She sits across the aisle from me at work. We both work for State Street Bank Private Wealth Management, though I think she is a programmer and I am a ledger monkey. I can’t be sure, since she just moved onto my floor a few weeks ago, but she is always talking about code and laughing at computer screens full of numbers. When she laughs she scrunches up her nose and emits a high-pitched sound that grows only more frantic when there are dashing, young executives around. Maybe she is being flirtatious, or maybe she is embarassed about letting them see her cubicle, which is filled with bunnies.
There are wild northern breeds of bunnies sitting up in the arctic tundra, keeping their long ears alert for predators, and right next to them sit some peaceful domestic brown bunnies sunning themselves by a bowl of apples on an old-fashioned windowsill. On her desk calendar, the bunny of September is a very fat and fluffy little bunny sitting in a teapot. Her flowered ceramic bunny figurine is arranged so that it might be having a dialogue with the computer printouts of what are presumably her own bunnies that miss her so much while she is here at the bank. Looking at their little bodies, divided into segments by the pale, bubble-jet printer lines, she must feel a little guilty about leaving them all alone. It’s a long time until 5pm when she can return home to give them the love and affection they deserve. To pass the hours, I often see her smiling and giggling to herself, reading what could only be bunny jokes sent over e-mail from someone she met at the last Rabbit Lovers Meetup.
I wonder where she is from and how she ended up working in this crappy office. I wonder if she is happy, surrounded by so many bunnies. I hopefully will never know because I’ll have found a real job and the dismal 22nd floor bank office will be a distant, unpleasant memory. I wish Bunny Girl the same opportunity, though her cubicle decorations give me the sense she’s in it for the long haul. She is gradually creating her own rabbit hutch, which will undoubtedly grow more elaborate as the years pass. She will add more and more items, like a bunny gathering straw for its nest, until one day she is lost and forgets how to communicate, knowing only how to scrunch her nose and open her eyes wide with alarm. The young executives will stop coming around and her world will become code and carrots.