean, I understand if we can’t all sit together. I mean, we all have phones, and that’s what they’re for…”

“There is no more tickets period! They’re all sold out!”

I was in disbelief. My mom could tell. She showed me the web page, and she was dead right – there wasn’t a single seat left in the entire theater. Even the nosebleeds were sold out… Or at least there would be if the theater was big enough to hold nosebleeds. God, I wish that theater had nosebleeds.

To say I felt crushed was an understatement. With the way one awful thing after another happened to me that weekend, every other thing just hurt that much more. Mom could see the look of frustration on my face, “Carrie sweetie, please don’t give me that look.” That wasn’t a command. That was a plea. Mom cared so much about providing for Lisa and me that she was heartbroken about not being able to take me. “I’ll make it up to you. I swear, I’ll get your tickets to the next one.”

I knew how much my mom cared about this sort of thing, so I was trying badly not to show how disappointed I was. There was also no chance of getting anyone else’s ticket. Dad was never going to go. Even if she probably would have given it to me, I would have felt awful even asking for mom’s ticket. Lisa may have looked out for me, but there was no WAY she’d give me her ticket – not even if I offered to pick up her chores for a year.

Mom and Lisa left for the show, and I sat there being jealous. Dad, who had been so inconsiderate the night before, sat next to me. “Sweetie, I’m sorry. I know things aren’t always fair, and that’s probably not going to make you feel better. But if you need a shoulder to cry on, I’m here for you, hon.”

“Thanks, Dad.”

Dad probably noticed I didn’t usually say so little to him. “How about I order a pizza?” Despite having pizza last night, I wasn’t one to complain about getting free pizza two nights in a row. Besides, the pizza was a cold comfort (pun not intended but hard to avoid) after everything that happened.

Mom and Lisa arrived from home. I asked, “How was the show?”

“It was fun,” my mom answered. That was her way of saying “We enjoyed the show, but we don’t want to rub it in your face.”

Lisa was a little more honest with me, “Neither of us got called up, but we still had a great time. I always love how they some game like 10 Chances where someone has to guess every number in a car price, then they play something like Flip Flop where the guy has a 50-50 chance.”

“I actually thought that was kind of unfair that they have games like that,” I said. That’s how I felt about this weekend – everybody else was getting Flip Flop, and I was getting 10 chances – and losing.

That night, I went to bed and did everything in my power not to fall asleep to my own tears. If nothing else, I was just happy that this whole awful weekend was finally over. Too bad it wasn’t.

I was never so happy to be back to school. I wasn’t one of those people who LIKED school, but I didn’t hate it or anything. Still, after the weekend I had, school sounded a break for once. Before going to school, I got a message from Annie: “Hey Carrie, can you meet me in the cafeteria after school? I need to talk to you.”

“Yeah, I can be there.” I wondered what she wanted to talk about. Although I liked Annie, I knew our relationship was built around Kiddie Town, so I figured she wasn’t meeting with me to discuss buying tickets to Paramore. However, her tone sounded friendly enough that I decided not to worry about it.

Annie and I met up in the cafeteria after school. “You got the feeling back in your legs, Carrie?” Annie asked with a smile.

“Yeah, I’m feeling a lot better!” I could walk, but after that weekend, that was about it. Do you have any idea how glad I was the band was out of season? But as Mom always told me, a little white lie never hurt anyone.

After her little joke, Annie got down to business. “We need to talk about your behavior on set. Look, some of the actresses said they were uncomfortable with your jokes.”

I tried to explain myself, but Annie continued. “You also roamed around our guest’s house without asking.”

I tried to explain myself, but Annie continued. “Now listen, I know you’ve got a lot going on. You’re in the band, and this will make things easier for you to commit. I also know…”

That’s when it clicked. “Wait a minute! I’m fired? But I can shape up. I’ll behave myself. I’ll…”

“Look, I’m really sorry about this, but I’m sure things will work out for you – just not on this project.”

Annie left, and I sat there alone feeling sorry for myself. I was worrying: Would I ever work in this town again? Would this one gaffe follow me around like some kind of Scarlet Letter for the rest of my career? At the same time, I felt a sense of relief – My weekends were free again. I wouldn’t have to see that jerk, Greg, again.

You know you’ve had a lousy weekend when things spill over into Monday… So in conclusion: I lost my job, I lost my man, I lost feeling in my legs, I lost my show, and I even lost my lunch.

I was hoping to get some empathy from some of my friends, but that wasn’t happening. When I told anyone about getting fired, they told me “You shouldn’t have been acting that way,” “You deserved to be fired”, “Everything that happened was [my] fault.”

Lisa was a little more sympathetic. When I told her about how I was fired, but that jerk Greg kept his job, she reminded me, “There’s your lesson. If you’re friends with the right people, you can do whatever you want.”

When I told people about Adam, I was told: “Just because a guy’s nice to you doesn’t mean he’s interested.” I think I was just going to start a steady habit of bottling up every awful thing that happened to me from now on…

I did tell Robert about this months later (leaving out the part about Adam of course). He gave me some feedback. “Carrie, when a jerk like that says ‘I don’t have a filter,’ tell him: Most retards don’t.” I didn’t care much for his use of the R-word, but that was a wicked burn.

Suffice to say; I don’t think this was going to be my year.

The End

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