Cubicle Death #18

trump supporter

How Co-Worker #3 spent her holiday break.

Everybody has returned to the office after the holiday break.  I miss the quiet solitude, shopping on Amazon and doing whatever the fuck I want to do.  It’s been great not having Co-Worker #3’s loud ass annoying voice piercing my ear drums.

Yesterday, Big Big Boss called to say that she would return on Tuesday, citing that she had broken her arm over the holiday break.  She would not say what happened to her.  Sometimes when a woman has an injury like that and refuses to explain what happen, you might think domestic abuse.  Except, Big Big Boss probably wouldn’t allow anybody to abuse her, but you never know.

broken arm

Brackium Emendo!

She came to work this morning with a big purple cast on her right arm.  Because she’s the Big Big Boss everyone is fawning over her.  “Oooh, what happened?”  “Are you okay?”  She finally admits that she broke her arm riding a hoverboard.

She said she bought two for her grandchildren and she just loved them so much she bought one for herself.  She said she spent the entire holiday break riding it and wouldn’t stop even when it started to rain and snow.  When it got too icy outside to ride it, she brought it in the house and started riding around on her hardwood floors.  The batteries just randomly died and it threw her off into a piece of furniture.


My boss wouldn’t wear skinny jeans, but you get the idea

I didn’t even know what to say to her because she is the Big Big Boss and I don’t want to get fired, so I just asked if she was okay.  I find it unfathomable that a woman of her caliber would be riding a hoverboard on her own damn hardwood floors.  This is a woman who is at the top of her professional game.  She runs a multimillion dollar program and is in charge of hundreds of employees.  She comes to work everyday in bomb ass suits, and she is incredibly intelligent and business savvy.

But yet, she was riding a hoverboard…in…her…house.


Cubicle Death #17: Follow Instructions

Ellen hard at work.

It’s been awhile since I ranted about office problems.  I figure now is as good a time as any.  I’ve probably changed jobs a hundred times since the last rant, but really, it doesn’t matter where you work.  Some of these issues are universal.  Many of you will understand.

I now work for a very large company (I will call it Large Co.), which is broken down into business units and sectors and further broken down into programs which are broken down into departments.  It’s all very complicated and a little bit irrelevant, but it helps to get some context.  My program is mid-size, but there are only two people in my department:  me and my employee.  It’s not really impressive to say that I’m the lead of a two person department.  For a long time I was the only one here until Large Co. hired my employee (and I had no input), whom I’ll call Older Completely Clueless Lady Returns To Work Force.  For short, we’ll call her Ellen.

Ellen is really nice, but she is older.  This is not some discrimination thing, because I don’t have a problem how old or young you are, as long as you can do the job, which Ellen cannot.  She is sadly out of touch with today’s technology.  Many days she has trouble even turning on the computer.  For example, just this very morning it took her almost half an hour to figure out why her logins didn’t work.  (The caps lock was on.)  After a number of password resets and a visit from the tech guys, they got it all figured it out, but I had to go on a coffee break because I was getting frustrated.  I needed her to get into her system so she could recall this fucked up ass email she sent out on Friday. 

I really like that Ellen is working with me, because it was lonely in here by myself.  I like to talk and so does Ellen, but Ellen’s problem is that SHE DOESN’T FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS.  Like, at all.  In order for her to do the work in the way it should be done, I often have to write long detailed instructions, which she doesn’t follow or will repeatedly ask questions as if she did not understand.  For example, if I say, Step 1. Turn on the computer, she will ask, “Did you want me to turn the computer on first?”  Or she will turn the computer on and then turn it back off, not understanding that I wanted the computer to stay on.  Or she will not do anything at all and wait for me to return to confirm that I actually wanted the computer on.

It has been incredibly busy in this office the past few weeks.  We’d been so dead and then suddenly all this work fell from the sky.  Last week, we got a big job.  It was so big that I handled it first, then I sent it on to her as a backup because when the job is big like that you can’t really do good work on your own.  You need two sets of eyes.  I wrote out lengthy instructions on how to complete the job, including the due date.  The shit was so big I had to ask the customer for an extension.  The customer agreed that instead of Wednesday, we could return the work on Friday.  I told Ellen how particular this customer is.  This customer is not the one you bullshit, and I really felt I impressed this upon Ellen.  This was Thursday.

