Thursday, October 28, 2004

Requiem 2

My boss, who is also my friend, has been watching her mother fight through illness after illness. This weekend she finally succumbed, though it was somewhat of a surprise, as she was actually doing pretty well lately. She had been up and around, cooking breakfast that morning, but by the evening when my boss's brother stopped by to drop off some prescriptions, he found her in her bed, gone. At least it appears that she went peacefully in her sleep. The viewing and funeral were both today, and Jane, Nutjob, JerseyGirl and I all drove down for it. Having been under the impression that it was going to take us two hours to get there, we met in the office parking lot at 6:30 this morning and were on our way. It only took an hour and fifteen minutes, so we stalled for a while in a coffee shop before going to the viewing.

You may be wondering why all four of us went, when it was such a distance and so early in the morning? Well, I would have gone if it was midnight and in Timbuktu, I wanted to be there to show my support. Jane also has a good working relationship with her and wanted to attend. JerseyGirl was looking for a morning out of the office, and Nutjob just had to go so she could pretend to be so distraught and make it all about her somehow. In fact, Nutjob's uncle passed away about a month ago, and soon after that, Loserboyfriend's grandfather died. So, when HeadHoncho sent out the email letting everyone know what had happened, Nutjob literally jumped up and said "Well, that's Number 3 for me!!!". I was really not looking forward to the prospect of being jammed in a car with all three of them for over three hours, but it turned out to be rather uneventful, thankfully.

Several other co-workers attended: PartnerInCrime, HeadHoncho, FuckingLyingScumbag and Puppydog, CheapSkate, and a few others who haven't made it into the blog (yet). We all went straight from the viewing to the funeral. It was a lovely service, very heartfelt and not preachy at all. My boss's 12 year old son read a poem he wrote to his grandmother, and it choked all of us up. One thing struck me though, as I sat there in the hard wooden pew, surrounded by co-workers. I kept thinking.... "I'm in church... with people from work. This is strange." It felt like a weird dream. I was very touched by the service but was fighting back tears because I didn't want Puppydog to see me crying. (It would have seriously blown away that "icy nordic efficiency" facade I try so hard to maintain). Maybe it was just the fact that I was feeling overly emotional about the whole thing, but I was kind of touched that we were all there, as people, sharing in our support of another. See, I really am a sympathetic mushball, deep down beneath the permafrost. ;)

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Oy! My aching bones!

You know those people who, when you politely say "Hi, how are you?" have to tell you exactly how they are? And every little thing that's wrong with them? Well, we have one of those working here. Usually I just smile nicely and say hi, and leave off the "how are you", so I don't have to hear about the latest stomach ailment, or gall bladder problem, or trouble with his adult daughter who is messed up in the head. I slipped today though. When I saw this gentleman today, I noticed he was walking with a pronounced limp and matching pained expression. I ignored this the first time I saw him, and just said hello, but the second time I saw him today, he was making such a production that I felt rude not saying something.

Me: Hi Sam. Hey, you look like you're gimping around, what's wrong?

Him: Well... (big dramatic sigh) when you get to be my age...

...and he was off. I was treated to a ten minute monologue about gout and the buildup of uric acid. Mmmm, tasty. If he was about ten years younger, he and Nutjob would make the perfect couple. Actually, 20 years younger... since she only dates guys 10 years younger than her.

Uric acid lecture notwithstanding, I figured I'd bring this up because of a continued debate between Silent Husband and I. (Aren't you lucky, you get to play marriage mediator!) He sometimes responds truthfully to the casual "how are you", to make a point. I say no one really wants to know how you are, the question is asked as part of a greeting and doesn't really mean anything. His angle is that if someone asks, he's going to act as though they genuinely care, even though he knows they don't. According to him, if you don't care, you shouldn't ask, and so his truthful answer is a punishment of sorts to the person who asked without caring.

I guess I'm a follower... I find it a lot easier to just say "Hi, how are you" because it's expected of me, than to make a big deal about it. But in instances like the one related above, if I know it's going to result in a litany of complaints, I tactfully leave it out of my greeting.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Nutjob's School of Hypochondria and Hysteria

Lesson One:
Panic because of the shortage of flu shots, and go get one at your temple because you "are asthmatic". (Keep in mind that this asthma is purely for appearance's sake, and manifests itself only when attention is needed. To lend credibility to the story, periodically call in sick because your "asthma is really bad".)

