Kelvin wouldn’t admit it to anyone, even under threat of water boarding, but as with Tracey, for him the best part of the job was the location. The building housed a branch of Games workshop, and he could nip in in his lunch break and talk with like minded individuals about Dungeons and Dragons to his hearts content before returning to the sterile office. If he wanted variety there was also a branch of Maplin around the corner where he could sate his need for gadgets and gizmos, right next to a Greggs bakers for his favourite steak bakes. This all seemed to his mind, very neat and efficient.
Phil: Those who know Solihull will recognise the office that we’ve put KOD into. There really is a block containing a Games Workshop and it is just around the corner from Maplin and Greggs. Mind you this isn’t that much of a surprise, you could say the same in may towns especially the proximity to a Greggs.
I used to look out on this building while sat in the cafe area of the second employer Candice and I shared and while my game playing tastes never stretched to Orc and Golbin fighting (apart from a couple of games as a teenager which I put down to being young) but Maplin – yep I was there. And occasionally the bakers too, although the appeal of the steak bake escapes me. It’s far too messy for me, like tomato in a sandwich, let me lose on one of those and I might as well smear the contents all over my shirt.
Kelvin and Tracey are a pair of second tier characters in the book. They do some important stuff but this isn’t really their story. I’ll leave her for Candice to explain – he was my problem. Having working in IT for years I think I know what the people who live in the corridors that normal people fear to visit are like. Despite the stereotypes, they aren’t all a bunch of weirdos with no social skills and a tenuous relationship with soap. Most (note, not all) are perfectly decent chaps who care about what they do and exist in a rapidly changing environment. For some reason they do all wear light blue shirts. I’ve never fathomed the reason for this but it seems to happen wherever I’ve worked so I guess that something about proximity to banks of flashing lights and network cables must be responsible.
Whatever you feel about the guys in IT, you know you need them. Yes they use a lot of jargon, but then so does anyone with an interest in fashion or who works in any specialist environment. They say Cat6, you say peplum frill. Get over it. Anyway, when your computer breaks down or something weird happens, who y’gunna call ? And how many of us can work without a bunch of technotools nowadays ? So, if we write anything involving an office, it’s going to need some computer power and web stuff. A laptop plays an important part in one story strand – not a big surprise there and so Kelvin is an integral part of the tale. Sometimes he plays comic relief when we need to lighten things up. At other times we get to feel his pain or at least embarrassment.
Oddly, he never gets a flat pasty in the text. Perhaps in the sequel. Mind you, we have a lot more good things lined up for him there…