05 November 2013

"Go see if the temp is dead."

Earlier today at work there was a minor kerfuffle in the women's restroom. The restrooms have shower rooms attached and one of my co-workers grew panicky after the showers been running for a couple of hours. She was convinced someone had died in there but refused to check for fear someone really was dead. Turns out no one was dead. It was just someone who felt compelled to leave all the showers running.

This reminded me of another work incident involving the restroom. Several years ago, while working in the greatest city in America, Chicago, I was in an office whose facilities were, well, less than desirable. The bathrooms were hideous. I've been in Port Authority cans that were more appealing than what we faced each and every work day. And you'd be disturbed, even repulsed, by what went on in there in addition to the normal things...like washing lettuce for salads, haircuts, and warming slow cookers. And sleeping off benders. Wait...what?

I was at my desk one afternoon when one of my colleagues burst into to my luxurious and semi-private cube and tersely intoned, "Dude, go see if the temp is dead!" He told me he'd just left the men's room and he was insistent that our mail room temp who was in the bathroom was dead. I was the only other male manager and he was adamant that I go see if said temp was dead. Hesitantly I made my way to a place that could normally be described as a crime scene to see if it now actually was one.

I walked in and could hear the muffled sounds of rap music coming from the handicapped stall. I'd been told that's where the temp could be found. The door to the stall was slightly ajar and with more than a little trepidation, I pushed it open. What greeted me haunts me even today. There he was - our temp, sitting on the 'throne,' pants around his ankles, splayed out for the world to see, with the sounds of gangsta' rap oozing from his earbuds. He was out cold. The very soft snoring was proof enough for me that he wasn't dead. With more than a little relief, I left Sleeping Beauty on his perch and backed out of his 'sanctuary.'

I'm not sure when he came to but he did. He repeated this napping activity a few days later and he was then invited to find work elsewhere. I'm not sure what became of him but I can only hope he found a better place to rest. I give him props for taking the word 'restroom' literally. Also, I've never been more disturbed in all my life. Thanks, temp.