Brigid, a recent hire, hovered hesitantly in my doorway.
“Rona, what’s wrong with Andy?”
“I’ve an alphabetized list if you’ve got an hour or two to spare,” I waved her to come in.
“He’s moved all the recycle bins and the paper trimmer into his office, and there’s a very strong smell of glue seeping from under his door.”
I smiled at her sympathetically—I didn’t want to frighten her because she was already twice as efficient and productive as Andy, “he can be…quirky. Did he mention what he was doing?”
“All I know is that he didn’t react well when our boss Aditi complimented me for saving money on that last mailing to clients…Would you come and check on him? I don’t want to go straight to Aditi and get him into trouble.”
Sighing, I trudged towards the aroma of adhesive.
I knocked on Andy’s closed door, but he wasn’t listening…too busy swearing. So, I opened the door and marched in.
A paper blizzard had stormed through Andy’s office. The walls were feathered with all sizes and colours of square-ish, paper cut-offs—there was printing on one side. I recognized some of my own memos Andy must have salvaged from the Blue Bins. Bottles, cans and sticks of all kinds of glue clung together on his desk, next to an avalanche of paper shreds that had buried our paper trimmer.
My look of inquiry was enough to halt him tearing a quarter of a Gantt chart from his shirt sleeve.
“I was making sticky notes;” he was more pathetic than a spaniel that’d punctured his ball.
“And how’s that working out?” I poked through the fire hazard on his desk and retrieved a familiar flyer.
Andy coughed and waved glue fumes away from his face, “I think I’m going to get fired. I was trying to do something great to balance out all the mess-ups I’ve had…”
“…And you’ve spent the whole morning proving,” I wagged the latest Office Plus flyer at him, “that you can’t make one usable note.”
He took the flyer from my hand.
“Check out that deal! In minutes, you could have ordered 12-packs—that’s 1,200 sheets—of genuine Post-it®s!”
Andy read, “they’re all neatly cut, 3” x 3” and repositionable! It’s not easy to do that.” He suddenly smiled, “Look, I can redeem myself a bit. There’s a $10 rebate on each multi-pack.”
“Go for it! And then clean up and air out this room,” maybe he heard, but he was already adding up his savings.