I don’t work Fridays, and when I came to work on Monday I saw an email from Ellen to the customer indicating that she was finished with job and attached was her work product.  I was flabbergasted because there was no way Ellen could have finished that work so quickly.  And I was right.  Let me quote exactly what you she wrote to the customer:

Hello Customer,

Attached is your work product.  Absolutely wonderful job on your work product.  I didn’t go through the entire work product myself, but I did the best I could.  Very perfect.



This is what happens when I leave Ellen alone for too long.

Uh, what the fuck?  You didn’t go through the work product yourself?  You did the best you could?  Why would you tell the customer that?  I was furious because it makes our whole department (all two of us) look bad.  Plus, it is in writing that you didn’t do your job.  Way to bring us all down with evidence!  This is why I wanted her to recall the email, but she couldn’t log in her computer because she didn’t realise the fucking caps lock was still on.  She got locked out and then the stupid ass tech guys had to come because she couldn’t figure out what was wrong.  By then, the customer had already seen the email.  We tried to recall it but too late now.  The customer has not responded yet, probably because she’s sitting on her end of the computer foaming at the fucking mouth.  She probably cannot even come up with the words necessary to cuss Ellen out.

Also, I don’t understand why Ellen praised the customer’s work.  I don’t even know what that is about and I can’t ask because every time I think about it I want to shit myself.  I think Ellen is a nice person but she needs to get with the program.  The reason I started writing long detailed instructions is because she could not understand my verbal commands.  She would get really confused and then not to do any work because she needed clarification.  I realise that I tend to bark or scream everything so I thought writing it down would help, that it would be less aggressive.  She told me she preferred the list of instructions.


Cubicle Death #16: Answer the Damn Phone!

So, I work in an area where there are several offices.  All of these offices are not related.  In general, we have no idea what is going on in each other’s office.  Oh, and by the way, the offices are not separated by walls.  It’s just a bunch of desks, a low cubicle wall and some more desks, a low cubicle wall and some other desks.

The office that is across from mine is a military office.  In addition to all their paperwork, they also have military tasks.  They have to do PT in the morning.  They have to go to the weapons range.  They have to do a lot of military things, so they aren’t always in their office.

They have a loud ass ringing phone that is incredibly annoying when there is no one to answer it.  Occasionally, because I cannot stand the sound of the phone I will answer it and leave a message for them.  When they are in the office they pick up on the first ring so it’s not problem.

This morning, they are out of the office.  Who knows where they are.  The phone starts ringing.  And ringing.  And ringing.  And ringing.  And ringing.  Whoever is calling must be calling all the different numbers associated with the office, not realising that even though there are four numbers for every office, all the numbers ring the same damn phone.

The phone has been ringing non-stop for 30 minutes.  It’s aggravating.  But what makes it more aggravating?  One of the military personnel comes into the office and sits down.  Presumably, he is waiting for the people who actually work there to come back.  The phone is ringing.  He just stares at it.  The phone rings continually for about five minutes.  Everyone in my office is starting to get irritated.  Even the office on the other side of ours is like, “Whose phone is that?”  The military guy is staring at the phone.

I’m like, “Could you please answer the phone?”

He says….

.… wait for it…….

………………………wait for it………………………….

“I would, but I don’t know how to use it.”

What the fuck do you mean, you don’t know how to use a phone?  I got so mad that I couldn’t even respond to such a stupid statement.  There is another military office on the other side of my office and the guy that works in there is pretty high ranking.  He gets up out of his desk and walks all the way across the hallway to the young military guy and the loud ass ringing phone.

“Do you work over here?”

“Yes, I do.”

“Can you answer the phone?”

“I would, but I don’t know how.”

“You pick up the receiver and say ‘hello.’  And then you take a message if you’re not able to help them.  It’s very easy.”

We do not have any special phones over here.  No, they aren’t like your average house phone but it’s like any office where you have multiple lines.  You pick up the receiver and press the flashing light (that’s the line that’s ringing) and then you say, “Hello.”  How hard is that?  Well, we don’t say ‘hello,’ but you get my meaning.  It’s not rocket fucking science.

This jackass will sit there and let the phone ring for ten minutes straight because he claims he does not know how to use a phone.  Really?  Really??????  Where do they get these people!?!!?

