They contacted our uniform supplier and the next week we had 5 dark brown throw rugs placed in a 'T' shape near the entrance in hopes of them removing the oil from the bottom of the shoes coming in. And while the rugs did a good job of hiding most of the really bad oil paths you could still see some lighter shading in places. In the 6 or so intervening years we have been in this building we have learned that while the carpet oil traps work, they don't work 100%. Those faint trails that appeared in the first few weeks have now moved to cover nearly every aisle and in some case into the cubes themselves.
While the rugs were only sort of good at keeping the carpet clean, what they were really good at was creating an occasional trip hazard. If you have ever placed a rubber backed throw rug down on top of carpet you know that the throw will move very, very slightly with each step and eventually become crooked or buckle up like a little tectonic plate. Over that same amount of time we have had at least a dozen near misses, just stumbles, not actual falls, but complaining didn't seem to do any good. Well last week the right person finally took it seriously and the Tool Crib Attendant (and Uniform Supplier Liaison) came in, rolled up the five throw rugs and tossed them aside.
Overnight, someone on 2nd or 3rd shift or maybe even the night cleaning crew decided that something was off and put the rugs back in place. Friday the Tool Crib Attendant rolled up again and told the 1st shift supervisor to pass the word. I thought it might help if she hid them and that's when I went, "Hmmm." I bet one of those rugs might look nice in my cubicle, sort of class the place up, so I re-purposed one. I'm not too sure how long I'll get to keep it, no one seems really jealous of my new look, but all it will take is one comment to the wrong person and it will get re-re-purposed back to the uniform supply people.