Thursday, July 30, 2009

iGoogle Makes Me Green

There are a lot of things I inherited from my father.  My love of the Chicago White Sox.  My inability to eat a grilled cheese sandwich without ketchup.  The ability to hold a grudge longer than a shark can hold its breath.

The most work-worthy thing though is the obsession with making to-do lists.  For anyone who is a frequent reader of this publication you know how much I love making lists.  But when I am not listing My Favorite Office Supplies or Reasons I Will Not Let You On The Fun Committee I spend my time making actual to-do lists of things I need to do.  I generally make two a day:  one for things to do when I am not at work and one of things to do at work. 

The one at work is the on I generally put a lot of time into.  For the past six months or so I have been getting to work each morning, grabbing a piece of light blue scrap paper, and outlining my day.  It's not so much that I need a list to remember what to do, I just really enjoy the satisfaction of crossing each task out with the only Sharpie marker in the office.

Today though I found a way to keep my lists but ease into the 21st century.  Do you guys know about iGoogle?  It's the main page of Google but for crackheads who really like applications. (i.e. people with iPhones.  Note:  I am not one of those people.  Not until my trusty Razr dies anyway.)  You can customize your main page with tons of useful items like Joke of the Day for when you need a way to end the silence at the lunch table, Pet Turtle because your boss won't let you actually keep a real one at your desk, and Daily Bible Verse for when you feel bad about cursing the Microsoft Outlook for locking up on you.
Generally most of the applications on my iGoogle have a practical use like a currency convertor and language translator.  But nothing is more useful than what I added today:


I failed at my attempt to get a pic of my iGoogle page posted here so you could see an example if what I am talking about but I am computer illiterate once I leave for the day so there.

But believe me when I tell you amazing.  It is a virtual yellow lined pad where you can add tasks that you need to complete and when you are done, you can delete them off, giving pretty much the same satisfaction as crossing them out without the noxious marker fumes.  Sadly I was so busy doing stuff today that I didn't get to my to-do list so there is still a bunch of stuff on there.  And the only real downfall is that when I go on iGoogle at home there list is there, reminding me of what I have to do tomorrow.

But I am sure I will eventually learn to suppress it much like everything else that deals with work once I clock out.

~ The Office Scribe

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

I Scream, You Scream

You know what turns an average day at work in an exciting day at work?


As an act of tenant appreciation the building my office was in held an ice cream social for everyone, and I have to say, it was pretty awesome.  They had four flavors of ice cream that you could get in a dish or in a waffle cone.  And then they had like 8 toppings that you could put on.

Luckily went down to the lobby the line was pretty short but when I left there had to be about 100 people milling about.  I didn't even think that many people worked in the building.  I mean, the parking lot always seems empty.  Makes me wonder where they all came from.

Perhaps they were ice cream social crashers.

How do I get that to be my job title?

~ The Office Scribe

Monday, July 27, 2009

Not So Manic Monday

Monday's are when I usually provide my readers with short and witty observations from around my office, but not much happened today.

I'll be honest, I did paperwork all day which didn't leave a lot of room for me to notice anything interesting.

Oh, except for one thing....


Oh the glory!  Oh the rapture!

I wonder what tomorrow will bring...

~ The Office Scribe

Oh, and if you aren't doing anything, head over to the Mercury Falls website and sign up for the interest list.  The guy is about 4 sign-ups away from his goal.  Help the man out.  Because I have said it before and I will say it again, when I finally finish my book/novel/screenplay/fortune cookie I want people to support me.


Thursday, July 23, 2009

A Perfect Game

Sometimes I think I have super powers.  Nothing that would ever aid me from saving someone from the evil clutches of a villain, but they are the powers I was blessed with none the less.

Currently my favorite is the ability to know when I have recieved a text message even when my phone is on silent on in my bag.  I generally know I have a message within 10 minutes of getting it.  Of course, some might say that this is because I am constantly checking the time on my phone since I no longer believe in watches, but I saw whatever.

Today's texts were about Mark Burhle pitching a perfect game.  See, my friends know I am a White Sox fan and they also know that when a person works in an office baseball games aren't priority #1 (most likely due to the lake of televisions with cable access).  

At first I was super excited when I heard about it and went and told all my fellow Sox fans in the office.  But then I started thinking - "How many other people can claim to have a perfect day at their job?"

My guess: Not many.

I know I have had some pretty good days at my jobs throughout the years, but I don't think I have ever had a perfect one.  Aside from baseball I don't think I know of any profession that can ever be labeled "perfect".  There is always something that is going to happen during the day to make you awesome day a little less awesome.

But I guess that is why they call it work.  

~ The Office Scribe

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Excuses, Excuses

We all use them, mostly when we dash through the door a few minutes late and feel the need to justify our tardiness to those in the cubicles around us.

"I can't believe how bad traffic was this morning!" 

"Silly me!  I couldn't find my keys.  Would you believe they were in the freeze?"

