I’m generally a pretty placid person, but some days things push me close to the edge.

I started off with an e-mail reminding me that healthcare enrollment for 2005 ends in a week. Which would be fine, except that the web site’s broken, and has been since the start of the month. Even though I called last week and allegedly got my healthcare coverage updated for Texas, the site still says Tufts, MA. And when I try to enroll for 2005, it says it can’t save the information and I should call customer service. So I do, and they say they’re still working on it, and it might take a while.

Next I decide to try again to get my broken Lotus ID badge replaced with an IBM badge that’ll actually open building doors here. The first time I tried, I discovered that the reception area closes at 4pm, because obviously no business ever happens after 4pm and there couldn’t possibly be a need for customers to be on site after that time, let alone employees.

The second time, they told me there was a special badging office and I should go there. Obviously it was in a completely different building. So I went there, and found out it was only open two days a week, and not open lunchtimes.

So this morning I tried a third time. It seems that the strain of two days a week was too much, and the staff were on a break. I waited around, and when they returned they asked if I’d submitted a badge request to the badge request database. It goes without saying that I’d never heard of the badge request database before. Anyway, rules were bent, and I got a replacement badge. Time to return to the room and get back to work.

The exit from IBM onto Burnet Road is right turn only. Fine, I sigh, and I head up a couple of blocks to look for a convenient place to U-turn. Except that there’s a catch–you have two small roads which you can turn into, U-turn and go back south. If you miss those two roads, Burnet Road suddenly becomes one way. As far as I can tell, there’s no way to get onto Burnet Road going south at that point. (The car agrees.)

So, I had to take MOPAC south a few miles then drive back north again to the hotel. Fine. Except that an asshole was so busy tailgating the guy in front that he wasn’t willing to let me change lanes onto MOPAC ahead of him, going as far as to accelerate and honk when I tried to force the issue. So, I had to head even further south.

Next I got back to my e-mail, to find more rage-inducing stimuli. Before I went away, the team that manages the deployment servers for a project I’m working on had mentioned that they had re-drawn the architecture diagram we had submitted, in Microsoft Powerpoint. Fine, I thought, if that keeps them amused, whatever.

Today I discovered that what they had actually done was draw a different diagram which had some similarities to the one submitted, and approve that instead, and not tell anybody that they had changed anything. And then they turned around and asked me to re-do some work because it didn’t agree with their diagram.

It was now just after noon, and I was sufficiently angry that I decided a lunch break would be advisable. Some food, some sunshine, some fresh air, and I was sure I’d be feeling much better.

As we were sitting in the sub shop, I noticed one of the customers leave. He got into the Hummer H2 in the parking lot, which was covered in advertising wrap for a local gym. He drove the H2 out of the parking lot, took three left turns, went about 50m up to the next parking lot, and parked outside the gym, which I could see from where I was sitting.

And that’s why I had to kill them all.

Update: And then my day was truly completed. We were out looking at furniture, and came out of one store to find a crack in the rear left light. There’s a scratch on the top of the bumper too. Looks as if some sort of truck clipped the corner, quite possibly the huge pickup I had parked next to. I wonder how much that’s going to cost to repair?