by Mike Worley
It started out as a joke, the kind of snickering one does when the inate pre-teen 12 year old takes over...
Let me explain--when my old boss was here, we had the office door painted red. He and I used to joke about it, he said he wanted it to be a reminder of "hell." And we even talked about maybe airbrushing some flames on it, and painting the quote, "Abandon all hope, All ye who enter here!...", or however it goes. But he left, getting promoted this year to a bigger venue(and with bigger headaches). One lesson I re-learned was that if you're put in charge, it is bad policy to operate the place like you're "babysitting" it for someone who isn't going to be returning. For good or bad, right or wrong, I was/am now "the manager."
Some of the kids asked at the end of the full-time season about repainting the place. Couldn't do it, as the budgets were gone by that time for that sort of thing. But I did joke about repainting the office door green, since it was red. Ironically, I was at a Home Depot in late September and found out they had "Ooops!" paint. And they had an almost-full can of bright, Kelly green mixed by mistake, hence the "Ooops!" I bought it for a buck. And eventually painted the door green.
One of the artists jokingly asked, "Why green?" to wit I said, "Because you'll never know what goes on Behind the Green Door." I figured most of them would be too young to get the joke. But one girl did her own search, and with a sly look on her face came into work and told me she knew what the implication was for the green door, and we had a laugh.
Since that time, I've considered doing my own adaptations of classic short stories, O. Henry being one of my favorite authors. And low and behold, one of his short stories is titled, "The Green Door." The story is a great commentary on how life can be viewed. In it, the "hero" gets a card slipped to him with an invitation to the "Green Door." Eventually he meets the love of his life, and comes to view the card coming into his possession as a contrived event by unknown persons. What he discovers is the large black man giving out the advertising cards was doing it for promotion at a theatre for a new play. Yes, titled, "The Green Door."
So why the image of Ms Briggs on the office door? Most because it's my last gesture of defiance for the season. A way of keeping my sanity and putting some distance to my life. And it's a way of doing something "arty." Yes, it is a joke.
I also think it serves as a warning to the "unique" notion that decisions we make in life have consequences. Some short termed, some long termed. Some for good, and some for not-so-good. Our society seems to have forgotten it. Ms Briggs, even though she gave the "party line" to the advantages of working adult films also said that it will break your heart. For all of her fame and infamy, she ended up dying alone. The money she made for being famous and kickstarting the sexual promiscuity of the '70's was gone probably from further poor life choices, alcohol and drug troubles.
I'm emptying out the office of my stuff. Like Woody Hayes, I think it wise to keep things short-leased and with distance. Not get too comfortable there. Hayes said during his coaching time at Ohio State that his contract was on a year to year basis. He wanted it that way. I wonder if the door to his office was green?