Small Disaster This Morning

Little things that go wrong irk me. I like a smooth, easy life; it keeps the mind and emotions in check. There is enough disruption in the work day, annoying calls, solicitation emails, and the like. Then there are all the people at work who are constantly complaining. I truly wish for peace some mornings, but you don’t always get what you wish for. Take yesterday for example. I came in expecting the normal but reality did not oblige. Someone on the night cleaning crew must have accidentally knocked over my small portable humidifier that I found here because it was on its side and there was water all over my desk from the remaining fluid in the tank. It was a disaster, but not of epic proportions. It did ruin several papers that were lying about. I hope I can restore them to readable condition.

I had recently assigned a paper and had started grading them the night before. I put them in a stack and left the rest for the morning, but alas they were wet. I wanted to hand them back to the students and now I don’t know if I will make it in time. I had promised them their grades today as it was approaching midterm time and they wanted to know where they stood. I had to resort to another personal appliance: a hair dryer. The humidifier and the dryer and the two small electric items I keep at work. Of course, the humidifier was there to combat dryness in the air, but it was the culprit in some excess water this morning. The dryer comes in handing on a rainy day, but who knew I would ever use it for moist paper.

The drying session was just what was called for and soon the papers were ready to pick up and sort. I read quickly and attached a note and a grade. I would be ready for class with no problem. However, when I handed them out, several students looked perplexed. They asked me why the papers were curled at the edges and showed water spots. Ha! I explained the mishap with the night crew and the bind that the spilled water had put me in. They quickly understood, but I was a bit embarrassed. Should I have been more diligent with the humidifier? Should I empty it every night? I had never had it knocked over before nor had it fallen to the ground. I suppose someone could stumble on the cord but it lies flat on the carpet. I will let it be tonight. If it happens one more time, it is history despite how well it works. It helps me breathe easier and counteracts allergies. I will leave a note for the cleaning crew in the middle of my desk—highly visible in big letters. Watch out for the humidifier. I don’t know why they didn’t notice or try to mop the errant water up. That would have speeded up the drying process.