Joe’s coming back. – By @_florussell

Joe’s coming back. 

I just got off the phone with Joe. He’s been working from home for a few weeks and we’ve all missed him terribly. Its amazing how quickly we’ve all carved out our own presence here in Pop, that removing one piece of the Checkout jigsaw has such a sizeable effect on the studio atmosphere. Joe brought us his unique combination of a smile that’s wry and a wit that’s dry, (not to mention his sassy TikTokking ability), all of which were sorely missed while he was away. The thing about Joe though is, he knew how much we’d all missed him. He knew it and loved it. So much so that he’s completely capitalising on it, keeping tomorrow’s triumphant return a secret. He’s planning on making a grand re-entrance, just in time for Friday drinks. Well, we also missed how much of a self professed drama queen he is, so I certainly can’t fault him. Plus, even though I’m dying to tell everyone, I can’t ruin his surprise plan, and Amy, (who’ll read this before anyone else), now you can’t either. So I’m happily writing all about it in this SCAB, in the safe knowledge that it won’t be published until Joe has quietly settled back into the column of old news. 

This got me thinking though. What would people miss about me if I left for a few weeks? What would they be relieved to be shot of? What fragile legacy (if any) have I left in the studio, that the Checkout girls and boys might remember, shake their heads or smile fondly to themselves about, before cracking on with one of the relentless briefs we have on at the moment. Ok. Well they might be glad not to have to put up with my stress singing. Granted I sing a lot (I even got fired from a job for this once, send me a message if you’d like to hear that story), but it gets far more frequent and a lot less tuneful whenever I’m stressed, which normally means we’re close to a deadline. People have been patient with me so far, but I know its only a matter of time before I (rightfully) get a stern talking to from my fellow middle floor mob, and I’m forced to make a conscious effort to shut the hell up. Maybe I should just start trying to do that now. I asked Joe himself this same question. He said Marc’s masterclasses wouldn’t be the same without my verbal jabs in response to things he’s said that I vehemently disagree with. He said he’d also miss my positivity, so its good to know I don’t come across as consistently cantankerous. Conor would probably miss having someone who is always ready and available to respond to his familiar beckon call of “Pret?”. 

Whenever people aren’t in (even if its just for a day), I always miss them. When Alice worked from home on Monday, it felt jarring not having her around to describe everything as jarring. Alex Heath hasn’t been in now for a while, and the quality of the top floor’s music selection has dramatically decreased. Tad (and therefore also Tod) has been self isolating, and everyone can’t wait until he can come back. I’m aware this SCAB has become very rambly, and at this point, I can’t even remember what I set out to write it about. But I suppose what I’m feeling right now is that (as much as I can’t wait to go home for Christmas), its going to be really weird not seeing everyone every day. I’ve gotten so used to being around everyone, I’m already looking forward to being reunited for term two, and we have even left yet.

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