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It’s been a week and a half now, and we’ve heard nothing. He’s gone. No reply. No response from email, no response from phone or text messages. Nothing. I leave for vacation to visit family in Illinois, and when I return a week later, our newest, brightest, most hardworking employee is gone without a clue.

I still don’t know how to feel about this, or what to think. Adam has disappeared, and no one has any idea what’s happened or why. I’m 100% fucking serious. I had some concerns before I left that something wasn’t right, but I’d only discussed my concern with my closest friend assuming it was too early to make a big deal of anything. I figured that I’d go away, there would be little to do at work, everyone would relax and take it easy, and the situation would either resolve itself or I’d be around to deal with whatever happened. Instead, something I didn’t even thing was possible happened while I was away. I guess life doesn’t like being predictable.

It’s strange. I’m concerned for his wellbeing because something must be wrong, but at the same time I feel a bit betrayed. He’s been a trooper at work going way beyond anything I’d expect from someone so new to any company having gone through the Trial by Coding with me. He was so driven with working that our biggest problem was figuring out how to slow him down, and get him to relax a little. And then he just disappears.

We’ve actually gotten word that he’s alive, but we didn’t hear this from him. Our general manager was able to get his mom to call us and at least tell us that she’d talked to him since he disappeared, and hadn’t been in a car or motorcycle accident (which he’d been in not long ago – a motorcycle crash where he was fine, physically, but the bike was totaled). We don’t know much more than that, though.

It’s strange, obviously. He was our hardest worker. He liked what he was doing, his mom even told us that he really like the work and working with everyone. I know he was having some social issues, though, and he was having some challenges solving a couple complex work tasks. The only thing that’s made sense about all of this is what Andrew, the company president said during one meeting.

“No one’s heard anything? I hope Adam’s O.K.,” says Christian during our regular Monday morning conference call.

“Of course he’s not O.K.,” Andrew shoots back in reply. “He’s had a mental breakdown.”

I was so confused by everything, but Andrew has a great sense of reading and describing people that’s very intuitive, and he was right. That’s about the only thing that’s made sense throughout this whole ordeal.

I know Adam has had some social issues having moved out, I think for the first time ever away from home, from Maryland to California. He came out with a couple friends, and the two of them had some issues with one another once out here. His sister has had some minor issues back home, and I think he’s missing the comforts of home too (I don’t blame him, that’s normal). He’s still young, he’s still filled with emotions that aren’t always easy to control, and he’s in a completely new place, working for a new company, and he’s had a lot coming at him that’s probably new and maybe a little scary.

I can somewhat relate. I grew up in Maryland, and I’ve since moved across country (although, I moved around a bit before moving across country on my own) with no family to support me when I arrived. It’s a challenge for sure, but I’m a few years older, and I think I’ve experienced a few more things in that time. Still, I don’t know how I should react.

I want him back. I don’t care why he left. He’s a great person to work with. He’s really fucking smart, totally on the ball, and he likes doing the stuff I don’t like so much. He probably works a bit too much, and he should listen to the rest of us more about taking it easy, but he just likes doing this stuff apparently. Go figure, who am I to stop someone from doing something they like doing so much.

Then again, maybe that’s played a role in his disappearance. Maybe we should have been more forceful in making sure he was taking it easy in the off hours. I don’t know. Without any contact, there’s no feedback to judge the situation by. Is there something we could have done at work? Could we have been more supportive? More assertive?

And now, I’m not sure I want him back at the same time. I feel betrayed. It puts more pressure on me. I’ve got more work to do, a tougher job, at least for a period of time, while I cope with the new demands. Why can’t he at least make some kind of contact. I wouldn’t care if he said that he’s having issues, and he’ll need 2 months before he can return. Fine, the job’ll be there. Do what you need to fix anything, and let me know what I can do to help. But so far, no one’s heard anything. We were all afraid he’d been in a major accident, and the only reason we know he’s physically O.K. is because we’ve called around to other people.

I keep waking up hoping he’ll show up when I arrive the next day at work. It’s a tough situation. I don’t know how much longer I’ll hope to hear something from him, or if I’ll just finally write it off as ‘one of those things.’ I want to confirm from him that he’s able to deal with things. Hell, he’s a really smart kid, maybe Google stole him from us. I’d be delighted to hear that over thinking the things I’ve thought.

Beyond worrying about him, and considering my own needs, the big question is, how long do we hold out before putting up another job application? It’s ashame, but he’s disappeared, and the only option he’s left us is to cut the cord.

I’ve got a few opinions (I always have a few opinions at the very least) about getting burnt out, transitioning from your early twenties (post education years) to your mid and late-twenties (the change of life, friends, family, lovers, and everything else), and some strategies that I use to keep that from happening, so I think I might make a post or two on that topic in light of recent events. I’m sure everything will turn out fine for him, but such is life, and such is learning, so at least things are interesting and we’re on our toes. Hope Adam’s able to deal with whatever is going on, and he gets in contact with me or someone at the company at some point.