Corporate Peon: September 2004

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Things I Found Funny During This Week's Class

~ Annoying girl pronouncing 'speedometer' as "speed meter"

~ Annoying girl pronouncing 'Caleb' as "Caleeb"

~ Hearing the professor say 'shipper' but thinking he said 'stripper.' I wasn't the only one who thought that; I also wasn't the one to say "What does a stripper have to do with this case?"

~ Discussing a case involving a sorority and having the prof say, "Picture yourself in that sorority house" and having the controller / accountant / father of two sitting next to me say. "Oh, I am. I am" in a dirty voice.

Yeah, so you had to be there. Up yours.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Office Romance

Once upon a time, there was a girl named Kate. She worked in the IT side of a large company. She was in her late 20's. Also working in the same IT side of the same large company was a man named Gordy. He was in his late 50's. Kate and Gordy worked together on many projects over the four years she was at the company. She learned that his bark was worse than his bite (figuratively speaking) and that under his gray beard and gray hair, he was just a harmless old man.

Kate heard through the office grapevine when Gordy's wife died. Kate was sorry for Gordy. Gordy seemed to handle things okay - he had had a long time to prepare for this, as wifey was sick for a long while.

One Wednesday afternoon, Kate passed Gordy in the hallway. Kate said "hi, Gordy, how are you?" She was a friendly gal and always said hi to people. Gordy responded in kind.A few minutes later, Gordy showed up at Kate's cube. "What are you doing this Sunday?" he asked. Kate faltered. "Nothing but homework." "Would you like to go to a play?" asked Gordy. "What play is it?" she asked, her mind racing, trying to find a polite way to rebuff the older man. He answered. "Where is it?" she asked. He answered. "Sure," she replied.

His face lit up. "Really? You'll go? That's great. We have season tickets and I had no idea who would want the other ticket. You'll really go?" "Definitely. Thanks for thinking of me."

Thursday, Gordy went to Kate's cube with the tickets so she could get the address of the theater. He said something about the tickets needing to be exchanged so he couldn't give her hers then. Kate said she would map out directions and let him know if she had any questions prior to the weekend.

Kate then left to attend a meeting. When she arrived back at her cube, she found printed directions, with the route highlighted, on her seat. Stapled to the directions was Gordy's business card, with his home phone and his cell phone numbers written on the card. Kate thought it was nice that he made sure she had the directions.

Sunday came. Kate showed up at the theater, dressed nicely but not overdone, to find Gordy standing outside in a suit, waiting for her. He hopped in her car to show her wear to park, which ended up being right next to his car. They walked into the theater and found two of Gordy's friends there, a couple who always attended theater with him. They odd little couple. To others, Kate was sure it looked like a girl out with her parents and grandfather, which made her chuckle silently.

They had dinner prior to the show, where Kate minded her manners and made small talk. Gordy's eyes got big over some desserts and his friends teased him. Kate mentioned how his eyes lit up when she brought donuts in on Friday; Gordy replied, something to the effect of being excited to see her, not the donuts. Kate ignored that comment.

The show was amusing. Kate and Gordy made small talk during intermission. She tried to focus on the show and not the fan stealing glances at her. After the show, Gordy asked if she was up for ice cream. She was not. He walked her to her car and she thanked him again. He said he still didn't know her very well; she lightly said there was nothing extraordinary to know. They hugged goodbye.

Monday when Kate got into work, there was a voicemail from Gordy. When he had been in her car, driving to a parking spot, he thought he noticed a flat tire. She should get it looked at. Kate wasn't sure if she should appreciate his concern or be a little creeped out.

Thursday, there was a VM from Gordy saying he still had a lot of questions about her. He came to her cube and asked a work question; then asked if she'd want to have dinner sometime. Startled, Kate responded, "Why?" "Because I want to get to know you better." "Why?" "Because I want to be your friend." "Why?" Gordy chuckled. "Well, you think about it and let me know."

The next day, the following email came to Kate:
You wanted to know why? I have a lot of reasons. I really like you. I like your personality. I like being with you. I like the look in your eyes.

