From: Carl Bethea
Date: 2-14-92 2:52pm
Subject: A Journey Not to Forget
(API) SAN FRANCISCO--Thousands of local residents crowded the Golden Gate Bridge as an unlikely convoy of buildings passed underneath. In a bizarre scenario that started three days ago, several buildings in Sausalito, a community north of San Francisco, became uprooted from their foundations during an historic rainfall and floated into the Bay. Autodesk president Al Green explained, ``We made a decision to go for it. We could flounder in the Bay until we sank like a cast iron stock certificate, or we could head directly into the storm and fight for our lives.''
Employees broke first-floor windows and began to paddle with whatever they could find. ``As long as we all rowed in the same direction,'' explained a straight-faced Green, ``I knew we could make it.'' When the Bay became too cluttered with other broken vessels, the convoy headed for open sea. Volker Kleinn, commanding a house boat, acted as tugboat to nudge and pull the buildings into safer waters.
``They could have wandered about the ocean for weeks just looking for each other,'' explained Malcolm Davies, who directed the rescue efforts from a hilltop in Marin--except for a brief period when the Juggernauts entered international waters. ``Instead,'' he said as he leaned over a criss-crossed, sweat-soaked org chart, ``they kept a tight formation, worked together, and had fun.''
Upon docking again in Sausalito, a haggard Robert Wenig, leader of the ports group, hurried past reporters carrying a dog and saying only, ``We will ship on time. Get out of the way.'' Green later explained that the dogs had been used in a jerry-rigged power generation system to keep work progressing on the Windows project of the company's flagship-er-popular product, AutoCAD, and that now the animals needed rest and food.
Asked how the three day sojuorn in the Pacific affected product support efforts, Lew Goldklang said, ``What?'' Green later explained that a microwave network link to the mainland had kept the castaways in constant contact with their colleagues. ``We could have eaten those dogs,'' Goldklang said. Braced by an inventory of canned soda and vending machine snacks, most of the the suddenly sailors claim they never thought seriously about a food problem.
Meanwhile, other employees kept spirits high in a continuous party in San Rafael. ``We knew they wouldn't want to miss it,'' explained Lisa McCormack, ``so we just kept it going until they could join us.'' One employee was unhappy that she couldn't keep the 87 billion credits she had accumulated on the casino tables, and several local tuxedo rental firms were threatening to sue unless their tails were returned, but otherwise the company was none the worse for the adventure.
Editor: John Walker