Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Unlucky 13



For the past 37 years I have worked in many Chicago hi-rise office buildings. Most were modern and a few were landmarks.

All in all, while working I paid little attention to the floor I was working on unless it offered a splendid view.

When working full-time a few of my offices had very nice views. At 360 N. Michigan I had a corner office view looking west and north on the Chicago River. It wasn’t my biggest office but the view from the 20th floor windows were better than any framed image I could hang.

Today Yahoonews had a piece published about the 13th floor of Chicago hi-rise buildings.

Recently I have had on-site contract assignments at 35 S. Wacker. One space I shared with about six other contract workers was a very large corner office overlooking the Chicago River and Marina Towers on the north bank. It was what I would call a splendid view.

Someone had brought binoculars into the office because a woman living in the Marina Towers at our eye level would exercise in the nude at precisely 10:15 am each day. We figured she worked in a nightclub or as a waitress in an upscale establishment judging by her silicone implants and lower tonsorial grooming. A hooker? A call girl? Maybe. Our imagination ran wild as we fought over the binocs for a peek. This lady knew exactly what she was doing.

This took place on what was technically the 13th floor.

When entering an elevator at 35 W. Wacker an astute observer would notice there was not a 13th floor button, the buttons on the elevator panel allowed one to press the 12th floor and next was the 14th floor.

Occasionally I would get into a crowded elevator and ask a person nearest the button panel (who usually was completely engrossed reading email, tweeting or facebooking on their personal “device”) to “please press 13” for me. 9 out of 10 times the time-poor young uber-connected digital geekazoid would hunt for the 13th floor button before realizing he/she had been punked.

I got quite a few laffs.

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