Archive for the ‘Office’ Category

April 6, 2012

Today is National Tartan Day .

Honestly, I didn’t even realize there was such a thing until a couple years ago when a lady in the office came in regaled in her formal dress with her family tartan.

I guess someone talked someone in Congress into passing a resolution or some such to recognize the contributions of Scottish-Americans…sheep jokes, penny pinching jokes, ummm…. OOO!!!… Single Malt Whiskys!

So this year I decided to wear my tartan tie to celebrate the day. And, just because it is a Friday and most of the boss-types are out of the office, I decided to wear my work kilt.

Work Day? Work Kilt.

I’ve gotten many comments, most “What the hell are you dressed up for?”, with a few compliments (I’ve been told I have nice legs).

In explaining why I was dressed as I was, I occasionally got the standard question: “What is worn under your kilt?”

To this, I give one of my standard responses – –

Answer #1 – Nothing is worn. It is all in perfect working condition!
Answer #2 – Two shades of lipstick…so far.

Even more fun were a couple conversations with some female coworkers.

First came our office finance person – –

Finance Lady: Ooo, that is a good look for you…where’s your bagpipe.

She immediately knew that she had offered up a wonderful double entendre and skulked away, avoiding my gaze whilst my officemates are rolling on the floor laughing.

Later in the afternoon, a co-worker, M, stopped by the water cooler next to my cubicle and peeked in my office. She asked a few questions about the kilt, then commented – –

M: Well, you’re not sitting very lady-like there.

GnuKid: Well, I’m clearly not a lady.

M changed the subject as she saw my sporran [Scottish man purse] she liked and pointed at it…waist level, yet the other people in the office can only see her pointing downward at me and having her last comment in their minds, hear:  Oh, I see…very nice!

Didn’t even get a chance to blink as my officemates once again burst into inappropriate laughter.

I stopped by her desk a bit later to bug her a bit more. She started to say something. Rethought it. Started again. Rethought it. And finally admitted that there was nothing she could say that wouldn’t be taken in the wrong way.

And all the while? She was staring at my sporran.

M: I want to, but can’t even say, “I can’t stop looking at it!”


Feeling the least I could do was acknowledge her kind words, I offered a hearty “thank you”…much more for the benefit of those howling hyenas around me than anything else…as she wandered away with her face growing more crimson by the moment.

It is a bit cold-ish to be wearing this at this time of year, but I’m having a blast. And very looking forward to this year’s Celtic Festival where I can wear it for three straight days.

And, who knows? I may just have to show up at work randomly dressed like this. Or wear it on the bike ride tonight…


Tis The Season

November 1, 2011

Halloween, that is.

Yesterday was Halloween.  And it closed out a great 5 days of wearing stuff that wasn’t typical.  Costume?  You bet (and a blast that was).  But more…

The folks at the office foolishly wisely asked me to be master of ceremonies at an awards luncheon.  Now, while I do theater and being in front of a crowd doesn’t bother me, I don’t often seek out that opportunity outside of theater.  This was no different.  So, I thought to teach them a lesson.  It’s an awards ceremony?  Then the emcee should be wearing a tuxedo.  So, I wore a tux to the ceremony.  And – – –

I wore it to work – –

forgot my top hat at work

I even wore it to the dentist – –

I told them I wore it just for them

And to Krogers – –

amazingly little reaction to this outfit

The next day was dress down day at work.  We are, on occasion, allowed to dress less professionally.  That day’s theme was favorite sports teams.  Therefore – –

yeah, a Steelers with it

Then we hit the Halloween weekend, with a couple parties.  And, stupidly unthinking bravely on their part, the office encouraged wear of costumes to work.  What could I do?

and this was downright comfortable!

Yep.  I enjoy this time of year.

Shown The Door

October 23, 2011

Yep.  There it is.  “The Door”.

And the big boss is showing it to me.

my bunny is actually blue

No, I’m not being fired.  And at least he didn’t tell me something trite like, “Don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.”

The business I’m in favors job mobility – – moving to a new position every few (3-5?) years.  The thought is you don’t want to become stale and entrenched in your current job.  Likewise, the thinking is you can bring fresh ideas to the new position.


I hold to the counter argument (with allowance for exceptions) that the expertise and depth of knowledge built up over the years is a synergistic bonus to job success.  Move only when you want, not when someone thinks you’ve been there too long.

The exceptions?  The curmudgeons and troglodytes are always there in any business.  Sometimes they must be moved just for the health of the organization.  Admittedly in the mostly futile hope of actually finding them a job that they can accomplish without bringing down civilization as we know it.

(by the way, i miss the muppets)

I’ve been here 3 years.**  The big boss thinks it’s time for me to go.

So, I seek other jobs in the big organization, outside of my office.

The good part?  The jobs I’m looking for mostly require an interview with a panel.


If I “accidentally”, during that interview – – –

a)      Pick my nose,

b)      Leer at the cleavage of the woman leading the panel,***

c)       [there is no (c)], or

d)      Channel and start quoting ancient Hittite philosophers.

…or some such nonsense, I can self-sabotage the interview!

But not too much.  I don’t want to burn too many bridges before I get to them.

I’m not wanting to move soon.

