Never be afraid to get dirty, but be sufficiently sure-footed to avoid the abyss of contamination.

Life in a Day

Not every morning starts with being questioned by an FBI agent, but this one did. Let me call him Fox Mulder even though the questions had nothing to do with the X Files. In fact, the questions seemed fairly boilerplate, and I answered them, describing the object of his questions as friendly, smart, funny, and loyal. It turned out Mulder just wanted to talk, and I figured he was probably one of The Other Guys.

After the interview, it was time for work. I had planned to work closer to home, but an insect had shown up during the previous one, and I had bug-duty this week. I went to work confident that the pesky insect would soon be crushed, and I could get back to my project. This seemed to be the case in the morning, but when I went back to see where the insect had come from in the afternoon, I noticed something: infestation! By the afternoon, everyone had rashes. I found some calamine lotion that we could use but spent the rest of the day trying to open the bottle. When they say child-proof, they’re not kidding!

Another swarm, possibly relatives of the first, started cropping up by around 6 in the evening. I got in touch with another rash-laden insect-hunter, and we were able to establish a connection between the two swarms. I told him I still couldn’t open the bottle with the calamine lotion, and he told me to just go home. Someone with pliers would come in the morning, anyway. We then got some dinner, and by the time I returned to my desk, it was 8:30.

I composed an e-mail to explain the infestation and calamine situations, and I was about to send it off when someone walked up to my desk. It was one of the interns, who was wondering if I had a few minutes. She had a question, I answered it, and then went above and beyond what she wanted, which became evident when she tried extricating herself from the conversation. I let her go and sent off the e-mail.

On the drive home, I noticed the gas tank was near empty. I thought I had found a gas station, so I took an exit and realized I had taken a wrong turn. Would I run out of gas looking for a gas station? No, I would not. I filled up the tank and drove the rest of the way home.


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