Lesson Two:
In front of Musketeer #3 (who is a hopeless instigator) "casually" mention that you happened to get a flu shot. When he takes the bait and starts asking you about it, act coy and insist that you didn't want to get it, your father made you. Regardless of the fact that you have never before in your life had a flu shot, insist that your father was so worried because you have asthma and are "sepseptible" to flu.

Lesson Three:
Insist that there really is no shortage at all. (Conveniently ignore the fact that this is in direct conflict to Lesson One). When someone asks if you don't believe half the dosages got screwed up at a British plant, insist that there isn't a shortage, and it's "all political".

Lesson Four:
Later, when the subject is brought up again by instigating Musketeer #3 for Musketeer #2's enjoyment, and asked where you managed to get a shot, explain that your temple has them. Also point out that there were people of all ages getting shots there. Then wonder aloud if what you got was really a flu shot after all... maybe it's a shot that "tells you how to vote" (since you don't have a mind of your own to make up), that what you really got was "voting serum".

Lesson Five:
Act offended when Musketeer #3 says he gets a shot every year, but didn't get one this year because he didn't want to take one away from "some little old lady who needs it more" than he does.

Don't forget to enroll in our other popular classes, "The Seven Habits of Highly Manipulative People" and "Obsessive Tendencies 101".

Monday, October 25, 2004

Halloween Hi-Jinks

Ah yes, it's that time of year. Time for rubber bugs and plastic goo and generally scaring people. I'm slacking this year... last year I had a giant furry black spider with glowing red eyes (and when I say "giant" I mean at least 2 feet legspan) that I hid in people's chairs or under people's desks. I had many a good chuckle over the squeals of disgust, especially from the admins. Now I have to come up with something for Musketeer #1. I was going office to office, handing out the coupons a local pizza place sent me- I was going to just put them in the kitchen, but when I realized Nutjob would just take them all, I decided to hand them out. When I got to Musketeer #1's office, he asked if I could help him with something on his computer.

Me: Sure, what's up?

Musketeer #1: Could you look at this and tell me what it says? It's in German.

Me: Oh great, you're testing me now. Sure.

He clicked on a video file and a serene scene appeared, with a car driving down a winding road. I assumed it was a car commercial. I was leaning kind of close, to be sure I heard it all. Lo and behold, a very dead-looking zombie type thing popped up and screamed. Loudly. I jumped about a mile. As much as I love Halloween, I am a big wuss when it comes to zombies. So my instinctive reaction, after I recovered my composure, was to call him a fuckhead. Then I left his office in order to finish my oh-so-important task of distributing pizza coupons. (Hey, they're $3 off, not bad). When I got back to my desk, Musketeer #1 and #2 were still laughing about it.

Musketeer #2: SilentWitness, did I hear you swear a moment ago?

Me: No, I didn't swear.

Musketeer #1: Not unless you consider "you fuckhead" a swear.

Musketeer #2: Oh, nice. I get slapped on the wrist for language like that, but you get away with it.

Musketeer #1: Musketeer #2, she wasn't about to punch someone when she said it.

Musketeer #2: Point well taken.

So now I have to come up with something that tops the giant hairy spider with glowing red eyes. Suggestions are welcome.

Lets.... PLAY BALL!

Nutjob's take on the World Series:

"Know what's weird? They both wear red!!!"

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Message in a bottle

Nutjob is about to outdo herself. Just when I think she can't, she does. She has been dating Loserboyfriend for about three years, and has spent most of those three years hinting and flat out saying that she wants a ring, she wants to get married, blah blah. I guess since he didn't propse to her in Hawaii, she's decided to take the bull by the horns. So to speak.

She has ordered some sort of special bottle from Hawaii, filled with sand from some special beach; the woman she ordered it from said she has to "hike six miles to the beach to get the sand". Uh huh. Fortunately for this woman's bank account, Nutjob is as gullible as she is desperate. I have no idea how much this is costing her. She spent all day Friday figuring out the wording she wants to use for her question, which she will then print out, roll up and put in the bottle. How quaint. So far, here is the last draft of her question.

"Dear Loserboyfriend-
I had such a wonderful time in Hawaii, and I have really enjoyed the last three years together. What I would like to know is, are you ready for a committment? If the answer is yes, that's all I need to hear. If the answer is no, then thank you for the last three wonderful years."

