Wednesday, April 2, 2008

A recap and some other junk...

Well, needless to say, my secret meeting with the CEO went well today. Whilst two of my colleagues don't have jobs as of next week, I used my charm and boyish wiles to convince her that I was awesome and that I could single-handedly turn things around.
Or something like that. Actually nothing like that. I had to be very honest and admit fault but it seemed to work out alright. There was an unnecessarily large amount of talk of office culture though. I found this funny because this is a workplace overrun with middle-aged women with nothing better to do than talk about when they had a cup of tea once that was so hot that the cup melted a mark into the top of their desk and they had to hide it with paper for a week because they'd only been working there for a little while and were afraid they'd lose their job.
Imagine banal conversation like that. All. The. Fucking. Day.
Although I lie. These conversations are punctuated with me being told what smart-casual means.
"So we all have to come along to this event tomorrow night. Dress code is smart-casual. Jiminy that means you should probably wear a collared shirt or something. Maybe jeans, I think that would be ok."
Ahh...yes. Thank you for clarifying smart casual for me. Unfortunately this means I ironed my string vest and camouflage three quarter cargo pants for nothing. Damn.

In an effort to boost the morale in the place, they've opted to install umbrellas in the middle of the groups of desks. Like, big fuck off novelty beach umbrellas. No shit. It's ridiculous.
These are the kind of people that make every second Friday "Dress As Your Favourite Pet Cat Day" because they think it will be so good for morale, not to mention FUCKING HILARIOUS to see Laneesha from accounts dressed up as little Mr Tinkles. They forget however, that no one else in the office owns a cat, let alone multiple felines from which to pick a favourite. Everyone also knows that you let your cats sleep in your bed and that your just-used vibrator has picked up so much cat-hair from your sheets that it looks like an Alsatian's disembodied tail. Fools.

So at the moment, there's a big taffeta umbrella perched gaudily over a desk. A green one, with a parrot on it and fairy lights.
The other one is pink with flowers embroidered on it. And tassels.
I work near colourful umbrellas and tassels, however I'm not a cocktail waiter at a burlesque club. What has my life come to?

Why don't you just shape some shit into a ball, roll it around in your cat-hair sheets and call it a fucking coconut. Because that's closer to paradise than these stupid umbrellas you're surrounding me with.

So being the singular synthesiser of testosterone in a thick swamp of estrogen producing manatees I mockingly declared that I felt left out of the festivities as i didn't have an umbrella above my desk.
Bad move Jiminy. Manatees cannot detect sarcasm.
Yesterday a package arrived in the post for me.
"Open it." My boss says, grinning daftly with her fish-mouth.
I sigh and pull away the packaging.
It's a wide-brimmed hat with corks dangling off it. It even had a kangaroo printed on the front of it. Because that's what we all do in Australia these days. Seriously, live in the now. Why didn't you just get me a brochure for EXPO 88 or a block of cheese signed by Peter Russell Clarke. Why stop there though? Buy me the box set of Crocodile Dundee videos wrapped in prawns and soaked in Eucalyptus oil. Or save yourself the trouble and just write me a card that says HEY YOU'RE AUSTRALIAN. Cos that's about as funny as your fucking hat.

It's like me buying her some severed heads, cos isn't that what the English were into at some stage? Cutting off heads and sticking them to things to ward off their enemies? Or was it burning people? Maybe I could bring her some matches and a some sticks to make a pyre.
They wonder why there's such a high staff turn-over? Geez... I dunno guys, it wouldn't have anything to do with the incompetent managers. Maybe it's because there's NOT ENOUGH UMBRELLAS.

Anyways, I'm getting all worked up. The point of this was to paint a picture of the 'culture' in my office. It may seem to you that it paints a more accurate picture of my current absence of sanity but frankly, I care not. Me and Other Me are very happy with ourselves.

Anyways, my office sucks and I'm powerless to change it, unless I magically develop ever-shrinking ovaries overnight and miraculously turn into a bitter, thick-skulled ass hat.
Quit, you say? I'd like to but I need the cash as The Girl and I are saving furiously (which I imagine would look like a tiny kid frantically jamming handfuls of bank notes into a piggy bank) for our big Europe/India/South East Asia/Back to Australia trip at the end of June.

