Monday, 13 April 2009

The End

Tomorrow is the last day in my old office. On Wednesday I'm moving to brand new digs, and I can't tell you how much I'm salivating with anticipation. My own office, with nice carpeting, french glass doors, the works. A real kitchen with dishwasher and full fridge, board room with full AV system, security system, key card access, first class all the way. I even have a new desk!

Tomorrow is the last day I have to work in the kitchen.

For the past six years my office has been a cramped corner of the kitchen with the other two members of my design team. Our walls are piss yellow, full of holes and old chunks of tape from years of notes and calendars, the furniture is cast offs from the 'main office', it's hard cold tile floor is not only tasteless and ugly, its tasteless and ugly. The power supply is laughable - a couple of years ago a sales rep plugged a tea kettle in and three of my computers shut down. So without the bosses knowledge I had the landlord install new dedicated outlets in there just to support the computers. When we moved in here, there were three computers, now there are nine. Power is a bit of an issue. While the electrician was messing around in the wall the day he installed it all, he let out a yelp and out of the corner of my eye a bright flash immediately caught my attention. The bare wires inside the wall just three feet from my desk touched the steel studding and arced. Needless to say the electrician was not impressed. Neither was I.

No longer do I have to be privy to every meeting. The only common table in our cramped little paradise is in the kitchen, six feet from my desk. This morning I attended a sales meeting without the benefit of an invitation or even wanting to be there. It couldn't be helped.

No longer do I have to listen to every phone conversation in the building simultaneously. The walls are so thin that it can't be helped. Add to that the gregarious nature of some of my workmates, nothing is ever said in private. I fondly remember the day I closed the kitchen door just to be able to concentrate on something, only be be chastised for 'slamming' it. My simply action of trying to gain a slight bit of privacy was taken completely out of context. The person in question accused me of slamming the door. This person was not amused, and refused my explanation that I was simply trying to concentrate. The argument lasted hours. Kinda useless. No more.

No longer do I have the be the only route to the only bathroom. For six years nobody has done any business without me or my design team knowing about it.

Speaking of the bathroom, now that I'm leaving this shit hole I can finally fess up to something - the hole in the bathroom wall roughly the size and shape the door handle is indeed, my handy work. I never lied about it, I was simply never asked! I opened the door a little too violently one day. Back in the old army days, if someone knocked a hole in the wall they always signed their work. It was a mark of pride. Especially if the wall was brick. Yeah, it happened. There was always holes in the basement walls of the armoury circled and signed by the author, and of course, dated. After all these years, there are still some there. At our last reunion we took off looking for them, only to be escorted back to the mess by some annoyed security personel. I thought about signing my hole in the bathroom, but I thought better of it after I realized I'd probably get the bill for the repair. Who cares now!

When the former owner decided to bring his staff into the computer age he decided not to spend any money to accomplish this task. I was given the assignment of wiring the building to accommodate everyone's computers and data links. I was not allowed to do this with any level of professionalism. Hence bright blue and yellow ethernet wires hanging in the corner of every office, strategically duck tapes into the corner so as to appear slightly less noticeable. Still laughable that he deemed this 'professional'. The jackass was quite happy with it all. As long as it didn't cost him anything. All those wire terminated behind my desk to the main data trunk. Which is of course, just as laughable. Eight ethernet wires are bundled together in the corner, taped to the wall, and tie off at the router, modem and four dlink port expanders all tied in parallel to each other. All of this is mounted to a peg board, and shoved in behind my desk. It's a fucking mess. I shoved it behind my desk so I wouldn't have to stare at it all day. I tried hanging a poster in front of it at one point.

I also won't miss the shitty little fridge that measures 2 foot square. Just big enough for a TV dinner. If you're second in, your screwed. I won't miss the recycling guy wheeling the bin through my office once every two weeks. I won't miss the tied off pipe that sticks up out of the middle of the kitchen floor that I always trip on. I won't miss any of it.

But It won't be the same. I love my job, and am lucky to have one. We do have offices in worse condition than mine, cramped, old shoddy, falling apart. Of our five offices we are combining three into one. The remaining two are on the list for refit, but first, ours. Tomorrow I will pack my things, shut the server down, and pull the stuff off the walls I deem worthy of a new home. (The old Apple posters didn't make this cut). When I walk out of there at 5pm I will take one last look before what used to be my office becomes a storage room. With a smile on my face I will take my chair to the new office.

I may even sign the hole in the bathroom wall.



  1. Here is to new beginnings.....just remember NO MORE are going to a nice building.

    The golf pictures aren't going right? I never understood why YOU had golf pictures in your office. It makes no sense to anyone that knows you.
    Apple posters..yes. Star Trek pictures..yes. Pictures of Masters playing on pretty grass..not so much.

    Have fun tomorrow!

  2. Those were Dave's. They're already hanging in HIS new office - I took them there two weeks ago. My John Pettie painting 'disbanded', will be hanging there on Wednesday. It was Dave who took mine down and put up the golf stuff.

  3. Wish I could stop by tomorrow just to say good buy. You will have to do it for me. We will have to go for lunch. Thanks for the memories!

  4. Hope you're enjoying your new work digs.


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