Monday, April 21, 2014

The Great State Capitol of Oklahoma

Some of you may know that I work for the State of Oklahoma.  Over the past few years there have been extensive office renovations going on.  Part of that involved a HUGE space in the north hallway on the 5th Floor of the Capitol building.  Here’s an article about it.  The reason this link is to a Tulsa World article instead of a comparable article in the (Oklahoma City) Oklahoman is because the Oklahoman article webpage contains an obnoxious video ad that plays audio, and you, gentle reader, do not deserve the insult.

Now, this photo was taken in the northwest corner of this big Senate meeting room.  If you look at the two people on the right edge of the photo, behind them is the north-south hallway that runs south towards the center of the Capitol.

This rough diagram demonstrates the location of the Meeting Room, and a food prep room next to it.

In the photo above, the fellow with the flag in the foreground is facing north.  Now look at the circled doorway in the middle of that photo.  That doorway leads into a prep room/kitchen.  It is in the Prep Room that our story took place.

In this photo of the Prep Room, the doors on the right being held shut with blue tape are the same ones that are shown open in the circled area in the top photo.

This photo was taken from the Prep Room corner towards the area in the foreground of the top photo.  See the American flag in the background?  That’s the one being positioned in the foreground of the top photo.


My story is a tale of the months before the area was finished, when I played a strange (and VERY ENJOYABLE) game of one-upsmanship with an anonymous construction worker or two.

Now, in the photo of the finished Prep Room, the photographer is standing with their back to an eastward-facing window.  Well, that window used to be very dusty.  So dusty, in fact, that people started drawing in the dust, kind of like kids write “WASH ME” in the dust on a car.

What’s that you see drawn in the window dust?  Let’s look at the window a little more closely.  But let’s take it step by step, because that’s what my tale is all about!

One night, while making rounds, I saw that somebody had drawn something like a deer skull in the bottom pane of the window.

Something like the above.  (It was later wiped out by somebody, not me of course.)

So, one night, for fun, I drew something in the dust in the top pane of the window.

This is what a drew.  And guess what!?! A few days later, somebody drew something in the dust, next to my S Shield!

Yup, somebody liked Batman, I guess!

Well, this was so much fun that the game was on!  I drew another symbol in reply ….

That’s supposed to be the Flash’s insignia.  I gave you the real thing for comparison.

Well, a week later, my unknown Super Friend had made his comeback …

 So the next week, when I smiled at the fine Green Lantern logo my buddy had left, I was running out of Superhero logos that I could draw in the dust freehand.  So, I admit shamefacedly,  I was forced to leave the DC stable …

Once again I am giving you “the real thing,” in case you couldn’t tell that it was Spider-Man’s emblem I was trying to draw.

TO WRAP UP THE STORY …  A few days later, my Secret Pen Pal proposed a triumphant comeback that probably can’t be topped … not in this hyar neck of the woods ...

Below is the entire photo that was cropped to yield the close-ups above:

 Sadly, a few weeks later the time came when I made my evening rounds and discovered that the litter of construction was gone; carpets were laid; and, darn it, windows were cleaned.  Now, I’ll never know who my secret window graffiti pal was, but it was fun over the month or more that our game lasted!

Here’s another angle of the window.  How that tubby guy got into the reflection, I don’t know!

See you next Monday.

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© by Mark Alfred