Saturday, April 02, 2005

Lightness of Unbelonging

I can almost always tell if my association with a place or person will be a long. Having consulted for over ten years now, my typical stint at an organization is roughly between two to four fiscal quarters. I try hard to contribute from minute zero knowing that I will not have oodles of time to make an impact. Most often my efforts to that end have ranged from Nada to Middling.

Organizational change I have realized is organic, it takes dog years to happen not a couple of quarters. Over zealous contract resources like myself are tolerated with disdain bordering on contempt by the long timers typically accompanied by entitled attitudes. So, when I being to feel the sense of floatation in imaginary space that generally precedes the end of a stint, I resort to questionable means to foster longevity.

For instance, I will pretty up the bare cubicle walls, bring a coffee mug to work when God knows I am no coffee drinker. I may even start to socialize by the cooler with the types that I didn't even make eye contact with before. Most telling is the increased organization of paper on my desk and folders on my desk top. I did not do this say five years ago but I guess age has caught up with me. I do not enjoy uprooting and re-planting constantly. Offline though, my resume will go through re-incarnations based on the kind of gig I want to pick up next.

I remember this incident that took place on the way back home from work a few months ago . They were playing a Vivaldi bassoon concerto on 101.1 FM, the day was wet and grey, traffic was crawling. I had the time to absorb the landscape that I otherwise whiz past too fast to notice. It's amazing how different detail looks from a blur. When my eye fell on the marker that said "Dallas City Limit" I was filled with overwhelming, unaccountable nostalgia like I was seeing this sign after many years. It was like I has long since left Dallas and was coming back to visit. A feeling of light un-belongingness best describes it. Once back on TX-114 that feeling had passed. It was back to being an ordinary day heading back home.

I would have most likely forgotten about thoughts that crossed my mind in those few minutes unless it turned prophetic. I have since relocated and it was fairly sudden as moves typically have been with me. Even spring cleaning desk and desktop proved quite unnecessary in the final analysis.

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