Sunday, September 3, 2023

Thanks For The Offer But I'll Pass On The Life Lesson Today.

Life is full of teachable moments. I know this because there seems to be a never-ending stream of people who will try to turn everything you say or do that conveys even the slightest lack of complete positivity into a lesson on how you could be doing better if only you would (*insert way of being told how to live life here*).

If that came across like I'm not particularly fond of receiving unsolicited advice, then I guess it means I was able to successfully relay my feelings on the topic. As much as it may rob someone of the opportunity to display their intellectual & emotional superiority help, I sometimes, would like to not walk around with a fake smile, pretending like everything's peachy for fear that someone I know (or even don't know) will see my less than perfect facade as an opportunity to jump in & tell me what I'm doing wrong & how I can fix it. It's tiring, always having to put up the "everything's okay" front & worrying about even the slightest thing you do or say can be an excuse for the random person nearby to step in.

What really made me aware of that under-the-microscope feeling was something that happened several years ago...

I was waiting for a taxi to get back to work from a lunchtime errand. It was a beautiful, sunny day & I was admiring the sharp colours of the blue sky & white clouds. Sometimes I do things like that. I observe trees, clouds & other things. It's weird, I know, but I enjoy it.

Anyway, I digress (I just realised how long it's been since I've typed that). I saw a taxi coming towards me, I stopped it & got in in the back. As it was the only passenger, I scooted in behind the driver to allow for any other potential passengers he would pick up along the way. No more than ten seconds after the car pulled off, the driver started.

"So, I couldn't help but notice that you were staring up to the heavens just now."

That's when I noticed the rosary hanging from the rearview as well as the old-school (I mean, really, really old-school) gospel coming from the radio. I honestly don't know if my sigh was audible or not but I'm pretty sure he didn't see my eyes roll (I hope). How was I going to get out if this impending conversation that I didn't want to have? "Me like pretty clouds!" was a way to go, I guess...

"Don't worry about it. It's just a thing I do." was all that I said, though.

Fortunately, we were interrupted by another passenger flagging him down & the conversation ended before it began. I still think about that passenger sometimes. I hope she's doing well in life.

It was minor but, for a while after that, I was left feeling like I had to be on constant guard as to how I carried myself in public, down to the most minute detail, so as to not leave an open invitation for unsolicited suggestions & life-coaching.

None of this is to say, mind you, that I already have everything figured out or I even can figure everything out on my own. Like everyone else, sometimes (often) I do need help & advice as I navigate through life. That being said, I don't need everyone jumping in & trying at every chance to take the wheel either.

Sorry if all that came off a bit whiny... I did file this under "rant" after all, so you were warned.

Truth is, since my divorce, I've been thinking about firing-up the old blog again. I got my own place, my own internet & even my own computer... but I was hesitant. When I first started writing here, I was (was?) a complete noob. I thought I could keep this space private from people I interacted with IRL so I could say anything I felt without judgement. That, however, didn't end up being the case. Family came to know about it, coworkers & friends found their way here. I did a piss-poor job of keeping this blog away from my non-virtual life. Maybe... subconsciously... that was intentional. Who knows?

Sometimes, but not very often, a few of these people would even come up to me after I posted something that got too deep to tell me what they thought & how they thought I should handle things. A few even tried to not let on that they read my thoughts here & it was somehow a complete coincidence that this advice was forthcoming.

However, after some soul-searching & figuring out of things (On my own too! Would you look at that!) I've decided I'm not letting those thoughts hamper me from doing things the way I feel I need to do them. Regardless of who has anything to say, this is still my space, after all. Does that mean I'm going to start posting every day/week/month again? Huh! I dunno! We'll see where things go from here.

All this being said, to anyone who knows me ,on or off the internet & somehow still manage come back here to stumble upon this post, let me just say thanks... but I'm alright. The majority of the stuff I write here is peppered with a healthy serving of hyperbole anyway so I'm not as lost & in need as I may appear on "paper". Let me be the one to come to you seeking assistance. It'll feel more special that way, I promise.

