October 1, 2001
Last Monday

 


 
I attended the Totem Pole Company staff meeting this morning ... just like I do every Monday morning.

I sat in my customary seat on the left-hand side of the conference table, next to the door ... squeezed between Bob The Engineer Guy and Bob The Other Engineer Guy. As usual, I carried a box of Kleenex and half a cup of coffee into the conference room with me. 

Before the meeting started, I took attendance, handed out the meeting agenda to everybody, and made sure that the electronic overhead had a fresh roll of paper, as I do every week. When Jim couldn't find his notes, I ran down the hallway to his office and fished them out of his golf bag, just like always.

But I didn't take notes today. I didn't report my 'billability goal' for the week ahead. And when The Human Resources Director Person asked for volunteers for this year's Christmas party, I didn't raise my hand.

I'm not going to BE there, after all.

Later in the day, I sent out the Bay Area Business Transportation Committee Meeting Notice to all 43,897,621 super-critical V.I.P. committee members, just like I do every second Monday. I composed the meeting notice and the agenda, as usual, and forwarded them to the VP of BFD for his blessing. I double- and triple- and quadruple-checked the names and fax numbers on the member list. I added a handful of new incoming members. I deleted another handful of outgoing members. Eventually, I stood at the fax machine for twenty minutes, punching in all 43,897,621 fax numbers into the elderly Canon, one at a time, just like always. When the fax machine ran out of toner in mid-transmission, like it always does, I managed to change the cartridge without getting a single *toner molecule* on my best interview suit.

When I was done faxing, I saved the new meeting notice and the updated fax list to a floppy disk and gave it to Cathlene The Receptionst Person (soon to be Cathlene The New Executive Ass Person).

I won't need them, after all. I won't be sending any more meeting notices.

In the afternoon, I cleaned up the Totem Pole kitchen. Unlike the other stuff I did today, this isn't something I do every Monday. Technically, it hasn't been part of my job description since February 1998.  But I'm feeling guilty about walking away and leaving Cathlene alone to fend for herself in a sea of angry Totem Pole Testosterone, and I know I'm going to be walking around backwards for the next couple of days, trying to make her life easier before I abandon her. (Would you like me to take care of the mail today? Can I get you a Calistoga? When was the last time someone gave you a neck-rub, hon?) So while Cathlene took an unscheduled midafternoon bagel break, I tackled the kitchen for her. I dumped out the stale late-afternoon coffee, and scrubbed the crusty black stuff from the bottom of the carafe. I rinsed all of the dirty coffee cups that had been left piled in the sink, and then loaded them carefully into the dishwasher. I wiped off the counters, I disinfected the sink, I refilled the salt shakers and the artificial sweetener containers. And then, since some thoughtless moron had left a can of soda in the ice cube compartment again (oh wait: that was me), I spent several minutes scraping exploded Coca-Cola from the sides of the freezer.

When I was done, I removed all of my leftover emergency food from the Frigidaire and packed it all into a shopping bag, to bring home with me after work ... leaving behind two 'lunch apples' and two 'lunch cans' of SlimFast.

That's all I'm going to need, after all.




previous
archives
*footnotes*
next
throw a rock