Thursday, April 29, 2010

Why Spock May, Or May Not, Be The Perfect Employee

Today a coworker told me that we would be more productive at our jobs if he could just import his thoughts into my brain.

"Like the Vulcan Mind Meld," I asked.  I then, since I guess I am a bigger nerd than said co-worker, has to define what that was, which I will also do for you, my readers.

According to the ultimate source on, well, everything (Wikipedia) the Vulcan Mind Meld "is a technique for sharing thoughts, experiences, memories, and knowledge with another individual."

And while I had to agree that it would save time if I could read his thoughts, I had to explain that the concept as a whole would fail because I don't want to know what my coworkers are thinking.  And I don't want them to know what I am thinking.

Wait, what was that? That is what blogging is?  Letting people know what I am thinking?

Oh, well then bring on the mind meld.  I want to swim with some whales!

~ The Office Scribe

P.S. - The Mind Meld is about the only thing I know about in regards to Star Trek.  I am much more of a Star Wars fan.  Darth Vader is my homie.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


At my company we are expected to put an Out of Office (OOO) on our e-mails when we are going to, um, be out of the office.  It is a professional courtesy to let those who are trying to contact you that you aren't going to be in.

A quality out of office contains the following information:

- Duration of time out of the office (including when you plan on returning)
- Contact information of a person who can be contacted in your absence
- General phone number of the office

For example:

I am currently out of the office, returning on May 5, 2010. Should you need assistance before I return, please contact Bob Saget* ( at ext. 666 or call (555) 555-5555.

Have a lovely day,
The Office

Examples of information which does not need to be placed in your OOO consist of the following:

- Details on the medical procedure you are having done while you are away - I am not interested in anything related to your cyst.
- Where you will be instead of the office -   Sure, Hedonism does sound like a fun place, but now I will feel dirty every time I send you an e-mail.
- Veiled threats - I am sorry that I might have to contact someone else in your company to get the information I need but I don't like that I am fearing for my well being in doing so.
- Jokes - I get it, you aren't in the office, and from your sense of humor, I am guessing you aren't at auditions for Second City.
- Quotes - I too love the quote "What a long strange trip it's been" which is why I, and thousand of other teens, used is as the senior quote in our year books.

So remember, when it comes to OOO, remember to KISS.

I apologize for all the acronyms - I have been hyped up on coffee all day.

~ The Office Scribe

* Whenever I can't think of a person I default to Bob Saget.  It's weird, I know.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

If God Wanted Me To Be Green I'd Look Like This Guy

Yeah, so according to something called The Internet, today is Earth Day.  But I work in an office, which as much as we would like to be green, we aren't.  Why?

Paper.  Lots and lots of paper.

We can't help it.  We are an office.  We print forms, faxes, e-mails, messages, and coupons from Barnes & Noble.  If it isn't written down, it doesn't exist.

Sure, we have computers with endless amounts of data on it, but I have seen movies.  Lots of movies where computers fail or people hack them or they send killer machines back in time to murder the savior of humanity.

So I print*.  And I will continue to print until someone proves to me Skynet won't happen.

~ The Office Scribe

* I do, however, make sure to recycle all the paper I don't need.  So I guess I am a kinda green.  Like this guy:

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Wait, Did I Miss Manic Monday?

Holy crap!  I completely forgot to post on Monday, which I have been really good about avoiding lately.  Damn, I am known for one thing, Manic Monday posts, and I forgot to post it.  So here is a list of reasons why it didn't happen:

1) Paper cut.  I received a paper cut on my index finger which felt like someone sliced through it with a katana.  And while the pain was gone in a short while, it lasted long enough to not make me want to type a lot.

2) 420 - International "Smoke It If You've Got It" Day.  Okay, so technically this was Tuesday, but I was so amped up about my trivia team, Blarney Stoned, playing pub trivia on 420 that I was distracted.  Oh, and did I mention that at said trivia, the theme was "pot" and my team won!

3) Lack of excitement.  I know I am known for turning the mundane into something awesome, but if the world doesn't provide me with material I am not going to make stuff up.  I might have a degree in Fiction Writing but that doesn't mean I employ that crap here.

