The Case of the Hideous Stench

When we came to work last Wednesday night, there was a mild stink in the Command Center. Well, sometimes there are weird smells within the Command Center. People bring a wide variety of foods and stuff in, some of which don’t smell so good. Then there are people like Crop Duster, who will pass gas as they walk behind you. (Me, I just throw up the “V” sign to my co-workers to let them know a bomb is about to be dropped.) Regardless, it wasn’t anything really that unusual.

As the night progressed, the smell started getting stronger. While one would get used to it sitting at their work station, going out of the Command Center and then returning would let you know just how bad it was starting to get. The smell continued to worsen as Thursday continued, so The Company decided to do a quick investigation of what could be causing the stench.

The results?

Condiment packages found in small drawers in certain areas.

OK, to be fair, the Scooby Doo team didn’t specifically blame those evil, unopened packages of ketchup, mustard, mayo, soy sauce, etc., but when they sent out an email to the Command Center staff, that was one of two things they complained about. The other thing the Scooby Doo team complained about were how disposable plates, bowls, cups, forks, knives, and spoons were being stored in the glass-doored shelving units that run behind the work stations down each isle.

When we came in Thursday night, the smell was that of a dead animal to most of us, though Amy-chan thought that maybe there was sewage backup somewhere nearby that could be causing it. Regardless, none of us were happy to find our stashes of condiments trashed and the note from the Scooby Doo team telling us we couldn’t keep them in the Command Center. Scooby Doo did a great job of finding just about every condiment package too. They strangely enough couldn’t actually identify the source of the stench.

By Friday the stench of dead animal was just awful. We joked about how someone somewhere was hiding some condiment packages and needed to be punished. Even though one would get used to the smell after a while, fresh whiffs of it would still hit us from periodically. So, when I went to make a food run, I purchased some car air fresheners for our team to use, which we hung on our lamps. The row behind us were pretty happy about that since the combined smells of pine, vanilla, and strawberry were pretty sweet and were strong enough to overcome the smell of dead rodent.

Since CafePress has just about any topic on a t-shirt, one of the guys found one that said “Smell My Dead Rat!” We thought about printing the image and posting it on the door of the Command Center. I guess better judgment prevailed since we didn’t do it.

Regardless, as we left Saturday morning, the stink was still there despite all the condiment removals. I don’t know what management will do about the stink now. If they follow form (ala two years ago), they won’t find anything and will just get a pass from Security to keep the Command Center doors open and some giant fans to blow some of the stink into the halls.

Case closed!

Reader Comments

  1. I have encountered the odor of a dead rat before, but it doesn’t seem to reek as much as roadkills, such as cats, skunks, and raccoons, and dead squirrels don’t have that awful of a stench. Awful smells tend to be from such larger creatures, but none is as troublesome as an all-out sewage problem.

  2. It could be a sewage problem, but the bathrooms didn’t stink and we are on a raised floor. There is water that comes into the raised floor in the breakroom, but that’s it as far as I know. So I just don’t know were a sewage problem would be at.

  3. Too bad you removed the “co-worker” comment, it was mildly entertaining. I think maybe you’re taking that whole “cyber-stalker” thing too seriously. It looks to me like someone or some people are pulling your leg. At least that last comment couldn’t have been serious, because obviously your co-workers wouldn’t be posting here for real and saying things like that. I could be wrong of course.

  4. Oh, my co-workers will post here. There’s a post I made last year which has some 50-something responses from my buds when I called in sick. *lol* However, I knew immediately it was them.

    As to “co-worker” making a remark here, initially I thought about leaving the remark and even responded to it before removing it. You might think I’m taking the “cyber-stalker” thing to seriously, but I’ve been putting up with it for at least a year and a half. Frankly, I don’t feel compelled to give them an audience. The one post they left on my anime blog ended up staying because people responded to it. After people responded negatively for him, he changed it from vile, hate-filled crap to something that could be seen as a posting from a co-worker tweaking me. But I know my co-workers and I know it wasn’t any of them or my friends. So…

    It doesn’t matter though. You should have posted immediately after “co-worker” and maybe I would have kept it. ^_~

  5. I’m the previous anonymous. If you have someone stalking you, that sucks, but how do you know that was the same person? The comment that was here seemed like tweaking to me, it wasn’t that bad. I’ve come across some stinky otaku at cons, so for me it was a funny connection. I don’t know the full context though, and in any case it’s your blog and your choice what to keep.

    About what you said in the reply– if you don’t want to give them an audience, probably not a good idea to leave attack comments up if people respond to them. I think that could encourage the attacker to involve other people. Just my $0.02.

  6. @Anonymous — I have two (or more) years of stuff from this person. While it is *possible* that its a different person (just as it is *possible* that you are my #1 fan), certain things said jive with previous stuff from the same person.

    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t lose sleep over it but there are nutters in the world.

    @JSM — Heh! We came in Wednesday night and the stink was gone. No one seems to know the source of the smell beyond those evil condiment packets, which still gets mentioned every time someone needs one (which seems to be a lot).

  7. >> just as it is *possible* that you are my #1 fan

    Thanks a lot. Forget I said anything, obviously it’s a touchy issue if it’s made you paranoid enough to suggest something like this just because I found that removed comment funny.

  8. My point is that on the Internet, a person can be anyone. Years ago, some co-workers used to get on chat rooms and pretend to be women wanting cyber sex. I remember seeing that and realized that just because someone says they are “this” or “that,” doesn’t mean they are.

    I didn’t say you were my #1 fan, only that you *could* be said person. How would I know the difference for sure? How does anyone know that all these posts, including yours, weren’t staged be me? ^_~

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