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

New Beginnings.

I mentioned a while back about a big change that was coming in my life that was not only life-altering but also adding to my feelings of being overwhelmed and stuck-in-place. Well, I won't bury the lede anymore. The thing is... I'm getting divorced.


After almost 25 years of being a "we" we're each going back to being first-person singular, at least when it comes to each other. I won't go into too much detail about how it went down, other than saying it wasn't any one, big thing that caused it. It was just the culmination of a lot of little things (and maybe a few medium-sized ones) being experienced by both sides that reached the point where it finally couldn't be ignored anymore and almost two years ago, Mrs C (or, as it stands the Soon-to-be-Ex-Mrs C) decided she had had enough and I had to fact the grim reality that I couldn't find a reason to disagree.

Why two years? Well, here, in Trinidad & Tobago, you don't just decide you don't want to be married anymore, run down to your nearest divorce attorney, sign some papers and - BAM - your marriage has ended (I'm assuming it works like that in some parts of the world but I could be wrong). Here, the law requires a two-year wait between deciding you want a divorce and actually being able to file for it so the nice lawyer lady still has to wait another two months to take the paperwork to the courts. Another few months after that (they still give you time to change your mind) it becomes official... and then I guess I can remove that awkward "soon-to-be" prefix.

Even after almost two years our minds are made up. Still, knowing for so long that it's coming, this isn't easy to talk about. I only just started telling some people about it at the beginning of this year, after we went to the lawyer to start preparing the process.

If anyone remembers, the soon-to-be was a source of a lot of my posts. We haven't talked about it but I took the decision to remove those posts - the ones where she had most of the focus, anyway - and after this post I more-than-likely won't be telling any stories about our interactions anytime in the foreseeable future (definitely not without her okay, anyway).We're amicable, for the most part, but I'm not taking any chances.

I titled this post "New Beginnings" because while the divorce signifies the a very sad end of a quarter-century history, it also signifies a new start for the both of us and maybe a chance to find the futures we couldn't find with each other. That's what I'm choosing to focus on instead of what-could-have-been.

Wednesday, September 30, 2020


Ever since I lost my job at the bank over ten years ago (yes, I'm still talking about this!) it feels like I've been stuck in the same place. Not physically, of course, I've changed addresses about as often as I've changed jobs in the last decade (which is a lot). Mentally... emotionally... that's something different.
As we go through life we're constantly being told we have to reach some point where we're meant to change. We're supposed to "evolve" into the us we're supposed to be at that point in our lives. Lately, though, an overwhelming feeling of stagnancy is leaving me feeling unsettled (ironic much?).
It's not like I haven't tried to move forward... at first. I thought I would just bounce back, find a new job (that paid just as well) and keep things moving after it all happened. Naturally, that wasn't the case. Instead, it felt like-it feels like every time I try to get back up off of the ground since then a new wave of shitty situations would just knock me back down and every time it did it was harder to get back up again. Little-by-little, before I knew it, I guess just stopped trying to get back up altogether.

Naturally, I've been stuck financially too. I haven't been able to clear off the debts I've amassed during those banker years when I could (barely) afford to maintain them in the first place. It doesn't help that new debts keep popping up that always take priority over the old ones. It also doesn't help that my salary's gotten nowhere near what I used to make despite being steadily employed for the past seven of those ten-plus years.

I know, I know! Life happens. Shame on you, Vinny! We all go through the same crap and we're all expected to pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and keep on fighting. But when is it too much? Who decides that we haven't reached our limit yet?

Now, with another big change set to happen next year* - a life-altering one, in fact - I'm feeling the weight of this (self-imposed?) stagnancy. I know I have to hit the marks I haven't even tried aiming at while I waited - in vain - for things to settle down.
Not gonna lie, it's making me feel a not-so-slight pang of desperation. Ironically, though, I think that desperation is what I need right now. I hate that it even took feeling desperate like this to wake me up. If you're not a super-self-motivated-hustler-go-getter nowadays you're pretty much failing at life, aren't you? Where's that ambition, Vinny? Where's your fire?!
In all honesty, I think I'm ready to find it.