If I ignore the door…is it not there?



 **…this time…I like this place  I’ve been here numerous times in various positions.

 ***yeah, I know that wouldn’t really be an “accident”.  Rather, it takes purposeful effort to avoid doing that in the first place. 

Head Scratcher #284

July 20, 2011

okay, so at work we have these opportunities for professional development with classes given periodically, often at lunch.

i got this e-mail – –


Professional Development Series Power Lunch

July 30, 11:00am-1:00pm

Room 132

(Sorry Food/Drinks are not permitted in this room)


ummm… maybe the topic of the presentation is “Oxymorons in the Workplace”?

makes just as much sense as a no-food power lunch

Fun with Grammar

December 10, 2010

…and, no, I’m not talking about the mom of of my mom or dad.

‘Tis the holiday season and holiday parties are rolling.  Aside from the usual office parties, last week the women in our office up and declared a “ladies lunch” where they would go off and spend hours drinking and eating and yakking.  work?  that was for us men-folk, that day. we weren’t even considered to invite.

But, with all the hoo-ha about business places to be politically correct*, the boss (one of the ladies), came around the next day and suggested that the guys have a “gentlemen’s lunch” so no one would feel left out.

Aside from the fact that most of us aren’t really gentlemen, we dove on the opportunity since it would be a valid and boss-approved chance to go drink and eat and do manly things (ogling the waitresses, watching football highlights on the big screen tv in the place we went, scratching ourselves, and so on).

After being seated and ordering our first round of drinks, one of the guys offered up that we should play manly games.  When questioned on just what the hell ‘manly games’ really are, he paused a second and said, “Let’s see how many times you can use ‘fuck’ in a sentence!”

I replied, surprising myself at the ease of my diatribe:

“Seeing how many fucking times these fucks can use ‘fuck’ in a fucking sentence is a fucking stupid fucking idea that none of the fucking fuckers here at the fucking table would give a flying fuck about…so fuck off, you fucking fucker.”

I was immediately declared the winner and we moved on to talking about women and drinking more beer and belching.**

depends on what the prize is...


*Attributed to many, the definition I enjoy most is:  “Political Correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end.”

**Okay, that’s not exactly true.  After dissecting the sentence, we realized there were verbs, nouns, and adjectives all based on ‘fuck’, but no adverbs.  So, my question to the readers – – – can you make ‘fuck’ an adverb?

Big Dan II

December 8, 2010

Big Dan strikes again.

I introduced Big Dan earlier and gave an example of how he doesn’t hold back on what he thinks of a person and often has a ‘special’ way of imparting that.

Consulting a team who recently had a change of leadership, I went to Big Dan to explain what help they needed and what I needed from him.  I explained that the lady now in charge has been a program manager before, but never in our industry.  Our industry, mind you, has many varied, arcane, and complex rules for how to manage programs.

I knew Big Dan had the essence of the problem when I later heard him describing this new program manager to his boss – – –

“That lady’s tree of knowledge has no branches.”*

pretty sad looking tree, if you ask me

Yes, I realize this may already be a common phrase to some people.

So I’m unread…

So I’m uninformed…

So my tree of knowledge has no branches…



*I’ve often heard a variant of this to refer to inbred families:  “Her family tree doesn’t have any branches.”

Job Assignments

July 8, 2010

I’m in a gopher farm.  That’s the one where there are lots of cubicles and, if there’s any kind of commotion, people’s heads pop up over the walls like gophers peeking out of their holes. 

yeah, we really look like that

I didn’t want to be in this room in the first place.  But when I was directed by the boss to go there (“…so you can be closer to the people you’ll be working with…”*), I only had a few cubicles to choose from.  The one right next to the front door of the room…or the one right outside the boss’s office.

I chose the one by the front door for a couple reasons.  First, it made for a quick escape whenever it was time to go home or go to lunch.  Second, I actually had a window!  But the bigger reason was the boss himself.  At the time, we had a boss who was an avid proponent of the L.O.S.T. method of handing out jobs.

L.O.S.T. – Line Of Sight Tasking

In other words, when the boss had a job to hand out, his tendency was to give it to the first person he sees when he walks out the door.  I HAD to have the office most removed from his sight.

Well, since moving in, the boss has moved on**.  The new boss?  A milquetoast.  Rarely in the office and quiet as a mouse when she is.  She’s handed off the job assignment task to her deputy dawg.  He does not use L.O.S.T. to assign jobs.  He uses the “You’re next on my list” method.  No matter that I may be uniquely qualified to do the next or last job on his list.  No matter that my other assignments are butt-ugly and take lots of my time to do already.  It’s my turn to get a job, so I get it.  <heavy sigh>

But there’s partially*** good news.  I changed my office recently.  We’ve had quite the turnover of people, so a couple offices opened up.  I now have a quiet office, relatively out of view of the boss types (not that they don’t track me down still).

And I still long for a boss who actually knows how to assign jobs to the right people at the right time…and know when to tell their bosses, “No, we’re not doing that!”

A dream, I’m thinking…

*<smirk> …like I’m actually going to work…

**He has found his “Peter Principle”, rising to a position where he is totally incompetent to accomplish the job.

***…and it will remain “partially” until I can retire!