I had a bit of a dilemma at work today – do I leave, having finished my shifts, and get home in time to head off to my niece’s birthday party. Or do I stay for a few more hours and try and make sense of the nest of wires under the desk?

I mean, both of those have their merits.

And I do like my niece. She’s lovely.

But I really like wires. Wires are awesome.

So it was a hard decision.

I chose niece over wires in the end. But all through the birthday party I was thinking about wires, I won’t lie.

One of the cameras we use to watch the rooms has gone done, for reasons best known to itself. It broke yesterday, as best as I can tell, but the late evening shifts are not the time to start tracing wires back to their sources. That’s definitely a job for first thing in a morning.

So there I was this morning, following a series of identical black wires to work out what belonged to what. And cursing the wire gods for knitting possibly the worst bunch of bastards (as my dad would have called the tangles) I have ever seen in my life. If I hadn’t set my heart on hot dogs and cake, I would have had all the wires laid out neatly along the floor and put back in position in some sort of OCD fashion (see also: the back of our TV unit).

I’ve started to label the black wires. The identical black wires. Because it’s alright unplugging one wire to swap it with another to see if it makes any difference, but if you lose track of the wires you’ve unplugged you’re in a world of confusion and possibly confounding the problem even further.

And then when those wires run up in a suspended ceiling and run the length of your corridor you really hope the problem is with the tech on one end or the other and not with the wire itself.

Because that’s going to be an absolute sod to replace.

Not to mention the fact that I’ve just gone to all the trouble of labelling it!

As it stands, it’s still not working. I’m hoping the camera itself has died. But that needs investigating further, using a ladder, a torch and whatever else I have to hand. I’ve roped in the boss as well, so he’s going to have a looksee at it when he gets a chance.

But I won’t lie. I’m sitting here writing this, at half past eight on a Sunday night, and I’m considering going into town tomorrow so I can nip* into work and tackle some more of these wires. I’ve started now. I don’t like to leave a tangle half sorted. It’s not in my nature.

Unless there’s somewhere else I could be that serves cake. In which case I’ll begrudgingly abandon it…

Footnote: * in this case, nip could be anything up to a six hour visit…