(*Sorry but this big, life-altering change is not something I want to disclose right now. I will... in time. All I'll say is it's not good news.)

Thursday, July 25, 2019

I'll Procrastinate Later.

In the fourteen-or-so months (YIKES!) since I last posted, things have happened (as they are wont to do). Things I meant to sit down and write about but lacked the focus needed to apply myself to the task. Incidentally, "lacks the focus needed to apply himself" was a regular note my teachers left in my report cards back in the day.

Some things, you never outgrow.

Sure, I can make a lot of excuses as to why I didn't have time to blog. Tons of them! I could talk about how hard things got with my slow crawl to a Mass Communications degree and how not getting enough sleep didn't really seem like a problem in my thirties but my forties don't like it so much (I'd just turned forty when I last posted and hadn't truly started to feel the effects). At the end of the day, though, I just kept putting it all off.

That doesn't discredit the other things that have happened, however.

For one thing, school is tough on a working adult! A lot of you can attest to this. I reached the point where I suffered clear sings of burnout and developed a acute aversion to sitting down to do my assignments. Too bad you don't get to just throw your hands up and quit and still call yourself a proper adult. I totally would have done that, believe me.

So there was that... but the main thing that was giving me an excuse to put off writing was the flood.

Yup! Flood.

And I'm not talking about a flooded bathroom again. I mean a real, honest-to-goodness, house-under-water deluge.

Coming down to the end of last October - four days after our fifteenth wedding anniversary - Mrs C and I lost pretty much all our material possessions to a massive flood. Nearly everything we had accumulated over those fifteen years was gone after two days of freakishly heavy rain that left our community (as well as many other parts of our tropical paradise) under water for nearly two more days.

In our house the water got as high as five feet while others in other parts of our community saw as much as ten feet. I can't say we were the lucky ones, though. Be it five feet or ten, if you live in a flat everything you own is toast. Soggy, muddy toast.
Alas, poor Adella! I hardly knew ye!
Mrs C and I weren't home, fortunately. The rain caused a traffic nightmare in most of the country and, as a result, we were stranded in the capital where we both work. Kawaii - you remember Kawaii, right? - was the only one home and she was able to swim to safety and wait out the flood on top someone's pickup. The little so-and-so actually came right back to our street the same day all the the water had finally receded and met up with us when we were finally

able to get back in.

After several months and thousands of dollars, however, we were able to finally get back to some semblance of the life we had (though we still haven't replaced the TV and dinner table).

In some good news, I have finished with school (without having to throw my hands up and quit). By November I'll graduate and have my very own bachelor's degree! Not so comforting is the fact that, nowadays, everybody and his brother have degrees so to even consider myself marketable I'll have to jack back in and go for my master's.


Friday, May 11, 2018

Let's Just Stop & Think About This!

I'm not sure when or how but I've become... an over-thinker.

The level of worry I invest into every little decision is astounding. Whenever I have a choice to make, nowadays, it feels like I can't move without weighing ALL the options and choosing only the best possible one. Even when I do decide I still don't make a move because I get hung up second-guessing that decision until the last minute.

This is proving especially troublesome where my schoolwork is concerned. Right now I have three courses left until I graduate and they're all filled with "choose your own topic" or "you decide on the angle of approach" (or both) types of assignments. It's safe to say I'm a little stressed right now.
In fact, I'm not proud to admit that I'm writing this post instead of doing one of those assignments because I just don't want to face it.

How did this happen? I mean, I guess there were always signs of this being a problem in the past but  always did a good job keeping it in check.... I think... While, I've always been a planner and hella methodical when it mattered, at other times I considered myself an easy-going kind of guy. The kind who'd just go with the flow and make decisions on the fly. It's not to say I used to be reckless or anything. Quite the opposite. Now, though, it's like I traded all that for paralyzing indecision and self-doubt.

