Thursday, January 26, 2012

23 Years, 4 Months, 21 Days

On September 6, 1988, I walked into an office building on North 12th Street in Reading, Pennsylvania to start my post-college career. Through all the intervening time (though divestitures, mergers, and corporate re-branding changed the name on the top left corner of my paycheck,) I worked for the same company.

At approximately 4 PM today, in a home office in the Cross Timbers east of Norman, Oklahoma, I will log off, power down a laptop, and stuff it in a box to be shipped back to it's rightful owner. After 23 years, 4 months, and 21 days, it will be over. There is no gold watch waiting at the end of the day, if such a thing is even done anymore. No conference room send-off with a hastily purchased sheet cake and soon-to-be-unkept promises to stay in touch. Just me, the laptop, and uncertainty. To be honest, I prefer it that way. When life forced me to divorce ego from pride, I put away a need for grand gestures.

I finished Josh Wilker's Cardboard Gods this morning. It's a funny thing. How different our paths through life have been, Josh and me. And yet, I find myself identifying so strongly with him. Both standing on a precipice, looking at the future, wondering where that next step will lead.

My box of Obak arrived yesterday. Opening it brought me no respite. I have carefully placed the cards back into the packs, the packs back into the box, and set it aside for another day. I'm doing the same with this blog. It may only be a few days or it may be longer. I don't know. I'll be back when I am not such a fucking downer.