how to handle CDs
Tuesday, January 11 2000
Jason and Dave, the two new "channel developer" guys who sit in the cubicles on either side of me, are about as cool as you could ever expect co-workers to be, especially in this particular company. They're funny, sarcastic, full of energy, and, at least in the case Dave, about as wacky as anyone this side of Wacky Jen. It's as though he's always had three shots of espresso too many.
Both of them love their jobs and put in long hours, at least 30% more than me. Since they're never at their homes, I asked them today about the contents of their refrigerators, and both of them reported "a tub of butter, and that's about it." Neither has gone shopping since being hired by our company.
They're somewhat behind me in their knowledge of development techniques for our particular environment, but they're super-smart and learning fast, and much of what they learn they're learning from me. We all get a kick out of the fact that if you can succeed in writing a SQL stored procedure with proper syntax it's almost certain to work correctly. What other programming language gives you that?
I came home to find all my boxes from Virginia had been delivered. In total, the shipment came to three bicycle boxes in addition to the two boxes of random things I'd bought. Now I have all the music I've been craving. But there's a hitch.
The truth is, Kim is murder on CDs. It takes her very little time to render a CD utterly worthless. For example, the Cyclefly CD she bought back in the Spring is already skipping on its second track. If you examine its surface, you find it's an ice rink of scratches. Kim is touchy about my criticism of her CD-handling technique, but as far as I can tell it hasn't had any effect on her behaviour. She's as rough with CDs as she was the day I met her. Though she's an extremely tidy person, there's something very inelegant about the way she handles small precious objects. Without a moment's hesitation, she touches art and computer screens, and she'll toss a CD face-side-down onto any available surface when she's ready to listen to something else. It's very different from my behaviour and rather hard for me to watch. I think her lack of respect for material objects probably has a basis in her financially-untroubled childhood. She'll probably lecture me on what I've written here, but I really don't give a fuck.
Tonight she challenged me to show her what my CDs looked like, so I showed her. They were flecked with a little dust, but utterly scratchless. She couldn't believe it when she saw the care I used to put my CDs in their cases. "You actually worry about them scuffing the side of the case?" she asked. "Of course I do," I replied, "you have to, or else your CDs end up like all of yours."
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