There have been times when I haven't been this relaxed at HOME. There are many who would look down on a cubicle, but the one I'm in at the moment has even the are instance or two I had a "proper" office beaten bloody and begging for some gentle mercy.
I have a window. In fact, there are no cubes here that DON'T have actual windows. The offices are all internal, so even THEY don't get the view of the outside world. Even better, the windows have honest to god SHADES on them -- which is important, as my window faces west, and as I have learned many times when driving that direction over on Santa Clara ave. that can be pretty brutal on the eyes. It does open opportunities for adding a sun catcher or two to liven up the workspace.
Not that it needs it very much - even with no personal imprint on it at all, this space is comfortable, Well designed, ergonomic, and smart. Like, all the network and phone ports, along with several outlets, are at DESK LEVEL - No crawling underneath to wrestle with the %$#@$#%@!!! cable runs, surge protectors, et al. And it's ROOMY. As in space-wise I have more room then the entire Genius workbench in B'game, and four of us shared that. Even the Mac is better... a 2 Ghz 20 inch iMac G5 with a gig of Ram, and enough hard drive space that I'm already mentally planning on bringing in the music collection on the iPod (apparently this is common: When I fired up iTunes to stream IndiePop Rocks there were about 10 shared iTunes libraries up and running. I fully intend to be one of those ASAP). I could go on and on about the features of this cube, but that's boring as hell for anyone other than yours truly, victim of the total lack of personal space that was retail.*
Making the space complete is the fact that someone, for reasons unknown, left one of the company Segways in the cube. Do you have any IDEA how much personal self control is required to keep me from jumping up and trying it out? The closest I got to one before this company was at the Airport in Atlanta, when one of the stations cops let me talk to him about it for a few minutes.
I've been spending the morning doing the usual things you do on your first day, like puzzle out all of the policies and procedures, explore the intranet, and generally figure out the details. I've met a lot of people, gotten the full tour -- this place is even COOLER than I thought. I hadn't seen the theater room, pinball machine and other dedicated video-games, the gaming library**, the massage room...
I'm a bit overwhelmed. It might take me a week just to believe that this is real, even after starting.
Obviously, it isn't just about the fun stuff. For one thing, I'm fully intending to re-teach myself all the stuff that I haven't had a chance to use over the past ten years. Perl, Python, Shell Scripting -- all skills that I *knew* would be useful, but (for whatever reason) I never got to use to any degree in my other jobs. It always annoyed the heck out of me that I could learn things, and then not get to USE it. Now I can, and at least I'm not having to pick it up cold.
So, when am I finding the time to do this entry? Well, if retail taught me anything it was the importance of pacing myself, and breaking up activities to keep from achieving burnout. If I feel my eyes start to peel from reading too much online documentation, I pull this baby up and add a bit more.
It's so QUIET here. I knew that from the interviews, of course, but spending time here without pressure or conversation has also been... well, relaxing. It was SO quiet I fired up the 'Net radio in iTunes, and even though it's barely above the decibel level of a hunger struck whisper, it's more than audible for my needs. I'll still probably bring in one of my headsets for those rare occasions I need to kick up my focus a notch, but that should be a rarity.
I knock on wood when I write this, but I think I'm going to LOVE this job.
Edited to Add at 11:02 AM: Okay, someone revealed themselves to be the culprit who left the segway in my cube, but by way of apology gave me a quick driving lesson. VERY surreal. I can't wait to snag one to go to lunch later in the week... after a few more short hops around the office. For one thing, learning to lean back to break is not as easy as it sounds, at least for me. Steering is weird too... you twist one of the handle bars to turn in either direction.
Edited to Add at 2:26 PM: After a lovely lunch, I learned a few more things about where I work. They have an "adopted" cat that lives in the courtyard alongside the building (she has food dishes, a little igloo to sleep in, a scratching post... in short, a sweet deal), and free soda machines loaded with Coke, Dr. Pepper... and, much to my shock and awe, what I like to refer to as Dr. Pepper classic. Apparently the CEO is a big fan of DP, and has the stuff shipped in special -- made with real sugar, it's ONLY available from the Dublin, Texas bottling plant. This I already knew, because I myself had ordered several cases back when they first set up a web shop on the net in the late 90's. At this point it must sound like I suffer from parkinsons, as I am constantly knocking the wood-like surface of my desk to ward off the potential bad spirits whenever I even THINK how great this is going to be.
* Toward the end they couldn't even let us claim a locker for ourselves. Pitiful.
** Several major gaming companies use Perforce, so they get some freebies that you can "check out" - I think Roni's going to like that perk. I might have to take up gaming -- to better understand the client's needs, of course.