Sunday, January 15, 2006

The rite thing

My office buses, those devoted, faithful machines reach office an hour before office hours begin. Why, you ask? To be on the safer side, declaimeth them official directives – to make allowance for possible delays. Thoughtful, very, yes.


Of course, we employees absolutely love groggily wading out of bed at ungodly hours in order to stand   shivering (but at attention nevertheless) at the bus stop, as long as it is for the sake of that dear old company of ours, that company unto whose surf-dom we are bonded. Loyalty. Faithfulness. Please name some other such virtues and add here. Work verily maketh us free.


Our only regret is that we get to do this only five times a week, but we understand - running buses 7 days a week would drive the company bankrupt (at 1100 bucks a month per head, bus fares form the largest source of the company's revenue).


A decided advantage, then, of being in possession of a steed is the needlessness of having to wait for these office buses. That, of course, to spare them poor old buses the burden of having to ferry one more individual. Anything, anything at all for the greater common good.


The joy of being in the advantageous position indicated in the previous paragraph multiplies considerably when you see that the quantum of work you have is so minuscule that no one really cares if you arrive an hour late and go an hour early.


Unfortunately, as with all silver linings, there's a cloud here too. The problem, then, is that there's a power cut a 7 30 every morning. What that means is – even if a concerned employee chooses to spare them buses by traveling by his own steed at 10 am, he still has to bathe while the water is hot – the groggily-wading-out-of-bed-routines that characterized those bus-days wouldn't change at all.


Or so it would appear to they that dare not to think beyond. That spirit of scientific inquiry, that self same spirit that led one of my ancestors to not only rub two stones together just to be able to burn his own hand, but also to actually think of giving it that wholly appropriate name – fire, that self same spirit that lived on in me was stoked, and I applied myself entirely to the problem at hand.


To be truly scientific demands that all assumptions be discarded, that there be a total suspension of disbelief. From this knowledge, then, it was one step of logical reasoning to realizing that that ritual which I had assumed to be the cornerstone of the problem – the bath, wasn't essential at all.


Now, now, dear reader, will you please dislodge your hand from your nose? You'll suffocate. Cleanliness, godliness et al, yessireee. I'm not that uncouth, mind you, to avoid bathing altogether. If only to preserve memories of hallowed rituals that were once undertaken, I resolved, then, to perform this rite called bathing once a year. If for no other reason, why, I'm a driver now and not a cleaner.


May I, gentle reader, having suitably enlightened you, take leave now? That most holy ritual – the annual bath beckons. Amen.

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