austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

Started it tomorrow but will finish yesterday

Walking towards lunch I noticed an arrow on the ground. It was a duct tape arrow, pointing to a corner of the floor. There weren't any posters or features of particular interest around there. It just made unmistakably clear that the floor had a corner there. The corner was even painted white, just in case color might have been interesting. I looked around and located another arrow, pointing directly to the first. Going down the hallway a bit I found another arrow, at an angle to the corner-pointing one, but more nearly parallel to the wall, which pointed to that.

Now it became a quest, admittedly a silly one: where did the arrows start? I could follow them down a little side corridor, and to the other, frightfully unpopular set of stairs. There the arrow was on the wall, rather than the floor, at the top of the stairs. (There are three ways to that floor, which happened to be the second -- the popular set of stairs, the three elevators, only one of which stops on it, and this other set nobody uses.) However, in the shaft, at the landing where the stairs turn around was a U-turn style arrow.

On the ground floor, the stairwell opened up to the outdoors, a fusing of concepts of ``indoor'' and ``outdoor'' not rare here, and there was another arrow pointing into the stairs. The next arrow pointing to it was pretty near the main entrance for the building. That was a point where the arrows changed direction: the next arrow was from about 45 degrees away, and coming from the sidewalk to the circular driveway around the building. Just off of the circular driveway was the last -- or first, I suppose -- arrow. If the trail went any farther I couldn't find it.

Now I just have the mysteries of who put the arrows there, and why they lead to a perfectly empty corner. Perhaps I arrived late, and if I'd been around earlier I would have seen an iPod Nano tucked in the corner and a concealed team of researchers with a tranquilizer dart, butterfly net, and radio collar hoping to catch a prime example of Singaporean undergraduates. I'm forced to speculate.

Trivia: From 1769 to 1821, when Spain ruled California, fewer than thirty families were allowed to acquire their own estates. Source: Measuring America, Andro Linklater.

Currently Reading: The Arrow of Time, Peter Coveney, Roger Highfield.

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