Wednesday, 16 April 2014
Leave no man behind
Any of this.
It's strange how much time we spend accepting the absurd as regular, simply because it keeps the rain from our foreheads. If you would have told me this succession of events beforehand, there's none of it that I probably would have thought credible.
Our working lives dictate a huge part of who we become, even as much as we'd like them not to, because of the sheer weight of them.
It's impossible not to get cynical over a number of years when you're presented with the same thing again and again. It may rankle at first and cause an initial jolt of reaction but as the sword of time pierces our skin, that same set of circumstances barely even registers.
Recently a good friend of mine left the confines of our office to seek gainful employment doing something different but the same. The send off, as these things always are, was emotional but this one somehow felt a little harder to deal with initially. I think it's because the amount of time we'd spent, as we shared 2 different offices, trying to make sense of all this nonsense, really started to have an effect on the way I looked at the world.
I'm lucky in my 9-5 because my big brother works in the same office. It's yet another extension of my childhood that I've not yet been forced to give up. It doesn't matter how bad things get, and in truth they're never really that bad, it's always comforting to know that he's there. It goes back to being a kid when he'd sneak me in arcades, you never forget those kind of gestures.
My friend however, was a different animal.
I never realised how many times we'd stood in a grey room discussing nothing and everything or how many times it'd be gone 6 and we'd still be chatting on the car park. I lost count of the number of times we'd make a pot of tea on a Friday afternoon and both attack paperwork whilst listening to a play on the radio. I'm probably painting it to be way more civilised than it actually was but in a world full of high speed everything, the contrast was sometimes overlooked.
Judging fights has taken a hold of my senses incredibly of late, and over the last few months the schedule has really intensified. I'm not complaining by the way, it's awesome. It's the best job in the world.
The other day at work I had to help move some equipment round in a rare lull and as I did, I became so aware of how quiet the place seemed. I walked back into the last office that we shared and immediately became enlightened by a million conversations about the sublime and the ridiculous; chats about old computer games, Indoor League, Joan Jett, Welsh rain and Protect and Survive to name a few.
It was only when I finished boxing up all of the things that my colleague left behind did I have a startlingly morbid thought. This happens to us all. The temporal nature of this fragile existence. The beginning and the inevitable end. I got scared for a second and quickly worked to complete this task before more feelings or thoughts got in my way.
It wasn't till I finished the task that I turned round and saw the following image.
It was our way of balancing a bucket of water on top of the frame then telling the world to fuck off.
The truth is that this part of the whole experience made me happy. The job isn't the same but it should be. I'm still doing the same things with the same people, but without the interaction from certain peers it becomes nothing more than ticks in boxes.
Next time you're at work and it's really getting to you, just remember that the people that you share that passing conversation over a cup of tea with, may well turn out to be some of the most important people you ever meet. You just don't see it at the time because it's hived in the veneer of order, model and paperwork.
Until next time