It was 10:30 and we were halfway through the quarterly meeting when my clothing combusted. Several people gasped, and Celine Carter started giggling. I just stood up, dumped my cup of water down the front of my pantsuit, grabbed my briefcase, and said, “Excuse me.” Jennings pinched the bridge of his nose with one hand and waved me out with the other.
I fumed all the way to the bathroom, clothes sizzling and the whole office gawking. Maddening. Just maddening. I’d always heard menopause was painful for super heroines, but this? This was humiliating! This was my third pantsuit in a week to explode; the second in a month to explode during a meeting.
I shucked off the ashy pantsuit and pulled a skirt and blouse from my briefcase. As I struggled into the new outfit, I called my husband on my cell.
“Jeff? I need an asbestos wardrobe!”
Jeff sighed. “Oh, sweetie. The flame retardant didn’t help?”
“No! I had a hot flash, and my clothes blew up. Again! It’s just…it’s so frustrating.”
“Maybe we could get Edna to make something for you? She dresses all the hip you--hip superheroes, doesn’t she? Or, wait, maybe we can just pull your old suit out of the attic!”
I huffed into the phone. “Even if I could fit into it, which I seriously doubt, I’d like to remind you that when I wore that thing, I only shot fire from my hands. It won’t do anything against a full body hot flash!”
“You could always quit your job and just sit around the house naked.”
* * *
Jesus H. Christ!" Stan hollered. "I Know I said we needed a female superhero in our comics line, and that I wanted it written by a woman, but issue 1 was breast feeding in public, issue 2 was that time of the month, and now menopause?! Firebabe has yet to take on a single villain!"
"But Boss," Chatsworth replied, "it's outselling Spiderman and Superman. It's the hottest title in comics."
"I know, I know. It just feels wrong."
"Not to worry, Boss. Next month Firebabe faces her toughest foe yet. The shoe salesman from hell, known as . . . The Misogynist!"
"Now you're talking."
Opening: Rachel Roy......Continuation: Evil Editor