I need a new companion, someone I can talk to, someone I can confide in, someone I can share my feelings with. I have picked you and now I'd like to know more about you. When you feel comfortable about talking about this, please let me know. I am a hands off kind of guy, kind of old fashioned maybe, and I will never try to force my will on you, that's a promise.

I'm just asking for a chance to get to know you better to see if we can be good friends.


Kate was a bit unsettled about this. Was Gordy just a lonely old man, as she had first suspected? That was what she was leaning towards, but his comment about not forcing his will on her unsettled her. Why even mention that? What did he mean, he had picked her?

Friday, Kate was working late and hoping to get out of the office soon. Gordy came over, settled down in her cube, started making small talk. Kate said she was trying to finish things up and would stop by on her way out. Kate made her way over to Gordy's cube and asked him to walk down with her.

In the elevator, Kate said "You need to know that this is making me uncomfortable. I'm not open to turning work friends into outside-of-work friends" (which is true, but not exactly what she should have said to him). "Well, that's fine," said Gordy. "But you need to know that I'll be there when you're ready." "That's just it - I may never be ready." "Well, I'll be here when you are."

Kate left that day feeling awkward and slightly skeeved out. Her interaction with Gordy since then has been minimal; she's embarrassed around him and goes slightly out of her way to avoid him. Kate feels badly for the older man - she's sure he's just lonely and looking for a friend - but she's not comfortable enough to make that happen.

Monday, September 27, 2004

You Might Be In Fargo If... have a 'temporary' mailbox stored in the garage eaves. You never know when a drunk friend might back down your driveway in winter and run over your steel mailbox post, causing it to snap in the cold. leave your key in the ignition and the car unlocked while it's in your driveway.

...Wal-Mart is hoppin' on a Friday night.

...a carton of name-brand cigarettes costs $31.48. With tax.

...the 'international' airport only flies two airlines.

...the gates at the 'international' airport are numbered: Gate 1, Gate 2, etc. There are no terminals to factor into the mix.

...the ratio of pickup trucks to people is 2:1.

...owning a house with 6/10 of an acre warrants a small John Deere riding lawn mower. Don't worry, you can take the mower off and attach the snow blower for the rest of the year.

...the mosquitos are so big you can break a fly swatter trying to kill them.

Monday, September 20, 2004

Not Yer Momma's Meatloaf

I can never pick just one song to be called my favorite. To me, the best songs are those that express thoughts I've had myself, that put into words an exact sentiment I've felt. These songs can be upbeat, they can be...downbeat, they can be sung by males or females or those who straddle the line.

I am a staunch Meatloaf fan. And I don't care how much you tease me. Point, jeer, make fun of me, go ahead. You won't change my mind. He may be bordering on the scary side, he may be well past his prime, he may be an acquired taste...but no one can truthfully say he's a one-hit wonder, a flash in the pan.

His songs have taught me many things. How else would I have learned that life is a lemon? That there can be paradise by the dashboard lights? That two outa three ain't bad? Good girls may go to heaven, but bad girls go everywhere? That objects in the rearview mirror may appear closer than they are?

There are times when I listen to his tape in my POS car, and I wonder if the tape suddenly gave birth to a new version of an old song. "I've never heard that verse before," I think. The words continue to surprise and engage and, well, touch me, in that non-pervy kind of way.

That, to me, is the mark of a good song. And if you disagree? I'll smash my guitar against the body of a varsity cheerleader.

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Reprise - Gal Friday needed for Eccentric Millionaire

Got an update from David yesterday:

Hi Katey,

Just thought it would be wise to show you the updated version of my Craig’s list posting:

Ok, so the ad I ran a week ago went like this: (shows original ad).

Now the update: I tried to tiptoe around the EEOC, but now- screw it. I'll just speak my mind: I'd like a beautiful, young girl to provide all the above services, plus certain sensual services once or twice a week. I'm very good looking, young, and charismatic- If you disagree when you meet me, you can respectfully decline this particaular high paying job. I'm paying $20 gas money to all applicants who travel out here (really not that far- I'm right next to Schaumburg).

I responded with:


Thanks for sending the update my way. Definitely clears up a thing or two. I must say, while intrigued, I'm not interested to apply.

Good luck finding the right one!

