« Mind the Dust | She's Pissing Me Off »

And I’d like to change my life, and you know I would

January 26, 2006 | Category: In My Life

I was on the phone this morning with about a dozen different engineers. A server that was supposed to have a 75gig drive only had a 32gig drive and you wouldn't think that was a big deal - but when you only have a guy for one day to load the software and the software needs a 75gig drive, well... it becomes a big deal.

At one point, I hijacked someone else's conference call. My hat in hand, begging for a 75gig drive.

After I made my desperate plea there was a pause. Then I heard a vaguely familiar voice say.... "If it isn't Professor Peabody and her Wayback machine!"

And I had to laugh.

It was a guy I had worked with in 1998, when I was a newbie at Mega and still wearing thrift store (I mean Vintage! Bohemian!) clothes and learning what the heck "Deliverable" and "Return on Investment" meant.

It was a guy who'd screwed me over.

Who had stubbornly refused to meet the deadlines I'd set because back then, I wasn't senior enough for him to notice. And he was new to Mega, too. Hired away from a competitor and eager to show how important he was.

And today we ended up getting on our phones and chatting like it was .... well, a whole new world. After all, we knew each other when.

We saw each other at the begining of our careers with Mega. We had both attended the same long dinners at Morton's, crowded into one of the private dining rooms with 20 others. The rounds and rounds of drinks at the local pub after pulling 20 hour days. The "All Hands" conferences at the local hotel ballroom - a division president barking inspirational words into a corded microphone as he paced the parquet floor.

We both worked our way up, in a corporation famous for rarely promoting. From Lead to Senior Lead. To Partner. To Management. To Senior Management. Hovering in front of the executive washroom, scrambling to take on more responsiblity.

We left behind the core skills that got us in the door for PowerPoint presentations and budget challenges.

And now we're old-tiimers. You know, from way back when.

He refuted me when I told him I was going, disbelief thick in his voice. It took me a few minutes to convince him.

It's a strange thing, inside Mega we are always fighting our own co-workers for the fewer and fewer spots up the food chain. Like a athletes that travel together to competitions.

After the race is run, we all file back onto the same bus. We compliment and commiserate. High-5's as we shimmy down the narrow aisle to an empty seat. Internally plotting to beat each other next time.

"You're coming back," he announced to me smugly. "You're at the top of your game. You won't walk away from that."

And I told him that no one knew the future. If they did, Lotto would go out of business.

And he sighed, and changed the subject. Started reminiscing, and we lost a good half hour that way.

We used to battle and now that is what links us. We were witnesses to a slice of each other's lives, which is a powerful bond.

And I truly believe that when he said he was sorry to see me go... he meant it.

I know I did.

(And we got that 75gig drive from him. But don't ask how. Or from where. Or anything. In fact, we never had this conversation.)

(oh, and p.p.s. - the comments are working again. Wouldn't you like to be my neighbor? Or, at least tell me that the gang's all together again and no hard feelings for me blowing up the website? I'm blatantly begging here...)

Share: Delicious Delicious! | Stumble It! | Slashdot  Slashdot It!
Tagged: Corporate, Mommy, Life
TrackBack (0)


Glad to see you back!

Posted by: jm on January 27, 2006 09:06 AM

Bev, good thing I didn't know that yesterday - I would have shown up with a duffle bag!! :)

Posted by: Elizabeth on January 27, 2006 08:56 AM

It gets worse in terms of synchronicity.

Again, I'm telling the absolute truth when I say that in my very cubicle are TWO 72Gb hard drives for our data server. If only I'd known you needed one! Well, they're for an HP Proliant 380, so they might not have done you any good...

(Got to install those before I go.)

Posted by: bev on January 27, 2006 08:51 AM

I have just found your site around Christmas. I love, your style of writing. Checked out your site 2x a day to see if it was up and running!
It hurts my heart though, that you are going through so much right now.
Big hugs and wishes that things start to look up for you real soon.

Posted by: ashleigh on January 27, 2006 08:44 AM

Bev SO wins the "Obscure reference to a Chicago tune" award - this was the song that I would listent to over and over when I went back on the road after Bear was born. It still makes me tear up...

Chicago › Wishing You Were Here
Sleepless hours and dreamless nights and far aways
Ooo ooo ooo, wishing you were here
Heaven knows and lord it shows when I’m away
Ooo ooo ooo, wishing you were here

Same old show in a different town on another time
Ooo ooo ooo, wishing you were here
Even though you’re far away, you’re on my mind
Ooo ooo ooo, wishing you were here

And I’d like to change my life, and you know I would
Just to be with you tonight, baby, if I could
But I’ve got my job to do, and I do it well,
So I guess that’s how it is.
Ooo ooo ooo, wishing you were here

On the road it’s a heavy load, but I’ll get by
Ooo ooo ooo, wishing you were here
Pay the price, make a sacrifice, and still I’ll try
Ooo ooo ooo, wishing you were here

Posted by: Elizabeth on January 27, 2006 08:43 AM

I'm a frequent reader and infrequent commenter who is very glad you're back. I'm quitting my IT job, too. This is the end of week 7 for me. My countdown is secret - I can't give more than 2 weeks or they'll haul me out. I'm gonna be an art teacher...who knew?

The real reason I'm commenting? I kid you not. I am absolutely telling the truth. I'm honest when I say that I was listening to THAT VERY CHICAGO SONG as I got out of my car at work this morning. I've been in a very 70s-Chicago mood of late and iTunes is my friend.

"...but I've got my job to do and I do it well."

Posted by: bev on January 27, 2006 08:21 AM

No time for long comment. Still love you!

Posted by: RP on January 27, 2006 08:15 AM

Yay! You're back. :) I actually really like the new design (no goose poop here.)

I've never managed to stay at one company long enough to have wayback machine conversations, when the bureaucratic silliness (you know, BS) gets too deep, I always seem to find myself changing jobs, so good for you for sticking and moving up and then having the courage to make a dramatic change like you are now.

Posted by: beth on January 27, 2006 06:32 AM

Yeah..old school...1998...It's amazing what can change in less than 10 years, eh?

Posted by: Grace on January 26, 2006 11:42 PM

You're even showing up on Newsgator again!
BTW the site doesn't resemble goose poop at all.

Posted by: cursingmama on January 26, 2006 10:10 PM

I think your brave to change your life in midstream.
And your doing awesome. Your right, we can't see the future, but if we don't like the present, it's time to change that. Good for you. I want to be your neighbor.

Posted by: Melissa on January 26, 2006 09:50 PM

I don't know if the gang is all here or not, but this lurker is :)

Posted by: k on January 26, 2006 09:24 PM

Well, this gang's here anyway and I'm sure I'm far from the only one anxiously waiting for you to resolve your technical issues. :)

Glad you're back. Now I can do some catch-up reading. Where's that popcorn again?

Posted by: Lucinda on January 26, 2006 09:12 PM