"I must have hit the power button instead of the snooze and I totally woke up late."

But all those excuses are now officially lame because of the reason my co-worker gave us for why he was going to be late to work.

Okay, so as it turns out it wasn't bombed in an Al Queda kind of way.  But in the e-mail sent to the people in my department the word BOMB was used.  Images of IED in Iraq and tales from the IRA flashed in my head.

I guess my co-worker left his apartment in the city at 9AM and noticed an unusually high number of neighbors gathered around some cars on the street.  So he edged his way to see that they were all looking at three cars that were completely burned out.  And one of those cars belonged to his roommate.  Apparently someone threw some sort of incendiary device (you know, the kind people in malls chuck off the roof to kill zombies) and it burned three cars.

So my co-worker had to go back inside and wake his roommate with the news that her car was now a piece of charcoal.  Seriously, there is no better alarm clock than that one.

Anyway, I now feel like I can never have an excuse for why I am late because he just set that bar way too high.

Sadly I think the only thing that can trump an exploding car is alien abduction and I don't want to use that one. I don't need my co-workers thinking anal probe every time they look at me.

~ The Office Scribe

Monday, July 20, 2009

Manic Monday #9

You know how I can always tell it's Monday?  When I head down to the mailroom to drop off my NetFlix envelopes the mail bin is full of co-workers who have done the same.  Too bad the envelopes are so solid.  I would love to know what people in my office are watching.  But then again, if that were the case, they would know about me returning "Street Fighter:  The Legend of Chun-Li".

Vending Machine FAIL: All I wanted was a Snickers bar because I was having a serious chocolate jones and what did the vending machine give me?  A weird package of strawberry fruit snacks with peanuts mixed in.  What if I were allergic to peanuts?  Wait, then I guess the Snickers bar would have killed me too.  

Never mix the powder non-dairy creamer with the liquid non-dairy creamer.  They are mortal enemies who don't mix and leave you with soggy little white clumps in your morning coffee, which is not a welcome sight.

At one point today I felt like I was going to pass out at my desk.  The conclusion I came to was that there must be a gas leak.  But I figured the office had some sort of warning system to let someone important know.  So a few hours went by and I felt better, so I guess it wasn't a gas leak.

I took a cupcake order from a co-worker today for next Friday so I am still earning money for the down payment on my new car.  Should you wish to contribute to this important fund I will let you know where you should send the check.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

The Sunday Night Routine

Sure, weekends are nice, but sometime on Sunday I realize that I have to go back to work.  And like most people, I have a certain routine I stick to in order to prepare myself for what is to come.

I generally start out by doing some laundry because clean clothes are often appreciated by co-workers.  This thought usually hits me around 6:00PM which means that I can get a good 2-3 loads of laundry completely done before the sound of me going about my chores starts bothering the neighbors.  See, someone left a rather snarky note on the board in the mail room one day about the sound of washing machines running after 10:00PM.  Then someone else wrote back that, and this is just a paraphrase, "I own my god-damn unit and will do god-damn laundry whenever I please".  So to avoid hate from my neighbors I limit myself to doing laundry until about 10:00PM (NOTE:  It is currently 10:47PM and my dryer is still running.  Why won't some loads dry in one cycle?)

After the laundry is started I begin to think about food.  Now on Sundays I have generally just come from one of two places: (1) - My mom's which means I am still full from eating an awesome meal or (2) - From the city and I am still recovering from the night before and food is downright a vile thought.  But it doesn't really matter where I spent Saturday night because I never seem to have food in my fridge on Sunday nights.  Fridge gnomes might be to blame.  So I spend the next 15 minutes coming up with a simple and precise shopping list so I can stop by the Jewel after work and not stick to the list what-so-ever.

Then I stop and watch "True Blood".  Seriously, I love it.  Sure the acting is a little strained but come on, it's about vampires and they are always cool.  Unless they are the vamps from that "30 Days of Night" movie because those bastards were scary.  So scary that the lead one went onto be the bad guy from "Wolverine" and is related to Angelica Huston.  (That second thing may not actually have anything to do with his role in "30 Days of Night"...)

I continue doing chores after "True Blood", which includes making sure all my NetFlix DVD's are in their red envelopes so I can drop them in the mail, finding the left shoe of the pair I want to wear tomorrow, and realizing that the only commercials they show on late night cable are for "Girls Gone Wild" videos and chat lines for lonely singles in the suburbs.

Next comes the shower debate: Do I shower tonight or take one in the morning?  There are pros and cons to each choice.  If I take a shower tonight I can sleep in a little later tomorrow morning but will have wacky bed head... while if I shower in the morning it will help wake me up but will have to cope with drying my hair which right now looks like Cousin It because I haven't had a haircut since Obama has been in office.

Eventually I will fall asleep watching old episodes of "Talk Soup" before coming to an real conclusion, will dream about work, and wake up 3 minutes before my alarm clock goes off which is the worst feeling in the world.

