Dude Broke His Foot

Last week I was walking near the corner of California and Battery streets when I witnessed a particularly remarkable injury transpire. If you've passed through this intersection before, you're well aware of the sharp drop-off between sidewalk and street.

My eyes were drawn to the opposite corner where a man stood, fully clad in loose-fitting business attire, looking very much out of his element and emitting a certain stench of arrogance. Everything he wore was way, way too big - starting bottom-up with his shoes that undoubtedly, at one point, belonged to an emo clown; pants that were stolen from the set of the "U Can't Touch This" music video; a suit coat fit for a mildly obese Ichabod Crane; a shirt collar with ample room for a couple gullets; and to top it all off, a poorly tied tie.

So the crosswalk sign turned white and everyone took cautious steps down onto the street. Except our hero. God knows (or, actually, probably hasn't the foggiest) what was going through this chap's head. He took his first step without much concern for, well, anything.

Yeah, and then he fell and broke his foot.

Have you ever walked or tip-toed through a dark, empty house? That's how he should've treated this situation. But no. This was more like a bull-in-a-china-shop thing, cast in broad daylight in front of hundreds of watchful Financial District lunch-goers who secretly hoped he would fall so that they would have something interesting to tell colleagues upon returning to their offices. Poor guy just spaced out at the most inopportune moment. He took a step forward that would have been perfect for a flat surface... except there was no flat surface.

That's when he plummeted. His foot might've broken his fall, but the fall sure as heck broke his foot - bending at some awkward-ass, painfully unnatural angle. This was all followed by an equally gut-wrenching moan, which in the hustle and bustle of the city can best be recounted as, "Noooaaahhhooowww! OW! OW! OW!"

Noah-OW is right, buddy! Good grief! Did you see that abyss you just jumped into? What were you thinking? We're talking a chasm-caliber rift here. Good lord! Even I felt the pain reverberating through the pavement! Are you right in the head, man?

Walk it off, junior. Back to work.

And Now: Dave's Long-Winded, Overly Sentimental Goodbye!

Lord. Have. Mercy. What a freakishly awesome ride it's been…

From fixing paper-jams in our elite fleet of printers to helping pitch and win big new business -
SHIFT has allowed me to do anything and everything under the all-powerful PR sun. And I'd be nowhere without you, my kick-ass friends and teammates.

So what could this dork
possibly say about our agency that hasn't already been said 1,000 times over? Probably nothing, but I will try my damndest to recount some of the memories I am putting in my pocket and taking with me to Chicago:

1. When I sat on the ninth floor, there was this one time when I got very thirsty (and lazy) and drank the distilled water in my cubicle's earthquake pack. Chris, buddy, this took place in your current cube. You might want to take a look at your survivor's kit - I'd hate for you to be parched when the big one hits.

2. On two separate occasions I have used the eighth-floor men's restroom at the same time as a woman (the
same woman each time!). It was both uncomfortable and exhilarating. Men, heed the following: use the facilities with great caution. To quell obvious rumors, this person is not physically handicapped, mentally challenged or newly transgendered in any way, shape or form – she is simply too freaking lazy to walk up or down one measly flight of stairs.

3. Upon moving to California from Michigan, hordes of SHIFTers informed me that I have a "rather noticeable accent," which was something I had never been told before. Cool?! So it should come as no surprise that when they asked me, "Where are you from?" I honest to goodness replied with a trepid, "America." The horror! Far too broad, Dave. They wanted to know which
state, dummy!

4. I once ate two too many
Specialty's cookies in a client meeting and became heavily, heavily sedated. I mean, you know how hot the ninth-floor conference room can get, right? Throw a couple pounds of cookie dough in me and I'm bound to fade fast into comatose. But the best part was coming to and seeing my client directly across from me… doing the exact same thing! From that moment on we shared a profound, unspoken bond.

5. When piloting
Jott, a free voice-to-text service, I still can recall the awkwardness of a particular message Cathy sent to me. It read (and I quote): "Hi, babe. Can you e-mail me Johnnie's cell-phone number?" Whoa, Cathy. Hmm… All I'll say is I guess phonetically "Dave" does or could sound a lot like "babe." Who knew? Poor ol' Jott just gave it its best ballpark shot before firing away. This would certainly not bode well for a Jott case-study, should SHIFT ever pitch them. (Had to do it. Sorry, Cathy. [Important aside to Mr. Mike Fiske: no cause for concern on this one, I promise!])

6. On my way out one day, I took the stairs instead of the elevator and by the fourth floor I could distinctly hear Ozzie belting out
"How Can You Mend a Broken Heart?" by Al Green, which was on the radio. "How can you mend a broken man?/How can a loser ever win?/Please help me mend my broken heart and let me live again." You might not think it, but this fragile man (Ozzie) has a spectacular voice. I told him this and he covered his face with both hands. Truth be told, Ozzie's a total softie. Get him listening and singing to the smooth, soulful sounds of any R&B ditty and you, my friend, will have a confidant in this building for eternity.

7. Lest we forget that dancing with a client is always, um, weird? So just pray you'll never have to. For those who have: how awful, huh? Praise Jebus I had a couple drinks in me! This not-so-smooth Caucasian criminal is out of place on a dance-floor to begin with, so when you throw a client into the mix who was literally, physically twisting my arm to get down with my bad self, it quickly became a grossly forced charade. But she made me look good, that's for damn sure - spinning around and cutting up rug like a
Whirling Dervish while I pretty much just stood there and bobbed up and down as if I were some sort of human buoy on a wave. Hey-o!

I could not have asked for better friends and colleagues in y'all. These past two years have been a blast, and I'll miss you kids and this fair city dearly. Be well, SHIFT, and keep in touch.

Signing off (later today),