Sunday, December 16, 2007

the door is closed

HDR brick and door
Originally uploaded by daveterry.
What's it like crashing to the ground from 100,000 feet? Terrifying and exhilarating all at the same time.

The project has been halted.

The project budget was $100,000,000 for a single year. That's huge. But it has vanished into thin air. Most of it spent on consultants and contractors, on shore and off.

In one month alone 6.5 million dollars was given to a vendor for software development. And we never installed the software. We canceled the development. The person that wanted the software has left the company.

Of course I get paid even for failed projects. I get paid to draw boxes and lines. I get paid to meet with people. I get paid to get people to agree on ideas, directions, and well, diagrams with boxes and lines. It doesn't matter that the systems those diagrams represent never get installed.

I could argue it's all futile and ask: "What's the point?" and leave. But then, my checks would stop coming and I'd get kind of hungry.

I view the diagrams I've drawn and consensus building I've accomplished as my successful deliverables, regardless of the project result. If it's determined that there is no money to implement the beautiful pictures I create, I think the pictures themselves are still works of art. They hang on the hallway walls and conference rooms just the same.

This project is similar to many others I've been on. We start them, then stop them, then start them again, often under a different name. Like a car that can't get enough gas, we lunge forward, then lag and die out. We start up again, jump forward and within a few feet cough to a stop.

We have named our dog Stay. "Come Stay, come Stay, come Stay."

The contractors have left, others have moved off to other projects. And so all's quiet on this floor. The cubes are empty.

I sometimes hear phones ringing off in the distance. No one answers. An elevator bings but no one is there and the elevator descends empty to the lobby.

The only sound I hear is, my own typing at this keyboard. I'm working on another project but remain here on the top floor, alone with my coffee pot, pens and beautiful diagrams.

I have enough money to last me the rest of my life, unless I buy something.