The Parker-Morris building will go over, all one hundred and ninety-one floors. It’s weird to think the place where we’re standing will only be a point in the sky.
—Chuck Palahniuk, Fight Club (the book, not the film)
Yes, it was weird on Friday to look at my e-mails and personal files at work, and to think that all this information would soon disappear utterly. I’d been at that place for nearly nine years, and had amassed a lot of e-mails, some of them personal (between myself, “good housemate”, “female best friend” and “other female best friend”); I wondered if I should go through them and send myself anything irreplaceable, that I couldn’t bear to live without… and then didn’t. At least I was able to preserve the clever spreadsheet I’d set up to weave together raw reports and spit out good reports, though whether my former office will be able to make sufficient use of it remains to be… well, not seen by me, but it’ll affect the children, so strictly out of the goodness of my heart, I hope it all works out.
Other losses to electronic oblivion include the funny images I clipped from the company’s intranet page (such as the guy who introduced himself as Mr. Butt, Head of Housing — uh huh huh huh huh huh!), and a text file containing some of the ludicrous things an Australian woman kept saying in her dictations (the only way I stayed sane during the bad old audio-typing days). All these files will be lost, like tears in rai— no, that’s Blade Runner.
Anyway, I’ve now finished my job of over five years, and left my employer of over eight years. I sure hope this crazy scheme to break into the IT industry works out (not least because I’m tired of having to explain it to everyone and anyone), as I don’t want to be unemployed for too long, appealing though time off work may be. Thanks to my agency postponing my “mock interview”, I’m having this entire week off, with the prospect of my unpaid short-term experience-gaining placement beginning next week.
So, what have I gained to make up for my loss? Well, aside from a week’s holiday (give or take), I’ve gained contact details for some of my old friends at work, as well as the right to “friend” some former office colleagues on Facebook (who wouldn’t let me do it before when we worked together, for obvious reasons). They also gave me £50 to spend at Game… oh, wait, the nearest branch is on the high street where I used to work, DAMN! But that’s still a better parting gift than the one given me by the nice but religous lady at the health centre: a Bible (which I already have, thanks to “female best friend”, and I will read it one day!) and a CD of Tim Hughes (who? Exactly!) singing Christian songs. What happened to the Ferrero Rocher she got me at Christmas, that was a practical present!
(Sorry, religious readers: the only Christian CD I would ever listen to is the one from South Park, where Cartman takes love songs and changes the lyrics to make them about Jesus…)
One of my gains is technically a loss: I’ve gained a final, eternal reprieve from having to listen to the annoying woman EVERY. DAMN. DAY, and no matter how much my next workplace sucks, I’m just relieved my sanity lasted long enough for me to escape. Now I can listen to music (of a non-Christian variety) because I enjoy it, and not just to drown her out — and nor will I, while listening to said music, look up from my screen to see her towering above, talking to me as though she hasn’t noticed the big pair of noise-cancelling headphones covering my shell-likes!
Importantly, I’ve gained the chance to slag off my former employer by name… but I’d better not just yet, they’re paying my redundancy money on August payday (the 15th). I’ll wait until then to name and shame the organisation that’s moving all its employees into a building no-one likes, and which doesn’t have enough desks for everyone because they want more people to work from home, hence replacing everyone’s computers with laptops that they have to lug around… and hey, they did nothing to encourage me to stay — quite the opposite, remember? They don’t even trust employees enough to put buttons in the lifts! And don’t get me started on the food situation at the new building, oh no sir…
Most of all, though, I’ve gained a future in IT, at least in potentia… well, we’ll see how long it takes for me to wish I’d stayed put. Hope is a gift, and one which I lacked during 2012 (after supplies ran low in 2011), so it’s nice to have an abundance for a change, that I might spread my wealth and bring hope into the lives of others less fortunate than myself.
(There, was that maudlin enough… oh, sorry!)
And finally, so you can leave now if you want, it’s time for a gratuitous Gwar reference: I just got a copy of Lust in Space, but it’s a little poignant, because there’s one more album left (Bloody Pit of Horror) before we lost Cory Smoot, and then another album after that (Battle Maximus) before we lost Dave Brockie. I’ve thus got two left before it feels like Gwar somehow “runs out”… but what do I know, I’m just a simpering bohab, right?