So all of you need to light a candle and hope that some cool stuff starts to happen in my office so I can write about it.  Because if I continue down this boring track I am afraid you guys might leave me.

But you would never do that....

Would you?

~ The Office Scribe

Friday, April 16, 2010

Sign Of The Apocalypse

Is it just me, or has the world gone a bit wonky?

It all started a few months back, or whenever it was, when massive floods ravaged the town at the base of Machu Picchu, preventing anyone from visiting this iconic landmark. (If you didn't know, I work in international travel and as you can imagine, this provided us with some issues at my office.)

Next I awoke in the middle of the night to hear the dishes rattling in my cabinet as an earthquake shook the midwest.

Then a few days ago a volcano, which has been spewing stuff for months, decides to shut down 90% of the air traffic over Europe by sending giant plumes of ash into the sky which can be seen from space.

Sure, there have been a lot of doomsday signs lately, but nothing like what occurred today.

An e-mail was sent out today wondering if anyone wanted to order lunch from Jimmy Johns...


People, I would suggest praying to your gods or lighting a candle or slaughtering a goat because things can not get any weirder than this.

~ The Office Scribe

*That isn't to say I didn't each lunch today.  Actually, I was in the mood for soup so I ran to Panera.  Now normally, I am all about the Cream of Chicken Wild Rice, but that is only served on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.  So I had decided to get Broccoli Cheese.  But when I got to the counter THEY HAD CREAM OF CHICKEN AND WILD RICE.

Another sign of the apocalypse? 

You decide.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

You Like Me, You Really Like Me

As I was leaving work today, ready to head out into the gorgeous weather that has embraced Chicago, I  ran into a few people from my company who work in another department.  A department I am known to help out from time to time.

They wanted to let me know that they appreciate the fact that I find time to help them out.  And they wanted to know if I wanted to join their department.

I decline, with the caveat that I could be tempted if they could offer me a higher salary.

That's right.  I am trying to start an internal bidding war for yours truly.

Here's to hoping it works.

~ The Office Scribe

P.S. - Like I said, it is absolutely beautiful outside right now which is one of the main reasons this post is so short.  I just poured myself a glass of wine and am headed out to my patio, raccoons and all, to relax after having finished my taxes.  Yeah, I know,  they are due tomorrow.  Which is why I did them today.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Manic Monday Follow Up

As I was picking up dirty socks around my bedroom this morning (because I swear those suckers escape from the hamper in the night) I bent down to grab one from under my dresser and low and behold I found my glasses!

Of course, now I can't use eye strain as an excuse for anything I do wrong today.

Oh well, I guess that's what cramps are for...


Too bad - deal with it.  I've been up since 6:30 a.m. making this:

Why? Because I am the best co-worker a person could ask for.

Happy Tuesday!

~ The Office Scribe

Monday, April 12, 2010

Manic Monday #28

One pair of prescription glasses with just enough oomph to prevent eye strain from staring at a computer screen all day long.  Last seen, um, I think at work on Friday.  This morning all I could find was the empty metal casket I use as a glasses case (yeah...I am scary).  They are about 11 years old so I probably need new ones anyway (or I guess I could go to Walgreen's and get cheaters) but that is beside the point.  

Where the hell are my glasses???

Okay, even if you aren't from Chicago I am sure you have heard of Portillo's. (I think they even have some of them out in the LA area now for all the ex-pats.)  Anywho, they are known for their hotdogs and their Italian beef.  But I have also discovered that they should be known for their ice.  I bought a large iced tea at 12:30 p.m. and there was still ice left in the cup at 7:00 p.m. when I got home.  And not little flimsy pieces. Actual chunks of ice.  I didn't know if I should be impressed or scared.

Seriously, to the person who put the World's Finest Chocolates with Almonds (and I know you read this) in the candy dish - I hate you.  And here I thought my kryptonite were Tootsie Rolls.

I can't tell if people at work are getting sick or if it's allergies.  Either way I think I will start wearing a HazMat suite to work tomorrow.  There is nothing worse than being sick when it is nice outside.

