Outside the office today on the East coast of the US there’s an amplified heat that feels like wearing vinyl to Death Valley, but I bet there’s more than one of you who still has their space heater on in the office. Maybe it’s just a favorite sweater that helps warm that tan you got over the weekend.
There are a million people out there fighting against global warming and looking for a fix to the environment. Some of them are riding deer to the Poles with ropes and cool looking snow gear to save the ice as we speak. You’re fixing a cup of coffee while wearing the fleece pullover your company gave you a couple years back that doesn’t really fit. Well, I’m fighting for you, friend. Maybe fight is a strong word.
I once worked in an office where, in my section upstairs, the heat was broken. How broken? As you stepped on the fourth stair it went from about 70 to 85. Evidently the owners had done an analysis and realized paying for someone to fix it would be more expensive than just paying for the extra heat. Of course, they made this decision in their wool suits downstairs. Have you ever seen a sheep sweat? No, because they don’t put sheep in 85 degree carpeted offices. Trust me, we all had a look at that dial to see if we could fix it. Well, not the ladies who thought it was great. Let’s just say buy in for the audits of fisheries and meat packing plants suddenly rose to an all-time high.
In most offices the heat is not broken it’s just controlled by a fairy – the Heat Fairy. Imagine if your office was a democracy and everyone had a vote as to what the ambient temperature should be – whoa, bad idea. Sometimes you know who the Heat Fairy is. Usually it’s because they made a scene – they built a blanket fort on their body to prove that they were cold. They use the word ‘dying’ often when they are hot. They are sadly not good enough hypochondriacs to just call out sick. They’d rather roam around and infect everyone with the notion that illness and potential death is only avoidable if they are allowed to adjust the thermostat.
Some places, though, the Heat Fairy really is a fairy that you can never quite catch. Yesterday it was 62 degrees in here. Today it is 75. How does that happen? Why is the AC on in the middle of February? That’s assuming you have consistent heat across your whole office, but there are mysterious zones. Do you guys have the one meeting room that is an icebox? When you see it on your schedule you know you have to bring a sweater with you – it’s like an outing except you’re in the same office and your boss has about 50 slides to run through. He’s got the projector light to keep him warm. What do you have? An ill-fitting sweater and your touchy-feely co-worker, Phil.
I would also recommend not working in a building that is cursed or the owners got a really good deal on. Here’s the story. You make the call which of the above led to this:
One day the partner heard a noise above her head. It was not an accountant trying to escape through the heating system, but something. She called an exterminator who used his masters degree to explain we had a mouse problem. He did not have a degree in psychology though, so when the mice started falling through the ceiling tiles onto desks and floors we were less than consolable – really just paranoid. You know, if you could fall from eight plus feet, land, and bolt away you’d be in the Olympics. You can’t and mice can. We told the exterminator to stop thinking and just start shooting.
It was proven that mice cannot land in your hair unless maybe if you had a Don King afro. But flying ants can do everything! And they’re creepier than those little cute mice. Maybe we should have looked into replacing the ceiling after the mice incident because not long afterwards ants started falling. You know how you get the first drops of a summer rain that peck the dust and you’re just waiting for it all to pick up. Well, a couple dazed ants sauntering across the floor were noticed. They had wings which was pretty awesomely scary. Soon after they were plopping on desks, landing in hair, walking everywhere. The exterminator was called again.
If you want to be distracted from work maybe a change in the temperature will do the trick. If you really want to test your mental toughness add some animals into the mix and see how much you get done. Faithful readers, migrant internet searchers tell us some stories. You can stay anonymous if you’d like, but me making up comments on my own blog would be the saddest thing ever. Share!