Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The hills are alive . . .

. . . with the sound of mu-u-u-u-u-u-u-u-u-u-sic. OK, no hills, and it's not really music, no matter how many "u's" you use. (That rhymes.) Perhaps I am getting ahead of myself and should explain. Fine, I will.

The project I am on, pathetic and overtimeless as it is, has some interesting features. Even though we are at the firm, we are intentionally isolated from the firm. This actually is good. We are on a floor separate from the rest of the law firm and require no key cards to get where we need to be to work. We are unable to get to any other space the firm occupies, as we lack key cards, which means anyone at the firm who wants access to us (other than the two legal assistants who have offices on our floor and are tasked with making sure we don't steal the silver) has to come to us, as we can't go to them. Naturally, none of them want to come to us, so they don't, and we are left alone.

But I digress. The interesting part is the space we're working in. There currently are three projects in here, separated by movable dividers. The space itself is just a big room, with dividers turning it into three (unequally sized) spaces. This room has two exit doors, both of which lead to hallways that each have a set of double doors exiting to the elevators. On one of the hallways, between the door that exits our space and the double doors that lead to the elevators, is the men's bathroom and, directly across from that, some kind of locked maintenance/workspace that serves unknown building purposes. Bear with me, this becomes important.

Our workspace is ventilated in such a way as to create a fairly significant overpressure -- air flows out of our space at a pretty impressive rate. Naturally, it does this through the two exit doors. At one end, the single door leading into our space closes fine despite the overpressure, but the double doors on the hallway that exit to the elevator lobby are held slightly ajar by the outflowing air. At the other end, the double doors close fine, but this is because the single door leading into our workspace is held ajar by the outflowing air. (All of these doors have automatic return mechanisms intended to close them regardless of how thoughtless the person who just walked through them might be.)

For those of you who have stayed with this long enough, here is where things get fascinating. The workspace across from the men's restroom apparently has some sort of outlet that allows air to rush through it into a shaft or whatever. The air flows into the space around the door and whistles really loudly. If you move your hand up and down the door crack, it changes the pitch  of the whistle. You also can change the pitch and/or volume of the whistle by opening the door to our workspace, opening the double doors that lead to the elevator lobby and by opening the door to the men's restroom. All of these actions have a different effect on the pitch of the whistle. I swear, I've learned how to play "Ode to Joy" by opening doors and moving my hand over the door crack. My goal now is to figureout "Auld Lang Syne" by New Year's.

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