It's not fun..

I'll stop boring you any further this right here. As much as I'd like to delve deeper into this, I don't have the time right now. That aforementioned assignment isn't going to write itself after all.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Player Ready?

OBJECTIVE: Withstand workday assault
DIFFICULTY LEVEL: High! - Player begins mission with reduced Stamina and Morale.
DURATION: 8 hours
MISSION REWARDS: [WEEKEND] - Includes “End-of-Workday” Mission Rewards: [Rest] and [Relaxation].
[WEEKEND] grants player bonus points to [Rest] and [Relaxation].
[Weekend] also grants player increased chance of earning high-level rewards:  [Alcohol] and [Doing Something Fun].
[Weekend] also grants player the chance to receive Rare-Classed loot: [Sleep].


Friday, November 4, 2016

Snowball 3 - Moving Man.

During my confession the other day mentioned getting my contract at work renewed. This means, barring any monumental screw-ups on my part (or an apocalypse or something), I'll be steadily employed for at least another three years. I'm happy for this, of course, especially since my country's economy's driven by our oil and natural gas reserves and the plummet in oil prices last year has forced a lot of belt tightening and even some downsizing here and there. So, no complaining from me. Besides, I mentioned what happens when I complain. The last thing I want is to end up getting transferred to another division.

So why am I not only sitting at a new desk, once again, but also in a new building..?

It all started when I got the call from HR to inform me that all the "i"s were dotted and "t"s were crossed and I was officially reemployed.

HR: How soon can you start?
Me: Is Monday okay? (It was already Tuesday afternoon so I figured I'd give myself three more days of freedom.)
HR: No problem... By the way, you should know there are seating issues to sort out.
Me: Hmm?
HR: Yeah, the new Executive (*lightning flashes, thunder rumbles, building shakes slightly*) brought some new staff in with her. You know we have a new boss right?
Me: Yeah, I heard (Even if I hadn't it wouldn't surprise me. We've changed five Executives (*lightning flashes, thunder rumbles, building shakes slightly*) in the three years I've been there).
HR: Anyway, we're short a desk in that unit now so you'll be another department until we sort out the logistics.
Me: (Probably would have been nice if they had figured that out before) Okay...
HR: Don't worry, it's just for a week.

All things aside, I wasn't going to complain. The main thing was I was not returning to the ranks of unemployed and for that alone, I was grateful. I refused to sweat the small stuff.

That week finished quickly and before I knew it I was once again fastening my polyester shackle around my neck. The shiny, purple one!

My temporary place of abode was a department I knew a little about but never had much to do with. One thing I did know was that they deal with major projects and had a lot of work. The Director introduced me to the team and let them know I'd be squatting on their land for a few days. I was given some busy work and mostly left to my one devices.

One week later, I went back up to the executive floor. As luck would have it, one of the new people brought on by the Executive (*lightning flashes, thunder rumbles, building shakes slightly*) had to go off on maternity leave so a desk was made temporarily available. The plan was to rearrange the floor space and add an extra cubicle (just for lil' ol' me) so by the time she got back, there'd be no more seating issues.

IT had put my PC in storage while I was away so I spent that morning arranging for them to bring it back up to my old desk (after I had them remove the interloper who was there out, that is). True the desk was only temporarily being returned to me but it was mine until the new cube was built. MINE! Soon the computer was set up and IT went on their merry way. I sat down, adjusted my chair back to its original settings, put the all my stuff back where I'd left them, hung my reflective safety vest on the chair-back (did I ever mention I'm also a safety warden?), sat down, booted up and prepared to get back to work...

Then the phone rang.

