I stood by the open door to Jean’s office, watching him try to stop laughing. It was a losing battle. He was just about to get it under control when the thought of an engine falling off a plane Andy was going to fly on forced more laughter from him.
I was glad to see this because it humanized Jean for me. Jean was and is very human, warm and genuine, but in a kind of always-under-control sort of way. His style was to show his warmth and genuineness through actions rather than words. So to see him laughing out of control because of something so amusing was, to me, very amusing in itself.
Finally, his business side regained control, his laughter subsided and he said, “Don’t tell me the story. I know it...”
I said, “Obviously.”
He asked, “Is there another reason you’re here?”
Guiding us back to business, I said, “Lori suggested I ask you what to do about the meeting with Those Characters From Cleveland.”
Jean said, “I’ll call them and postpone it.”
He closed his eyes, no doubt thinking about Andy, and shook his head about the peculiar foibles of Americans. As I started from his office, Jean held out some papers to me with, “Here. I approved two of your Care Bears treatments. You can go to script.”
When I said, “Shouldn’t Lori get them first so she can put them in her chart?”
He nodded, impressed, I’d like to think, that, foibles and all, I knew how to do things by the book.