So, there goes that one. It's not so much about the fact that ultimately, I'd be selling myself - lord knows, I've done that enough under false pretenses (dinner, love, etc) - but this is blatant. Too blatant for me, as it turns out, but the money is tempting. Satan, back away from this girl!

This post is dedicated to Sacki.

Sacki provided me with the following ad, which doesn't mean he authored it, though perhaps he did:

Highly eccentric& hedonistic, yet young & charismatic dot-com millionaire seeks ‘Girl Friday’ to run my simple errands, buy the groceries, tend to my two adorable Shih Tzu’s, clean up after me, and tend to my meals. This would amount to perhaps 10-20 work hours per week. No butler experience necessary. You must be reliable & punctual, and never flaky! Drugs & alcohol aren’t a problem, as long as this doesn’t interfere with your duties. You’ll receive residence in my furnished mansion guest house, plus a salary of $1500/month. Become my invaluable genie, and I’ll pay more. Ideal job for young & responsible student.

So, okay, I responded. I mean, it can't hurt, right? Here's my response:

I wasn't aware there were furnished mansions in (insert town). That aside, your post is interesting, to say the least. I do have a few questions:

1. Is it serious?
2. Would residence there be required?
3. Would the 'winner' be able to handle your requirements AND a current full-time job?
4. What will it take to become your invaluable genie?
5. Is it serious?

Thanks for your time,


And here is his response:

1) Yes!
2) No!
3) Probably, if she's very hard working.
4) Charisma, ability to get things done....and don't forget that I'm a true hedonist....
5) Hey, I'm skeptical when something seems too good to be true...but see my mansion, talk to me, you'll know it's all the real deal.


Now, what are YOUR thoughts????

Saturday, September 18, 2004

Fight! Fight!

Sauntering along the sidewalk at the crowded Cheese Days, some asshole behind us muttered loudly, "Does anyone know where the fuck they're going?" I said, "yes." He turned around and gave me an evil glare, which I matched with my own eye contact and held until he turned back around again.

On the way home, we drove through a little block party / street fair. A guy walking on the street was wearing a nice balloon hat. Safe inside the confines of the car, I started whooping at him. "Nice hat! Yeah baby! Shake that thing!"

We all realized at approximately the same time that the guy was retarded. (Sorry, is that the PC term these days?)

I felt SO BAD. We were all dying with laughter, of course, and I think my face turned a few shades of red, which is unusual for me, but damn. Thank goodness the windows were up. I would have gotten a beatdown with a balloon hat.

Friday, September 17, 2004


I'm very chipper today. 1) It's Friday, 2) It's jeans day, 3) My big rush project was killed, making people happy, 4) I've been told by more than one person that I look cute today, 5) It's purty nice outside, 6) None of the bosses are here today, so I'm gonna leave early!

I was recently called a tart. I've been called a vixen before. I like those names.

I was at Target last night, buying a couple small things for my friend's baby shower next week. One of the items I picked was not the exact kind she had registered for, so it would not be marked as 'fulfilled' on her registry. I asked the cashier to please remove it from my bill. Well, he did, but he left it in my bag. So thanks, Target, for the $2.79 item you gave me for free!

We are currently closing in on Week 1 of a two-week company wide charity drive. We do it every year, and they make a big deal out of it. There's a raffle with expensive tickets for some really great prizes - who couldn't use $2000 at Circuit City? It's all a voluntary giving program. Wink wink, nudge nudge. Voluntary as in, daily updates are sent out to each area (You're currently at 46% participation! Remember, if you reach 100%, you get jeans day every Friday for a month!). Voluntary as in, more incentives to give (For every $1, your boss will work one minute extra at a food shelter!). Voluntary as in, it's not anonymous who donates, so those who don't can be singled out for public flogging.


Addition - my company is a sponser of the Olympics. We all received very patriotic pins, with the US flag at the top, followed by USA and the five Olympic rings, and then capped at the bottom with our company logo and name. Nice. Supportive. Again, patriotic.

The #*@#$ pins were made in China.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

It's My Prerogative...

...I heard a remake of that song yesterday. It was wrong on so many levels. I have a sinking feeling that it's a Britney original, which really makes me want to ogle her less.

