Lunch Break

After what felt like an eternity, Gary Nicholson checked his watch. He was sure it was nearing his mid-day break. He had been clamoring away at his desk since he signed in at 9 AM, and he was positive it had been a productive morning. He was preparing for his lunch break where he could take some well-deserved time-off.

But an eternity had not passed – Gary’s watch showed 10:15. He knew time passed slowly once he signed in for the day, but a man can hope. Gary’s shoulders slumped as the realization that he was in for another long day set in. He turned back to his monitor and began typing away. The weekly report he was responsible for soon began taking shape on the screen.

Happy with how the report had turned out, Gary turned his attention to a different report he was tasked with. This one, however, would have to be crafted by himself and not from a pre-existing template. He opened up a new document and prepared a simple outline in his mind.

It all started with the cursor, its metronomic blinking reminded him of every second that was slipping away from him. There was no peace to be found in its periodic blinking – every occurrence of the blink took him one step closer to the end. Deadlines would come and go, empires would rise and fall, but the cursor would blink, unaware and apathetic of what happens on the other end of the screen.

A blinking cursor would never have attracted his attention before. The blink represented precision – every blink evenly spaced in time. The cursor was symbolic of an eager assistant ready to record every thought for posterity. Right now though, the blink represented not the warm gaze of an empty canvas waiting. It represented the cold stare of a malevolent entity, watching him like a predator, counting down the seconds until he engaged in fight or flight.

And then, as suddenly as it had emerged, the dark shadow lifted off the cursor. Gary snapped out of the trance, his attention retracting into him once again. Gone was any semblance of symbolism in the cursor. In its place was a simple cursor, blinking in digital precision, awaiting his inputs.

It took some effort but Gary was able to peel his eyes off the screen. He glanced at his wristwatch. It read 1:30. A wave of confusion washed over Gary, and he double-checked the time. He poked his head over his cubicle – most of the other cubicles were empty, their occupants away for lunch. Gary was confused, but happy. He could have his lunch now.

He got up from his chair, locked his computer and turned off the screen. This wasn’t so bad after all. It was finally time. Time for his lunch break.

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