Both FunkyChick and PartnerInCrime asked Nutjob if she was ready for the answer. When they suggested that his answer might be "no", she just got a faraway look in her eye. (Dissociation, anyone?) Loser though he may be, Loserboyfriend's no dummy. He knows how to string her on. No doubt he will give her a non-answer, or say yes but then not buy her a ring and never make any actual plans... further prolonging both her agony and ours. (Just so you know, this is a guy who every time they passed a jewelry store in Hawaii, would say "hey let's go in", and when her eyes lit up, he'd say "just kidding". Nice guy.)

I hope for her sake and ours, that he flat out says no. Otherwise I will be bombarded with wedding planning questions (having been the last person in the office to get married) and might actually end up feeling sorry for her as I watch her set herself up for yet another miserable disappointment.

Damn. This blog was supposed to be funny. I've just bummed myself out.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Call me Martha Stewart... err... maybe not

Because I like to bake, I made a batch of molasses cookies last night and brought a dozen in to share. I also get a strange pleasure in watching all these diet-crazed females, who go on and on about how they don't eat carbs, gobble up the first confection they spy in the "up for grabs" place in the office kitchen. When Musketeer #1 found out that I made them, he asked "Ok, what'd you put in them?". I told him I put play-nice powder in them. That got a chuckle out of Musketeer #3.

So far everyone likes the cookies, but no one has put them to as much scrutiny as Musketeer #1. He came over to my desk to tell me what he thought.

Musketeer #1: Wow, what a little Susie Homemaker you are. I'm impressed- nice rounded shape, nice and brown on the bottom but not burnt, and you even put those sugar crystals on top. Pretty nice!

I thanked him, but I found this odd, especially from a man. I mean, I figured men and cookies were kind of like men and sex- they're just happy that you show up. If he's that analytical about his cookies, I hate to see what his poor wife is subjected to.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

"Welcome to your private information source, how may I help you?"

It's been a fairly quiet morning so far. Apparently most of our brokers will melt if they get caught in the rain. Strangely enough, PhoneSwindler braved the elements and is here today. (He's one of those "work from home" types). As soon as I read the email from him, I figured out why. I groaned when I saw an email from him in my inbox with the subject line "flu shot". I figured he was gonig to ask me to reimburse him for a flu shot. Not quite that ballsy, but close. Here's what I found when I finally decided to open the email:

"if anyone has a private source locally (ie. Dr) whereby you dont have to wait 4 hours for a flu shot I'd grealty appreciate it."

See, one thing you need to know about PhoneSwindler is that he has a condition that could severely weaken his immune system if he had a bad spell. So, even though he's not in the age demographic they're recommending the meager supply of shots go to, his health is certainly not up to par and it wouldn't be a bad idea for him to have one. However... there are two (at least) things wrong with this email.

1) If he needs it that bad, he can go stand in line with Bertha and Gertie and get his shot like everyone else.

2) He is (once again) using our company email system as his personal information source. This isn't the first time this has happened. Nor will it be the last, because nothing will be said to him because as my boss once explained, "well.... he makes us a lot of money".

Friday Morning Fight - Revised

While chatting with Musketeer #1 last night before I left the office, I realized that I did indeed miss some key points to Friday's almost-brawl. Damn my "fly under the radar" instinct. Anyway, it seems that the fight actually did get physical, which is why Musketeer #3 intervened. At one point, Musketeer #2 was jabbing his finger in BigFatBaby's face, and BFB kept swatting it away. Then, further angered by the swatting, Musketeer #2 bumped chests with BFB, shoving him into a cube wall. The mental image of this amuses me. Musketeer #2 is in his mid to late 50's and looks it. He's a little shorter than average, and BFB is a tall, well-built guy in his mid 30's. I'm sure Musketeer #2 had to stand on his tip-toes to knock chests with him. I'm also sure of this: due to the psycho factor, my money would be on Musketeer #2, hands down.

Monday, October 18, 2004

In honor of Nutjob...