Ahh, Sunday nights...we couldn't have Mondays without them.

~ The Office Scribe

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

I Need 400 CC's Of Cured Pork - STAT

I saw a banned substance list for items that can't be brought into the country of Zambia.  Aside from the fact that I can't bring in Free Base Cocaine (aka crack) or Hashish Baked Items (aka Special Brownies) I found out I can't bring THEBACON into Zambia.

My first thought:  Why won't they allow bacon in the country?

Second thought:  If you can't bring bacon can you bring in sausage?
Third thought: Chances are neither of the previous two thoughts make any sense and are way off base.

And I was right.  Thebacon is a medicine that is derived from the poppy plant, you know, like opium and heroin.  According the several websites I checked out it isn't prescribed to people because it doesn't really work on humans.  

So I wonder why anyone would:

A) Have it in the possession

B) Have it in their possession and decide to bring it to the African nation of Zambia.

I would think actual bacon would be much more useful.

~ The Office Scribe

Monday, July 13, 2009

Manic Monday #8

So I screwed up my back this weekend (long story) and there is nothing quite like sitting in a desk chair for 8 hours in pain that makes you want to vomit.  Though, that is how most Mondays are ... ZING!!!

Why is it always assumed that I know where the people who sit in the cubicles around me are when they are not at their desks?  Until HR lets me instal LoJack I don't see how this is possible. (Though chances are they told me where they were going and I just didn't hear them i.e. wasn't listening.)

I decided today I am jealous of people who know how to Photoshop.  I consider myself pretty tech savvy but I must admit, having the ability to take one persons head and put it on another persons body for comedy alludes me.

The quality of glue on Post-It Notes seems to be getting less sticky as the years go on.  Pretty soon I assume they will just be stack of paper that we have to use staples to affix to things.  This should make it both awkward and painful if we want to put a "Kick Me" Post-It on someones back.

Generally I am good at avoiding the temptation that is my candy dish - that is, until someone when and put Tootsie Rolls in there.  Damn you and your bulk candy selections.  My afternoon candy coma is because of YOU!

~ The Office Scribe

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The World's Water Supply - Consumed By My Office

My, aren't we a hydrated bunch?

Okay, so I know that the air inside an office building can suck the moisture out of the human body faster than a thirty vampire* but there are a LOT of people drinking high quality H20 in my office.  But aside from the quantity I couldn't help but notice the various vessels from which people drink.

Personally, I drink out of a tricked out Nalgeen bottle.  It's green with a black neoprene sleeve which prevents the condensation from puddling all over my desk and even has a skull splash guard so I don't spill water all down myself.

Okay, I know.  That is possibly the smallest picture for what I am talking about, but I am sure you get my drift...

Lot's of people in my office, especially the "younger" crowd (i.e. people under 35) seem to haul Nalgenes around.  I use the word "haul" because when they are full these things weigh a god-dang-ton.

Surprisingly no one has really jumped on the aluminum bottle bandwagon that seems so popular lately.  Perhaps for the same reason I haven't, which is I own about a dozen water bottles and can't justify purchasing a new $25 dollar one just because they have a sweet graphic design created by some third world art student.

The really impressive people are the ones that drink water out of good old fashioned glasses.  I stare in wonder as they fill their glasses to the top and carry them back to their desks, never spilling a drop.  Quite often they are carrying a glass of water in one hand and a steaming hot cup of coffee in the other.  This balancing act is like something out of a circus.  If I had a box of popcorn and a giant thing of cotton candy I would be in heaven.

Personally I would dump the water all over myself before I even got 4 feet from the lunchroom which is why I use the bottle that I do.

~ The Office Scribe

P.S. - I extended the date for the poll about my friend Stubbs getting a mullet.  Why?  Because I want to see if I can get 100 people to confirm that she should rock the business in the front party in the back look... so tell your friends and family that I need votes.

*  Oh yeah, I made a vampire reference.  They are so trendy right now I couldn't help myself.  Did you know that some of them even sparkle???

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Improper Use of 30 Minutes

Hmm.  I just got home from work and realized I was absolutely starving.  So I threw a burger on the grill and tried to think why I was so hungry.  I tried to remember what I had for lunch and I couldn't remember.  Do you know why?

Because I didn't take a lunch today.


How did that even happen?  Shouldn't some biological signal go off in my body telling me around noon that I should eat something?

People all around me went to lunch.  I remember that.  And I remember smelling someone eating tuna around me and thinking about how it smelled like cat food.  But at no point during my day did I think about eating lunch myself.

I guess it's true:  if it isn't scheduled in my day planner I don't remember to do it.

~ The Office Scribe

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Casual Thursday Haiku

This is a short week
I can wear jeans tomorrow
That is so awesome

Kudos to the HR department for letting us have casual Thursday since we have Friday off.  So if I don't get back here before the 4th have a lovely weekend.  

Don't blow a finger off with an M-80 - chances are you'll need that when you get back to work on Monday.

~ The Office Scribe