Burning the midnight oil
It’s almost midnight and I am still at work, waiting to confirm an update on the site. The only other people here are a producer and editor. All I can hear is the humming of the refrigerator in the pantry, and the low murmur of distant voices debating over edits.
I don’t mind working late, for the most part. When I worked solely as an Assistant Editor for on air shows, I often started my “days” at 5pm. When my shift was over, I would come down the elevator and greeting me would be the eerily empty NYC streets. Perhaps a bum would shuffle by, or a giant rat, but for the most part it often felt like – at least for the walk to the subway – the entire city belonged to me.
By the time I reached my neighborhood and exited my train, the sun was coming up, and I would pass by people in nurses uniforms, groggy eyed students, workers peddling newspapers. They were just starting their days, and I was on my way to my little bedroom to draw the curtains tight, curl up under my blanket and pretend there wasn’t blazing sunlight searing through my eyelids. It goes without saying I was a little deranged for the year or so that I was a digital vampire. The undead.
In those days I was usually the only female AE. It was totally a boys club, and became used to working those shifts alone, with a boombox or laptop as company. I would dance around my edit suite while digitizing, stare out the window while rendering. If I somehow managed to finish my work early, I would show up at a bar and sip a soda or vodka tonic and watch the last call-ers sizing each other up, or stumbling out muttering obscenities to no one. Sometimes I would just wander the streets aimlessly, contrasting their church silent appearance at 4am to the rushing throng that normally occupies.
Working those vampire hours taught me how to enjoy my own company. And even now, with fairly normal hours and much more friends, I still find myself stealing away to do my own thing. Politely declining invitations to parties and club events. Why? I don’t know.
I’m a weird kid with even weirder interests. Sometimes I don’t play well with others.
Unfortunately, even at midnight, Times Square is overflowing with bodies. Oh well, at least I will get home right when the best shows are on Adult Swim.