Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Steno Pads

I am at work, along with three mechanics, building the Volt that will be shown at the Detroit Auto Show next month. Because this is a GM holiday, I am the only Engineer here. My responsibility is to sit patiently at my desk and just wait for problems to come up, fix the problem, then go back to my desk and wait. I'm not sure if I am here to fix problems as much as I am here to make decisions so if later they turn out to be the wrong ones, it will be easy to find the person responsible. Decisions are never black or white, just different shades of gray. I am a whipping boy. I guess I am cool with that.

I am cleaning my office while waiting for problems. I just threw out a year of used steno pads. I thought I was hanging on to them so I could go back and look at notes in case questions came up about who said what, or why certain things were handled the way they were.

I flipped through the pages of these note pads as I threw them out and it occurred to me I was hanging on to them because, in between my legitimate engineering notes and original art work, I wrote down non-work related plans: my plan to rent a cabin so I could pre-ride Yankee Springs last April, times I was shooting for at different races, rough drafts of emails I planned on sending, plans for the future. Well thought out, though often half baked plans, now sitting in a dumpster along with coffee grounds and banana peals and broken car parts.

On the way back from the dumpster I went to our office supply cabinet and got a new steno pad.


  1. I am attempting to clean out the oldie bank safe aka JUNK storage-entrapment piece o' furniture that is too heavy to move. So many things that I have held onto in form o'paper ... I can't throw it out = me sitting here with huge pile of mess on the floor!! So, good for you. :(

  2. My office is spick and span; however, I am traumatized, hard to say if I am ahead.

    Editors note: my original post included pictures of my artwork but it appeared as if I was still in junior high. I have an image to up uphold.

  3. Reminds me of my days as an engineer at Renault in France, in Prototype ops... I still have some of my office stuff from then in my garage, stocked like treasure.
    I don't hate the Volt and think it is a great idea. It is a car I would buy if it ever arrives in Europe, unlike the Renault electric cars and their expensive rent a baterry system.
    Best wishes

  4. Thanks Jim. The Geneva Auto Show (in March) is going to be significant; that's all I can say.