It was 1980. A new decade. A new hope. Hopefully a new job. I was 20 years old and a Junior in college when the planets cosmically aligned thus setting me on a strange and bizarre sojourn as a newly hired employee at a little red pole barn in Columbiana. This sojourn is titled, “My Office Has A Window” even though in reality, there were no windows at all.
Chapter Twenty Five – When The Bullet Hits The Bone
Help I’m steppin’ into the Twilight Zone
Place is a madhouse
Feels like being cloned
My beacons been moved
Under moon and star
Where am I to go Now that I’ve gone too far
As ordered, I made the trek to the new Youngstown, Ohio warehouse the next day. Everyone had already settled in to the new place, but there I was, a veteran and everything looked strange to me. I looked at all the office space, the big garages, and had a funny feeling that I was here before. It slowly dawned on me that my father had worked at this exact place a long, long time ago. Just a different name, a different company, a different time, a different generation.
Walking through the office I said hello to the folks I knew and found plenty of new people saying hello to me. Towards the back of the offices, I saw the executive staff including the new guy, Mr. Copasetic and waved and yelled out “Howdy” to them all. For just a moment, the executives (The brain trust) all stopped in their tracks, looked up from their work, and calmly smiled and said hello back.
I had arrived. Mr. Copasetic told me how much he liked the new items I had shrink wrapped for him in Columbiana. (He had them tacked on his office wall) Yatta yatta yatta. I really wasn’t paying a lot of attention. I wanted to see the huge warehouse and multi door dock. I wanted to see the new high tech modern operation of which I would now call home.
I was excited. I really was. I was thinking, no more hand loading orders, hoisting countless boxes from the ground into the truck. No more circle of fear. We could load a truck in 10 minutes with the forklifts and floor jacks instead of it taking two hours. We could do 50 times the amount of business with little or no effort. I could have all the shipping papers and equipment stacked neatly and efficiently instead of on a folding card table that also doubled as the lunch table. And since we could produce so much more work, it meant less overtime. Just then, a little man in a white suit tapped me on the leg and exclaimed, “Where the hell do you think you are? Fantasy Island? Next fantasy, next fantasy!” Actually, it was Mac. He said he would give me the tour of the plant and show me where I would be working. Somehow this all seemed way to familiar to me. I was hoping he didn’t hand me any keys.
On the back wall of the dock, I saw my new home, the shipping office. I use the term “Office” loosely here. I should say shipping area. The office was a 15 foot by 15 foot area enclosed by chicken wire held down by several old truck tires and a few poles. It was a dusty dirty mess with old paper and scraps all over the floor. Incredibly, it was a huge improvement over Columbiana. Some major cleaning, a gallon of Ajax, pine sol, and a strong pair of wire cutters, and I would be in business. Still no office windows, but I was used to that.
Little did I know that the Youngstown warehouse was in a fifth dimension beyond that which is known to man. A middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition. That lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge.
The sign post up ahead. The next stop…..
But that’s another story, another legend, another time.
There was just one more thing left for me to do.
LURKING, I NEED SOME WINDEX ON THE GRASSY KNOLL