I don't lessen the ogling, but I do want to.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004


1. I don't feel I've gotten a durn thing done this morning. I've tried, honest! It's like I'm a hamster on a wheel - I can try, but I still ain't gettin no where.

2. I keep thinking about this woman in class last night. I don't know what it was, but she just got right under my skin and stayed there the whole time. I don't know if it was her nonexistent eyebrows, or the way she talked when the prof was talking so I couldn't hear him, or the way her ankles were swallowed up by a fold of skin, or whether I'm just a bitch. I'm hedging my bets on this one.

3. Oh, have no fear - there will be more gibberish to come. I am off to a doctor's appointment, followed by a fast food lunch. More hilarity (or whatever this crap is pretending to be) later.

4. I have eczema. Xima. Zima! Itchy itchy. Or, as someone (Fleece? Sloth?) once said, scritchy scritchy!

Bonus #5: Denis Leary's new show, Rescue Me? Mmmmm. Sex. And he's surprisingly sexy. Maybe because he acts a bad boy; maybe because he wears a wifebeater surprisingly well. Thank god for repeats - allows me to get my fix almost nightly. For instance, the 9pm show just aired - yet here it is again on at 10. Mmmmm.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Good News!

My very good friend Nikki is pregnant. Her shower is in two weeks (she's not newly pregnant). I wasn't going to go to the shower because it's out of state, and my very good friend Sarah was coming to town that same weekend.

Sarah, as is like her, has decided not to come to town that weekend. Which leaves me free to go to the shower!

Wait, it gets better!

My very good friend Liz, who is also a very good friend of Nikki's, has enough frequent flier miles, thanks to her job, that she is taking care of my ticket for me!

YAY for good friends! YAY for getting to see good friends at happy occasions! YAY for being 20 lbs thinner than when they saw me last! YAY for being healthy enough to go!

Sunday, September 12, 2004

Eternal Sunshine of the [Empty] Mind

I wasn't impressed with the movie, but the idea continues to intrigue me. I firmly believe that I am who I am due to where I've been and what I've seen and experienced. That being that, would I get rid of certain memories if I could?

Damn straight I would.

I'm not always happy with who I am. Whether that goes back to certain things I've experienced, or whether that's symbolic of a deeper problem within myself...I don't know. I don't want to know. But I do wish, probably more often than is healthy, that there was a magic time machine, to take me back and allow me to undo or redo certain times in my life. I'd be on that machine like white on rice.

I always feel bad for feeling bad about the things I feel bad about. I've had a really, really good life. Privileged, educated, healthy. I don't have any rapes or beatings locked away in my mind; I don't have any jail time or criminals lurking in my past. But if I could erase the New Orleans 'family vacation' where my mom, sister and I ate crackers in our hotel room because mom & dad got into a screaming match that led to dad going his own way and mom with barely money enough for a stop at Walgreens...I would.

If I could erase the memory of dad cornering my sister in the kitchen, calling her a 'stupid bitch'...I would.

If I could erase the memory of the blind-date who came over, 'left to pick up dinner,' and never came back...I would.

If I could erase the memory of finding out that a sweet freshman sorority sister was killed by a drunk driver...I would.

Problem is, I can't. So I'm stuck being who I am. Things can always be worse.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Johnny, Part 4

Johnny and I played phone tag for weeks, then finally connected around July 4th. It was not even a month into my new job. I was lonely in my new place - new apartment, new town, new job. My boss was a very demanding woman who didn't have much use for tact. I left the office that day in tears, with no plans for the long holiday weekend.

My conversation with Johnny didn't go well that night. He was struggling between the idea of moving to Colorado for himself and the pull of staying to help his elderly ex-pseudo-step-father. Johnny was feeling the urge to be free and single and find out what he was really all about. He didn't want to hurt me; the classic line. I was struggling with being alone, with feeling connected to someone.

I don't recall exactly how the conversation ended; I felt we'd still be in touch, still be able to have our conversations, still be friends. I was wrong.

