I started a new job about 3 months ago. It’s a good job but there have been things I’ve had to get used to. For instance I haven’t had a job that requires I dress professionally in…maybe ever (at the most it’s been business causal). My employers dress in suits on a daily basis setting the bar high. Thankfully I’ve had friends with great taste pass things down to me over the years so I didn’t have to go out and buy a new wardrobe (Yay for free clothing! and friends!). I’ve also never worked in an office of all men before; three serious men with little time for chit chat, which is understandable given the nature of their business. My background consists of mostly non-profit and human service experience, meaning I’ve had the pleasure of working with a diverse group of people at any given time with conversation a plenty! Suffice it to say, my experience here has been a lonely one until…
Enter “The Smell”. It started faintly enough. My super mom sense of smell picked up on it first. “Do you smell that?” I asked the least serious of the three. He replies, ” I thought I smelled something, but I must have gotten used to it.”
Day two: The smell is still present. It’s gone from “Did I really smell something?” to “Yup, there is definitely a stinky source and we need to find it pronto.” So I addressed the only other female in the office, Miss Intern, who is here very part time (not enough for organic female bonding to occur). Together we ruled out the garbage as the culprit. Maybe something in the walls?
Day three: It’s getting serious. One of the bosses has also detected the small, and you know it has to be bad if a man with allergies can smell it. After speculations of what may have died and where, there is some joking about who done it. Yes, I did say joking! And kidding! The first sign of life.
My boss instructs me to call Critter Control.
Day four: Critter Control can’t find the source, but it’s confirmed…it a dead something, and we have mice. Not inside the building, just under it. There is more discussion around the copier (we don’t have a water cooler). More laughs and pleasantries shared.
Several days later there is still no solution and the stink lingers, but that stink has been able to do something I didn’t think was possible. It created a pseudo bonding experience. It reassured me that humor does exist in my office. It allowed for free flowing conversation (for a few days at least). It gave me hope that I may again laugh while I work one day. My dear Dead Thing, you did not die in vain!