Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Rumor Mill

Because of both the relative isolation of the station, and the extremely tight-lipped nature of the Raytheon hierarchy, everyone on station is more or less in the dark about most things. Good information is hard to come by, and so to compensate, Antarctica has developed a thriving rumor mill.

It's pervasive enough that the [mandatory] introductory video warns new arrivals against believing anything anyone says. The most popular topics are who's doing what to who (usually dating and/or fighting), how far behind the station is on food or fuel resupplies for winter, and who/what's coming or going on the next flight.

Recent rumors have involved the station closing early due to the extreme cold lately (more on that soon), and some of my coworkers were told to "consult the rumor mill" so many times that they began to believe it was a tangible thing, posted on a wall or webpage somewhere.

Actually, most of station social life resembles junior high school. Discussion topics are similar, relationships follow similar paths, and the interpersonal rumor mill is just as active. It's kind of surreal to be in junior high with a couple hundred 30-year-olds. Does keep life interesting, though.

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