Johnny never returned any of my phone calls after that. At first, I just thought he was busy - after all, our schedules were completely opposite. I tried to vary the messages I left, I tried to be funny, let him know I wasn't upset, only concerned. I started asking him to just let me know he was okay. Even if he didn't want to talk, to call while I was at work, to let me know he was alright. I gave up after two weeks.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

This story took place in 2000. I haven't heard from Johnny since our last phone call. Occasionally, Stef will hear an update from her now-hubby's group of friends and pass that along. The last word placed him doing well in Colorado. I think about him often and send out little prayers of happiness and well-being for him. I often use him as my personal barometer - would he be proud of me now? It's my own little version of WWJD. Though I still miss him, and a part of me has not yet gotten past the hurt, every now and then I pull out the picture of us and smile.

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Johnny, Part 1

I first met Johnny at a bar. He was friend's with Stef's boyfriend, and thus, friends with Stef. He had this bad-boy reputation with this good boy smile that immediately drew me in. I have a picture of us from that night, his arms wrapping me in a hug from behind.

Everytime I was near that bar, I'd keep my eyes open for his beatup red pickup. I always made a point to say hi. He was high most of the time, but I didn't know that then.

On the night of my best friend's 21st birthday, we hit the bar after the stripper's show ended. Low and behold, there was Johnny. I said hi, made the usual introductions (I'm Stef's friend...we've met before...blah blah blah). I kept my eye on him, and saw him dancing in place, nowhere near the dance floor. In my infinite wisdom, I used the best pickup line I had in me: "The dance floor's that way if you think you can hang." He pulled off his sweater and led the way.

The man could dance. And look good doing it. Mmm. The fast song ended and a slow song started, just the way it does in teen movies. I knew my friends were applauding my game from afar, seeing me in this mysterious man's arms. I decided to use the next best pickup in me: "I don't want to be too bold, but I think I have to kiss you." (I'm actually cringing now. I was so lame!) We exchanged phone numbers when the song ended; that was how he finally learned my name.

We began a relationship of sorts; as much of a relationship as one can have while still living in her parents' house after college. We'd talk while we could; I'd stay over at his place when I could. He was the impetus for me getting my first apartment: I wanted a place to fuck.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

"Inspirational" Sayings

The electronic sign board in my office building's lobby has the following saying:

"The most powerful weapon in the world is the human soul on fire!"

Is it just me, or is that the scariest thing ever? Makes me think of hellfire and brimstone. Just plain wrong.

Monday, September 06, 2004

Thurl Ravenscroft

Isn't that the best name ever?

Sunday, September 05, 2004

Snippets: Part Deux

I hate not being able to cut ties with people. There are 'friends' I have, who I really don't like very much. I don't enjoy spending time with them. I make no effort to contact them. I wish them well, but I wish them well from afar. So how do I make that known to them? If I don't do it now, I'll be forever sucked in once Baby Selfish comes into the world.

Kate: The last name is S------, S as -
Blockbuster Idiot: Need Blockbuster card or ID.
Kate: (Hands over license.)
BI: (Types name into computer.) Nothing. Have you rented from this store before?
Kate: Nope.
BI: What location do you normally rent at?
Kate: Dundee & McHenry.
BI: I need to call them to get your account #. (Dials; identifies self; reads off my last name.) Nothing. Could it be under a different name?
Kate: Nope.
BI: Have you rented from us within the past 90 days?
Kate: Nope.
BI: Then your account has been marked inactive and purged from the system. You need to reapply for an account.
Kate: (Takes ID back). Thanks. (Exits building).
What kind of shitty policy is that? And why, with ALLLLL the Blockbusters in the world, aren't their systems synced up?

Sister was down this weekend. As I'm driving us to the next store, I commented that I often have thoughts to do something stupid. Like, drive off a bridge. Rob a store. Park the car on the highway. I picture the cops talking to me: You have a college education; you can afford the shirt; why did you steal it? Well, officer, because I could. Not that I would DO any of those things, but they still occur to me. Sometimes I want to see what it would be like. Sister said sometimes she thinks the same things. Are we nuts? Don't answer that.

I've been spending money like chocolate. Like water for chocolate. Seriously. I don't have kids or children or debt or anyone that I'm supporting, but still. I go through phases where the money drips from my fingers. Phases like this worry me. I think they're a symptom of something else, I'm just not sure what. And since I'm not hurting anyone, and my wallet can support it, I look the other way, figuratively speaking, rather than think this through. It could be worse, right? I could be drinking. And then I wouldn't have pretty shoes to wear.