~ The Office Scribe

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Why Do I Work?

It's a question that anyone who has a job asks themselves from time to time. We feel the need to justify the long hours, hectic conditions, sub-par wages, stress, anxiety, and other less than favorable situations.

But then something happens and you suddenly realize what makes work worth doing...

Like picture perfect spring days at the ballpark with your friends and a giant frozen margarita in a novelty collectors cup.

Happy Spring everyone!

~ The Office Scribe

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Under The Desk With The Office Scribe – An Interview With the Unfinished Rambler...or Person

Apologies all around.  The was supposed to go up on Tuesday, but between a long day at work and the need to get to trivia and finally start drinking again, it didn't.  And then between sketchy internet service and having dinner with my Gram it also didn't happen yesterday.  But I am sober, hungry, was bored at work, and once again have a connection to the outside world, so this shit is getting posted now.

My second guest who agreed to come Under The Desk with me is Unfinished Person.  When I met him, he was going by Unfinished Rambler but he has been changing his name, double posting on Twitter, and generally making me confused as hell.  But all of that aside, I am a fan so I asked him some questions.  Which he was kind enough to answer...

1) Have you ever worked in a cubicle?

Yes.  When I was an intern at a newspaper.  Unfortunately, I was right by the door to the room with all the other cubicles so I couldn't masturbate like I would have liked to have done, if I had been hidden in the back somewhere.

Editor's note:  I am completely freaked out to walk into the cubicles of the people who are hidden in corners.  Thanks UP!

2) You seem to have somewhat of a split personality (something I have noticed on Twitter).  Do you have any other mental conditions I should know about?

I don't just have two personalities.  I actually have 27.

3) I notice that you read a lot.  What is your favorite book that doesn't contain illustrations or a "turn to page..." scenario at the bottom of each page.

A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving

4) I gave up liquor for Lent.  You gave up candy.  What is the hardest thing you have ever given up because of God?


5) Do you have scented candles in your bathroom?

Um, no.  I am a heterosexual male and even though my wife is a heterosexual female, I don't allow that in our bathroom.  We don't need it anyway, because my shit smells like roses.  Really.

6) We met because of the now defunct which means we both think we are funny.  Do you have a favorite humorist?

Dave Barry

7) There is a lot of information about you on your blog.  What is a secret you are willing to share, here, for the first time?

I am 5-foot-7.

8) Does that little smiley face on your blog mean anything?

Well, even though I recently received a fortune cookie recently that said, "You are a happy man," that's not what it means.  What is really means is that likes to put shit (and it's not rose scented either, those bastards) on my blog that I can't figure out how to take off, and by the time I figure it out, I'll be gone to  True story:  See designer Chris Pearson's answers about 20 comments down on this post:

Editor's note: That link may, or may not, bring you to a NSFW website.  I am afraid to click on it so I am no help.

9) Coke or Pepsi?

Pepsi is the answer I give when family is around because my late grandfather worked for Pepsi and most of the time, that's true except on nights like tonight (when I'm answering these questions) when I'm drinking Crown Royal and Coke or other nights not like tonight when I'm drinking Captain and Coke.

Editor's Note:  I read "Crown Royal" as "Royal Crown" and spent 5 minutes trying to figure out why someone would mix two colas together...

Oh, and for the record, these answers are from Unfinished Rambler.  Unfinished Person is too much of a pussy to tell it like it is; I'm not.

Well said my friend, well said....


~ The Office Scribe

* Feel like you have what it takes to venture under the desk with my extra pair of shoes and a petrified Cheetoh?  Drop me an e-mail or find me on Twitter.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Manic Monday #27

One of the things I am known at for work is my ability to translate e-mails from Spanish into English.  So I was really thrown for a loop today when a one sentence reply my co-worker received from South America made no sense.  I must have read it about 20 times.  I thought maybe I was losing my mind.  Or my foray back into drinking had killed my Spanish brain cells.  But it was neither.  Turns out it was just Portuguese.  Silly, silly Portuguese.

