By Wyatt Earp | April 29, 2009
Nice, huh? This was the scene that greeted us in the division on Monday morning. Apparently, when the city said they were going to renovate our building, they didn’t say that they were going to demolish it . . . during the day . . . while we were working!
The department, in its infinite wisdom, told us that we were getting a new floor (tiles placed over the original asbestos ones), new ceiling tiles, and cubicles. Mind you, we were never asked if we wanted this – we were told that this is what we wanted. To a man (and a woman), every one of us is dead set against this construction, primarily because of the cubicles. They are the same ones that were installed in our sister divisions, and they are too small and much too high. At six feet, you are isolated from every other detective in the division.
The best part? We are scheduled to receive about 24 cubicles . . . and the floor only has 11 computer stations! The city told us that we wouldn’t receive any more computers, so we will have 13 empty cubicles that will simply collect dust – although we could probably sit in one of those and take a nap. I’m just sayin’.
So, let me try to describe that indescribable picture for you. Our main divisional floor – where most of the detectives work – is rather large, maybe 36 feet deep by 30 feet wide. The construction guys cordoned off half of the floor with stylish plastic tarps, probably to contain the dust and the grime. Unfortunately, they also removed the old ceiling tiles, so the dust gently wafts above the tarp and into our noses, mouths, and other delightful orifices.
I know what you’re thinking, “But Wyatt, your bosses let you dress down during the construction, right?” WRONG! We were told that we must still arrive for work, dressed in our usual dress shirt, tie, and dress pants. Lord knows you want to look your best when your expensive clothing gets ruined by filth. Besides, try conducting an interview or an interrogation while a guy is drilling holes into a concrete wall.
The construction is scheduled to last for weeks, if not months, so until then we should probably sit down, shut up, and go with the flow. Nah, I don’t think that is going to happen, especially since the work is making our jobs virtually impossible.