Friday, November 9, 2007

The Office Worker's Babel

Yeah, they say it reaches all the way to Heaven. So what? All I ever see of it is my cubby, the coffee room, and a few hundred glass windows on the other side of which are more dispirited office drones like myself. All day long I shuffle papers, write reports, balance long lines of numbers, deal with self-important conference divas. It’s hard work, but nobody admires you for doing it.

At five p.m. I power off my PC and take the elevator down a few hundred floors to my apartment. I turn on the TV as soon as I get home. The blinds are always shut. I never look out. What’s the best I could see? The moon reflected in somebody’s window? Some perv with a telescope hoping somebody’s undressing with the blinds up? Big whoop. I’ll take American Idol, thank you very much. Some nights I nuke a TV dinner. Other nights I send out for Chinese. I’d like to take a vacation in Hawaii or the Yucatan, someplace where women sunbathe topless, but who’s got the money? It all gets eaten away by taxes and rent. Who knows where it goes? It certainly doesn’t go to me.

Sometimes at the office, though, I go to the window and place both hands against the glass. It feels cool on my palms. Then I think how great it would feel if I could just open that window, step out into the air, and fly. Yeah, it would only be for a few minutes and then I’d die. Still. For just that little while, wouldn’t it be glorious? Wouldn’t it be great?

But I guess that’s why the windows are designed so they can’t be opened.


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