Friday, October 02, 2009

So there's lots to talk about and catch up on. My son's birthday, playing soccer with my new workplace, coaching my daughter's team, another exciting trip by Rod Ecstacy and Skip McBoner, the return of football, and much much more. So after much consideration I have decided to begin with events and lessons learned in the most valuable of places. The workplace bathroom.

As most of the free world probably knows I've been at my new employer now for for about four months. The first three and a half were really busy with lots of hiring and conducting training classes. The few weeks....not so much. We are officially into the slow time until Open Enrollment begins and then the beginning of next year. So....I've got some time to do some writing and appear busy at work to people passing by the office.

A new workplace means once again learning the lay of the land. Learning the movers, shakers, power brokers, politicians, and who all the people are that you can go to when you need to get stuff done but don't want everyone else to know that you have no idea howto do it. It also means learning which bathrooms are safe havens for when you need a few minutes of peace or are having the most uncomfortable and embarrassing of moments (quick note-this is almost never the bathroom closest to your office). The good thing about HR is that since you have contact with all departments, it's never that much of a surprise to see someone away from their desk. It is assumed that you are meeting with a manager from another department about some issue that you can't talk about.

The lower floor bathrooms are no good. For one, we have several visually impaired individuals who work on the first floor. This has led to uncomfortable exchanges, like when a blind person walks into the back of you while you are at the urinal. Not to mention, that as much as men are not the neatest in the bathroom I have come to learn that blind men are even messier. In addition the first floor bathrooms are too well traficked.

The second floor bathrooms are much less frequented and have better connectivity for my phone. Yes I toilet text. And yes I toilet surf on my Blackberry. Don't act like you don't. I don't need your judgement and false sainthood. The only problem has been the motion sensor automatic flush. They are hypersensitive and I have had instances where NUMEROUS flushes have taken place during one sitting. I've tried sitting still, but sometimes a song comes on the MUZAK and I have to dance. I finally discovered the technique of masking my presence to the sensor by placing a length of fresh toilet paper over the sensor before I sit down. Now I'm like the Predator. Undetectable.