Stepping through the doorway, I sequestered my belongings and continued to my post in the ongoing war against product complacency. My newly-minted commanding officer was still finding his place here, and suffered with the delusion of accelerated promotional tactics. Specifically, failing to see their direct correlation with the snowball effect and how it would one day crush him. Raising the bar also raised the median. At some point, you would be unable to produce even the minimally excepted throughput, and watch in horror as you are trampled beneath your own machinations.
I had witnessed the destruction of many an ambitious ladder-climber in a cheap tie, all coming from a world where logic and common sense were the law – the fools! Those linear, and dated beliefs were of no value in this quantum string reality of volatile temperament cascading over the overwhelming force of hubris. This was a maelstrom of winds and elements that changed daily, dependent on prevailing egos and precipitating greed.
A list, always a list, of things awaited me. Their number great, their execution slow and requiring aid, their enlistment roster consisting of exactly one – myself. This tactic was familiar, this tactic was futile, and my choices were limited. I could stay, I could bleed gold from lead, and then I could watch the mountain crumble as the impossible weight of inevitability came crashing down upon me. I would be taken from the board, a pawn sacrificed, my superior surviving for another day.
Or I could get the fuck out of Dodge…
“Retirement fund?” I asked in disbelief. He relayed the information to me, information I surely received back when I had first enlisted, but my brain struggled with the concept of escape. Almost a decade of conditioning had eroded all thoughts of such a thing. He ended his explanation with a rough figure of what would be waiting.
My story, my idea, could find life in the time that figure would buy me. I wouldn’t be rich, most people would barely make it to their next job, but I wasn’t most people. I had a long history of dire economics, of living on ramen, tea, and the slow burn of carbohydrates. I’d spent most of my life poor, I could do it again for the sake of something I felt could be greater.
So, armed with a dream, out of Dodge I fucked…