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Friday, May 20, 2005

Working Downtown

Now that college is over I have begun working for the department of JPMorgan Chase which is responsible for processing INS applications for U.S. Citizenship. I verify what is on the applications by typing in what I see on the scanned copy of them on a computer screen. Despite the weird hours (11pm-7am) the job is not very demanding. As we are allowed to wear our headphones during work i'm basically being paid to listen to eight hours of music every weekday. Oh and the view getting to and from work in downtown Chicago is mesmerizing.

The people at work are what make the job fun. Once one of the girls nearby mentioned her problems with perspiration. This then turned to a discussion of sweaty crotches and undersides of breasts. They sometimes talk about tampons or penis size "Girl why you swimmin wit a fish when you know dey so many whales out there?" or the latest happenings on General Hospital. Other times they talk about their man problems, "Girl he will just never have that motherly instinct. It's not the way God intended." And as I wonder to myself how anyone can even know what God intends I stop myself and realize that i'm on an episode of a really bad daytime talk show. This is the point where I raise the volume on my iPod.

At 5am everyday when there are only two hours left to work our supervisor leads us through an energizing round of coordinated calisthenics. She boosts up the radio on top of a computer monitor and puts in a CD that has about 20 different versions of the "Cha-Cha Slide" on it. So far I think i've heard about half of them.

At first I was afraid (I was petrified) to dance but after a few minutes on my first day began to clap and turn and jump and stomp and cha cha with everyone else. The rest of the warehouse/sweatshop enviously gathers nearby to peek at the 20 or so of us typists all moving together in a mostly coordinated fashion for nearly ten minutes.

Most of the time during work i'm listening to music on my iPod and pounding away at the keyboard. In between albums, though, i'll pause the music to catch an earshot of the latest soap opera gossip or relationship advice from the black girls nearby. And as the night subsides and the day rolls in i'll be sure to keep my eyes on the clock for 5:00am - for the cha-cha slide and the shuffle and the percolator. Despite the 40-hour week and odd hours i'm managing to adjust to this new lifestyle - one without the non-stop nagging of papers, lectures, homeworks or tests. What i'm still trying to get used to, though, is not having a lovely lady to wake up next to.

1 comment:

  1. If someone yelled out, "Cupid Shuffle time!" you would've done it, huh?