Nutjob is out of the office today, which is disappointing because a large group of us are taking one of the girls out to lunch for her birthday. I figured that would be good for at least one entry in the blog. But alas, Loserboyfriend's grandfather died, so she will be attending the funeral with him. (The boyfriend, not the grandfather). In her honor, I've decided to share an entry from my own private blog. See, when I shut down the original blog, I realized that a lot of funny stories would be lost, so I decided to keep writing them and just saving them on my computer for posterity. Turns out I now have fodder for slow blog days. I'm so smart. I hope you don't mind a week-old entry:

From Monday, October 11th.
Well Nutjob's back from her latest foray to her favorite tropical paradise. In case you've lost track, this is her third trip there in the space of a year. I'm trying not to be jealous of the fact that she was exploring a lava tube and hiking all over an active volcano... but hey, I had the Mount St Helens volcano-cam to watch all week. But I digress... Musketeer #3 has been asking her all about her trip, so I keep hearing snippets of conversation. Naturally, my ears perked up with I heard her say "I got lost! I was almost on the news because I got lost!" From what I gathered, Loserboyfriend was apparently so affected by altitude sickness that he declined to go on a tour of the telescope observatory on Mauna Kea, and had to stay in the hotel room in bed. Not to be deterred, Nutjob went on the tour by herself. At one point in the tour, she wandered off to look through a telescope and when she finally rejoined the group, she didn't realize it was the wrong group until she started asking when they get their hot chocolate, and everyone looked at her like she was nuts- evidently there was no hot chocolate involved in that tour. (suckers!) She found her way back to her group, but not before they had reported that one member was missing. Loserboyfriend saw this on the news as he lounged in the hotel room, and later said he just knew it was her. (No hint of concern, by the way, just amusement that she was the one who'd gone missing). Now, I figure she must have been gone for a long time in order for them to be reporting a missing tour member. Surely people wander off all the time and get behind their group... so she must have really been out there for a while. I wonder what she was staring at?

Sunday, October 17, 2004

A ring-side seat

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Friday Morning Fights! Brought to you by the letter "F".

Let me start this story at the beginning... before the fight. On Thursday afternoon I overheard Musketeers #1 and #2 bitching about how BigFatBaby hadn't gotten back to them all day about a project they're working on together. (BigFatBaby is the world's biggest procrastinator- he's also one of the leasing brokers, and he brought the Musketeers in on an investment deal he's working on. It's been a mess from the beginning). Musketeer #2 was in typical grouchy-old-man mode, throwing his hands up in the air and saying "You know, HeadHoncho wants us to work with these leasing guys, but they're never around! This is rediculous." I assume from what happened the next day that they must have left him an agitated voicemail.

On Friday morning, as I finished checking all my personal email and started actully doing some real work, BigFatBaby came back to our end of the office. He stood outside Musketeer #1's door and addressed him.

BFB: You know, I was here at 3:30. I was in my office. I guess you didn't look too hard for me.

Musketeer #1: Whatever, it doesn't matter.

BFB: Yes, it does matter. I was here. (begins to walk away) You know, you guys really need to at least make an effort.

At this point, the dynamite under Musketeer #2's chair apparently went off, because he came flying out of his office, yelling.

Musketeer #2: We need to make an effort? WE need to make an effort?!?! You've got to be fucking kidding me! This is unfuckingbelievable!

BFB turned back to Musketeer #2 and a shouting match ensued. I couldn't see Musketeer #2, but I could tell by his voice that he was about to lose it. His voice, and the amout of times and in different forms he used the word "fuck".

BFB: Look, I brought you guys in on a 40 million dollar deal. I don't need this. (he approached Musketeer #1's office again and addressed him alone) I don't need this.

Musketeer #2 advanced on him, still screaming obscenities and telling him where he could stick his 40 million dollar deal. I bet Musketeers #1 and #3 loved that. Now, I was sitting in my chair, wondering at what point and if I should stand up and try to diffuse the situation, when luckily, laid-back, voice-of-reason Musketeer #3 stepped in. He stood up and literally stood between Musketeer #2 and BFB, saying "Let's calm down, we can discuss this later. Come on, let's talk about this later when we're all calm". Musketeer #2 and BFB went right on shouting over him. If it wasn't for him standing in between the two of them, I am sure it would have come to blows. Eventually, BFB just walked away.

Musketeer #2 went into his office, slammed a few things around, and declared he was leaving for the day. (It was about 9:30 a.m.) He stalked out of the office, leaving a strange silence behind him. Moments later, he reappeared.

Musketeer #3: I thought you were leaving?

Musketeer #2: I am. I forgot something.

Musketeer #1 (yelling from his office): Are you going to go on that call with us?

