Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Dead Photocopyist

Fortean Times #321 (December 2014), p. 71.



There was a 1980s tradition going around the Greater London Council in its last days that there was a windowless basement “photocopying section” to which particularly useless staff members were exiled, to do photocopying all day. The same legend says that there were comings and goings around a particular photocopier over a few days, and it wasn’t till one of the people was about to leave one day that they noticed a guy who appeared to be leaning up against the wall near one photocopier that was churning out a particularly big run of photocopies, apparently waiting for the run to finish. One particularly eagle-eyed worker, by the standards of a demotivated workforce who couldn’t care less, eventually spotted that he wasn’t moving. He’d been dead, standing up against the wall (leaning against a radiator in the version I heard), his body kept warm by the heat from the photocopier and the radiator. Various photocopying jobsworths had come and gone and just assumed he was working on a particularly big photocopying job all those days.

The story was told me in the tone of some sort of example of how dysfunctional bits of the GLC had become.

Matt Salusbury