Tuesday, February 17, 2004

Sitting in a meeting

I am sitting in a meeting room with no windows. 10 chairs, six people, one phone that no one uses. Router on the table with a tangle of CAT-5 cables, empty plastic bags from lunch, slight scent of stale sandwiches, half-empty bottles of water. There are voices that push and pull the air, many words that deserve plaques and recompense. Ultimately, these words have uncertain value; at least they produce keystrokes and debate. Each person has a computer with a different screen. We are all supposed to be looking at the same presentation.
Productivity can be measured by this time that passes with all these laptop computers open and implements surrounding. There are pens and notebooks on the table too, but they are muted - except for some words that produce a quick jot on paper. There it goes - another flurry of words between two meeting participants, another tries to add his weighted observation. Pause. Another quick jot on paper. This continual process rolls over another wave of special words, a few more quick jots, and the story goes on. It will last another hour, ended by a flurry of jotted notes (quick, quick quick), then dispersion. The clutter on the table remains, now left inanimate without word flurries - the remnants of sitting in a meeting.
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