Monday, December 6, 2010


Joe was the name of the co-worker that I wrote about below on November 19, 2008. Since that time our office has closed, I moved on to another law firm, but Joe, who was in his mid-60's, struggled with finding another job to occupy his time.

He was, as I wrote below, very orderly.

I don't believe that finances were an issue, so he didn't "need" to work, but Joe was an only child, with both parents deceased, never married and he had no children, so his work defined him.

I was shocked to get an email over the weekend that he was found dead (an autopsy was performed and they are awaiting results) on the floor of his house.

I pray that his soul went straight to Heaven in quick, orderly fashion.

writing that with after the fact on my part compassion


"How come you aren't doing the mixing and scooping this morning?” I had to ask.

I am not sure why his antics bother me so much.

I should just be thankful that I don’t suffer like him.

He always works in pairs.

Two of everything.

Two cups of hot tea every morning during the cold weather – two cups of ice tea during warmer days.

Filled exactly to the same point – just micrometers below the rim.

Steeped for some precise amount of time.

Tea bags removed via spoon with the string wrapped around it and squeezed ever so meticulously until being deposited into the garbage can.

Then the mixing begins… cup at a time..round and round and round the spoon goes (I have never asked if he counts the twirls, but I think he does) until the “foamy” part is gathered in the center, at which time he scoops out the little bit of foam with a spoon, throws it away, rinses the spoon and starts the process over for the second cup.

“Why do you throw that little bit from the top away?” I had to once ask.

“Because it is bad.” he responded.

He then carries both of the perfectly-steeped-filled-to-the-rim-bad-foam-removed cups, one in each hand, back to his desk to be placed on the two napkins that sit in perfect alignment awaiting their arrival.

In response to my original question about how come he wasn't mixing and stirring - he was using one tea bag to make both cups (not as wasteful) so he had to let them steep longer at his desk.

I don’t know about you...but I am exhausted just writing about it and ever so thankful that I am not he.