Friday, February 06, 2015

The Enterprise - 49

Bob, Fun and I were on our way to Sunshine for lunch when Bob kicked a can into the street.

“You’ve been doing more work with Tom,” he remarked. “How’s that going?”

“It’s going well,” I replied uncertainly.

“I have strong objections to resources with a given skill set drifting into unrelated roles.”

I told him I could see what he meant.

“I don’t think it’s healthy. It isn’t good for the company. It isn’t good for people.”

We continued wordlessly down Fifth Avenue, hands plunged into pockets at the cold, belching plumes of breath like car exhaust. Was that it? I wondered. Did he expect me to prattle on in response? Would he escalate this topic somehow? To Neil?

It was true my role was drifting. Toward product development, toward coding—not real programming of course but coding with the user-friendly interface the engineers out west had created—and away from whatever dubious thing I was originally engaged to do. Actually maybe I was still doing what I was supposed to do, but really doing it now, instead of typing up some dumb paragraphs in a Word document and attaching it to an Outlook e-mail for someone else to laboriously download, open, copy-paste from, reformat into the gizmo, check for errors, and commit to the repository. Now I was using the gizmo. It was inevitable. It saved me time and it saved everyone else time.

We got our falafel. Walked back up Fifth in silence. Then Bob and Lowell started talking about something. Joking around. And that was it. Bob never said a word about it again.