Thursday, December 6, 2007

Bottled water, fort-building, and meaninglessness

It's kind of a nice-ish day outside, clear and cold. I spend a good portion of every day with my chair swivelled partly around, gazing longingly outside. My cubby-cle is in the inside row of the floor, but down the cubicle-alley is a window, and through it I can see some high-rises and parking lots and a donair place and my favourite bookstore. I look out there and can't really deduce what I'm doing in here.

I know I've probably linked to it before, but this exploding dog drawing summarizes perfectly how I feel about my work. I don't really mind being in this little room with 5' high walls and endless laminate surfaces. In fact, it kind of reminds me of a place you could build a really good fort, and sometimes when I'm staring at my monitor, totally zoned out, I'm thinking about the ways you could add elements to my cubicle to make it more fort-like. Netting or blankets draped over the top would be a big one. Pillows, hidden under the desk. A mini-fridge, right next to my empty file cabinet! Pieces of pretty fabric, attached to the neutral grey baffle walls with pins. A string of Christmas lights looped around the metal bar that holds my phone and my inbox. My little iPod dock with speakers. A flap of cardboard over the door, with a hole so you have to crawl through, and written on it in charming, backwards letters: "Alleged Writer/Editor. Keep Out!"

Anyway, as I was saying, it's not like I resent being here, really. I'm apathetic about it. I don't hate my job, I just don't really understand my job. The knowledge that I could not be here, and things would proceed EXACTLY the way they are now, is a little unsettling. Does the whole working world feel this way? Someone must be actually doing something, right? Through the window, I can tell that the work of the world is proceeding. There's a disconnect there, I guess. Other people must be accomplishing more than I am.

My throat really hurts, and I have these hall's cough candies, but they're so thick and sugary that every time I eat one I get the feeling my blood is being partially replaced with black cherry syrup. You know? And not in a good way. I keep sneezing, and every sneeze is like agony. And yet I have to keep sitting at this desk, as if everything is fine. This is how it always happens: I get sick, I'm really sick for a couple of days, I get partly better, and then I am partly sick FOREVER. It occurred to me the other day that if I lived in the 19th century, and was rich, I would be an invalid. If I lived in the 19th century, and was poor, I would probably die in childbirth at the age of, let's say, 25-minus-two-weeks.

I've been getting lots of email today from people I know. That's good! Keep it up, everyone! Here I am now, entertain me!

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