Gimme Those TPS Reports. And STRIP!

A few months ago, the company I work for moved into a cool new building in downtown Camas. It’s not really “new” because it was built in the 1920s and housed many businesses over the years, most recently an automotive dealership. Where service bays once stood, there are now desks. The ceiling was ripped out, exposing wooden beams and skylights. It’s the very definition of a hip and modern workspace. We’ve even got a mezzanine with a ping-pong table, and a kegerator in the kitchen. You would never know that a year ago the concrete floor was stained with oil and the whole place smelled of rubber tires.

That was then…

Fuel 1

And this is now:


As you can see, quite a change. We needed to move, because here’s a pic of what our old office looked like:

Like Sardines in a Can

Oops. Wrong shot. Here we go:

Old Fuel

Talk about a tight fit. It got to the point where new employees could either set up a desk in the parking lot or the vacant field next door, which is kind of a bitch when it rains. Fortunately, this is Washington, so it rarely ever rains here.


OK, fine. Maybe it rains a little. But the point is, we needed bigger quarters, and we got them. The new office is a great space that we are all pretty happy with. But after we moved, I learned the owners had been considering buying the building next door. Which would have been way cooler, because the building next door is…

A funeral parlor.

If I’m lying, I’m dying (and if I were dying, how convenient would that have been? They could’ve wheeled my body right into the conference room). Which means our front lobby might have looked like this:

Funeral Parlor

And c’mon, you know a place like that is haunted! The funeral home dates back to 1912. That’s over a hundred years’ worth of dead bodies gracing the premises. Surely a few of those spirits might decide to linger. And because I have such a fascination with ghosts, you know I’d just love that. Instead, if I’m lucky I might get to see the spirit of a ’53 Buick. It’s not quite the same.

The owners got to tour the building, and said it was pretty cool but in the end wouldn’t have given us as much space as we needed.

Damn. What could have been.

Stripper---Pole-DancerAlso, they said the office upstairs contained a stripper’s pole. I kid you not. A funeral home with a stripper’s pole?! I don’t know what kind of shenanigans were taking place there among the stiffs (heh), but suffice it to say, my interest is piqued.

And I’m thinking my cool new workplace isn’t quite as awesome as it could have been…


Published by Mark Petruska

I'm a professional writer and editor living my best life in south central Wisconsin.

10 thoughts on “Gimme Those TPS Reports. And STRIP!

  1. “And this is now:”

    WOW, Mark, what an AMAZING transformation! I freaking LOVE it! And what a great space to work in because it’s so open and airy. I love the exposed air conditioning/heating ducts on the ceiling. WAY cool-looking!

    ” A funeral home with a stripper’s pole?! I don’t know what kind of shenanigans were taking place there among the stiffs (heh), but suffice it to say, my interest is piqued.”

    OMG…how funny! But it really has me wondering what the place above the funeral home was used for!?!

    “And because I have such a fascination with ghosts, you know I’d just love that.”

    Yeah, I would have felt the same way about the funeral home because I too have a fascination with ghosts.


    1. The acoustics leave much to be desired, and I personally like cubicles. But I’m probably the exception to that rule. It is nice to be able to converse with coworkers should issues arise. Otherwise, I just keep my headphones on and rock out.


  2. I gotta say your new space is pretty awesome even if it is without the ghosts and stripper pole. My office is very tiny and really there is nothing “hip” about it. Talk about creative suffocation over here. How can I come up with a trendy marketing campaign staring at old metal filing cabinets and bare white walls?


    1. I get that! It can be a challenge staring at walls. What I miss most about not having them is, I have no place to hang a calendar. It’s forced me to get creative in different ways: swing-out clip for papers attached to my monitor, a desk calendar, etc.


  3. I am envisioning a lot of noise, and a lot of distraction created by having, oh, everything in one’s peripheral vision. But it IS a beautiful space. How is it to work in?

    Oh, and you could TOTALLY be haunted there. You know SOMEONE since 1912 totally loved new cars and used to hang out looking at the new models at that dealership. (Hang car-themes calendars to appease their frustration at the way you’ve “ruined” their favorite hangout.) Not to mention all the people who died of sticker shock there over the years. Oh, the hauntings!


    1. That next to last line had me laughing out loud! Sticker shock, indeed. And yes, it IS distracting – especially when my neighbor starts playing his music out loud. Like I mentioned to Bijoux, headphones are my saving grace. It’s definitely a great spot to show off, though. Even without the ghosts.


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