Inaugurations and Fire Alarms

January 23, 7:00 pm

It’s January 23, and we are three days into the new Trump Administration.  Here in D.C., one result is that the monster traffic from road closures we experienced last week (or the just plain not being able to get to the office at all) has returned to plain old horrible traffic.  Woo hoo!  In all seriousness, as a long-time Washington-area resident, I was very relieved that there were no terrorist attacks or major upheavals during the inaugural festivities.

I actually spent part of the week with several members of the UTC Foundation Board and UTC staff planning the inaugural event for the Foundation at the 2017 UTC Telecom and Technology in Charlotte (May 8-12).  Without getting too far ahead of the planning, we will be formally launching the Foundation in Charlotte, with at least a couple of activities in the works – one I can mention now, and that is the annual golf tournament, slated to take place at the prestigious Golf Club at Ballantyne.  Previously, the proceeds have gone to a different charity each year, but now they will stay with the UTC Foundation to benefit utilities’ telecom and technology workforce needs.  More to come on the details of the other Foundation activities both during the conference and beyond, but the bottom line is that you can become involved now – either through signing up to participate in/sponsor the golf tournament or via direct contribution. For more information contact Steve Vick, UTC VP Finance & Administration.

As I mention above, there was a bit of feeling of a return to normalcy here in D.C. today (which, many of you may be thinking, is a return to the usual inside-the-Beltway nonsense, and I will not argue with you there), but it was pouring down rain accompanied by a bone-chilling wind, so there was also a feeling among UTC staff that we might as well hunker down at ourBLOG_photo_1.23.17_v2 computers and not venture out too much.  I actually love days like this because I can check off a lot of things on my “to do” list (this blog, for example).  However, all of the cozy feeling left us as we heard the fire alarm go off and smelled something burning.  So, we skedaddled down the stairs and out the back door, at least one of us without rain attire, but gamely holding onto computer bag and other essential work electronics if needed.  Turns out, the alarm was set off by a person in an office on our floor who was trying to pop some popcorn that got a bit charred.  The good news is that: 1) your UTC staff is safe; 2) the staff is thinking of working for you at all times, even during a potential fire emergency; and 3) the coffee maker was working when we got back.  See the attached pick of a few of the staff post fire alarm.

The bottom line…don’t pop popcorn unless you watch it closely and don’t take your computer bag with you on your way out of a potentially burning building (note to self and, um, Atossa!).