The @-Work Nettwerk
Mundane Tasks and Capitalist Pig-Dog Commands
Volume Thirty Seven:
Back, Ready, Rested and Moist
This weeks Golden Cubicle Award Goes to Mr. Andrew Myatt, of Bethesda, MD:
**So I had to go to another building downtown yesterday afternoon for a
conference. The building is sort of confusing, so I decided to ask the nice
concierge/guard lady for directions to office 1030. When I did she
immediately had a heart attack. The other concierge/guards rushed to her
aid and called an ambulance and I felt bad because I guess my question set
her over the edge. I found the room, but I was a few minutes late.**
I just got to address an invitation to a very elegant event to a "Mr. and
Mrs. Bill and Terri Poop." Small pleasures.
Today I bought a stick of deoderant at lunch.
(A note on this entry. Frank
Zappa, in one of his finest moments, reminds @-werk readers and the world
to, quote, 3Ram it, ram it, ram it, ram it in your poop shoot. Corn-hole.2 I
just thought you should know)
I chose one web designer to work for us over another, because I want to hump
him. I have also insisted on meeting at his house (he works out of his
bedroom...does he ever...) and I send him e-mails with subject headings like
"hot sweaty web action." Am I crossing the line?
This morning I found mouse droppings on my bagel. Things only went downhill
This new guy who's using the computer near mine for training is the LOUDEST
typist I've ever heard in my life. I didn't know it was even possible to
slam the keys that loud. I tried competing with him because it seemed
funny, until I sort of realized that it's probably not a good idea to piss
off anyone who's obviously repressing that much anger.
If you want to hear the most grating human voice in history, call 1800 441
8455. (Note from the ubermensch: I accidentally called 1-800-411-8455, and
that lady is pretty fucked up too.)
File this one under: "IDIOMATIC EXPRESSIONS THAT HAVE DRASTICALLY CHANGED IN
MEANING IN THE LAST 50 YEARS." As I was leaving for lunch yesterday I told
my boss that I was stepping out. She yelled back that it was no problem,
and added, "I'll keep my finger in the dyke."
This morning I got the mother of all weirdo calls, and I get a lot. This
was a 75 year old woman who has been on the lam since the 1970's through six
different states. She was looking for a guy who supposedly working here but
is now "judging in Los Angeles" (no one here has heard of him). She had a
grand conspiracy about her persecution, including the Feds, doctors,
insurance companies, and her exhusband. She essentially had a nervous
breakdown over the 20 minutes she vented at me on the phone. I put on mute
and couldn't stop laughing, and other times I was holding my head and
Kids at work RE: where they get to sit in the car: "No way, dog! I called
gunshot!" Indeed, this is the hood.
Two of my middle-aged male co-workers are standing right outside the door to
my cubicle talking about their recent colonoscopies. In these cases, I can
only scream silently to myself, "God, why can't I have a door to shut?!"
I just returned from a European vacation to my job with a non-profit group
that, in part, advocates mass transportation. My boss asked me if I had
taken any pictures of the fabulous public transportation system in
Amsterdam. I scanned my brain, and two photos came to mind: one picture of a
streetcar that I thought was funny because it has an enormous
coochie-looking Jennifer Lopez painted on the side, seen through the
pot-hazed foggy window of an Amsterdam coffee shop, and a second picture, of
my boyfriend smoking a joint, with a bus and a train in the background. I
i can sum up my day at work today, july 5th, in one word: zombification. i
think when everyone goes to lunch ill take a nap on my boss' couch. im
still curious to know what happened to my knee on saturday night.
I've decided, just now, that every day at werk I'm going to write a haiku,
print it out, cut it out, get up in the drop ceiling, and drop it down in
the wall. Aside from assuming that this will be the only day I remember to
actually do this, I've learned some things: 1) Before climbing up on shelves
to try to get to the ceiling, check the shelves to make sure they are
supported by more than LITTLE, TINY PIECES OF METAL. Metal bends. Shelves
collapse. Lenses fly out of glasses. Knees get injured. 2) Once one has
finally found a place where there's hole that was run for network wires, in
the wall, above a place where one can stand to do the depositing, one might
feel tempted to do a lot of Haiku in one day, to make up for all the days
one's worked without having done this. 3) I can't write Haiku.
Today a co-worker asked me if I know how to spell Ubermensch. I did. Thank
today i deleted 347 e-mails from my "sent" box. "trash" is next!
Every morning I stand by the road and wait for the bus, and every morning
since March a carpool in a blue buick sedan drives by. In the beginning the
guy in the front passenger seat, who is overweight, bearded, with a long
ponytail, and looks EXACTLY like the comicbook-store owner from the Simpsons
("Are you the creator of Hi & Lois? Because you are making me laugh") would
stick his tongue out at me and go BLLPPT! in that third-grade way, and all
his companions would laugh. At first I was grumpy and would scowl at him,
but gradually I found him funny and would wave, and now he doesn't stick out
his tongue anymore but gently honks the horn and every one in the car smiles
and waves. It makes me happy in the morning. Now if I don't see the blue
Buick, I actually feel off for the rest of the day.
I take a break and go out back for a cigarette, and Kevin and Corinne, the
two people I work with, are out there smoking. Basically, I walked into a
conversation about uncircumcised penises. When Corinne says that she's never
seen one in her life, Kevin is shocked, and I say, "Jeez, even I've seen
So here's the email our staff just got:
Re: Last Rats off the Titanic Dinner
Hello my remaining casualties of the corporation wars,a s we sit here in the
belly of the beast, we are taking one final repast together.
