The days, the nights, just time passage captured by the tare of the daily calendar. That familiar crrrrreeeeeep triggered synapses to fire in John’s head resetting him for a new day.
His cubicle was smaller than a prison cell. Its grey fabric walls and black accented desk was void of life. A gift of office bamboo that was supposed to be good luck, turned brown. A shelf dusted once a week by the nighttime cleaning crew held one picture from 1938 of John’s grandmother and her siblings.
The grey desktop had two appearances. One was chaos, papers that should have been filed littered about, with pens and paperclips filling in gaps of desktop. A legal pad held phone numbers of missed calls, but mostly doodles. A spaceship with its tractor beam locked on to a car going off a cliff.
One day a week the desk was wiped clean. Papers have the option of filed or tossed in a recycle bin. Pens and paperclips forced in their respective receptacles. It must be twenty minutes to five on a Friday.
A call came in from the front desk receptionist. Her voice was nonchalant with a hint of deal with this underlying. John had a visitor. He was somewhat relieved because there was nothing left for him to clean at his desk and he had made the decision to stop working sometime before three.