Running Mate(2)

By: Katie Ashley



Once I’d had a good hit, I turned my attention to the boxes of donuts on the table. Sugar overload and high fat content were the staples of a campaign staffer’s diet. You could count on donuts and pastries for breakfast and pizza followed by more pizza throughout the day. The campaign budget went to TV ads, signs, and banners; we weren’t approved for catered-in nutritious foods. When I wasn’t running late, I tried to bring salad and fruit with me. I’d only been with the campaign six months, but I’d already gained ten pounds. My older brother loved to tease me by saying the entire ten pounds had gone to my chest and ass, and after today’s hard-hat appreciation of said ass, I was starting to agree with him.

I refilled my coffee, grabbed a cinnamon donut with my free hand, and then headed back to my desk. My phone was ringing when I got there. “Volunteer Services,” I answered.

It was my New York attaché, Grant. “Hey Ads, we’re in deep shit with the Latinos for Callahan’s rally.”

Groaning, I slurped on more coffee. “What do you mean?”

“The translator quit, so next weekend’s borough rallies in NYC and the Jersey rallies are totally fucked.”

I took a deep breath and collected my thoughts before I replied. “Okay. Go ahead and start fielding resumes for a new tri-city area translator. Worse comes to worst, I’ll take the train up and do it myself.”

“You speak Spanish?” Grant questioned incredulously.

“Si. Soy fluido en espanol, pendejo,” I replied.

Grant chuckled. “Let me guess, you just used an expletive to describe me.”

“I most certainly did.”

“Call me crazy for doubting you, but didn’t you grow up in North Carolina?”

“Yes, I did. I also spent every summer in Central America. You tend to pick things up.”

“I see.”

“For future reference, pendejo is asshole. I could also call you a cabrón.”

“Okay, okay. I’ll never doubt your skills again.”

“You better not. Keep me posted on the translator.”

“You got it.”

“Adios pendejo.”

Grant laughed. “Bye Ads.”

After hanging up with Grant, I fielded a few more calls while downing my coffee and scarfing down the donut. Since my stomach was still rumbling, I decided my day from hell allowed me to throw calorie counting to the wind, so I snagged another cinnamon donut.

As I made my way back to my desk, I couldn’t help feeling so very blessed that I called the Callahan campaign home. Not only was it a total coup that I’d landed the job at just twenty-seven, it couldn’t have come at a better time for me both professionally and personally. I’d spent the first two years out of college working as the personal assistant to Representative Walter Gregson. While I spent my days with Walt Sr., my nights were spent with his son, Walt Jr., so yeah, you could say nepotism had landed me that job.

Walt and I met our senior year at Duke where we were both political science majors, and we started living together after just six months. Once we graduated, we moved to an apartment in Georgetown. While I started working for his father’s political office, Walt took a job with a lobbying firm.

Everything seemed perfect—like put a ring on it perfect. Looking back now, I realize how naïve I was about all the nights I went to bed alone. Walt assured me that his long days were being forced on him by his bosses. He was the new guy and had to earn his stripes, which meant working into the wee hours of the morning.

The truth was Walt had fallen victim to what I liked to call the DC Dick Curse. Something about the air is different in DC; it fans the flames of narcissism and inflated egos. Even the most committed man who would never dream of straying can get the wandering eye. It’s like they’re sucked into the Bermuda Triangle of Pussy.

It wasn’t just Walt’s eye that did the wandering; his dick ended up wandering into the vagina of one of the office interns. I had the pleasure of discovering this one night when I went to surprise him with his favorite Thai takeout. Instead of finding him toiling away at his computer, I found him nailing the intern doggy style over his desk.

After he had chased me down to the elevators with his semi-erect dick flapping in the wind, he begged me not to leave. He did the familiar song and dance that all men who get caught cheating do. He promised he would never do it again. It was only about sex. He loved me, never meant to hurt me. He even offered up all the heavy hitters like therapy and having the intern transferred.

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