Monday, December 18, 2006

the time has come

it's my last night in the dungeon.

while i still have three more days to work in the tower (yeah, there's a tower, a fortress and a dungeon, but there's no point in explaining all that now.) this is my last hurrah in cell block "D".

i took the job 2 years ago, shortly before i started this blog. it was a 2-year contract for which i will have served all but six days. and that's only because unlike last year, i'd like to spend Christmas surrounded by family, food and ripped-up wrapping paper, not cinderblock walls and whatever crusty substance growing inside the ceiling they so sweetly exposed by taking off all the panels:

working evenings, weekends and holidays is like being a ghost in your own life. you're present, but the world moves along without you. you communicate via email and telephone, even with ones who live in your house. people call you from parties while you're at work to tell you they miss you. and you can go six months without seeing friends in your own zipcode. there is no "dinner break," set "weekend" or "hours" (start times can vary by up to five hours and end times are at the mercy of the reports). i have rarely known my schedule much more than two weeks in advance, so making plans becomes a ridiculous guessing game you can only win by paying full-price for plane tickets. and i won't even start on the parking.

without unfurling the scroll on the rest of my complaints, i'll say that i've learned an immense amount during my time here. about the job, the industry, people and mostly myself. i can withstand some really tough situations and still come out standing, even if i'm walking with a limp. and i have met some phenomenal people here. it's unfortunate that in my discretion about describing work, i haven't been able to share too much about them. this job is not for the unintelligent, high-strung, lazy or faint-hearted. i've been very lucky to have been in their company.

we're all going out for a night of karaoke after my last shift because i'm intrigued by it and have never had the experience. and a few of them have promised to sing so it won't be people just standing around bullying everyone else to take the mic, but hopefully a very good time (which is another reason i'm putting this post up tonight and not early friday morning).

near the beginning of my time here, i was joking around with one of my coworkers about the boredom that is the dungeon. later that night, in desperation, i wrote a haiku on a piece of paper and put it in an unused drawer:

oh man am i lame
just sitting here all alone
contemplating death

as of today, there are three sheets of paper in the drawer, with 48 haiku scrawled on them by the poor souls who have done their time. here are some of my favorites:

Trapped in the dungeon
there's no hope for my future
Damn, i missed my bus

oh cursed first-offs
How I hate your evil ways
wake me for city

Say, it's a thin line
Between love and hate when it's
5 in the morning

(12:48 a.m.)
crap, crap, crap, crap, crap,
crap, crap, crap, crap, crap, crap, crap,
crap, crap, crap, crap, crap,

I can't stand this shift
I went to college for this?
I want a refund!

A cold Mug root beer,
Flaming Hot Cheetos on desk.
I should be in bed.

no windows in here
can't even see the fireworks
watch the clock instead

If this room could talk,
What do you think it would say?
"I pity the fool!"

When 1:27 seems
early, you know you
have lost touch

a fridge full of beer
would make the time go faster
longing for Fat Tire

there are SNAKES! in this
mother-f*cking lonely place.
help me, Sam Jackson

"boss" should read haikus
then he would know what it's like
would he sympathize?

though counting the days,
a sickening twist of fate:
i might miss this place.

as for me, i don't know where i'm headed. but i cut a fat check this morning because i do know that the mortgage company gives breaks to no one. never fear, however, i'll continue posting. this blog would have never happened if it weren't for the dungeon. and i wouldn't have discovered all of you. for that i will be eternally grateful. well, that and the fact that if all goes well tonight, i'll have successfully eluded psycho blue-eye.

so long, dungeon.


omar said...

On one hand, I'm thrilled for you, because you get your life back (not to imply that you had no life while working in the dungeon, but... you know what I mean).

On the other hand, I know you as Cadiz from the dungeon. It's like "Jenny from the block," only better. It's been part of who you are for as long as I've known you. I fear change. Will you blog the same, working 9-5 at a place with ample parking? My selfish side is starting to hyperventilate...

OK, I'm relaxed. This is about you, not me. Sorry. Congrats!

