Today’s the second day back post-vacation and it already feels like there never was a vacation. How is that possible?

I slept a little late today and after all of the morning errands and the morning routine I feel like I’m going straight from the shower to work. I hate that. It’s still better than driving to the office, but I always like a little brain-free downtime before I punch in. Not today.

That’s okay. I’m planning on going to the office on Thursday this week, again. I’ll have plenty of brain-free downtime then. Ugh. The company is trying to incentivize the return to the office. Come in more often and we’ll give you a perk. They haven’t mentioned anything that is enough to make me feel like commuting every day is worth it yet, but they are trying.

Okay. Time to punch in. I have a couple of meetings this morning and one in the afternoon. The contractor will be here again during that one so I hopefully will remember to stay muted. Zoom meetings, ya know?

Good day.

The Deer Show

I’m trying my hand at working in the office on a Monday. It’s still early, but as of right now I nearly have the building to myself. There are two people in view in front of me but they are as far away as you can get and still be in my line of site. There’s no one in site behind me. The traffic was non-existent too. I zipped in without any problem.

Now having written all of that, it just dawned on me that today is a state holiday. It’s actually the first time in my 17+ years with the company that we don’t have today off. So… maybe my Monday experience is somewhat less than typical. Oh well.

That’s not what I want to write about this time though. I want to write about Deer. Again.

This morning, as I was doing my normal morning routine, I happened to look out the window and see a single deer. She (I assume it’s a she, but I think the males would have all shed their antlers by now so who knows) was in the yard, not the woods, and perfectly framed in the window. She was just hanging out, but then she looked sort of startled. She was looking off into the woods on the left side of the house. She dipped her head and stomped her front hooves. Then she took a single step backwards and did it again. Then another step backward and repeat.

Clearly she was confronting something. I couldn’t see anything in the woods but the angle was really bad so there could have been an AT-AT* out there and I would have missed it. She was clearly worked up and nervous about something. After a few minutes she turned to face the woods and did another startled little jump. There was nothing back there though.

After a few more minutes something did come out of the woods from where she was originally looking. It was 5-6 more deer. They hung out with her for a few minutes and then something spooked them all and they ran off to the right. Two more deer came across from the left at full speed, which is awesome, and then a couple of stragglers wandered in after that. They were in the woods though, so they were taking their sweet time.

And that, my readers and only friends** is the story of the scared deer.

May your Monday be less scary.

*Star Wars reference. AKA Imperial Walkers. Use your harpoons and tow cables and go for the legs.

**Clockwork Orange reference, my droogies.


I knew it was supposed to be warm and raining today. Did we know it was supposed to be stormy? It’s like a hurricane out there. Our Poland Spring delivery is today so I put out our empty bottles. I have to believe that once the wind gets hold of them they are going to end up in Maine*. I’m glad I drove to work yesterday and not today. It’s nuts out there.

When I came home from work yesterday there was a new wireless Apple keyboard on my desk. Santa came early! The one I was using was old and well loved and whatever coating they put on the keys was long gone. This one actually feels knew under my fingers. Sweet. It also has a finger print scanner and that’s pretty cool too. Welcome to the 2020’s babie!

I’m hoping for a quiet day at work today. I doubt I’ll get it. One of our buildings has a power outage already. I think some of our Inhouse environments live in that building. It might be weird for a while. Hold on to your butts.

Happy Friday.

*I live in Massachusetts and the New Hampshire border is in the woods behind my house. I wrote Maine as an exaggeration. Had I said New Hampshire it would have been because it is a literal possibility.

Here in One Piece

Another day in the office for me. Traffic was okay. It took about an hour to get here. I shouldn’t complain. things tied up pretty bad on route 3, and then again for a little while on route 128. Neither jam was as bad as pre-Covid, but still… It’s just frustrating to go through it after working from home for two years and not worrying about traffic at all.

I took a rapid Covid test before I left. I had thoughts of doing that every time I come into the office and then last week when I came in for the first time I completely forgot to do it. We’re supposed to do a little self assessment before we leave the house. Any symptoms? Nope, come on in. My thought was to add a home test to that process. Not sure if I will keep doing that, but I’m negative today so life is good.

Jen told me that she saw a news report of a shooting in my general neighborhood. That’s a happy story to wake up to. I don’t know the details. I’ll have to see if I can learn anything. Just a little icing on the Thursday cake, right?

Happy work day, everyone.

Office Tomorrow

I’m going into the office tomorrow. My second time since they reopened the building. I need to make a lunch, I need to wear a collared shirt. I need to not forget my freakin wireless headphones again.

I’m nervous about Covid, of course, but I guess I need to just put some faith in the two vaccine shots and the booster shot and just suck it up and deal with it.

Patches agrees.

Cheap Soda

My company has soda machines all over the place. The cans of soda are nearly free for staff. We have to pay the $0.05 state deposit and that’s it. Picture it; me, a lifelong dedicated fanatical soda drinker working in a building where cans of soda cost a nickel. Basically heaven.

Except that I can’t drink soda anymore. Shit.

I am in a new building now. Did I mention that? Probably. We were in Waltham, which was closer to home for me than any other company building, but they sold the Waltham building during the pandemic. We were moved to Westwood, which is further away than Waltham but was the next closest building to home. When we had our brief return to office experiment over the summer we had to setup our new desks and get used to the new place. Now it’s just where we go. No big whoop, right?

