Friday, March 23, 2007

The Quote of the Day

Mister M and I trade funny snippets from our day back and forth. It helps make work go a little faster, and adds brevity to what can be a very plodding existence in cubicle-land. Recently, we've sent a string of unconscious, yet hilarious, grammar slips zipping back and forth across the wires. Who ever is monitoring my e-mails at work must be getting a chuckle.

Quote 1: one of mine
Mandy, a co-worker with a proud-to-be redneck flair, sighs heavily.

"Everything okay over there?" I ask over the padded five-foot grey wall.

"This hold time is inconvincable!"

"Huh?" I lose track of the beat in The Girl from Ipanema.

"You know, like, outrageous. Inconvincable."

Quote 2: one of his

"We've had a grub worm problem for the last couple weeks out on the estate," Mister M explains. "The moths see the landscaping lights in the lawn and are sucked in. They lay their eggs, then out come the worms.

"Now some sort of animal has been rooting around out back, looking for a meal. The housekeeper thinks it must be an 'Amarillo'. You know, one of 'those things they have down in Texas'."
And the winner is...
Quote 3: one of mine

"Ug!" My boss fans herself rapidly, then starts alternately lifting and yanking down her cowl-necked sweater.

The office is noticeably over-warm. She's flushed. Her stringy, over-processed hair has gone flat. There's a light sheen on her upper lip.

"You okay?" I ask, ever the helpful employee.

"This heat!," she gasps. "I'm sweating protrusively!"

I've decided to give out dictionaries for Christmas.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

The Girl from Ipanema

I was sitting in my cubicle, in my standard-issue wanna-be-ergonomic office chair, listening to the forth round of "The Girl from Ipanema". I was very glad, at that point, I was wearing a headset instead of holding the receiver. No doubt the company big-wigs issue them with the understanding that even the most die-hard Sinatra fan can only take so much. The cost of handsets being thrown through the window could get a little pricey.

I'd been on hold for 27 minutes, last check, and was on my forth transfer. All four phone reps claimed I was in the wrong department, and thus began the "Tall, tan, young and lovely..." assault . I wonder, sometimes, if there's life on the other end of the line.

Finally, success! A human being answers the phone:

"Great-Big-Financial company, Jane Doe speaking. How may I assist you today?"

'You could drop the cheesy phone voice,' I think to myself.

"Hey there. This is Mouth from Another-Great-Big-Financial company, calling in regards to the requested transaction for our mutual client, Mr. Bigbucks."

"And is Mr. Bigbucks available for me to speak with?"

Damn. A strike-out. "No, he isn't, I'm afraid."

"Oh, I'm sorry, Mouth," chirps Jane, dripping with vicious sarcasm. "I can't discuss the transaction with you unless Mr. Bigbucks is there to give his permission."

Jane and I both know her company has already spoken with me three times regarding this particular transaction. We're also both aware that she's going to do everything in her power to hold on to that particular quarter-mil for as long as possible, and that it's my job to get her to release it and send it to me.

I imagine Jane and I as two knights, squared off against one another in a jousting ring. We straddle our chairs, keyboards tucked snuggly under our arms, and stare intently into one another's monitor-reflecting eyes. Suddenly, the flag drops, and we lean forward at a charge. The keyboards collide in the center of the ring, Ps and Qs flying hither and yon. Jane is dazed, but not down. Swinging my mouse overhead like a mace, I deliver the death blow...I smile, batting my eyes. "Well, Jane, if you would be so kind as to review your notes, you'll see that John Smith and I conference-called Mr. Bigbucks just last week on such-and-such date at so-and-so time, and that he indeed has given his permission for you to discuss the transaction with me." I'm a meticulous note-taker. It's what makes me good at my job.

Choking on her final breath, pencil skirt and suit jacket smudged and torn from taking her spill into the dirt of the jousting ring, Jane resorts to her final tool in the financial world arsenal - the hold button. "It will take me just a moment to review the account, Mouth. Would you mind if I place you on hold?"

'YES!' my subconscious screams. "No, Jane, that would be fine. Take your time." My voice drips with honey-coated barbs as we start The Waiting Game. It's something like The Price is Right, except there's no smiling Bob Barker, no television cameras, and nobody goes home with a new bedroom suite.

Something inside me dies as Sinatra croons yet again, "... when she passes, each one she passes says, 'Ahhhh'."

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

The Old Gray Mare

I hit the snooze button six times before I finally dragged myself out of bed this morning, cussing and rubbing my eyes. One pounding shower and a quick kiss of the toothbrush later, and I'm standing before the mirror, wondering why my breasts suddenly seem less excited than I am about facing the upcoming day.

That's when it caught my eye. One shining white streak among a field of crimson.

My first gray hair.

At least, the first one I've noticed. I plucked at my scalp, miffed. 'How is this possible?' I thought to myself. At my age?

I took a closer look. Deep, dark blue shades the inside corners of my eyes, and fine creases have developed there, and around my mouth.

Then I remembered my grandmother admonishing to my mother, "Don't go pullin' at thim gray har. You'll git three in 'er place." This from the woman who insists coffee tastes better with a little bourbon, who has to retrieve her teeth from her purse every time we want to take a family photo.

Now, I'm not buying into that whole wive's tale about hydra-style grays that split into themselves when they're severed, but why tempt fate, right?

Anyway, I've earned the gray. You don't have the kind of year I just had and come out completely unscathed. I guess I'll keep it.

Maybe I'll name it Harry.

Friday, March 02, 2007

In the House

"A meshugga madam who taught people how to be sex slaves turned a stately $3 million Westchester home owned by an ultra-Orthodox rabbinical school into an S&M dungeon, police claimed yesterday. Mistress of "The Sovereign Estate," Sandra Chemero - who advertised the manse online as a place "where submissives and slaves are immersed in training" - was busted on charges of prostitution and weapons possession for having a stun gun."

A friend linked me to the New York Post this morning.

"Can you believe this?" she said.

No, honestly. I can't.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again:

What goes on behind closed doors between two consenting adults is nobody's business but theirs.

You'll notice, please, that the report did not define which "sex acts" she agreed to. I'm sorry, but how, exactly, do you define a sex act?

I'm patronizing a restaurant, and up saunters my waitress. She's got a killer body, legs all the way to the floor, and I become aroused. Are she and I committing a sex act?

What would have to happen in order for it to count as one? Would we have to have contact?

So I stand up, shake her hand, and introduce myself. Are we going to be arrested on the spot because I'm aroused and we're touching?

In order for it to count as prostitution (which is actually the illegal part of this story), money (or goods) has to exchange hands. So, if I tip her heavily because of those curves, we're both going to jail?

Were this the case, cell block 7 in the women's ward would look like a Hooter's reunion.

It's like the city of New York banning the "N-word". How can you ban the use of a word, and still tout the United States as a country with the right of freedom of expression? How could the bill not have been laughed off the floor?

It's a sad state of affairs when Americans don't stand together against the loss of their basic rights.

Is the Dominatrix's behavior offensive to most Americans? Yeah, probably. That doesn't change the fact that by allowing her to be imprisoned for her activities, you open the door to your own bedroom for inspection.

Is the "N-word" offensive and derogatory, with or without the "R"?

Absolutely, but I'll support some one's right to use it with my dying breath. Why?

Because by protecting his right to say it, I'm also protecting my right to tell him just what I think about it, and that is something worth fighting for.