RIP, "Pretty Dress Girl"

That was my name for her when I heard the news she was dead. I don't know her actual name. We were never introduced. She was kind enough to say "hi" in the kitchen, but she worked in a different section. Small talk takes minutes out of that pittance per hour. No problem. Gotta get back on the clock.

She always wore a smile. Usually a dress too. Sometimes, some exotic filigreed hosiery. I think she spoke Russian.

She had a month from the pancreatic cancer diagnosis until her end.

Not a word about her passing from her employer. Not even to the people in the AZ office.

She was invisible. A widget.

Some guy named Tom died a couple months ago. He was a project manager in Michigan. The entire firm (even the real lawyers) got an email. There were appeals for money for his two now-orphaned kids. My section got a personal announcement from our project manager before that. To my knowledge, he was never in the new Scottsdale location.

My boss went to his funeral. Before that, there were hushed conversations in offices and moist eyes among the command crew.

He was not invisible. At least not to the non-widgets - the salaried gentry.

[Edited to add: Her name was Olga Zlotnik. I learned this from someone who had talked to her, not from the administration.]

[UPDATE: Six days after the fact, TPTB acknowledged it. Maybe it's just the nature of information diffusion. Maybe I am just a bitter widget.]