There was a point in time during our Waltham stay where I was trying to eliminate caffeine in the afternoon. I started bringing a water bottle and filling it up from the water cooler in the kitchenette. It tasted really bad. If I added a ton of ice it would get cold enough that the bad taste was sort of masked, but even if I put my go-to grape flavoring stuff in it, the taste was still crappy.

Now I am under doctor’s orders to no longer drink soda (Robert wipes away a single tear) so I’m back to the water bottle. There’s a little cooler in the kitchenette here too. I just filled up… nervous that this water would be bad too…

It isn’t. It sure ain’t the Poland Springs wonder that is our cooler at home, but it’s okay. I can live with it.

That sound you heard all over the surface of the Earth was my emphatic sigh of relief.

Half Way There

My lunch break is coming to an end. I am halfway through the work day. Halfway through my first day back in the office.

I had planned to bring my AirPods Max with me. I forgot to pack them. I’ve been using air buds like some kind of caveman. I also forgot that they centralized the trash barrels. Instead of having a barrel at every desk they have one in the middle of the room. My lunch trash is just sitting on my desk. I’ll chuck it out the next time I get up, but when will that be?

It’s sunny and 50 degrees out. Practically Spring, right? I made sure to open the blinds in the bedroom so the plant clipping can get good light today. I’m hoping there will be a new leaf opening up when I get home. Fingers crossed.

There are more people here now than there were the last time I posted. Still no one close enough to make me nervous, but still. I’m Covid safe, but not as Covid safe as I’d be if I were working from home. Sigh in frustration.

I got a phone call from the weight loss clinic. They confirmed my appointment for Monday. Yet another teeny tiny hurdle crossed. Monday should be a huge hurdle crossed. I’m nervous, but I am okay with it for now. That’ll probably change once I see a doctor holding a knife above my guts. Crap.

Okay. Back to work.

Back to the Office Again

I’m in the office today. I’m not terribly happy about it but I’ll live. The commute was better than most days pre-Covid, but given that I’ve only made this drive a few times over the last two years it was infuriating. I drove about 200 yards before I hit traffic. It was just a school bus, but it was still traffic. The highways were slow and annoying. Again, not quite pre-pandemic, but definitely bad enough to imply that the pandemic is over… even though it’s not.

There is no one sitting at any desk near me. I think the closest person is probably 30 yards away. Much more than six feet. I am plenty Covid/Omicron safe at my desk, but I will still need to go to the bathroom and the kitchen and such. I feel good about my elevator skills. I expertly avoided having anyone in the car with me as I went up to the third floor. My people avoidance skills are still very sharp in that respect.

My desk is still here. It’s nice and clean and all. My keyboard is shit compared to the one I use at home. My monitor is double shit compared to the one I use at home too. Oh well. It’s just going to average out to one day each week. I can survive that. Sure, I would prefer not to be here, after nearly two years of only working at home.

Funny, remember back in March of 2020 when all of my posts were how working at home was abnormal and how I had to get used to everything being different? Deja-Vu, right?

My Favorite Winter Weather Event

There isn’t much I like about winter weather, but last night we got a little taste of one thing I do actually really enjoy.

I checked the forecast at one point yesterday because the weather was looking a little iffy and the kids had a long drive back to school. It said we were going to get 1-2 inches of snow, but it wouldn’t start until long after the kids were off the road. That was good, even though all snow is bad.

I woke up this morning expecting to see some fresh snow on the ground. When I looked out the window I saw that there wasn’t any fresh snow. The forecast was wrong. It didn’t snow, or if it did it didn’t stick.

Ah, now that’s a happy way to start a Monday!

Just six months to go until Spring, kids. Bring it on!

Lunch Break

I’m in the office today. I need to come in four times this month and today makes three. I have Thursday penciled in as the fourth visit.

Last time I came in everything on my desk had been moved around. I assume it was the cleaning staff. This time everything was where I left it. That’s nice to see. I told myself that I had to get a mouse pad before I came back and then completely forgot. The desk is arranged in such a way that there is a seam right where my mouse wants to be. It’s annoying. A mouse pad will fix it… if I can just not forget to grab a mouse pad. I ordered one on Amazon today. Read the first paragraph and then try to guess what day it’s scheduled for delivery… go on… guess. (Thursday)

I had no traffic this morning. Well, almost no traffic. There was a slow down at the junction between routes 93 and 128. Other than that, and one lady who was tailgating me at 70 miles per hour (asshole), the commute was easy as can be. Here’s hoping the same thing happens on the way home. Fingers crossed.

I didn’t forget my lunch today! Will wonders never cease? I did buy a bag of Peanut M&M’s from the vending machine though. Not my finest hour.

Last week my sister was unable to cover shifts at my parents house, so my brother and I just alternated days. There was a whole week where I slept at my house one day and at theirs the next. Today is the first day since that started that I won’t appear at the house in Tewksbury at all. I love my parents. I really do. I’m also very happy to have a day where I am not there. It’s such a stress relief. I’ll be there tomorrow night and all day Wednesday though, so let’s not get all kumbaya and shit.

This morning, before work, I looked at posts on this page made on July 26ths in past years. Last year there was a post talking about my progress in the 50/90 challenge. I had six songs finished and 17 songs in the pipeline. I am crushing that pace right now. Today I have 13 songs finished and 23 in the pipeline. Winning. I wonder how far along I was in 2014 (the other year I completed the full 50 songs)? Who cares.

This weekend is a Harry weekend. This is a good thing. That is a happy thing.

Okay, back to work.