09:40:51 pm on
Wednesday 03 Jun 2020

My New Office
AJ Robinson

Recently, I moved into a new office. No, my company didn’t give me a promotion and move me from the open area of the general drafting to an actual office, with a desk and a door. No, my new office is sort of my old office.


How many of us now work from our bedrooms?

I’m working from the third bedroom of my new townhome. Yeah, I was sent home under the new Florida statewide Shelter in Place Order. Many people think it’s long overdue, considering the pandemic.

After all, Florida is a major tourist destination. It’s not merely places like Miami Beach and the Greater Orlando Area. No, Spring Break is very important too, it’s a source of major revenue.

Some people think that’s one of the reasons the Florida governor delayed in so long before issuing the order. After all, business is business. Pandemic or not, business comes first in America.

Anyway, the order finally came down last week: stay home. Now, I and my co-workers are confined to quarters. In many respects, we’re lucky.

Not only can we do much of our work on our home computers, we can also access our office computers via remote control. That is quite awesome, but this setup is not perfect.

We must engage via email, texts and phone calls, but at least we can work at our jobs. Given the state of the nation, that’s saying something. We’re determined to do it well.

This week, we have done well. Javier and I took care of the areas for a bunch of model homes for two developments. Taylor got to work on an Excel matrix to help with some product fits. We made changes needed on a set of construction plans.

What all that gobble-de-gook means is one important thing: we have work to do. That makes me happy. Trying to do the work presents some challenges.


Computer screens and the aging worker.

The biggest challenge is viewing the screen of my office computer on my home computer is a little like watching a football game on television instead of in the stadium. Images are reduced. To paraphrase Don Henley, of the Eagles, computer screens reduce the world to twenty-two inches.

Even with my glasses, it isn’t easy to see some images. When it comes to reading the text, even my best glasses are not enough. I keep my magnifying glass handy.

Yet, I do not complain. I see the daily reports. Millions of people are out of work; thousands more are ill, with hundreds passing away each day.

Stacked against all that, me having a little trouble seeing pixels on the computer screen doesn’t amount to much of anything. Of course, the Great Orange continues to screw things up. I shudder to think of the hundreds, if not thousands, that will pass away, needlessly, because of his incompetence.

As for me, it’s an odd sensation to eat breakfast, climb the stairs and get to work. It’s even odder not to go anywhere. I make a point of getting up and away from my computer at least a couple times a day and walking around the neighbourhood.

A walk is important for my physical and mental well-being. It also pays to get away from my family, occasionally. Cabin fever can lead to short tempers.

A joke I’ve seen around the internet is that the Donner Party didn’t get hungry. They couldn’t stand each other any longer. Their cannibalism began with the least likeable.

As the news continues to be negative, we need to act to boost our spirits. I focus on writing. It’s yet another means of keeping my mind off the near-continuous bad news I hear day after day.


What the future holds.

It’s a lucky woman or man that can do what he loves, do his or her work and be with the loved ones every day. That’s especially true at this time. I wonder what the future holds for all of us.

Combining the gimlet-eye, of Philip Roth, with the precisive mind of Lionel Trilling, AJ Robinson writes about what goes bump in the mind, of 21st century adults. Raised in Boston, with summers on Martha's Vineyard, AJ now lives in Florida. Working, again, as an engineeer, after years out of the field due to 2009 recession and slow recovery, Robinson finds time to write. His liberal, note the small "l," sensibilities often lead to bouts of righteous indignation, well focused and true. His teen vampire adventure novel, "Vampire Vendetta," will publish in 2020. Robinson continues to write books, screenplays and teleplays and keeps hoping for that big break.

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