HR (different person): Hi, Vinny.
Me: Hey! 'Sup?
HR2: Um... What are you doing now?
Me: Nothing. IT just set me up so I'm about to start.
HR2: Oh, okay. Here's the thing... We need you to go across to another division and fill in for a few days.
Me: Huh?
HR2: Just for two days. That's it! There's another drone going on training and they need someone to man the desk.
Me: Well, I guess that's okay but what about my supervisor?
HR2: We'll call her and let her know. Can you leave now?
Me: Now? As in now now?
HR2: Yeah... Her training started this morning.
Me: Hmm...
HR2: Sorry...

I didn't make a big deal out of it since it was just for two days. The other division was one I'd never been to. It was in another building just down the street and was a result of another Ministry being merged with ours after the Prime Minister did some portfolio reshuffling. I got there and reported to the HR Manager. She said I had to talk to the Director but she was out until after lunch. The HR Manager then suggested that, since it was only 11 am, I could go have lunch myself an extra long until the Director returned. Hey, if the HR Manager cleared it, I'm not going to argue.

I got back at 1 pm. The Director's office was still locked. I went over to the HR Manager again. That's when she broke the news.

HRMg: Sooo... as it turns out, the training the person you're supposed to replace is only a half day long each day. She's already back.
Me: Oh... Okay...
HRMg: Yeah, it doesn't really make sense for anyone to come and hold on for only half a day so I guess you can go back.
Me: Huh...
HRMg: I honestly didn't know-

At the same time a young lady, who, as it turned out, was the one I was supposed to fill in for came bolting in. She told the HR Manager to wait and not to let me leave yet. They quietly discussed something then the HR Manager looked up at me.

HRMg: Well, it looks like you may have to stay after all. I didn't realize she was supposed to start her three month rotation to another division uptown. I guess, so you'll be assigned here until she gets back.

(Did she say three months?)

Me: Um... I was only told it was supposed for two days. I'm pretty sure head office might want to say in something like this, since I'm from there.
HRMg: You're right... Hold on. Let me make a call and find out what they want to do.

After a few minutes...

HRMg: Well, I spoke to the HR Director, who spoke to the Executive's  (*lightning flashes, thunder rumbles, building shakes slightly*) senior minion and he confirmed it. You're staying. Why don't you go with the young lady here so she can hand over? After you meet with the Director we'll set you up on the system and issue you a keycard.
Me: *blinks* Huh..?

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

When You...

That moment...

Friday, March 4, 2016

Smells Like Monkeys In Here.

As I mentioned the other day, I was sick. I'm mostly better now (not factoring-in the residual mucus.. Sorry). I also mentioned something about hipster monkeys in that post too (I don't know... I think my brain was overheating or something).
No, wait! There was a point to the monkeys! The monkeys had meaning. They were a symbol to represent my writing (I submit my entire blogging history as "Exhibit A") or, at least, my return to writing. See? Makes more sense now, right?

Know what? Forget the monkeys! You can't expect to understand what's going on when there are monkeys in the room. That just never works out. What I mean by all this is, I think getting sick made me figure out why I haven't felt motivated to write these days.

You know when people say "life happened" and I couldn't keep up with this or that anymore? That's exactly right! And it's not always because you're so busy. That can happen but that wasn't the case for me. For me, I got stuck in a rut. Between bills, night school, boring office job, etc. I subconsciously began to wall myself off so as not to feel overwhelmed by what felt like the sheer meaningless in my existence. The problem with that was I made myself literally numb to everything going on around me. It's really hard to be creative when you go about your everyday routine just letting everything bounce off you and letting nothing stick. Know what I mean?

Now that I realized that, I think I can keep myself from falling into that trap again. Or not. I get distracted easily.

Speaking of distracted, I got my sense of smell back!

(Yeah, complete and abrupt change of topic. No warning. No clever segueing. Nothing! Blame the monkeys.)

