While my day started out on somewhat of a down note because I chose to carpool instead of facing the balrogs, things turned around soon after I got to work and I've been in an uncharacteristically good mood since.
Our director sent out an email at the beginning of the week reminding us of the closure policies for the county. It put me in a foul mood because I have disagreed with the existing policy (in our department) that if the building closes midday due to declining weather conditions that "essential" staff must remain.
Policy has been that essential staff in P&Z was the admin on duty and the planner assigned to the latest shift of the day. Since the latest shift ends at 5:30, that meant if the planner happened to be a bicycle commuter (i.e. ME), then in the depths of winter when the days are shortest he/she would be leaving in the midst of rush hour and in darkness as the temperatures dropped. On a day when the building closes due to inclement weather conditions could be particularly hazardous for "essential" staff.
I approached my boss (the one who called me "chicken" for not riding in this morning) and with the caveat that I was not asking for special treatment inquired whether I would be stuck at work if the situation should arise where I would be deemed "essential." He replied that the director had stated that no P&Z employee is "essential," which I'm sure many developers would agree with, and that I would not be expected to stay at work if everyone else got to go home due to bad weather.
Later this afternoon Facilities announced that the locker room where I shower before work will be closed for FIVE weeks beginning October 31st. After a quick email to the Facilities help desk I found out that there is also a locker room with showers across the road in another county building. The nice lady from the help desk was impressed that I will be riding my bike to work next month.
I know there is snow on the ground and that it will still be there in the morning. I will be riding. Call me crazy if you like, but I will be riding.