It is true that I only grudgingly accept assignments involving the care and feeding of daughter firms, particularly when I had no part in the acquisition, but be this as it may I do take the assignments I am given quite seriously. It is in this way that I discover the location of the Sinister team.
Quite a clever bit of detective work on my part, if I don't say so myself. I happen to know that one of the Sinister sales team members, let's call him "Tom," is almost certainly sleeping with another Sinister employee, let's call her "Linda." Linda has no idea I know this so I figured calling Linda at Sinister's headquarters and insisting that there was a medical lab calling with something about "test results" was a good way to find out where Tom was.
"Hi, Linda, it's Equity Private from your benevolent parent company."
"Oh. -pause- Hi, Equity." (Linda doesn't like me very much because I delivered the news that three people in her department were getting laid off right after we bought Sinister).
"Look, this guy from Hemotest Labs, California keeps calling here asking for Tom."
"Yeah, some kind of medical test results or something? Anyhow, I need to reach him and I know he is traveling in New York but no one has his itinerary."
There is a long pause. Linda doesn't even think to ask why I am calling her about Tom or why the lab would be calling me, the panic has already set in on several levels: 1. What is this medical test result thing about? 2. Whenever the parent company calls, it's trouble. 3. I wonder if Tom will be mad if I tell Equity where he is. 4. Does Equity know I'm bumping uglies with Tom? 5. Does Tom's wife know I'm bumping uglies with Tom? 6. I wonder if Tom is sleeping around. 7. Wait a minute. He's cheating on his wife with me... why would I think he's not cheating... that bastard... I'll...
"Oh. Sorry. Uh, why don't you give me the number for Hemotest and I'll give Tom the message."
"Oh, Linda, I wouldn't have bothered you with that sort of thing. The Hemostat guy insists that he has to talk to Tom personally. He won't tell me anything at all. Apparently, it's some kind of confidential test result or something. Heee-moe-test. What do you think they test for? Anyhow, I really have to reach him. These people keep calling here and the partners are starting to ask questions."
"Uh. Well. I think Tom is at the Peninsula Hotel."
Duh. Should have figured that.
"Ok, I'll try that. Thanks Linda!"
Tom isn't the only one. All three of them are at the hotel. Calling their rooms is a useless endeavor. I am sick of the hotel's scratchy, and somewhat bitchy, generic voicemail message by the third time I hear it. I commandeer Armin's driver and head into the city.
Maybe I'm the only one, but I have to think that it would be obvious to anyone that if a VP of your parent company has to come hunting for you because no one can find you the day before a critical presentation, you might have made a career limiting move. Apparently, it wasn't obvious to the Sinister sales team.
I tell the driver to wait nearby, copy down his cell phone number and walk up to reception. Of course, none of the team are in, or if they are they aren't particularly disposed to answer their phone. Getting room numbers from the suspicious and savvy staff at the Peninsula's front desk is going to effectively be an impossibility. (I remind myself that should I ever want to have a discrete affair with someone the Peninsula is a good bet to keep the matter quiet). Instead, I leave notes ("Medical Emergency. Call Equity Immediately: [cell phone number]") for each of the team members and after taking a quick peek in the almost totally empty Bar at Fives I camp out in the lobby.
I should have brought a book.