brokenclay.org/journal

What goes up …

At work, most of the buildngs are a single story – except mine. I work in the five-story Tower (not much of a tower, I know, but this is Boulder, which has building height limits).

The Tower dates from the late 50s/early 60s. It has at various times in its history housed classified programs, which means it’s a hodge-podge of interrupted electrical systems, added and subsequently removed secure entrances and in general a mess. Apparently when it was built, there was no such thing as a woman engineer (what did the female secretaries do?) as there is one restroom on each floor. Nowadays the even numbered floors have ladies rooms, the odd numbered floors have mens rooms. But most of them aren’t wheelchair accessible, and certainly not the one on my floor.

Due to their age, the elevators are very flaky, but luckily there are two of them, a frieght elevator and a passenger elevator.

Tuesday morning at 7:30 am, corporate security called me at home (how sweet!) to let me know that there had been a fire in the freight elevator, and that the power to the building was shut down.

I worked at home that day.

The next day the building was open again. The freight elevator is down for the count. I got to my office all right using the passenger elevator, but for the rest of the day, whenever I went past it, the door was opening…closing…opening…closing…opening…closing like some demented short circuited robot.

I called security. They called facilities. They called the elevator repair guys. Three hours later I reached the end of my mental rope thinking about the elevator, plus I had to pee real bad. I called security and packed up my computer. A security guy and a facilities guy came to take me out of the building (“Katja is fleeing the building!”).

After taking care of the peeing problem, I called facilities and told them I wanted a ground floor office – all it has to have, I said, is a power jack and an ethernet jack. And that’s about all it does have, besides a desk. But it’s better than trusting that elevator.

Katja

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