Cubicle Death #15: Punching Co-Workers in the Face

So I guess if I want to keep my job I can’t really punch my co-workers in the face, can I?  That’s just too bad because some of them really need a good punch in the face.  Was there some kind of memo that gave certain co-workers the right to act like smug bitches?  If there was, I must have missed it.

I took the day off yesterday because I have a right to do that.  If I had been thinking right, I would have come in yesterday and taken today since today is a snow day.  I think I’m the only person in this whole stupid state that doesn’t mind the snow.  I think if you take your time and prepare adequately it isn’t that big a deal.  I also live less then ten minutes away from the office.  During snow, it may take me 20 minutes.  It’s really not that big a deal.

So I come to work this morning to find that the building is closed due to snow.  My co-worker is like, “What are you doing here?”  Uhm, working?  What are you doing here?  She goes into this thing about how the building is closed and I was like, “Well, there is only about two inches of snow outside.  I live three miles away.  If my broke down car can get here, I don’t see what the problem is.”

I sat down at my desk and started checking emails.  She is a person who has to get her point across.  She starts muttering about how she would not be “pressed” to do anything that was dangerous.  She goes on and on as if there was 15 inches of snow outside in gale force winds.  When I don’t respond, she asks me what the mission critical policy states for our office.  My office is 24 hours.  Someone has to be here at all times.  I told her if you get to the end of your shift and nobody is here you have to stay.  However, since I am here and nobody comes you can leave.  She looks at me like I’m crazy.

Granted, I do not do the work she does.  I would not be able to assist our customers but I know how to take a message.  And if things get really serious, we call the supervisor.  Just like anything.  I gave her this blank look and she makes this comment about how people don’t take things seriously enough.  Bitch, you don’t have any idea what I take seriously and what I don’t.  Just because I am looking at you like you’re a piece of shit doesn’t mean I don’t take the situation seriously.  Didn’t I just say that I would take over for you in the even no one shows up?  How serious is that?  If I didn’t care, I would not have responded.  Since the building is closed I could take my happy ass home, if I didn’t take it seriously.

Then like an asshole she tries to dismiss me by turning her back on me.  I don’t give a damn.  I don’t think that highly of her to have been offended.  It was just a stupid thing to do.  But people like that feel they must keep digging into a situation.  Two minutes later she comes up to me and asks me oh-so-p0litely to fix her schedule for next rotation.  Oh, after you just insulted me now you want me to do something for you?  How about I punch you in the face first?

But no, if I did that, I would be wrong.  I need to find one of those jobs where I work in a dark hole by myself.  If you know anybody that’s hiring for a such a position, please let me know so I can get my resume together.

Cubicle Death #14: You’ve Got Mail

I took five days off work for the Thanksgiving holiday.  Before I left work, I cleared my inbox and deleted all unnecessary emails.  I don’t like having email clutter so I keep it carefully organised.

I returned to work this Monday to discover that I had 728 new emails.

Seven-hundred twenty-eight emails.

Really.  And who thinks I’ll be reading all 728 emails?  If you said “no one” you’re a winner.  I didn’t even read one.  I didn’t even bother to look to see who they were from.

Select all.  Delete.

Do you really want to permanently delete all selected messages?

Yes, I do.  Thank you and have a nice day.  I figure if it’s that important whoever emailed me will just email me back.  And if it’s not that serious they’ll have forgotten they emailed me in the first place.  I can’t believe I had that any emails in my box when I came back to work.  It doesn’t seem like I get that many messages over the course of five working days.  But you know, on top of that, here’s the true mystery:  who the hell was emailing me like that across the holiday?  Most of the offices go down to minimised work force.  You don’t need everybody on staff during the holidays and weekends.

I hope it wasn’t anything serious but like I just said:  they’ll email me back or they won’t bother.  Either way I ain’t reading 728 emails.

Cubicle Death #13: You Stink!

We all have this type of person in the office:  the one who dresses way above his salary, gets her hair and nails done every week, always has on the exact outfit advertised on the mannequin at the local department store… the one who wears half a bottle of cologne to the office and then sprays the other half on as soon as he sits down at his desk.

I have a very keen nose.  I can smell everything.  When I walk past people I get whiffs of hair spray, cologne, perfume, body odour, the coffee they spilled, anything.  There’s this guy in my office who insists on hosing himself down with his cologne before he leaves the office for the day.  My office is 24 hours.  Someone is always here.  He is leaving as I come in.  He’ll stand around and gab with the new shift coming and then he’ll reach into his bag and pull out some cheap .99 parfume de couer and start spraying himself down.  Not one squirt, or two, or even three, but at least 10-12 times.  He will spray around his collar, on his wrists, up his shirt, down the back of his shirt, and around his hair.

