It often seems pointless to carp about how unresponsive and behind the times the federal government can be in terms of the digital frontier, but today has been a particularly frustrating day. The computer in my cubicle froze up this morning for no apparent reason; I mean, I was running quite a few programs simultaneously but there have been days when I’ve put more workload on the machine with no ill effects. I’m gonna go ahead and blame ‘network latency’. Also? I understand it’s not part of my official job duties to check my personal web-based e-mail from my desk, but it is a little bit disconcerting to see messages on the Gmail home page to the effect that “You are using an older version of Internet Explorer that Gmail no longer supports.” Awesome.
On the other hand, long-time readers may remember that a while back I was grousing about how severely irritating my allergies had become, and how I suspected various job-environmental antagonists might be to blame, including I-66, the Metro system, my confined office space, my co-workers, and just being a working stiff instead of a millionaire gadabout in general. I never did solve the mystery, and even when I stopped using 66 and the Metro to get to work and got a brand new cubicle all to myself in the new office building, I still coughed my way through the day pretty much every Monday through Friday, which was a drag. Then a few weeks ago it occurred to me that the problems had started shortly after we moved, which was coincidentally around the same time I started working this contract gig in particular but was also a time when I was forced by new geographical circumstances to start using a different dry cleaner located in the new town. Could it be that I was allergic to their particular brand of soap, and all my shirts laundered therein, which explained why I rarely had the horking hacks on the weekends and they always came back as soon as I dressed myself for work on Monday morning? Well, long overdue, I recently switched to a different dry cleaner’s (closer to the train station than the highway/bus stop) and today is the first day I am wearing a shirt cleaned at the new place. I don’t want to jinx anything but so far, so good as far as ease of breathing goes. Will wonders never cease.