2005-10-10 - 1:03 p.m.
One thing that's endemic at offices across the board, all office situations with fax machines and carpeting and general low-level humming of heating and air-conditioning is the You Don't Have to Be Crazy to Work Here But It Helps thing. I had a headache my third or fourth day at this job and when I asked around for some medicine, three of the women said that it was too early for me to get driven crazy or to get driven to headaches by this place. People like to make their offices out to be exceptionally nuts or out of control. I guess it makes them feel better about their level of stress or makes them feel more put-upon, which helps them to feel less like they're falling behind, that somebody has selected that department or that specific desk for a general shit-on sort of happening. It's a transferrence of guilt or something that is common. I don't think any office is crazy, has ever been, or ever will be. No.
Maybe like a senator's office, though. I read a lot of online political insider stories. All online. I read the New York Times, the Washington Post, the ABCNews.com section called "The Note," which is just entirely too gossipy and ridulously exclusive but which I like because they seem to be two steps in front of everyone eles, and whatever's on the AP and Reuters wires. I realized that following politics like this is very similar to following a sports team. So, the Steelers' offensive line and corps of running backs are identical to Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama teaming up in '08 for multi-cultural, bi-gendered liberal getting-your-ass-kicked! I don't know how a Democrat will ever win again! This used to scare me a lot more than it does now! American history is depressing! How do I excise Howard Zinn from my brain and go back to being relatively happy about the state of our mildly conservative past?
History's dusty but what isn't dusty at all is that I'm moving into my friends' warehouse space sometime this week. I've put it off for a few weeks now, mainly because I'm tired during the week, but I've got a room reserved for me, carpet down on the concrete, a window that opens with a screen, and a desk for computer, printer, and some framed pictures. I've never had any pictures on any desk and I think I'll rotate a few on this one. It's echoey, this warehouse space, but I can play my music as loud as I could possibly want. And then in four or five months I'll find my own place and turn it back down again but my level of post-shower nakedocity will soar. I miss living on my own. It's nice to have people to laugh with but I miss knowing that the five mismatched shoes scattered by the door are mine alone and that I'm the only one to blame for getting drunk the night before and coming home and listening to five familiar Wilco tracks and leaving them by the door because who cares?
I got a cell phone with a camera in it. This is a pretty amazing piece of technology, this phone. I'm reachable anytime, anywhere. It's my first real cell phone. I've taken pictures of a lot of people. Some of them like it and some of them don't. Why do so many of us dislike pictures of ourselves? Why am I often one of them? What does this say about us? I'm going to start liking absolutely every picture ever taken of me. I realize this is impossible and sort of silly, but I would like to make that effort.
I watched the first five episodes of the first season of "Arrested Development" last night, with the Russian girl, who is visiting her parents for a few days. The show is brilliant. She is brilliant. She makes me feel more alive than when I'm not around her. I think we are very similiar in a lot of ways. She says she never speaks in class though she's always working out something to say but by the time she's worked it out they're on to the next thing. I did that all the time. I've gotten past that, but what I don't know how to tell her is that, for me, it took a long time. And it was very gradual. She's smarter than me, though, and so she's probably halfway out already.
I smuggled my cubicle nametag into the men's room the first day I got my camera phone. I placed the nametag on the top of the urinal and took a picture of it from above. It looks like the urinal's my office. This is precisely the sort of thing that causes the one ex-girlfriend I speak with regularly to say that I'm half fourteen-year-old.0 comments so far