Looks like I'm in Grit-Your-Teeth-And-Deal-With-It City for three more months. Hooray.
Oh well, I hear it's full of umbrellas culture at least.


Amanda said...

Oh good god. As if umbrellas aren't bac enough, the hat is just a blinding insult.

Hang in there Jiminy, in three months yourself and the good NB will be jetting off to some of the most awesome places on earth, and you'll never have to work with the banshee manager again.

D'Jen said...

Why is it that people think that adding some cheap novelty items around the office that will make all the difference when you are doing a job that makes you self harm.

I actually really like cute, novelty stuff but I find it incredibly patronizing when people believe all it takes is some beach umbrellas, and a cork hat to make the environment less shit.

Why not give people actual work to do that gives them a sense of pride and achievment, or eve just a bonus?! I reckon if you had the choice between a bonus $20 or a office full of novelty crap, people will take the $20. Even though it's a small amount, free money is always fun.

Dune said...


Not to laugh at your pain or anything. Man I have blogger envy right now - you're all funny and shit and I'm just endless whiney.

Your current paradise sounds like a call centre I used to work for years and years ago - a place that used to time toilet breaks.

Girl Friday said...

I was one of the only Yanks in my old office. Whenever they were celebrating something they considered to be very European or English (usually involving sport as there are few other reasons people feel an allegiance to their country here)they would buy me and the other 2 rejects something "from our country" to make us feel included. Let's disregard for one moment that I have been in London for almost 4 years and can't relate to much in the US anymore. The novelty items would be things like Jiff or Fluff or one time in the case of the World Cup, a plastic hat with the American flag on it.
I feel your pain Jiminy, but at least it makes for a good laugh and at least you have an Aussie at home to comiserate with. I just had a friend in America with a fluffy vibrator.

surviving myself said...

damn, what the fuck???

time for a new job man.

Fever Dog said...

I may even have said it before, but I think now more than ever your fish-mouthed boss needs to be burned at the stake.

J-Money said...

I suggest accidentally starting a massive fire by bringing in some tiki torches that you thought would complement the decor. If a cat lady or two gets incinerated in the process... [shrugs]

I'm so glad you're writing again...

jiminycricket said...

amanda: I am SO insulted by it all. Well maybe not insulted but frustrated and annoyed. Thanks for the support! Can't wait!

djen: You should write a business book based around the 'Free $20' ethos. I'd be waaaay happier if I had free money, so happy in fact there'd be no more need to self-harm!

dune: Laughing makes the pain easier to deal with... Timed toilet breaks are retarded. I worked in a place thaty did that. It was the worst.

girlfriday: It's good to know it happens to other people! People have no idea sometimes, do they? I take it that's why it happened in your old office.
I am definitely lucky i have someone to commiserate with. I'd go (more) mental otherwise.

survivingmyself: Dude, I know! It sucketh so hard. If someone offered me money to leave here tomorrow, I'd do it.

fd: Yes, more people need to be burned at the stake. Bring back the ways of old!

jmoney: You have all the evil ideas! First ete drops, now this! I'd keep one torch alight and just stand with it, then when the fire burned out and everyone was charred, I'd symbolically snuff it out with that ladle thing they used on Survivor and walk away happy.

Ashley said...

Inspired by your post, I put up a nice striped umbrella over my desk and have adopted a new, more tropical wardrobe that includes a coconut bra. I am currently trying to find a delivery person willing to bring imported white sand into the office.

Technodoll said...

I'm sorry your boss is such a retard. Come work in Canada, where all the smart people emigrate to ;-)

Boy on a bike said...

Fuck me, I've worked in some retarded environments, but yours takes the cake.

When I worked in London (so last century), the only token Australian thing we had around the office (apart from me) was a shitload of Australian wine on Friday afternoon - courtesy of the petty cash tin. Why not suggest that they buy booze instead of tack?

But I think your latest idea is the best - time to pull the pin if you ask me.

Kae said...


Smart Casual?

Mess with their minds.

Budgie smugglers.



jiminycricket said...

Ashley: Good for you! Embrace the faux-summer.

technodoll: Canada you say? Can you assure me that I will not have any problems with tards in Canada?

boab: Yes. Booze! Why didn't I think of this earlier. Prepare for drunken rants now!

Kae: How did you know that I am renowned for looking both smart AND casual when I don my budgie smugglers?!