This is an actual conversation I had the other day with a person I had literally just met. We were both waiting for something to come out of the copy machine and some annoying person decided to print 100 copies of a presentation and then leave. The papers started to spew out of the pile and onto the floor and so this person and I joined forces to clean up the mess.
Him: So, what do you do?
Me: I work with ____, in children’s co-editions.
Him: Are you an editor?
Me: No. I’m ____’s assistant.
Him: Oh. Do you like it?
Me: Yes. Well, I’ve been working with ____ for two years now and I absolutely love it.
Him: Oh. What do you want to do next?
Me: I’m not really sure yet.
Him: You know, because – an assistant? For two years? (this is accompanied by an AWFUL face)
Okay. First of all. How dare he? Second of all, OF COURSE I know what I want to do next. Third of all, reviews are coming up this month and I definitely have a plan. But why would I divulge said plan to you, a stranger whom I’m sure I cannot trust?
And also, sir. Assistants of the world unite, because we run this show. Y’all think we don’t, but we do. I touch every facet of everything we do around here. Sure, I fetch when asked and it’s occasionally infuriating, but I also edit interiors, approve advances, manage our list and keep all of our processes running smoothly. What would y’all do without us, the assistants?
(By the way – I’m trying to bring ‘ya’ll’ to New York)
Lucky for me, I have a boss who ends each day by saying, “Thanks for everything today!”