Today I travel to Fairfax, Virginia to check in and prepare for tomorrow’s intake ceremonies at IBM. Thus commences a new chapter in my professional life. The Onboardiad is scheduled to last a week.
I’m struck by this composite word, which has been wrangled into acting like a verb, much like planing and deplaning, which I shall shortly do. “What did you do last week?” “I onboarded at IBM.” “Ah, nice.” I’m not sure I can imagine a younger person approaching me and saying, “Sweet, dude, you onboarded. Way to go.” There’s just not enough skater or punk in the term for my money. But I’ve heard several adults use it with a straight face recently, so I’m gonna let it go by. Best to start off life as a team player.
Don’t think though that I’m not taking this event seriously, all jibes at corporate jargon aside. I am eager to consume the content that awaits me. All the prep literature hints at a week of getting dipped by the heel in the river of corporate culture and values, and I’m hoping to somehow emerge with a smidgen of invulnerability, or at least more than a shred of confidence that I can do this gig well. All my recent bench time has been getting to me lately.
Last night I haunted Jamaica Plain after watching the Red Sox clinch their playoff berth. Aside: will the Sox ever learn to pull their pitcher before it’s too late? Daisuke went in to the seventh with 98 pitches under his belt and proceeded to put two men on, which resulted in our losing the lead, albeit temporarily. But I personally never put much stock in counting on twin home runs in the top of the ninth, especially with the Yanks so close in the rear-view mirror. Anyway, Jamaica Plain. It was balmy and kind of misty, and parties spilled out onto the sidewalks, and noise from the pubs floated in the air. I sought the Pond and took a lap around it, talking myself into relaxing and going with it, this new job. Once I get the rhythm of it down, I’ll understand where the music fits in. I guess I’m just scared that if this gig is too all-consuming or demanding, I’ll have no time to do any serious playing.