Do Not Enter
My council building is huge and my desk very small and I tend to follow a fairly well worn path from the front door to my desk and back.
This means that there are plenty of places in the council where I have never been. It was therefore quite a shock when I found myself invited into our IT department this week. The IT department is usually locked and entrance is on a strict ‘invite only’ basis so I actually had a strange ripple of excitement as I was invited to enter and was led through the doors by the slightly pasty IT manager.
Not only is the IT department harder to get into than the local nightclub but the lights and baubles are way more exciting. Above a couple of the desks were big monitors with a variety of crazy graphs and lines that seemed to move almost of their own volition. There was a spattering of high powered laptops (I wondered where they went) and some people earnestly working on some programmes that I had never seen and looked very complicated.
And much like the nightclub at the end of the largest of the offices was the IT equivalent of the VIP area; the ‘server room’. Even with my privileged access I certainly wasn’t allowed in there (and rightly so; who knows what I might have ended up doing!).
As I wondered back to my desk (taking the same route as ever) it got me wondering what are the other secret rooms in the council? Below are my top five:
1) The Chief Executive’s Office
The big boos lady has her own plush office complex and whilst I have occasionally drifted past the office in search of someone or something I’ve never been into the inner sanctum of what I’m sure is some sort of combination of the bat cave and the Oval Office.
2) The CCTV room
Now, I must admit that I have been into the CCTV room once and it is the single coolest room in the whole council. To enter you need to sign into a book and be formally granted access. Inside there are more TV screens than you can ever imagine all recording an aspect of life in our sleepy, or in reality not so sleepy, LA area.
3) The Post room
I sort of imagine a cluttered room with a series of interconnected hamster wheels peddled by giant hamsters whilst our basement dwelling postal staff do their best throw letters into the slots of the hamster wheels, all accompanied by a disco ball and some loud 70s music. Which would be cool. In reality I know they deal with scanning, franking and mailing and have an uber-efficient, and slightly sterile, set up down there. Even so, hamsters would be cool right?
4) The Public Toilets
If the staff toilets are this bad I can only imagine (fear) what the public toilets are like. I’m certainly not going anywhere near them.
5) The roof
No-one is ever allowed on the roof so I have no idea what’s up there. My hope? A full sized turfed football pitch and an open Jacuzzi. I’m not going to check though; the air vents, chimneys and pipe-work would just disappoint.
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