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April 20, 2006

Next time, I'll take the stairs

You'd probably think, dear reader, that the five-minute trek from my office to my car at the end of a workday is not worthy of a blog entry. And on most days you'd be right. But not this evening, dear reader; not this evening.

With the endless construction continuing on the first floors of the parking garage, I had parked on the fifth (actually, between the fourth and the fifth) floor in the morning. As I walked down the hallway leading to the garage, I faced my first moment of truth. Do I trek up the stairs to the fourth or fifth floor, or do I hop in the elevator? Simultaneously preaching to myself the exhaustions caused by a six-hour workday in front of a computer and asserting my lazy-bastard personality, I chose the elevator.

I was joined on the elevator by another IBMer, a surly-looking fellow who stationed himself squarely in front of the elevator buttons and punched the three with vigor and also the five once I meekly stated my destination. Seconds later, the third floor beckoned, and my companion walked out of the elevator, started, and joined me once more. "Wrong floor," he grunted, "sorry about that." He pressed the four, with even more assertiveness than before.

We reached the fourth floor without further incident and my elevatormate left without a word. I contemplated getting off myself and walking up the ramp to my car, but decided to stick to the original plan. Two seconds later, as the elevator eased into the fifth floor it happened: the elevator plunged three, maybe four, feet, and then stopped.


The lights were still on. The doors were still closed.

But the elevator was decidedly stopped. Door open? No effect. Other floors? Fully inoperative.

Faced with this rather unexpected situation, I examined my options. The elevator panels presented me with a somewhat bewildering choice of alarm buttons, So instead of closing my eyes and choosing one, I whipped out my phone (haven't I always been a proponent of cell phones?) and gave Wing a call.

I think he thought I was joking, at first, but I quickly convinced him that I didn't see any possible escape route that didn't involve popping out a ceiling panel and scrambling on top of the elevator car.

To make a long story short, the next ninety minutes featured:

  • Wing summoning help from the building staff
  • The building staff summoning help from the elevator company
  • The building staff wondering why they couldn't hear the elevator alarm bell (which they taught me how to use) before figuring out that they were at the wrong bank of elevators
  • Wing coming up to the fifth floor of the garage and chatting with me through the closed doors
  • Me deciding I wasn't going anywhere quickly, taking off my backpack, and making myself comfortable on the floor of the elevator
  • Mike&mdahs;from the building staff—showing up and chatting with Wing about summer internships, college educations, and teaching English in China
  • A failed attempt to get a wireless signal while stuck in the elevator
  • Some light reading
  • A nap or two
  • Playing some computer hearts
  • Sending SMS messages to some friends

It wasn't nearly as entertaining as in sitcoms. There was no pregnant woman giving birth. No suspected terrorists or corporate spies. No frightened children, beautiful women, or smelly men (sorry, Sabow). After 90 minutes of confinement, the doors cracked, and a massive, heavily-tattooed man freed me.

So, what did I get out of my adventure this evening? Well, a few things:

  1. I got a blog entry (with pictures!) out of it, even if there wasn't any wireless signal in the elevator to enable me to blog from there.
  2. I can muse on whether I'm the first person ever to play hearts on a computer while trapped in an elevator. And if not, how many others have there been? I've never been very good at these ludicrous consulting-job interview questions.
  3. I finally had a legitimate reason to use doGooder. Thanks, Wing!
  4. Oh, and I took two pictures:

April 14, 2006

Holiday Tradition

From the category of strangest holiday traditions ever comes my father-in-law's time-honored Passover tradition. Most of my non-Jewish friends fail to understand why Jews would willingly eat—and enjoy—gefilte fish, but such a tame act pales in comparison with this.

My father-in-law likes. to. drink. all. the. jelly. from. the. gefilte. fish. jar.

April 11, 2006

Greatest Internet Video Ever?

I say yes. You decide. (Thanks to Wing for forwarding this to me.)

Game 6.

April 6, 2006

The Ultimate Fantasy Sports Team

Last Friday night at White Horse, Matt, Dodzie, Vanessa, Lynn, and I conducted a rather eclectic fantasy sports draft. It started as a guideless fantasy baseball draft, but quickly became unhinged. Without further ado, here is my unbeatable team:

  1. ARod. (round 1, pick 5 of the baseball draft, throwing all morals out the window)
  2. Roy Halladay
  3. Derek Lee
  4. Roy Oswalt
  5. Miguel Tejada
  6. Miguel Cabrera
  7. Carlos Delgado
  8. Brad Lidge
  9. Todd Helton
  10. Mark Buehrle
  11. Vijay Singh (round 1, pick 4 of the golf draft)
  12. Ernie Els
  13. Rocky Balboa (round 1, pick 3 of the movie sports characters draft)
  14. Roy Hobbes
  15. Sanka
  16. "kayak" (round 1, pick 2 of the palindrome draft)
  17. Link (round 1, pick 1 of the video game character draft)
  18. Snoods (all of them)
  19. Sonic
  20. Billy from Double Dragon
  21. Adam Morrison (round 1, pick 2 of college basketball player draft)
  22. Joakim Noah

Look out, world.