While the cold helped me regain my sense of blogginess (I think), I lost my sense of smell. That was new. I've never had anything like that happen over a cold - or any other reason - before. At first, I was a little worried that it was going to be permanent (and possibly the lamest superhero origin story ever) but Dr. Google assured me it would be alright. Actually, it seemed this wasn't not all that uncommon when you got a cold so I just had to wait it out. Sure, everything I ate tasted bland without a functioning olfactory sense but, on the plus side, I kind of liked being able to walk through the city and not be suddenly have my nose bombarded with scent human waste (sorry again) - usually strategically scattered throughout the city by members of our homeless community.

That being said, I am now of the opinion that the tongue is woefully undeserving of its position as the representative of taste. All that guy can basically do is tell what's sweet, sour, bitter and salty. Without your olfactory sense, you might as well just give up on life enjoying your food.

At first, my sense of smell came back in bits and pieces. The first time I noticed anything had a scent was one day, when I was returning from lunch about two days into it. A coworker was waiting to get on the elevator and the scent of her coffee hit my olfactory senses hard. The best way I can describe it was like being colorblind and suddenly seeing a woman in a red dress move across the room. And the fact that it was coffee that ended up being the first thing I could smell in two days turned that woman in a red dress into a curvy bikini model in a skimpy, red two-piece.
Of course I meant a Japanese bikini model!
I really love coffee.

After that, it was gone again until something else got through. Fortunately, none of it was poop. After about five or six days, I'm happy to report that things are back to normal and coffee tastes great once again.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

On The Outside, Looking In.

Remember back when I posted about how things always seem to change when I complain about my situation and they didn't usually change for the better? Well... it happened again. The complaining and things changing part, anyway. Surprisingly enough, things are actually a lot better now.

Halfway through September, I was transferred again and, no, it wasn't back to my original desk. I've been moved to a completely new desk in yet another division altogether. And, yes, this came as a result of me complaining. Not to myself or into the vast open spaces of the internet but to what appears to be a more effective audience: HR.

Yeah. Now, I'm normally the kind of guy who tries to make the best of things. You know the type: the guy who quietly sits and mutters to himself instead of proactively initiating change until one day he finally reaches his breaking point and thoughts of property damage start playing around inside his head.
Yeah, that guy. Or, at least, I thought I was. When things actually got to the point with my supervisor where I couldn't take it anymore I ended up going to HR and lodging a complaint. I even surprised myself. One thing led to another and here I am, working on the executive offices. Please note: my job title and salary remain the same level (the bottom). I'm just doing the job I was hired to do in a different setting.

I guess this is the point where I go into the ups and downs I had with the supervisor in question and talk about how things at my new station are working out. But... no. That's enough of that. Instead, let's talk about the time I locked myself outside my office... and, by extension, the entire building... on the top floor. That's way more interesting, right?

AHEM! The government office that employs me takes up the top three floors of a seven-story building. The executive floors are, of course, on the top floor of those three floors. On each floor there are two emergency exits and each of those exits also grants staff access to the balconies where staff is free to go to think, focus on a difficult task/assignment, view a passing parade in the streets below, have a private conversation or weep mournfully as they contemplate the meaninglessness to their existence (it's cathartic). As such there are no alarms to go off when these doors are opened.

Most of the time, though, people just go outside whenever the air-conditioning starts acting up. On rare occasions a unit will break down but, more often than not, they work too well and it gets super-cold in the office. Not many of us are built to take it but I don't mind. I just throw on my jacket and I'm good so, with only a few exceptions, I pretty much ignore those balcony entrances, even though I'm now seated right in front of one of them (naturally, this means, if shit goes down, I'm the guaranteed to be one of the first ones out).

That was until yesterday...

It had been raining all week. The air was colder than usual and even I was feeling the chill in the air. Then, from the window behind me, I happened to notice the sun had finally decided to check in on us. The sky was so bright I just knew it would be nice and warm outside already. I imagined the feeling of the warm sunlight on my skin and I could feel myself being pulled to the outside. That's when I decided to just go out and thaw off for a bit.

