© Richard Baker Photography.

But Sir


I have just selected a number of tunes to play on my computer at work when a beckoning voice calls from the corner of the office 7 of us share. I have ignored the reminder that has popped up in my outlook but I know that it is a futile gesture, for there is a meeting to be had.

It isn’t a ‘real’ meeting though, just one that involves me moving my seat across the room to the desk of the plump girl responsible for doing all the work in the office.

I go over there wondering why this has to be me. My boss jumps up from his seat. He walks over to join the two of us sitting opposite the girl’s computer screen. It is open with the relevant file blandly displayed for all to see. The inadequacies of the document are exposed to all the world and I wonder what happened to the dignity given to the mistakes of an earlier generation by manila folders.

Sunlight is hurling itself into the room via the huge windows that have replaced a wall right next to my desk. I am sure that there’s something going on out there that I need to be seeing right now but the light obscures everything.

The girl and the boy are looking at me and saying nothing. I nod my head and they begin chattering once again.

Bob Dylan’s voice is emanating from the tinny sounding speakers all of the way over there on my desk and I’m sure that he has something to say to me. He must do, he is talking right at me.

“You walk into the room
With your pencil in your hand”

What’s that you say Bob?

The silence around me becomes audible once more and I look back at them looking back at me. I agree with them and wonder about ‘point 2’. They begin to talk once again, what’s that you say Bob?

Because something is happening here
But you don’t know what it is
Do you, Mister Jones ?

But I’m Goldberg Bob…

“Are you sure that this is how you want to distribute the bonuses?” I catch her question with my ear and throw an answer with my mouth but I can’t for the life of me understand the words. Bob’s still talking at me. He must be talking at me, there’s no one else in the room.

And you says, “What’s mine ?”
And somebody else says, “Where what is ?”
And you say, “Oh my God
Am I here all alone ?”

“Oh no did I say that out loud” I wonder in my mind. There’s got to be something outside to see but the sunlight is hiding everything. Except the computer screen in front of me. Bob’s still singing at me, the girl is talking to me and the boss is holding his chin in his hand. I look at the screen and wonder what the sunlight is hiding and how best to dive into it.

You have many contacts
Among the lumberjacks
To get you facts
When someone attacks your imagination

What’s that you say Mr Dylan? I’m here in a meeting. Please hold. But he doesn’t hold.

But nobody has any respect
Anyway they already expect you
To all give a check
To tax-deductible charity organizations.
You’ve been with the professors
And they’ve all liked your looks
With great lawyers you have
Discussed lepers and crooks
You’ve been through all of
F. Scott Fitzgerald’s books
You’re very well read
It’s well known.

No you’re not making any sense good sir. I have an open document here that we must speak about. The urgency of assigning bonuses must be understood and there are many to be assigned in the future as the promotion goes online and players make their deposits.

Please leave me alone but stay with me. I can’t be without you but you aren’t here.

But something is happening here
And you don’t know what it is
Do you, Mister Jones ?

You must have me confused with someone else Sir, for I am Goldberg and there’s no one else in the room. Did I say that out loud Sir?

There is a mistake in many places at once in my document. She has noticed and is asking me for the corrections in front of my boss but I don’t know what they are. The sunlight is hiding a secret from me that I must discover. “No but on Thursday the players will receive special free spins and on Friday the same thing.” I’m sorry Sir I respond, did I say that out loud?

And he says, “How ?”
And you say, “What does this mean ?”
And he screams back, “You’re a cow
Give me some milk
Or else go home”.

Why are you still talking to me? I can’t hear you anyway. The days are like that because I didn’t care when I wrote the document, it’s just my job you see and I have no other. Did I say that out loud? I’m sorry Sir.

There ought to be a law
Against you comin’ around
You should be made
To wear earphones.

But it was you who came here to talk to me? I know that it’s not my desk, mine is only a couple of meters away, isn’t it? Can I go back there now? I can see it in the sunlight so bright that I can’t see anything.

Does something is happening
And you don’t know what it is
Do you, Mister Jones ?

But Mr Dylan, my name’s Goldberg. I’m awfully sorry Sir.