Ambedo. My morning fugue. I rarely talk about my job; people tend to act rather strangely if I explain who my employer is.
Working for the eminent Mr. mirg repaer makes me acutely aware of the thin permeable wall between life and death; of how quickly it can crumble.
And, that fact created far more correspondence than you might think. Correspondence scribed on clay tablets and papyrus to 3-D lasered missives all stacked in voracious teetering piles; a hoarder’s dream maze. Great care was needed just to manoeuver to my desk. Usually out of the office, Mr. R. left notes scrawled in horrific handwriting. Self-combusting upon reading (he’d picked up 10,000 reams when a certain branch office went bust during one economic downturn or other), I spent my mornings sweeping up ashes, and fanning smoke detectors.
I had to bring Mr. r and the millenniums old office into at least the 20th century. The letters needed to be digitized, for a start, to say nothing of the archives. Filing the paperwork after a large natural disaster, for example, was a logistical nightmare.
Jacob, from the other side, materialized one evening to help with the switch. Once known as an infant terrible and cyberverse wunderkid, he liked to dazzle me with his technological prowess. Sipping his signature blackberry tea, he brokered deals for genius phones with infinite GPS (Mr. r can be a hard person to find), internet connections zippity-do-dah fast, dealing in mega-trilla-gazillion bytes of information in a flash, 50 inch hi-def flat screen monitors, hand-held scanners and Holmes* computing systems. My personal techogremlins dared not misbehave; they took the first flight out of town after Jacob installed a real firewall. I left all the training to Jacob; Mr. r is not known for his patience.
I try not to read the correspondence closely; just scan and prep for storage in the cloud. Then consider conservation or shredding. Otherwise, a tide of emotions overwhelms me. Now, added to the mix are emails, texts and tweets. Every thing from death threats to thank yous. Pleas, promises, and forewarnings. Comedic, tragic, ironic, satirical, serious. Folks bare their soul (and their bodies); often not a pretty sight. Identities of some correspondents would amaze you; but we keep the names private – locked in a virtual vault.
I’m working on a “Letters to Death for Dummies” book while Jacob monitors all our social media. Mr. r’s tweeter followers are in the millions. Not as many “likes” for his face book page, however.
Each morning though, as I stir rich cream into my deep black coffee, ambedo washes over me. Working for Mr. mirg repaer does that. And one thing for sure, no pink slip; if he comes for me, I know I’m fired.
image: Tomb of Wayfaring Souls
The wordle words are in italics within the text. Two words came with definitions: ambedo – “a kind of melancholic trance in which you become completely absorbed in vivid sensory details—raindrops skittering down a window, tall trees leaning in the wind, clouds of cream swirling in your coffee—which leads to a dawning awareness of the haunting fragility of life;” and eminent – “high in station, rank, or repute; prominent; distinguished: conspicuous, signal, or noteworthy: lofty; high: prominent; projecting; protruding.”
* a nod to IBM’s Watson.