It had been a loooong time since I last went to an office to work, so my first day on the job was a little unnerving. I had been working out of a 100 sq. ft. executive suite by myself for 2 years. Sweat pants and a hat were approved office attire, with socks (and often shoes) completely optional. I could spend days without interacting with another live person. So walking into an office with about 90 people in it was a bit uncomfortable. The last time I was around that many people was last year when my complex had a fire drill and we all had to gather in one area. Good thing the fire drill was on a shoe day!
The morning of my first day of real employment did not start out so well. It was around 6:00 am when I discovered that my wife had played a cruel joke on me and shrunk all my dress shirts! I could not get a single shirt to button at the belt or the neck. She had obviously washed these in hot water and then tumbled dry on high. I had to start my day as if it was the end of the day, with the top button undone and tie loosened, like I had already put in 8 hours. My only other option was to wear a Pleasant Hill Hawks shirt to my first day of work. Also, I could have sworn that my dress pants used to have pleats. No pleats….gone. But you could see the zipper just fine with the way the front of my pants were all stretched out where there used to be pleats. The pants were okay until I tried to breath. I almost pulled a muscle in my back trying to breathe without moving my stomach. I was afraid I would have to drive to my first day of work standing up. I was going to need a purse in order to get my wallet and cars keys out the door with me because there was no way they were going in these pants. Once I finished stuffing 10lbs of Russ into the 8lb bag of clothes, I was out the door. I felt like my Mom should have been there taking pictures of Russell’s first day of work. I had to drive to Santa Rosa for training and was supposed to be there at 8:00am. Once in the car, I realized I should have left a few more snaps and buttons undone for some expansion room during the hour-plus drive. Man, I was burning up. Does everyone else drive to work at 6:30am with the air conditioner on high?
I was a little jumpy in the office. With all these people it felt like someone was always sneaking up on me. Working is a lot different with other people watching. I was ready to come home by noon. By 3:00 I realized that I might not make it to Tahoe Joe’s for happy hour. I thought I had better call them and let them know I was okay, just out of courtesy.
I have been at the new job for a few weeks and everything is going well. I wonder if I’ve been there long enough to collect unemployment. Recently I received a payroll check, had to fill out benefit forms and select healthcare – what’s next, cats living with dogs? But I think I am really cut out for this working thing. Everyone seems to like me and find my opinion both valuable and interesting, but…that is just how I see it.