Musketeer #2: No! I'm leaving! (pause). No, I'll go on it with you. I'm sorry, that's not going to solve anything. Ok, I'll stay. But I'm not going with you on Tuesday. I'm sorry guys, but I'm out of that deal. This place is fucking rediculous! I should quit. If HeadHoncho was here I'd march right into his office and resign. I can't take this place anyomore..." and off he went on another rant.

About a half hour later, he apologized to me. And when HeadHoncho got in, instead of marching into his office and resigning, Musketeer #2 grovelled and apologized for his behavoir. This place is rediculous, indeed. But it's a hell of a lot of fun at times.

Later, Alligator

Lucky you, you get to read a blog that has God (or Pele) on it's side. See, I was tossing the idea of resurrecting "the blog" around in my brain (including the half that ChinaGirl keeps in her head), not really sure if I should start it up again, when lo and behold, two morsels of such juicy blogginess were presented to me that I took it as a sign.

On Monday of this week, Nutjob returned from her 3rd Hawaiian vacation in the space of one year. Since this vacation coincided with her (may i remind you, 50th) birthday, she naturally assumed that Loserboyfriend would propose to her this time. She went so far as to make reservations for sunset boat rides, sunset dinners on sunset sands, all to give him the perfect opportunity. I think it goes without saying that she was sorely disappointed.

Jane, the Mosquito and I took Nutjob out for a belated birthday lunch yesterday, an event that is worthy of it's own post, now that I think about it. She was fine the whole time at lunch, perky as ever, babbling nonsensically about Hawaii and competing with the Mosquito for know-it-all points. I'm not sure exactly how what came next unfolded. I can only surmise that Loserboyfriend left her a voicemail or sent her an email that she received upon our return from gorging ourselves. Apparently, she called FunkyChick, sobbing, and said he'd told her that he wasn't making any money here and was going to move to North Carolina. And that he'd send her a postcard... "or something". I must confess, this is a low-class stunt even for him.

However, I'm a little confused, because it wasn't long after that, that she was her old self again, and nothing has been mentioned since then. I wonder if it was his idea of some kind of sick joke... because it smacks of his demented "sense of humor" that really is just a thinly veiled excuse to screw with her and insult her. I suppose only time will tell.

Friday, October 15, 2004

Who's Who at BlogCompany

The company I work for is known for privacy's sake simply as "BlogCompany". I offer this list of my esteemed co-workers for easy reference for new readers and old alike, as the stories can sometimes reach soap opera proportions.

Nutjob- the woman who started it all, who is featured in most of the stories. She is indescribable... but I'll give it a shot. She is the typical JAP, or wants desperately to be. She just turned 50 but she thinks she is 21. I'm not just talking about someone who dresses too young for her age, she truly believes she is in her early 20's. She craves attention more than a stranded puppy on the side of the road in a rainstorm. She will go to great lengths to get that attention... she pretends to be ditzy but she's really very calculating. There is some serious lack of brainpower there, however. We aren't sure if she had a nervous breakdown at some point or just did too many drugs. She is obsessed with getting married, and has been dating a 36 year old loser (Loserboyfriend) for about 3 years now in hopes that he will propose to her at some point. He lives at home with his mom, and sits on the computer day trading as his primary occupation. He constantly insults her but she puts up with it because she is sure at some point he will propose, even though he has told her repeatedly that he has no interest whatsoever in getting married. She does his and his mothers' laundry while she's there on the weekends (he lives about 2 hours away), while he goes out and golfs with his buddies. Nutjob is also obsessed with Hawaii- she's been there a total of 12 times, three of them in this past year. We're east of the Mississippi. This is not an inexpensive trip to make. Somehow she's got it in her head that he will propose to her there, and has planned these trips as the perfect place for him to drop the question. Right about now you're probably feeling really sorry for her- don't. She could leave this asshole if she wanted to. She is also manipulative beyond your wildest imagination... stick around for a while and her stories will ultimately reveal her true self.

PartnerInCrime- A guy a few years older than me, who works in another department, with whom I love to commiserate about the butt-headed things the brokers do or the latest bit of Nutjob news. He's one of those "really nice guys" you want to fix up with a single girlfriend in the worst way.... if you had any single girlfriends. When I started my last blog, I named him PartnerInCrime because he knew about the blog and fed me stories that I wasn't privy to (a lot of strange stuff goes on in that department). I've decided not to let him in on this one, only because I really want to be sure no one in the office knows about the blog. Plus, he's got some issues of his own.

