Borderline Retarded

Thursday, November 10, 2005


I have been at my current job for just over two years. I am still the "new kid" as there are people who have been working here almost since day one 25 years ago.

My first office was right underneath the stairwell, making me feel somewhat like a troll.

I had noticed that there was a gigantic gouge in the wood on the outside of the door. I wondered about it, but I am not very curious by nature, so I never thought to ask what had happened to it.

My friend Keri was standing at the door talking to me one day when she noticed the gouge. She strokes it and says, "I remember this day!". So, I settled myself in for a good story.

Apparently, sometime within the last 10 years, we had an HR / Safety Compliance Manager who worked out of the corporate office. His office is located right next to mine. This Manager is married to the owner's niece. We have several co-workers who are related to the owners in some way or other. He was an interesting fellow. I was told that he actually drove his whole family off a bridge once, wife kids and all. Luckily nobody was killed, but he was never quite the same after that. One night, one of the owner's sons was working in his upstairs office. He smelled smoke, and heard this manager start to yell "Fire!". Luckily, he made it down the stairs because there is no other way out from the second story, except a long drop to a very hard concrete warehouse floor.

They were the only two employees left in the office - it was after 5:00. The fire department arrived. The gouge in my office door happened when the firefighters tried to bust it open with an axe.

The HR manager told this bizarre story of an irate truck driver who chased him around the front office, and set fire to the place. There was much panic among the employees here, as you can imagine. We had an irate arsonist truck driver running around loose - God only knows what he would do next. The owners immediately put a security measure into action involving electronic padlocks on all the entrances to the warehouse and the front office. I figure all someone has to do is jump the reception desk, but when you're freaked out you don't always think things through. There were write ups in the paper, and an investigation by the fire department went underway.

What they found as they were picking through the debris was that the fire originated from the HR manager's office. They found an entire can of gasoline and matches next to his desk. The paperwork was set ablaze in a giant pile right underneath his desk.

As the story unfolded, it came out that the HR manager was unprepared for an audit that was scheduled in the near future, so his solution was to set fire to all of his paperwork. I understand that he served some jail time, and underwent psychiatric evaluation, but I'm not too sure if he is still locked up or not.

People around the office make little jokes from time to time about the "firebug", but nobody really thinks it's all that funny. I think if the owner's son hadn't been here it wouldn't be so dire. I think he has a hard time coming to grips with how close he came to losing him.

I have to say that is officially the weirdest story of any place I have ever worked.




    THat is hillarious. There is a joke sign in our office that states "In case of fire, throw all paperwork toward the flames and run for your life!"

    That so suits your office...!

    By Blogger Squishi, at 2:30 AM  

  • That's a good one! I'll have to print one up......

    By Blogger Robyn, at 9:38 AM  

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