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[personal profile] flewellyn
So, Saturday night and Sunday morning, I was at the office, doing some work to migrate our database to a new server. I was alone in the office, so I had the doors locked.

I took a break to go use the restroom. When I was finished, I realized two things: first, the door was still locked, and second...I had left my keys on my desk.

Not only was the office door locked, but also the door to the outside. And it has keyholes on both sides, so you can't open it from the inside without a key. I was well and truly trapped.

I thought briefly about breaking down the door, but decided this was a last-resort option. Was I in a last-resort situation?

Well, I had my cell phone with me, so I decided that no, I was not. So, I tried calling my supervisor, Ron. No answer. Tried his house phone, also no answer.

Tried my boss, Lanny. No answer.

Tried Ron again. Tried boss again.

Tried the other programmers. No answers there.

I was about to try Mark, our GIS guy, when my phone died. Out of power. Kaput. The timing could not have been worse.

WELL. At this point, I took stock of my situation. No way out of the building, and even if I could get out, no way to get home because my car keys were in the office. Even if I could get home, no way to get in because my house key was in the office. No one else was awake to come open the door. I had no food, only water was from the bathroom sink, and no idea when someone else might come by. And, most important, I had no way to communicate my situation to anyone else.

At this point, I decided it WAS a last-resort situation. So, I grabbed the fire extinguisher off of the wall and approached the door.

Bashing the door itself was not going to work, it is solid oak. I looked it over, and realized that bashing open the main office door was a bad idea. There was, however, another door, the door to the server room, which opened onto this corridor. That door never got used, and was usually blocked by large heavy boxes. In this case, however, I knew that they had been moved a week before, and there was a good chance the door was unobstructed.

So, I looked again. Big door, also solid oak. Not going anywhere. Doorknob, however, was a different story. I realized that I didn't need to break the door, just the knob; then I could pull the bolt from the wall and push the door open.

It took about fifteen or so heavy bashings with the extinguisher, but the knob came off, and the bolt came out. I pushed open the door and collapsed on the floor with relief.

I was a bit too frazzled to work any more, so I collected my keys, wrote a note to my bosses about why the doorknob was broken on that door, and left. My last words to myself out the door were, "I hope there's no legal repercussions from this."

Fast forward to today: I'm back in the office, much refreshed after resting, and working again. My boss calls to check on my progress. I fill him in, and then tell him about the incident of the previous night. I worried that he would be upset, or angry, or...something. Instead, he just said "Yikes, I'm glad you're okay. Y'know, this isn't the first time someone has accidentally been locked out. Maybe I should invest in combination locks."


So, no trouble. I might have to pay for the doorknob, but those are cheap. And hey, now I get to tell people that I have actually broken down a door by bashing the knob with a fire extinguisher!
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July 2014

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