The Three Musketeers- three investment brokers who sit right near my desk. They are infinitely amusing, because they have three distinctly different (and not always compatible) personalities. Musketeer #1 is by far the most bizarre. His strong independent anti-establishment streak is topped only by his love of capitalism and the almighty dollar. He loves to instigate trouble and start gossip. Musketeer #2 is slightly older (in his mid 50's) and as fastidious and high-strung as Musketeer #1 is indifferent and subversive. They have been working together for close to 10 years. Musketeer #3 was hired to bring some fresh blood to their duo. He is in his mid 30's, and is laid back but conscientious. He has an incredibly wry sense of humor that zings you when you least expect it.

FunkyChick- Works in PIC's department, and PIC is technically her boss. She treats him more like her best girlfriend, though, telling him all kinds of things that have no business being discussed with a male co-worker, much less your boss. She also dresses incredibly provocatively even though she doesn't quite have the body for it. Almost, but not quite. There are times when her bra - the bra itself, not the strap- is showing, and times when she wears a shirt or dress with cleavage so low that you can see the soft divet between her breasts. She's also a tad on the spoiled side.

HeadHoncho- The manager of this and the other office we have in this state. He is rarely around, and when he is, his door is closed. He has a nice disposition (most of the time) and a good sense of humor, so it's easy to forgive the times when he does blow his top. Especially when he apologizes 5 minutes later. He has a tendency to be wishy-washy and a tad forgetful, which makes it a bit frustrating when you need to work with him for something.

Jane- HeadHoncho's assistant. She is in her mid-50's and is incredibly insecure about her age. Refers to all the other admins in the office as "the young ones" even though only 2 of them are in their 20's. She really has it out for Nutjob- they lock horns all the time. I have come to discover that it's because they are frighteningly similar, although it would give Jane a coronary to hear me say that. She and I are pretty good friends, although she drives me nuts with her obsessing over her body and age and, well, just about everything. But she is a very nice person and most of the time very friendly. I probably should mention here that my whole office (the females at least) are obsessed with dieting. There are times when I want to scream... they all play off each other and sometimes I feel like I'm in the middle of a sociology study.

JerseyGirl- The name says it all. She's from New Jersey, and all stereotypes apply. She's an admin, in her mid 20's.

AngelFish- Musketeer #1 actually gave her this name. She's also an admin, in her late 20's, but one of those wilting flowers. She blushes when you talk to her, and has a very soft voice. She seems like a very sweet girl, but it's been hard to get to know her because she is so shy. She got her name because Musketeer #1 called her his "angel" whenever he heard her voice on the paging system. From there it became "AngelFish", I'm not sure why.

The Mosquito- our other admin, in her mid to late 40's. She is new, and asks a million questions. That in itself isn't bad, it's just the way she beats every dead horse into oblivion, and is always on the lookout to point out something that someone else did wrong. Nothing is ever her fault. Even when she's asking a question, she sounds like she's complaining.

AngrySally- The administrative manager for another department. She is the most foul woman I have ever had the displeasure to meet. I'm sorry, that sounds harsh, but it's true. She's a smoker, which in and of itself isn't bad, but she embodies the phrase "She smells like an ashtray". I have known a lot of smokers in my life, many of whom I didn't even know smoked until I saw them light up. Somehow she manages to reek of cigarette butts all day, every day. She had a deep phlegmy rattle in her chest that comes forth as spit globules when she laughs. Because she has the habit of seriously invading your personal space while talking to you, some of these globules invariably will land on you. She also complains about every little tiny thing. I have never ever seen this woman happy. In addition to that, she has serious anger management issues. She frequently berates people on the phone or just plain screams at them. She doesn't sit very far away from me, so when she erupts, I have to go elsewhere, because I can't take the screaming harpy bitchiness.

MiddleAgedHippie- A broker. He grew up in a very wealthy family and while he's not snobby, he has a different outlook on life. He has no idea how to do things himself, like change a tire. But he spent much of his youth smoking pot and lord knows what else. Consequently he is a great source of amusement.

Dick & Dork- A pair of brokers who work together as a team on every project. They're both in their 60's, disgustingly wealthy, and expect everyone to bow to their every whim. They both have a very pleasant side, though, so at least they don't make you want to strangle them every time you talk to them. They also have a tendency to argue like a little old married couple.

