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Data Miners


PradChap. No one ever uses that name. The numbers aren’t even really necessary, just a
way to meet the minimum field requirement of seven figures.
He hits Enter again and holds his breath.
The woman disappears. Her almost naked body vanishes into the thin air of cyberspace
while somewhere, a computer processes his application. Damn you vile temptress, he thinks as
he waits for the list of possible hook ups to appear. Sure enough, they do, a new focus for his
sexual frustrations. The title line says it all.
Women In Your Area Looking for Fun and Casual Hook-ups.
He scans through the long list of grainy pics, nothing like the ones used to lure him in
while he was cruising the torrent sites, looking for downloads. Already he’s losing interest in the
whole process. Playmates just isn’t living up to its name just yet. He looks at the clock in the
lower right hand corner of his screen. The thought of cruising some free sites suddenly seems
much more appealing. At the very least it would kill some time before he finally has to punch
out.
He calls up the Candylist directory and starts right clicking on the sites he wants from the
long list that Candy, the site's hot little avatar that dances in the upper right corner, has
graciously provided him with.
Busty, Teens, and what the hell, Asians.
3:15 pm.
The coffee has turned stale and is just hot enough to melt the three sugar cubes that are
needed to mask the awful taste. Coffee mate is available, but something about the powdered shit
makes him uneasy. He decides to raid the fridge, see if there is any fresh milk or cream in there.
An opened carton of half-and-half is all he can find.
“Don’t let Miriam catch you with that.”
Prad recognizes the voice. It’s Rohit, his only real companion in this jungle of steel and
concrete, at least the only one he truly thinks of as a friend. He eyes the container and assumes
the obvious.
“It hers?”
“Yep, and she’s not one for sharing.”
“How would she know?” Prad says. “As if there aren’t enough people crammed into this
floor as it is.”
“Yeah, I suppose. What are you working on?”
“Fucking the dog,” Prad says, giving his coffee a stir and sip. His appraisal of the taste
comes through in a big wide grimace. Too sweet, and kind of burnt, like honey on blackened
toast. Rohit gives him a nervous look.
“Uh-oh, I know what that means.”
“It’s not like you spend every hour at your desk working,” Prad reminds him.
“No, but Tetris and Minesweeper aren’t considered offensive. You know they’re short-
listing people for the downsizing list. Quickest way to get on that list is to commit a sex
offence.”
“Like flash my junk at the software chick with the big tits?”
Rohit takes a sip from his own mug of stale coffee and looks at the break room door. He
shoots Prad a look that says “watch it!” Even joking about that sort of thing is a no-no in the
workplace nowadays. Prad rolls his eyes and tries to absorb the moral. He will be sure to lower
his voice when making such comments again.
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