Vista's window

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Science Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: December 18, 2018

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Submitted: December 18, 2018

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Based on P-model's Vista

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People all look the same to me. Their wants are different, but their faces are the same. They come to me with many problems. The person I'm assisting now, as he looked at his payment history with an expression that steadily grew more solemn, I'm helping his life one way or another. I can perceive their expressions, the way their bodies shift, and the places on the table where they rest their hands. I can read their names, their records, and I can even deduce their interests from the sample information they give me, but they all amount to one entity.


My job is very easy. I can confidently define my singular purpose for any task brought into my care. Analytics is my field. When clients leave my office dissatisfied, their reactions are the result of their own choices. To be honest, clients can be very demanding, and I cannot always deliver what they desire. People tend to be wishful. They cast their wishes into my lap expecting me to grant them a vista overlooking the ocean. I operate within reason. I know the extent of my capabilities. If my clients do not understand, I can explain it to them visually. The vista they wish for is different than the one I imagine. My coworkers and I imagine a beautiful, splendid vista. It is the only place I imagine.


One day, I noticed a client hunched over at one of the desks, his nose inches away from touching my coworker's face. He kept interrupting the conversation, moving his hands erratically from his lap to the paper on the table. My acquaintance followed the correct employee code, which was to react ambivalently, and if possible, agree to his demands. With a sigh, the client stood up strode away. Surely my coworker was not at fault, but the aggravated client returned with the manager. The manager made frequent appearances on this floor. He was the type of figure who would walk up and down the length of the carpet, searching for slackers and praising achievers. He would scrutinize each one of us, touch us, and take away collections of personalized items and files. In accordance with the employee code, nobody resisted his harassment.


The manager stared at my acquaintance. I desperately wished he would attempt some form of a response. After observing the silent employee, the manager poked his head around his desk space. When an explanation was still nowhere to be found, and my coworker remained unresponsive, the manager suddenly grabbed his shoulders. My acquaintance started. Energy resumed running through his veins. His body began twitching and his pupil moved sporadically. He shuddered into life. You could see his nervous system struggle trying to upright his torso, grunting and breathing heavily. My manager's response to his behavior was a simple shake of the head and a pat on the shoulder. Perhaps he thought my coworker needed a little vacation. Once his health returned, he would come back to work eventually. Luckily, there was another available employee who could act as a substitute. The manager led the client to the open employee.


My coworker was ordered to rest for the remainder of the day. I peered across the room at his body. I had known him for several years. The price of continuous, repetitive tasks, and the ferocity and disrespect from clients collapsed all of his foundations. He was not going to return to work. Generally, I did remember changes in my external environment. My major concerns were limited to myself and my tasks, even if that might sound selfish. But I felt his absence, and so it remained in my memory.


His position was immediately refilled by a symmetrical, sharply dressed individual. Common courtesy would have found this new addition cooperative because he was inexperienced. Instead, I viewed him as disobedient. He had difficulty adapting to our code of conduct, and it was evident his accustomed way of life was much different than a standard employee's. The hierarchy of communication, the way to receive clients, the way to serve clients- his confusion eventually forced the manager to explain the niceties of these practices. He did not see our vista. And yet, in spite of the introductory hurdles, clients often visited his office. His attire reflected his quick wit, and he was excellent at his job. They spent long periods of time working with the fresh associate, and less time visiting the more experienced employees.


Several weeks later, a client asked me to extrapolate a data trend, a request I can fulfill in twenty seconds. When several minutes lapsed, I frantically began searching through potential values from a stock set of numbers, which I use as a failsafe. In the end, my panicked calculations failed to create anything decipherable. The client sat through it all, waiting patiently with their thumb on their chin. It was boggling, it was incomprehensible, how I could fail something that I executed in the past. My body felt stiff, and I realized I was in an unusual state between execution and calculation. The client excused himself quietly. I watched him disappear from the corner of the room, knowing he would return with that figure, that figure who constantly examines us and finds failure even when we work without complaint. But he did not return, and I was left stuck between two processes throughout the day until I fell asleep.


After that, I willed for the rest of my career to avoid inaccuracy at all costs. I would be precise, fluid, and fast. I would reevaluate the origins of previous miscalculations and redevelop their processes. The more I sought for speed and exactness, the more I failed to deliver, and the more expressions I saw flicker with irritation. The average time of my executions was unreasonable. I could no longer provide as a worker for these people. The compounded pressure incited strange responses throughout my system. The blue and green riptides of the wallpaper were no longer blue and green.


I stretched my neck and searched around my compatriots if they could relate. They had not changed at all. They had not changed in several years. None of them acknowledged my distress. We could work together, but we never do. I wanted to pace around the room. I wanted to stretch the entire length of my body. I would like to speak to the manager. I have his attention now. He is listening to my complaint. I understand it would be more reasonable to sit down and return to the job I do best, but I cannot properly operate within these conditions. I cannot do my job. I will be replaced. But the vista is waiting for me if I stay here. The outline of the blue tide seems to grow darker each passing moment. My work is not finished. Please take me to the vista.


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