StonerBoy- A brand new broker, fresh out of college, who looks like he stepped off the cover of whatever male magazine is fashionable these days. He embodies the term "metrosexual". He also talks like a stoner and squints his eyes like a stoner, hence the name. I have a hard time talking to him without bursting out laughing. He was hired to breathe some life into the Cardiac Twins (Dick & Dork) and do their running around and crap work for them.

Bruce- Thankfully, Bruce has toned it down a bit recently. He's relatively new, and when he first got here he had the world's biggest ego and attitude to match. He would (and still does) tell you a story about something that happened to him no matter what you were talking about. Mention you broke your toe? He's broken every finger and toe and a few ribs to boot. See, he's very big into martial arts, which is why we call him Bruce (as in "Lee"). He's got professional pictures of himself in various martial arts attire posing threateningly with various weapons, plastered all over his cube. He also loves to talk about his body- how "ripped" he is, etc. Very tedious.

PhoneSwindler- This is probably the broker who most easily makes my blood boil. He's got a cocky entitlement attitude. Every rule or policy applies to everyone else but him, in his mind, and sadly, management has given in to him on more than one occasion and he now has official exceptions to several policies. All having to do with money, of course. He got his name because I discovered one day while processing his expense reports that he was trying to get reimbursed for not only just his cell phone (which we reimburse at a higher rate than anyone else, just because he's who he is), but for all the cell phones on the account, which included his daughter's phone and his wife's phone. When my boss pointed this out to him and explained that he only got reimbursed for one phone, he acted like he hadn't done anything wrong. When pressed and asked if he thought it was right to do that, he shrugged and said "I don't care". So, PhoneSwindler he is, though he could be many other names (and regularly is, in my mind).

FuckingLyingScumbag- Another broker (shocker!), one who would stand there and swear up and down that the sun was shining in the middle of a blizzard. He'll look you straight in the eye and tell you HeadHoncho approved that $700 aerial photo when in fact, HeadHoncho knows nothing about it. He'll throw you under the bus just as quickly too.

CheapSkate- One of our most wealthy brokers, he refuses to pay for a single thing. He also, will throw you under the bus faster than you can blink your eye, and has a lying problem as well.

My boss- She Who Can Not Be Named. Truthfully, I just never gave her a name in my old blog. When talking to Silent Husband about her, though, I call her Hurricane HerNameHere. Perhaps from now on I will call her Hurricane Alice. She comes to our office twice a week and really is like a brisk wind sweeping through the office when she walks through the door. She is incredibly disorganized and scatterbrained and chatty but somehow she manages to get everything done. Barely. She relies on me heavily- I've been here for 7 years, and while she's been in the company for almost 20, she's only been in this position for 4 years. I have the complete opposite personality- strong work ethic (thanks to my Protestant upbringing), the idea that it's a good thing to finish what you've started and not go off on 17 different tangents... you get the idea. Perhaps I am a little too rigid. A broker once described me as having "icy Nordic efficiency". Ouch. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or not. Despite our differences in work ethic, we work very well together and are pretty good friends. We get into some conversations that would make even FunkyChick blush.

And, of course, yours truly: Silent Witness- Don't be fooled into thinking spend all day exposing other people's foibles and judge them from some imagined lofty position, because I do also reveal my own idiosyncrasies from time to time. Especially if it makes for a good story. So, in the words of MiddleAgedHippie- This is my world, man. Welcome to it. I will dig you.

From the depths of the Earth, a blog is reborn

With a nod to Tori Amos, I've resurrected the old File. Here you will find all the stories you loved about all the people you loved to hate- with one small difference. PartnerInCrime is no longer literally my partner in crime. (He will retain the name though, for simplicity's sake). While we still talk regularly, and share a love of complaining about the abuse we take from the brokers, I have decided for my own sanity's sake to leave him out of the loop on this blog. He's done nothing to lose my trust, but the way I see it, if I really want to make sure no one in my office finds out about the blog, no one in my office should know about the blog. Additionally, don't be surprised if I wander off track and start prattling on about volcanoes. I am an armchair volcanologist and have been watching St. Helens like a hawk, bringing up the volcano-cam several times a day to see if I can maybe, just maybe, catch a glimpse of that magnificent new lavadome. Ahem. Right, like I said, I may wander off track. I'll try to keep it interesting for you.