Monday, December 07, 2009

I won't be falling asleep at work this week

Scene I: Last Monday, 5:45 AM: My cell phone rings. I’ve been on vacation for a week, so one of my employees calls me to let me know that we don’t have any heat at work, that the damage is bad but they have an estimated completion date: February. We’re on less than 50% of our boiler capacity for the entire building for 10 weeks, because the one boiler that is working isn’t working correctly. Time to break out the scarves & fingerless gloves. And the hot chocolate. And maybe the party supplies – parties always warm me up. Scene II: Tuesday, 7 AM: I’m at work and find out that my room is next in the Great Library Recarpeting Adventure of 2009. Nothing goes out of our room except for the old carpet. We’re just moving stuff around the room for the entire week like squirrels re-arranging their winter acorn supply, working around the guys. I would say “like deck chairs on the Titanic”, but no one has actually died (yet) from the fumes of A) the old glue under the old carpet, B) the new glue for the new carpet, and/or C) The disgusting sludge that mysteriously appeared in one spot when the old carpet was ripped out. Also, the tiny particles that have infiltrated my lungs make me wonder if I’ve just discovered what it’s like to breathe fiberglass, but I’m kind of afraid to find out the answer to that question, so I just keep those thoughts to myself. And another Also: can mold spores start growing in your lungs? Mold likes warm, damp places, so if I were mold, I think lungs would be a good place to make a home. Unless the fiberglass got there first and beat me up. Scene III: Thursday afternoon: Staring at my inbox, an encouraging email arrives. In a nutshell it says “We think you’re getting too complacent with how things are going this week, so while some work is being done in another part of the building, the power will randomly shut off and on starting Monday, expected to be finished in 2 weeks. This will affect the functioning of the fire alarm, causing you to want to rip out your ear drums. Have a nice weekend!” Scene IV: Today, Monday, 0730: I walk into the office. There’s no heat, the new carpet is 85% installed, my lungs remind me that they emptied themselves of mold & fiberglass over the weekend for a reason – namely, so I can breathe – and the power is out for half the hallway & 4 cubicles, and the fire alarm isn’t working correctly, it has in fact decided to amuse itself by randomly going off for 5-6 minutes at a time. My cubicle has power (Yay?) – but the email server, internet server & [Library Software You’ve Never Heard Of] server are all down. Meaning: No emailing, cataloging, book ordering, random internet surfing or other type of work will be done until at least one of them is back up and running. So, in things I'm grateful for this week: A) Dear Baby Jesus, I’m glad we lost heat in the winter rather than A/C in the summer; B) Did I mention our old carpet was oozing, so it was kinda fun to see what was underneath of there – especially since the oozing spot is on the far end of the room from me and I can yell “Hey, Sue! How’s your ooze today?” at random points in time; C) Everyone needs an interrupted power supply at some point to make them grateful to Al Gore for creating the Internets. The malfunctioning fire alarm – the bell for which resides on the wall over my cubicle – can go to hell, though.

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