Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Slow Decay

Dear Reader,

Twenty three days until closure. That includes weekends. The death of an organization is a little like seeing a patient withering in a hospital bed. Slowly faculties decline, one week memories are there and the next they’re gone – vanished as if they’d never existed. Eventually the patient begins to hallucinate, to see ghosts. Last week I got a call from someone who used to be one of the key R&D scientists here – a genuine absent-minded professor sort. Just like in the old days, he couldn’t find something. In the old days I would have had the capacity to locate the missing item and bring it to him. Not in the dying shell of this facility, though. All I can do is walk the empty offices, check the shipping records, and ask my few remaining coworkers…all the while I know we won’t find what we’re looking for. The capacity to find it doesn’t exist any longer, all that remains is a memory of when the finding would have been possible and a faint recollection of what that felt like.

Adding to the personal sense of malaise is the fact that two weeks ago I had to move out of my office because my desk had a new job in another city. The bastard didn’t even wish me well, just packed itself up one night and headed for wherever to be with its new fling. I hope they’re happy together – I really do. Then again, some part of me can’t help but be resentful. Regardless of my emotional state, I’m sitting at the desk of a former coworker, using a laptop, and sitting on a scavenged third-rate chair that’s destined to be a fatality of this move.

About the time I got ousted from my office, the workmen showed up. They’re agents of decay, tasked with disassembling anything of and to restoring the rented space the office occupied to the state it was in when we moved in. What can be salvaged will be shipped off to other facilities across the country, what isn’t deemed sufficiently valuable will be scrapped. When we’re gone I’m sure there’ll be a shadow of what used to be here – but only a shadow, a soulless shade.

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