The office immediately becomes clouded up with the stench of whatever cologne he wears.  I wonder why he is spraying himself like that only to leave the office.  If he’s going home to his wife/girlfriend/dog/whatever, why can’t he spray himself in his car or right before he gets to where ever he is going?

He will sit there and lay on the cologne and leave and the office is filled with the raunch stench of his cologne for hours after he is gone.  It is like he wants us to remember him until he returns for his next shift.  I asked my manager to speak to him because I just couldn’t take it anymore, but she cited some kind of regulation that forbade her from speaking to him about that particular issue.  So basically he can offend everybody else and we’re not allowed to say anything, and I’m not the only one complaining.  Other people have come into the office like, “What the fuck is that smell?”  Or “Someone should tone down the cologne.”

The sad part is that the cologne is very cheap.  It smells like rubbing alcohol and dead flowers and it has this pungent aroma that just lingers in the air like factory run off.

But you know, cheap cologne is one thing… what about people who come to the office with superior body odour?

So I mentioned last week that I ran a 5K at my job.  Well, before you say anything, let me explain something to you.  If you bathe regularly, doing a simple aerobic exercise isn’t going to make you smell like week old goat cheese.  You might be a little murky, a little warm but you aren’t going to stank like you’ve been fermenting in a vat of milk and vinegar.

After I finished the race, I was headed over to the registration tables to turn in my chips and get some post-race refreshments, I passed this guy who smelled so bad that everything he passed died in his wake.  There was literally a cloud of filthy despair hanging over him.  And it was powerful too, like some unseen force from hell.  He was so stank that I could not cross him.  There was a barrier of stench preventing me from passing him.  I had to go all the way around just to get where I was trying to go because he smelled so bad I thought that Satan had erupted from the depths of hell in a bubbling froth of vulgarity.

A very fast runner finishes a 5K in about 20 minutes.  A very slow runner will do it in an hour.  The day was very mild, perhaps 60 degrees.  There wasn’t much sun.  Doing an hour’s worth of work doesn’t cause you to smell like something crawled up your ass and died.  The sad part was that there were several people who had extreme body odour after the race, women too!  How can you smell that bad.  This means you haven’t had a bath in weeks, maybe even months.  Or maybe you just get in the tub and let the water run on you but you don’t use soap or any type of cleaning agent.

I know that some people are like bathing everyday isn’t necessary, and I agree with you but when you smell like a bacon wrapped shit stick you should never miss a shower.  And don’t give me that crap about being natural.  Yes, I believe in that too but that type of smell should never be associated with the human body.

And then when the race festivities were over, a lot of people just went back to their offices in their stankin’ ass running clothes, or worse, they went and put on their suits on top of that putrescence.  I brought a little wash cloth so I could clean the sweat off me and I refreshed my deodorant.  This may not be good enough for some people but I am proud to say that I didn’t just come back to my office with sweaty ass crack.  I also bathe frequently so I don’t have pre-existing body odour.

That is the point I’m trying to make.  Please stop coming to the office smelling like a boiling lake of sulphur.  Please stop drowning yourself in your .99 CVS brand perfume.  Just take a shower every now and again, wash your greasy ass hair, and lay off the hair products.  And we’ll all get along just fine.

Cubicle Death #12: Office Music

It’s 7:15AM and my co-worker is blaring Gospel music at his desk.

At this hour of the morning, it is fairly quiet in the building.  Only about 20% of the workforce is in yet.  In our particular office, it’s just me, him and the girl who answers the phones.  So it’s kinda quiet over here.  I was just minding my business, reading the news when I hear “Jeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeesssssssssssssssssuuuuuuuuuuuuuuussssssssssssssssssssssssssss!!!!” Since he is the uber-Christian, I knew it had to be him.

Don’t get me wrong.  I love the Lord just as much as anybody else, but I don’t like Gospel music.  A group of black people screaming “Jesus” and “Hallelujah!” into a microphone is not really singing.  On top of all that, this is an office not a church.  Since we do not have the benefit of having our own offices with doors, you should probably invest in some headphones because I’m not in the mood right now.