Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Work Stories

I mostly got along with everyone at a place I used to work at. There were a few people that kinda got on my nerves. One of them was your typical aloof and socially awkward IT geek*.

I give everyone a chance, but then I had a conversation with him in the bathroom and then I knew I no longer liked him.

(we both walk into the men's room at the same time and I take the only urinal)
Foo: (joking) "look's like you are going to have to sit down to pee"
IT guy: "I always sit down to pee"
Foo: (confused smirk) …….
IT guy: "My wife makes me"
Foo: (silent giggle) " wha? why?"
IT guy: " I don't know… but she puts food on the table, so I do what she says."
--At this point he is in the stall next to mine. I don't know if he was sitting or not.
Foo: (trying not to laugh) "That reminds me of that movie, About Schmitt. You ever seen it?"
IT guy: (snooty tone) "Oh, I don't watch movies."
Foo: ......

After him telling me that he doesn't watch movies, I had this guy figured out, and there really wasn't much need for any more idle chatter between the two of us. He is one of those guys who has such a boring life that he has to broadcast his wacky quirks and knowledge to anyone that will listen just so he will seem interesting. Kinda like Dwight Schrute on The Office, except not funny.

Later on that month I overheard a conversation with that he had with someone just like him. It was funny because they were trying to out-do one another on how much trivial information they knew about Thailand.

1: “Thai food is spicy.”
2: “The spice is used as a preservative.”
1: “It comes from the habanera chili.”
--- long pause---
2: “Thailand is ruled by a King, not a democracy”
--- long pause---
1: “I rains a lot over there. They have alot of monsoons.”
--- long pause---
2: “Yeah, it really affects their tourism.”
--- really long pause-----
1: “Thai people eat a lot of eggs.”
--- long pause-----
2:"They have a lot of chickens in Thailand."

The last statement was my favorite.

It was like he ran out of information about Thailand from all the TV shows he had seen and he just inferred that there was alot of chickens because there was a lot of eggs.

When I worked there, there was a trend of eating lunch at Indian and Thai restaurants that were near. Every-single-time we ordered 3 of the same guys would get in some kind of contest about how hot they liked their food. When I would admit I wanted a 3/5 on the hot scale, they would say things like:

"Oh, you don't want that. You want a 5!" or: " I am getting mine much more hot that that!".

And while we ate, I might start sweating or make exclamations about the spiciness of the food, which they would all take as a queue to remind me how mild my food was compared to theirs.

I think they thought of spicy tolerance as a sign of their manhood. I would mostly admit that I am a spice weakling and they have far superior taste buds. On several occasions in the break room I would mock them about how little sugar they put in their coffee. I think one caught on, but the others didn’t.

Another funny story is when I was talking to my boss in the hallway, he was walking toward the bathroom. So i followed him in, because it was really important to talk to him. We continued the conversation through his entire bathroom visit, which included a very audible bowel movement. He didn't ask for privacy or ask if we could talk later or anything! I really admired him after that.

Another classic is a woman that I used to work with who lived in the country. Not on the outskirts of town, IN THE COUNTRY. Hours from civilization. Anyway, She always referred to her husband as "precious". She wasn’t describing him as precious; she actually called him precious, and didn’t mind calling him that when she talked to us about him. For some reason she expected us to know who he was.

“I need to pick up precious from the doctor’s today.”
“Me and precious are going to the lake this weekend.”
“I bought precious a new belt at the Walmart”

She also ate hot dogs hand-over-fist. She grilled those fuckers on a George Foreman Grill every day in our break room. So there was a stink of hot dogs 50% of the time I was working. Sometimes she gave me one, so at least I got a hot dog out of it.

This is the end of my stories about people I used to work with.

* I am not saying that all IT geeks are aloof and socially awkward. I know plenty who are not, and real nice guys. However, there is a special persona that seems to go along with IT people. I think most of us know what I am talking about.

maybe "precious" was her dog like in silence of the lambs. her comments make much more sense then.
With stories like these, you should be a writer for "The Office".
The whole reason I read people's blogs is for stories like those.
can i be you precious
I'm real caught up in work-place dynamics at the moment, since my new job has turned out to be the third most stressful and un-fun thing I've ever experienced. Partly because of the work itself, but mostly because of the people and what asses some people are - even in the face of the best intentions and friendliness you can imagine. What I have really learned, though, is this - Hispanic people are warm, nice, intelligent and are a joy to work with. This is true of the "laborers" and those with more responsible positions. Today I had more than one really meaningful "exchanges" (as opposed to conversations), with people who speak only the tiniest amount of English. On the same day, I received some really deadly ray-like dislike vibes from people who said not one damn word to me. And it is my birthday! And they know it. That's all I have to say about that.

On the other hand, please visit my blog
for a description of a really GREAT birthday present I got from my sons.
your message seems so much like blog-spam. that i am not sure if that is really you or not. i will go to your blog with extreme caution.
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