Finally, An Important @-Werk Nettwerk Story:
Because I was running late for work today, I decided to take a taxi from the
train station to my place of work. Now, I dislike taciturn cabbies, so I
wasn't bothered when mine started babbling at me this morning. Because he
had all the windows rolled down, I couldn't understand him over the traffic,
so I just nodded sympathetically in the backseat. Finally we came to a
stoplight, and everything fell quiet. I looked up from my coffee and saw
him staring at me, over his shoulder; he widened his eyes and asked me, in
heavily accented English, "Do you poop?"
I didn't really say anything, and he asked again: "Do you poop? In my
country, we have a saying that a pretty girl never poops. I never see a
cute girl like you in Washington, so I want to know if you poop, if the
saying is true." (At this point, we've reached my destination, and I'm
wondering if this is his way of trying to flatter a big tip out of me?)
"I've been known to poop, on occasion," I reply, hoping levity will defuse
the tense situation.
His face changes from lecherous to paternal, and he looks at me sternly.
"You must poop EVERY DAY. It is good for you."
Volume Thirty Eight:
Blew Up the Fucking Island
This week's Golden Cubicle Award Goes to Mr. MattWeier, of Minneapolis, MN:
**One of our clients just faxed us a floppy disk.**
My coworker was having a bad day, so in lieu of work, I printed out the
entirety of the @-werk Nettwerk from the website, punched holes in it, and
put it neatly in a binder from the bountiful supply cabinet. When I asked if
it had cheered her up, she said that at first she became even more
depressed, but then she had some coffee, and it was funny.
Today (at work) my mom called and was chatting and filling me in on the
latest news of the man she has been dating. After I hung up, I started
pondering, and for a second I honestly thought: "Hmmm, I wonder if mom has
ever had sex." Thank you.
I just recently opened a hotmail account. Now I get a lot of email about
I only have one more day of work. My pee smelled like puppies today, I'm a
Today I was trying to fix our section's copy machine when I said the dumbest
thing: "We're doing such a high volume of work on this old photocopier
that its bound to break down a lot. The machine is only human."
When I answer the phone, I always say, "Good morning/afternoon," (depending
on the time of day). Sometimes the person on the other end says, "Good
morning" back, which always throws me off, because then it¹s my turn to talk
again, and I don't know what to say. Lately I've been going with "Hi."
around 4:00 every day i start thinking about what i should eat for dinner,
and today i am thinking that i would like to make some mac&cheese but i
don't have any milk. then i remembered that the break room fridge is full of
milk. currently working on a nefarious scheme to steal the milk but don't
know if my makeshift paper cup will survive my subway commute. last time
this happened my roommate and i made "german" mac&cheese with stale beer
instead of milk... muhahahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaa...
I have to confess that the other day at work I indulged in the ultimate temp
cliché painting my nails (finger- and toe-). I console myself with the
idea that glittery silver nail polish is unique, in a sort of San Francisco
The highlight of my day today was that I took the "alternate route" home.
That was pretty cool.
I spent approx. 3.75 hours looking up information on Pompeii on yahoo.com.
That city was very old and much more interesting than updating online info.
for the company. No one seemed to notice all the roman pillars on my screen.
If I wear a different tie every day I can get away with wearing the
sameshirt and pants. Well that's the idea, anyway.
Today I was asked to make up a list of "the best books on Heart Failure,"
using the CV's of our program faculty. I know nothing about heart failure
and have never read a single one of these books.
Some lady just called me and took 15 minutes to tell me her life story which
involved Ty (the beanie baby company) threatening her and extortioning her
out of business and so I transferred her to the Operations Department.
Today I tried to call Jeni Jones at her office, but I dialed the wrong
telephone number. A young and very intense man named Eric answered. He
didn't say hello, however, he just said "Eric," emphasizing the k sound in
Eric. It really made me feel as if I had interrupted something.
Dispatch from Adventures in Templand: I'm at a nonprofit animal rights
organization's headquarters, editing publications. It's a very
professionally and tastefully designed environment...but on the lunchroom
wall hangs a framed, signed photo of the Ultimate Warrior (of late 1980s
professional wrestling fame) in full ring gear and make-up. It says: "Inside
every one of us, there's a little animal!"
I work for the gov't, and we have to have these picture ID cards or they
won't let us in the building, and they also open locked doors and stuff.
Anyway, my card stopped working a few days ago, so they issued me a new
card, with the same picture - sort of. I'm wearing the exact same clothes,
but my hair a bit longer and ruffled, I've got a two-day beard going, and
I've got a slight devilish smirk. The Security people insist they've only
got one photo of me, and I distinctly remember them only taking one photo,
on one day. But the difference is definite; my co-workers agree with me and
are just as perplexed as I (The old photo me is clean cut and angelic, the
new is rough and looks like I just returned from a bachelor party). My
theories are: that the photo-me aged slightly, or that Satan possessed my
photo-self. There's a Good-Andy/Bad-Andy thing going on here with the two
cards. Anyway, I'm sure you can agree the meta-philosophical implications
at work here are astounding.
Today at work I learned that for a mere $53.50, I can be the proud owner of
15 ½ x 10 x 3 1/4 meat pattie boxes.
The bathroom lady and I have had our final confrontation because, basically,
she is big and mean and I am a wimp. I finally confronted her face to face
when I happened to walk in on her while she was shutting the inner door to
the bathroom. I asked her if she was aware that there was a handicapped
woman on this floor who needed the inner door open so she can get out of the
bathroom. However, before I even finished my sentence she said, "Ms. Z?
Yeah, I know Ms. Z," and with that marched into the bathroom and slammed her
stall door. The next day in the elevator, my co-worker saw her with her
friend motioning towards me and saying, ". . .the tall one." Did I also
mention before that this woman in twice my size, has a mean look in her eye,
and is responsible, I would assume, for tearing the hook out of the wall
that once securely held the inner door open. Needless to say, it is just no
fun going to the bathroom anymore.
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