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Multiple exclamation marks

Oh, Jesus H Christ on a bike. I hope my employers aren't planning to hold a bunfight in a bakery any time soon. Based on today's farce, they'd need all the help they could muster. I don't normally do this, but pardon me please for a moment while I vent.

Today we reorganized the office slightly; one of the departments was being relocated, so a new desk cluster had to be fashioned for them. This meant "rationalizing" the neighbouring department's desk cluster; unfortunately, I got rationalized at the same time.

Until today, I was sitting with the same department I used to work for. I changed jobs back in February but we couldn't be bothered to move me - there was nowhere else for me to sit, anyway. Finally my boss has reclaimed me; as far as I can tell, I've been moved nearer to him so that I can be summoned to fix his e-mail without his having to stand up and come get me.

Seriously, that's really pretty much the fundamental building block of our professional relationship: his e-mail stops working, I come fix it. Some of the ingenious and challenging ways I have "fixed his e-mail" in the past include:

  • turning the ethernet router on
  • pointing out that his Caps Lock was on, thus rendering his password invalid
  • sitting down in his chair and typing the password in myself
  • sitting down in his chair and clicking on "send and receive mail"
  • sitting down in his chair and moving the mouse fractionally, thus bringing the computer out of sleep mode
  • sitting down in his chair
  • coming within six feet of his workstation
I'm not kidding about the last two - either I have some kind of mystical IT support aura going on here, or he isn't really trying very hard to fix it himself. I'd prefer the former, of course. User tries to send e-mail: nothing. User fetches Chris. Chris stands near computer, bids user try to send e-mail: success. Office falls silent, people back fearfully away as curious electrical discharge plays over Chris' suddenly powerful form, music from Highlander starts playing, etc.

Ironically, I've actually been working with the old gang more than ever before; I'm consulting on a couple of Web projects that they've undertaken and it would have made far more sense to leave me where I was - instead, I am suddenly more fully exposed to the whims of my boss's luddite lapses. Swapping Flash and Director authoring for Outlook Express troubleshooting... not good. Not good at all.

So anyway, I got to swap my seat in the main, open-plan office with huge windows and nice sunsets, alongside a bunch of people with whom I enjoy working very much, for a spot facing into the corner of a windowless, enclosed enclave. I am actually now the nearest person in the office to the door but, unfortunately, making a dash for it without going past the boss would mean scaling the seven-foot wall my desk is set against and then vaulting down into the lobby - so I'm trapped until I can fashion a crude ladder from twisted paperclips and ingeniously folded pages from my Access 2000 and Dreamweaver manuals.

I have a promise from my old team that they will come and evacuate me for lunch at precisely one o'clock every day, which is touching (*sniff* thanks, gang) but I have the feeling that if I'm not ready to move on the dot of time, the helicopter may leave without me, stranding me in my shared cell. We get fluorescent desklamps to compensate for the lack of natural light - and boy, do they make up for it!!!!!!!!!! That's how bad it is - I've had to resort to multiple exclamation marks to denote sarcasm. Fuck.

I'd better get some sleep, try to clear my head. The saga of the move itself I'll have to leave till tomorrow - if I'm not too busy slitting my wrists, that is.

Posted by chris at August 29, 2001 12:22 AM | Permalink


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