A pretty leftfield post this, but I’ve been asked to document the ongoing office prank senseless crime which has become known as Squidgygate. So far it remains unsolved, but I’m blaming my friend Steve, ‘cos this is the kind of thing he’d do.
Some background then:
As part of my job, I have to check that the software we write plays nicely with a variety of devices, so we’re constantly taking shipments of shiny new toys to test with. Now, as any kid will tell you (and trust me, software developers are just big kids), the most fun and interesting part of any new toy is not the toy itself, but the packaging. Anyway, on February 15th, after combining the aforementioned packaging with a few unfolded paperclips, Squidgy was born. I proudly posted the following on twitter:
Had a spare minute at work today, so quite literally made a friend 😛
I sent an email round introducing him and asking my colleagues to make him feel welcome (as we do for all new employees), and he soon settled in. Squidgy lived happily on my desk for several weeks, bringing joy to all who walked by.
Then it happened.
On the morning of the 16th March, I arrived at my desk, coffee in hand, to find that he was gone. Nowhere to be seen. My throat went dry as I slumped in my chair, questions racing through my yet-to-be-caffeinated brain. Had he run away? Had I offended him? Is it normal to be concerned for the wellbeing of sponge?
That afternoon, a single sheet of A4 appeared in my mail tray. Guilt was soon replaced by fear and deep-seated concern for my missing friend:
Kidnapped! Who could do such a thing? No demands, just a cruel taunt. A terrifying reminder of Squidgy’s mortality. I started asking around, not sure who I could trust (though I suspected it was Steve). I set up a watch on the mail trays, hoping to catch the perpetrator if he tried to deliver another message. The next day, I found another note:
Look at his little face! He’s clearly terrified. Worryingly, the kidnapper had gotten wise to my stakeout, as this note was addressed to me in a sealed envelope, delivered in the internal mail. Undeterred, I continued investigating. I noticed that both notes showed the same ink spots on the left hand side of the paper. Our office has a printer on each floor, with all of the computers set to print to their own floor’s printer by default. Mine was clean, but after a quick hunt round I discovered that the printer on the floor below had a dodgy cartridge. I started to form a list of suspects. Steve works on the floor below, and so became prime suspect.The next day another note arrived. This one delivered by a colleague who claims to have found it.
My colleague claims that the note was found early that morning, before most people had gotten in to the office. The list of suspects was narrowing (but still included Steve). I decided to launch a campaign for further information (and to put some pressure on Steve), including a photo fit made from bits of Steve’s Facebook photos:
Sadly no one offered any information (apart from several comments expressing the horror that the photo fit had instilled in them). As another day passed, I found another note:
This is getting serious. I’m back in the office tomorrow, so I’ll keep digging. I just hope it’s not too late…