Thursday, February 23, 2012

Sisyphean exploits

Today, for no particular reason apart from wanting to create another online identity (it’s not like I have enough already) I registered AnotherSisyphus on Twitter. I imagine I’ll be happy with only ever updating this with “Rolling a stone up a hill” once a day.

Aside from trying to figure out ways to make jokes that are only intelligible to students of Camus, I spent most of today on phone calls, which gradually made me maudlin and grumpy. It wasn’t so much that I couldn’t get anything done because I was on the phone all day. The problem is that I don’t have a headset for my phone, so I had about four hours of holding a handset to the side of my face, and gradually feeling the vertebrae in my neck fuse together into one ill-tempered lump. By the third or fourth call, meeting fatigue was beginning to set in, that mental condition where you spend more time entertaining existential doubts than focusing on maximizing shareholder revenue.

And thus, little by little, your soul leaches away until you have nothing left.

My other Sisyphean experience today came when I got the news that standard practice isn’t to delete all the work somebody’s done for five years when they make modifications to your account. But in my case, just to make me special, they had deleted all my precious work, and there was no way to get it back. This dread tiding was relayed to me by a third party, which meant I was even denied the opportunity to rant at the person who obliterated every sign of my existence. So thus the process of rolling the rock back up the mountain begins anew.

It could be worse: I could be having the metaphorical equivalent of being chained to a rock and having my liver pecked out by a vulture.

Or was it my kidneys?

Or was it a sparrowhawk? Or a peregrine falcon? Or a particularly angry Canadian goose?

There’s real benefit to studying the Classics, apparently, just not benefits I’ve ever derived, because I didn’t study the Classics.

Anyhow, I suppose Sisyphus probably accepted his lot without great complaint, whereas I feel the need to complain. If somebody would just email me and say sorry, I think it would ameliorate all the rage and bitterness that’s built up over the past three days, but since nobody seems to even want to acknowledge what they’ve done, let alone apologise, my grumpiness is festering. Just like the spot on my forehead; possibly the heat and humidity of Singapore is not going to be so wonderful for my skin.


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