Do you know why Google was invented?  So that when you start to discuss wacky dreams with people at work you can find out what their dreams mean.  And then judge them.

I know.  I was digging through the trash today in the lunch room.  So what?  Stop looking at me like that and go back to reading the random copies of Daily Variety someone has started leaving by the microwaves and enjoy that Lean Cuisine.  

When holidays fall on Sundays, instead of giving people Friday's off, maybe we should be closed on Monday.  That way, we have an additional day to recover from the sugar coma we have slipped into because of peanut butter eggs.  (Or scars from the Peep wars.)

At about 1:20 p.m. today the internet went out.  Normally I wouldn't mind, but it was opening day for the Chicago White Sox and I had to know how they were doing so I could compare it to how the Cubs were doing.  Luckily, the internet came back about 10 minutes later.  Moral of the story?  Sox won 6-0 and the Cubs lost 16-5.  To parody the Black Eyed Peas - This years going to be a good year. (Check back in October for confirmation of this theory.)

Question pondered at work today:  If you accidently kill your spouse in a freak sex accident, can you still collect the life insurance?

~ The Office Scribe

Friday, April 2, 2010

And That's Why Sobriety Pisses Off Jesus

Though I was raised Catholic, and attended a (prestigious) Catholic high school, I am in on way religious.  Well, I guess I am a little spiritual.  For the sake of labels, I guess you would call me an agnostic.  You know, there is some higher power, I just don't know what it is.

So during this holiest of holy times, I don't generally do anything special.  If I am with my mom on a Friday I will abstain from meat but otherwise I am my normal self (case in point - it's good Friday and I ate a pork chop for dinner).

But for some strange reason this year, I decided to partake in the age old tradition of giving something up for Lent.  When I was a kid it was generally something like TV or candy.  In high school, while working at  butcher shop, I gave up meat (boss was not happy).  This year, I decided, because I like a challenge, to give up alcohol.

Yeah, that's right.  40 days sans the hooch.  I should say, that I am not a heavy drinker anyways, but I am a social enough person that not having a beer at trivia or a cocktail at happy hour was a challenge.  Or when I have weeks like last week where I couldn't go home and drown my sorrows in a nice Pinot Noir.  That was really rough.  Of course, I was teased by friends and coworkers who thought I would break down and drink.

As it turns out, once I make a commitment, I stick to it.  Over the course of 40 days I only had three drinks (1 glass of champagne for the Oscars - which is a religious holiday to me, and 2 Black & Tans the night before St. Patrick's Day - because my ancestors would haunt me otherwise.)

Aside from saving a good chunk of change (rough guestimate $200.00) I thought that if there was a higher power, they would be pretty impressed with my commitment.

Turns out, I was wrong.


See, Good Friday at my company is what they call a half-staff day.  That means you can take the day off without sacrificing a vacation day, or work and earn an additional day off.  I always work Good Friday because I want to be able to take a day off when the weather is nice.  And Good Friday is generally a crappy day in Chicago.  I have memories of days with flurries and hurricane force winds.

This year however, it is a balmy 78 degrees and sunny as a day at the beach.  The grass is a brilliant shade of green.  Daffodils have pushed themselves up and are in full bloom.  Golf courses and parks are loaded with people enjoying the weather.

And where was I today?

In my cubicle, with a handful of other co-workers, having completed all my tasks within the first 30 minutes of being at work because no other company was open today.  My company is international, with offices all over the world.  I think every other branch was closed today in honor of Easter, including countries with a minimal Christian population.

The only conclusion I can come to is that God was not pleased with me giving up alcohol for lent.  I mean, he serves wine with all his meals, who knew it was a sin to pass?

~ The Office Scribe

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Unexpect The Expected


What does a snaky, fun loving office drone do on April 1st?

Switch the regular and decaf coffee?

Lower someone's office chair when they leave their cubicle?

Convince everyone at lunch she is pregnant?

I'll tell you what she does...

Absolutely nothing.

April Fool's on all the people who though I would pull something today.

You should know better.

~ The Office Scribe