Sarah sat at the head of the table, beads of sweat forming on her brow. She was trying to regulate her heartbeat with deep, long breaths but it wasn’t really working. This was the first time she had hosted this meeting and to say she was nervous was an understatement. This position was not one to be taken lightly, it held immense responsibility. If she got one detail wrong they would be down on her like a ton of bricks, and believe you me these people held no prisoners. They would cry her down without breaking into a sweat. The last host had held the post for five years so this was going to be a tough act to follow and the fact she was younger than the former host only made her more determined to prove she was up to the job. She didn’t want anyone saying she wasn’t experienced enough, although if truth be told it was the first time she had done anything like this but she wasn’t about to let that either show or stand in her way.
Everyone was staring at her. A newly appeared spot that had taken up residence on the end of her nose that morning, not only felt like it was going to erupt but also seemed to be sending out morse code signals of it’s own saying “LOOK AT ME”. She had used as much foundation as she dared that morning, the last thing she wanted was to look like she’d been “tango’d” especially with an audience, but every time she looked down at the table in front of her, the darned spot got in the way. Sarah cleared her throat, for two reasons, firstly a tight knotted ball had formed in her throat, attempting to make her cough and secondly to quieten the hub bub that had formulated round the table.
Someone had once told her that when in a situation like this to imagine everyone naked, but right now she had to push that image furthermost from her mind, as the average age was about 65 and although she herself was fast approaching her twilight years her mind was rebelling and still found the body of a young nubile man quite appealing, if not quite a turn on. The fact that it would not be reciprocated never entered her head. Now she had the image of this tight pecked, bronzed man, flexing his muscles, flash before her eyes. A smile crept across her face and the endorphins had kicked in. Suddenly Sarah’s tight shoulders relaxed and she was ready.
In an attempt to regain her composure, she clasped her clammy hands together tightly. “I would just like to thank you all for coming.” An uneasy hush fell across the table and fifteen pairs of eyes descended on her. Whether it was her or her nose they were looking at she wasn’t sure but she liked to think it was the former.
“Please could you take your cards, markers are on the table and let us begin.”
“All the fours 44.”
2 thoughts on “The Chair”
I love this! So funny, I was preparing myself for an intense read but this lighthearted piece really tickled me! Really relatable, I know I can take the smallest thing and get so stressed by it while everyone else probably looks on not knowing I’m a ball of anxiety!
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HA! What a great bit of fun. It had all the marks and makings of something far more serious, and I was trying to get in step with what I thought felt familiar (my first stab at being Chair of a Governors’ Meeting some years back) The nerves you’ve so accurately described: Wow! It was all I could do to ride the feelings as I continued to try to read.
The twist in the end is sublime. In fact I read it three times before posting this comment, just to see if I’d missed any of the minor nuances that are so often hidden within your writings. This is yet another indication that you do not limit yourself to writing a single theme. You’ll try your hand at any and many genres. You have such an eclectic back catalogue that I wonder if you might continue like this, as you feel you are still experimenting; or whether you might lock onto one thing: one genre, and strive to perfect that. It would be a shame if you were to lose that courage of diversity.