The Office

It was freezing this morning  (Thursday)  in the office when I arrived at work. I had a light sports jacket on (over the shirt/pants and tie dress code) and a beanie ... yes, it snowed a little this morning but not anything like yesterday’s storm.

I removed the jacket and the skull cap and sat down at my desk. After fifteen minutes it was still freakin’ cold. I complained audibly and Angela offered a portable space heater. “You have a heater?” “Yeah it’s here under my desk.” “Oh sure!” I grabbed it. Plugged it....and walaah, I had heeeat! I started to bask in the warmth of the quiet stream from the low buzzing device.

Others - Kevin, Jim, Dwight - started to complain, albeit nonchalantly. My complaint on the other hand was incendiary - yeeepp, literally. It was seriously intended to elicit heat. But just as I was starting to feel cozy and comfy, it was time for staff meeting. The conference room was definitely going to be colder, I thought. So I again donned my sports jacket - fully zipped up - and beanie and went to the meeting ..oh, and a space heater to boot. I was the last one to arrive. Our whole IT staff was already seated around the huge desk in the center of the room. They were talking about some mechanical problems with the heating system in the building but none was clad in any fashion close to what I was wearing, especially with the tie, now being stashed inside by the jacket’s chin-high zipper. I plugged in the heater and the staff looked at me ruefully; some giggled at my casual non-conforming mufti.... Tomorrow, Friday (casual day), my early “Samoan snow watcher” Halloween costume would have been more appropriate. Anyway, I said to my fellow Americans, “Hey, where I come from this is considered sub-zero weather.”

As I sat there I wanted to lapse into a trance and wishing I was a bird flying south in the winter for warmer weather. Then I can shed all the layers of clothing and slip into a simple ‘ie lavalava and a cutoff shirt (uhmm...on a second thought, no cutoff) just the ‘ie lavalava ... like the olden days of ... strolling along the remote virgin beach on a sunny afternoon, with palm trees swaying in soft breezy obeisance ...my feet dipping flirtatiously in the waves as they ripple, lap, hiss and kiss the soft white sand. Meanwhile, sweet melodious strains of “Samoa Matalasi” fill the air, synched to the sways of the palms and the gentle ebb and flow of the warm soothing tide. Feelings of allurement, romance, enchantment and fantasy that befit a tropical paradise soon becharm and overwhelm me ....I sing along “Tu lata oe i le Ekueta, e mafanafana fo’i e le vevela .....” as my bare upper body absorbs the cool breeze which gradually lulls and transfixes me to a world that transcends the environs of sports coats, beanies, space heaters, staff meetings and The [freezing] Office....

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