TFW, office edition
RE: RE: RE:
- That feeling when you get the offer letter and it’s what you wanted, and you’re proud of what you negotiated for yourself because you’re young and it’s your first real job, and you call your parents and they’re super happy for you but you can tell that they’re also secretly relieved because this means you’ll probably put off applying to grad school for English Lit.
- That feeling when you show up to the office on the first day and are met in the lobby by HR and sent to new hire orientation, and spend the day in meetings learning about company history and culture and benefits and how the internal network works and you’re nervous and excited and worried they will figure out that you have no idea what you’re doing but still you’re excited as all hell, plus they handed you a brand new laptop.
- That feeling when you’ve finally found your work crew, even if (especially if) that work crew is not part of your immediate team, and that work crew shares an an email thread that goes on for months, piling on, with one message after another — lunch plans, jokes at the expense of your boss, shared URLs, pics, after work plans, weekend plans, even more lunch plans, more jokes at the expense of your boss — until it’s hundreds and hundreds of messages long, and you think to yourself “I should save this thread somewhere because this is good.”
- That feeling when you’re running late on a Friday morning, having had maybe a few too many the night before with your work crew, and it took you longer than usual to find parking and the elevator’s late and you’re hustling to your desk because you’re worried the CEO is going to look at you askance and wonder where the hell you’ve been and you get there and she’s not in yet.
- That feeling when you get promoted, and you don’t really want to brag to your crew, but you’re happy for yourself, and your boss sends around an email congratulating you on your well deserved new role, but the email sounds forced and maybe a little form-letterish and you tell yourself you’re imagining things because hey, promotion and a 10% bump.
- That feeling when the company hits some big milestone that you didn’t really contribute to in any meaningful way, but you feel like you’re a part of it anyway, and an all hands meeting is called at 10am for that afternoon at 2pm and in the meantime no one can get anything done and your work crew email thread is blowing up with speculation and then at 2pm the CEO gets up and says congrats and she cuts the first slice of a big sheet cake and there’s champagne and you don’t say no when there’s an offer to fill your plastic cup and you raise your glass and feel proud when everyone toasts because it was a big milestone, after all.
- That feeling when one Thursday night you get a text from your boss saying “hey, you might not want to come in until about noon tomorrow” and you reply “why” and he doesn’t respond and so you take your time on Friday morning, only to find out that there’s a layoff happening, a “reduction in force” that reduces the company force by 10%, but reduces your work crew’s force by 20% (discovered through bouncing email messages) and then that night when the crew gets together for drinks all of a sudden everyone is very particular about how they use pronouns, because “we” no longer means what it used to mean.
- That feeling when you’ve been invited to the Monday morning management meeting in order to present your Big New Idea, so you get to hear the sales manager present their pipeline report and you know without even having ever been a sales manager that this guy’s not telling the whole story, because though there are rows on his spreadsheet with expected deal values, you can’t trust those rows, because those rows aren’t ledger items, they’re just rows in a spreadsheet projected up on to the screen, and then you know everyone else in the room has figured this out as well, and that he is going to miss Q4, which means “we” are going to miss Q4 (those pesky pronouns again), and that means that at least a couple more bouncing email addresses on your crew’s email thread.
- That feeling when you finally do archive your crew’s thread, knowing somehow that “it’s time,” saving it to a file, zipping up that file, encrypting that file and emailing it to yourself, knowing that you’re violating some kind of company policy that you learned about at new hire orientation, and also knowing that you’ll most likely never decrypt, unzip and open that file, never re-read the messages and their reverse chronological history of RE: RE: RE: because if you did you’d wonder who you (second person plural; damn pronouns) were and what you were thinking.
- That feeling when you get your next offer letter.