Now, as I said earlier, I hardly availed myself of the privilege before but the few times I did, I got in and out with no problems. However, what I didn't know was that, unlike the other balcony entrances, the door behind my desk does not open from the outside. So when a gust of wind eagerly finished closing the door for me I barely paid it any mind. I soaked in some sun, looked around a little at the nearby streets and buildings and headed back for the inside. Only... When I got the the door... Yeah...

"Of course..." was my first thought because, obviously if anyone's going to get themselves locked out it's me.

This was when I looked around and realized the balconies aren't connected around the corners and there was a seven-floor-deep gap between me and the only other entrance on the floor. Outstanding! My next thought was to discretely call one of my coworkers on their cells so they could come over and let me back in. This was unfortunately hampered by the fact that I had earlier put my phone to charge and it was at that moment sitting on my desk, evilly smirking at me (IT SMIRKED! I SAW IT!) through the locked window.

"Naturally!" I sighed.

At this point I was left with three options:
  1. Climb up the roof-access ladder and get to either the other balcony entrance or the door to the main stairwell.
  2. Go across to the emergency stairwell, make my way down to the floor just below and get in from an entrance there.
  3. Knock until someone heard me and came to my rescue.
Each option, however, comes with it's own set of problems. Like I said, it was windy. Climbing up to the roof and walking across seemed risky, especially since the entire center of the building is hollow all the way to the ground floor and all that covered that section was a huge glass dome so yeah... No! I considered the emergency stairwell option for a quite a bit but I wasn't sure if opening those doors triggered any alarms or if any other doors opened from the inside besides the one on the ground floor. Common sense told me I should be fine. The fear of sending the building into a panic if I trip off an emergency alarm told me back off that idea a bit.
See? Some of them do trigger alarms. I wasn't letting the lack of a label lull me into a false sense security.
While I was considering trying to get to the floor below, it also occurred to me that there was an Option 4: Since the building had a sort of Mayan pyramid thing going on, I could just ignore the stairs and jump down to the balcony below.
But I decided against it.

This left me with knocking and calling at the offending door until someone came to my rescue. While this may seem like the most viable solution to sum, to me it was the least desirable option. My new supervisor, who happens to be the one who sits closest to me was on lunch at the time so this meant I had to really make myself heard. Not only did I leave myself open to ridicule from whoever came to let me back in but I ran the risk of attracting the attention of the executive staff since their offices were all around my area. Being on the floor only a few months, I felt that somehow this wouldn't help me make a good impression.

Still, of all the available options this was the only one that could count as "sane" so I figured I'd play it safe. So I knocked... and waited... and knocked again... and waited some more. Then I realized there was no one within earshot. I looked at the emergency stairwell door again. I began to wonder if they'd fired me if I set off the fire alarm and sent hundreds of people scampering.

I knocked again, slightly louder. Nothing.

I decided to enjoy the view for a bit more until someone noticed I was missing. I figured, worst-case scenario, I had at least half an hour until my supervisor got back from her lunch break. Roughly ten seconds later I was back at the door, knocking and trying (and failing) to not look overly pathetic. I realized if someone did pass by, I'd only look like I was getting some fresh air rather than trapped outside. This time, though, my efforts paid off and a few minutes later I heard a 'click' as the knob turned and the door opened.

"What's the password?" It was the personal assistant to the third-highest ranking guy there. She was just returning to her desk and heard me knocking.

"Thanks," I smiled and started to pull the door open.

She held firm on her end, "Noooooo. That's not the password." She smiled back with a sing-songy reply.

I joked it off and made a few guesses (all of the wrong) but she insisted on making me squirm for a minute before letting me pass. FYI: It was "open sesame", apparently. Go figure.

"You now this door doesn't open from the outside, right?" she said as I walked in, "We normally block it open when we go outside."

"No... No I did not."

All-in-all I endured only minimal embarrassment and, as a bonus, the rain held up the entire time. That counts as a good a day, in my book.