After a hook-up one night at the frat house, my best friend happened to notice that my shirt was on inside out. And backwards. So much for playing it cool.

Saturday, September 04, 2004


There's not much better than napping nekkid. No, not in your skivvies and skeets, but NEKKID. Say it with me. Neck-id. The window open just enough for a breeze; covered with a blanket; nowhere to be...that's heaven on earth.

I moved to B_____ just in time for my last years of high school. I wiggled my way into a group of friends, blah blah blah. Shades was an adult nightclub that gave teen dances every Sunday. Oh yeah, biznitch, we were hot stuff. There was also a consistent radio ad promoting Teen Night at a local Applebees. It was on the tip of my tongue, so many times, to ask the girls if Teen Night was any good. I thought, hell, at the worst, we can nosh on some food and people watch. Again and again, this Teen Night. Luckily, I never mentioned it to my friends before realizing the ad was actually promoting Tea Night - as in, Long Island. I woulda never lived that one down.

I understand that it's hard to get out of the house when you have a wee little girl. I can't empathize, but I do try to understand. However. If your child is crying - or talking - or crying while talking - at such a scary movie as Shrek 2, please refrain from the movie-theater experience until they can handle it. Or at least have the common courtesy to take your kid outside of the theater. As evidenced by tonight's fun, telling your kid to 'shut up' does not work.

Coinstar is my new favorite thing. I dumped in almost $30 worth of change this week. That bought a lot of grapes. :)

Walking into the building from the car tonight, I dropped a bag of groceries. Yep, it was the one with eggs in it - but surprisingly, only 2 of the eggs broke. Wonder why that is?

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Good Samaritan Kate and the Flesh-Eating Spider

Warning: This is a really really really really long post!

There I am, driving along, basking in the glow that comes from passing a car's emissions test, talking to BIL on the cellphone, when WHAM! A service van barrels down a driveway and hits a car not too far in front of me.

Having witnessed the accident, I pull over and walk to the car. Two elderly ladies were looking at the damage done.

Kate: Is everyone okay?
Ladies: Yes, yes, we're fine, just shook up.
Kate: I saw what happened; here's my card. Let me know if I can do anything. Make sure you report this to your insurance company.
Ladies: We should really call the cops. It's always best to get a police report.
Kate: Sure, feel free to call the cops.
Kate: Do you have a cellphone? No? Okay, I'll call. Do you know the non-emergency number? No?
(Pause while Kate calls in a non-emergency accident to 911. Corner of Euclid and Vail; tan Impala and white service van.)

Smarmy Guy Driver of White Van: I was just inching down the driveway; they were turning.
Kate: Uh, sir, it looked like you were going rather fast.
Smarmy Guy: No, I waited there for a long time, I was inching.
(Pause while Kate politely rolls her eyes.)

Cop comes, takes down all information. Kate stands to the side with the ladies, trying to politely make small talk. Yes, it is humid today. Yes, this is a nice house. Two poodles, wow, they must be fun. No, you're not keeping me from anything.

All gets sorted out and I go on my merry way.

La-di-da, coming home with groceries, I see a girl moving in, arms full with boxes. I hold the door open for her. Get my mail, and get up to my floor. I see said girl moving in just kitty-korner to me.

Kate: Want a cold soda?
Girl: (Gratefully) Yes!
(Pause while Kate gives Girl a couple sodas, one for now, some to throw in the fridge.)

Cut to the pool. Kate is relaxing on her yellow beach towel, feeling smug that she has completed a good deed AND a random act of kindness today. She can now be a shit for the rest of the month and feel no guilt.

Suddenly...she feels something on her leg. She reaches back to swat offender away, but the pain lingers. She scratches leg to no avail. She turns over, gets up, looks at the leg. There's a red spot on it; slowly, the skin surrounding the redness swells.

Now, I'm not positive it was a spider that got me. It could have just as easily been a hornet, a wasp, a yellowjacket, or any other variety of vicious creature that mother nature created.

Damn that mother nature. Who the fuck does she think she is? That's the last time I do anything nice for anyone else, fucker.

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