Anonymous said...


The Stormin Mormon said...

Sometimes it's nice to be rid of something that you hated, even if you needed it. It just takes a while for you to realize that you needed to be forced into something better.

I know someone who had a car that was just a piece, but it never quit on her. Despite the fact that the heater didn't always work, the speedometer read 10MPH faster than you were actually going (there were about a dozen more problems), the thing was a tank and just kept on going.

It was stolen last year.

She was devastated, even though she could have bought something even slightly better, she hadn't done so before because she was used to the POS, and had grown to trust it.

jazz said...

hey, you rock! i never would have made it that long...

Ale said...

dont forget life is a balance- 10% is really really bad and yuky- 10% is Sooooooo GOOOOOD!! the rest 80% is neutral (and you can decide to enjoy it MORE or less) - so the good news is that you probably served out your bad 10% already so the rest will be ALL GOOD! yey!!!!

angel07 said...

Congrats Chica! Hopefully we can see more of you at GCAA!! We miss our little bird :)

Anonymous said...

So long and farewell, you dastardly dungeon!!!

Anonymous said...

wow. that's awesome. now you have to put up a different photo and change your blog byline... this should be interesting...

i'm excited to get to know the non-dungeon cadiz.

Guyana-Gyal said...

Everything Omar said! I hope you continue blogging.

Gee, that place sure looks like prison though.

Collect more haiku, quick, before you go, they're funny.

Anonymous said...

Goodbye, good luck
Struck the sun and the moon
To the fisherman lost on the land.
He stands alone at the door of his house,
With his long-legged heart in his hand.

Gloria Glo said...

Those haiku are hilarious! It's the end of an era - rejoice and be sad for it.

I work in a tower, btw. i've made so many Rapunzel jokes that an IT guy called and asked the secretary for Rapunzel's extension. Ha ha. I've got a rep.

Anonymous said...

Way to go!

If you (or someone) records karaoke highlights, I'll be happy to host the audio files so's we can all "enjoy" your last shift party.

Congratulations on the finish, and on whatever deligts await you in the days ahead.

Anonymous said...

Ha! Take THAT, Blogger beta! I successfully eluded your pitiable attempt to make me post a duplicate comment.

Ha! I have outsmarted you! And the fact "you" do not exist and are at best a relatively inanimate, steaming pile of code does not in any way diminish my sense of accomplishment.


Anonymous said...

those haikus are hilarious. I especially love the SoaP one.

No more dungeon? How amazing. As long as I have read your blog, the dungeon has been an omnipresent...err, presence hovering over each post. But hey, we know how much you hate the place so good riddance eh? Embrace whatever was good, let go of all that was bad and make way for new awesomeness.

cadiz12 said...

don't worry, guys, the dungeon has become a part of me. changed me even. or maybe just brought out what was already there. i'm sure i'll find plenty of new things that irritate me as i test my very very very low tolerance for dealing with people after being nocturnal for so long. hopefully that will be able to see all the people i've missed. and i'll just have to focus on the right 10% right now.

i totally hear you on the car thing. as much as i complained about the joint, i actually looked forward to going there sometimes. at home i have a dialup connection, but at the dungeon i can watch all the youtube at any volume to my heart's content. sadly, that will be no more, until i move and spring for broadband.

we'll have to see how the karaoke goes. if someone does record it and i don't sound like a drowning cat, maybe i'll let you all in on the fun. but i can promise you i'll describe it in full detail (well, the parts i remember, that is).

i think for now, i'll keep my photo. i love it, and now we can just interpret it "the dungeon is THAT way," i.e. no longer a part of my life.

as some of you may notice, i finally made the switch to big bad new blogger. i hope this doesn't inconvenience any of you, but in between "finding myself" i think i'll maybe do a little makeover on this blog, too. no promises on that one, though.

oh and thank you for the lovely poem, anon.

Anonymous said...

The post on Dec 19 at 2:19 PM are the last lines of "The Ballad of the Long-legged Bait" by Dylan Thomas.

Now you will time to read the entire piece. Lucky...