Friday, July 20, 2007

Sisyphus’s Dissertation Diary

Day six million, one hundred ninety-seven thousand, three hundred. And two.

Dear Diary,

Chatted with Tantalus at the water cooler this morning, before my shift. How’s it moving along? he asked. Oh, you know, I said. I’ve got my routine pretty much down now.

Today I pushed the big rock up the hill. It was heavy. And I never know where to get purchase on it with my hands. It nearly crushed me when it slipped out of my grip and rolled back to the bottom. But I think I got it further up the incline this time. Better than my previous record, I’m sure.

Ixion was complaining about the heat again. Still no response to all the work orders he put in about the broken air conditioning. They’re giving me the run around, he said. Oh, cheer up, I said. It’ll get better. Why, Thanatos promised he’ll put me on the tenure track any day now, and things’ll be totally different then, I’m sure. Ixion just grunted.

Afterwards Al invited me and a bunch of the guys out for beer, but I didn’t have the coin for it. He said to tag along anyway. You’re a funny kid, Sisyphus, he told me. I like your style. He introduced me to this great guy who works in the next division over, Jean-Paul. Boy, he can talk. You’re amazing, I tell him. How do you keep that great attitude?

Well, he said after considering the dregs of his warm beer. Really, it’s all about the people.


Earnest English said...

Fabulous. I hope there is more of this.

Sisyphus said...

Well, I do push that rock every day. You'll be hearing plenty about that.

Anonymous said...

Ah, I get it: hell, le regard d'autrui, etc. No, seriously funny stuff, if that's not an abuse of language. You should have worked in something about his odd, unblinking gaze, though. ;)