(forgive me for a work interlude)
Typically, I’m the guy at work who knows everything.
The guy who’s got it all in his head, the guy who gets the phone calls with obscure questions at 3am. The guy who’s gotta write out a novel of process when he goes away on vacation for more than a couple days, and who still gets called in Hawaii or Turks and Caicos or Fiji.
Only it’s not true anymore.
One of the things that happened to me this last year is that I had a horrible year personally, the same time that my group at work got completely re-purposed. We used to be all about chips, and then one day last april, my employer stopped caring much about custom ASICs.
We were the guys who kept the chip designers working, and suddenly we didn’t have a job. So we had to convert to being all about boards. We did it – and we did a great job. The proof is in our latest – and next – products. But to do it, my team had to learn a new business from scratch. And for the first time in years, I wasn’t the guy who was in deepest, first. I’ve been playing catchup ever since.
There are a lot of reasons why, and that’s a much longer, more painful story, a story for some other time and place. The part that’s relevant now is that I’m finally catching up.
I’m catching up because the guy I work with, the guy who wound up in my usual role, the go-to guy, the technical leader, the guy who knows everything, is leaving on a month-long trip to africa. And I have to learn everything he knows and everything he does in about two and a half more days.
This is good – in theory. I need to get back in fighting trim, work-wise. I need to get back to the point where I can manage fifteen things at a time, keep on top of everything, know who’s doing what where. And this forces me back there. Writing it down (thank god for wikis, they make documentation so fucking easy), training people, solving problems. That’s what I do, so having to take over again as the focal point gets me back into the mind set I need.
But god damn, I wish I were taking off for a month in africa. I want to tell him, take me with you.
I woke up with the need to go incredibly strong in my mind, the need to be out the door. The need to feel the weight off my shoulders, the need to be warm and free and open.
There are moments where I hear something out there call me so loud it’s everything I can do not to answer. I woke up thinking, quit my job, quit my job, quit my job. The kind of voice-in-my-head moment where I feel like screaming shut up shut up shut up at the inside of my own head.
My head’s finally getting back in the game, and yet, the call gets louder and louder. I need earplugs on the inside, or I need to listen to the call. Some days it’s a hard choice not to listen to it.