Strindberg Project

The Same Piece of Carpet

By Wilhelm Wintertidh


The Same Piece of Carpet
_______


    It all started the day Sammi died. We were sitting in our Ergoflex2000 office chairs, on the ninth floor of a glass building, basting in our own sweat. The ventilation was, as it always was this time of year, not working. This struck us as somewhat ironic as it was the only time of year that we actually needed it. Some days, when the heat was at its worst, the thought flew through our minds that we had infact been conned by the air conditioning company. That the many vents placed around our office were no more real than an oasis mirage in the desert. Still however, deep in our souls, the hope of the legendary repairman, this messiah of fresh air, lingered on. One day he would come. And we would be able to breath again.
    We had just finished our lunch. Boring left overs from boring dinners, heated in microwave ovens so weak that even after ten minutes on the highest setting, the chicken wok from last night would still be cold in the middle. Not so cold that you would bother another ten minutes in the oven, but just cold enough for the last driplets of hope, that maybe a decent lunch could still save this day from being a complete waste, would fall down into the communal sink of despair and disappear into the void. The cutlery, however, was of course so hot from the rays of sunshine that shone in through the windows, that they burned your fingers when you touched them.
     In our cubicles we were hard at work updating our statuses on various online communites. Dating sites for those who still had hope in their hearts, and facebook for the rest of us. The smattering of keys filled the air in a way that it never did during actual work hours, and almost drowned out the sudden choir of tiny bells signaling that we had all received an e-mail. Little by little, as people got around to reading the message, the office fell silent.
    Soon, only the sporadic hitting of keys could be heard from the people who, and it was always the same ones, didn't read their incoming mail. Their fingers still unaware of the news that awaited them, danced in a fever over the greasy keyboards and kept sending magic spells and insults to korean teenagers until their cubicle neighbors on the other side of the portable walls stood up and with professional frustration whispered as softly as they could "Hey man, check your inbox."
    The message was short, and its contents far from the usual quarterly finance reports or angry notes in capitalized Comic Sans that pleaded for people to start flushing the toilet after they had done their business. It stated, as matter-of-factly as possible, that Sammi.
    Had.
    Died.
There was little detail, as was probably fitting, but it told us there had been a motorcycle accident the previous day and if we needed someone to talk to, dear friends as we probably were, there would be a psychologist on call for anyone who needed it. I too, like my co-workers, sat silent as a torrent of thoughts rushed through my head. The most prominent one, if I remember correctly, was:
    "Who the hell is Sammi?"
Translate This Text To:

0 1 0 0 0
Read 62199 Times - Genre: Bagatelle
Published: September 11, 2010, 7:44 am