Archive for January, 2008

Am I the only one who’s noticed a subtle uptick in the number of “personal lubricant” ads on television lately?  I thought it was just me.  Either that or the “personal lubricant” industry is flush with earnings and is blowing them all on skeezy TV ads just before Valentine’s Day.

And then, this morning, there it was.  A “personal lubricant” ad that confirmed my suspicions: the ad slyly suggested that with their brand of lubricant, you are guaranteed to have a “Happy Valentine’s Night” (emphasis theirs).

Ah, yes.  Valentine’s Day.  That happy day which has gone from a celebration of the martyrdom of two Roman priests who were burned alive in the street, to a hypercommercialized card-and-candy industry, and finally to a not-so-subtle suggestion that you will need personal lubricant in order to celebrate with your loved one, because — apparently — all the cards, candy, flowers, dinners, jewelry and foreplay in the world are simply not going to be enough when it comes to consummating Valentine’s Day in proper fashion.  You will need lubricant.

Eeeeew.  And also?  What a lovely sentiment.  And, again…eeeeeeeeeeeew.


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When I bcc you on an email out of professional courtesy — so that you can see how a certain situation involving one of your employees is proceeding, even though you’re really not supposed to have this much detail about said situation at your level of involvement and I could get in a lot of trouble for even forwarding the email to you, much less bcc’ing you on it — DON’T REPLY TO ALL, YOU USELESS COW.

I’m just saying.  You might want to consider it.

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Beer!  And bacon!  An unstoppable duo of awesomeness and win.

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I caught myself saying the following heavily acronym-laden phrase today in a meeting, with a completely straight face:

“Do you have an ETA on the BAA for the SE LLC EAP yet? Because we need that ASAP.”

And then silently hated myself for the next hour of the meeting.

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Richard and I have finally finished planning our much-delayed honeymoon and are now scheduled to depart in mid-March for England and then Spain.

The honeymoon itself was delayed due to the fact that we had out-of-state and out-of-country visitors in town for the wedding and wanted to spend time with them, since they’d traveled all that way to see us.   Richard’s poor brother alone traveled for fifty (50!!!) hours straight to get to miserable old Houston for the wedding, stopping on three different continents along his way (see: ways not to travel to Houston from Perth).  Then there was the whole hands-on aspect of the wedding itself (pfft…who needs a wedding planner?), which necessitated a lot of actual work on my part — both before and after — and wasn’t conducive to just jetting off somewhere afterwards.

So, here we are, two and half months later, and we’ve finally booked all of our flights and hotels and rental cars and have even started scouring stores for some good boots for me to trek around the frozen tundra of northern England in.  Here’s the itinerary:

March 21:  Depart Houston for Manchester.  Arrive nearly fourteen hours later, delirious from airplane-induced claustrophobia and possibly escorted by air marshals after slapping parents of small children who are misbehaving.  Go immediately to pub for drink.

March 22:  Adjust to massive time difference while learning to drive on wrong side of road; will send pictures of ensuing wreckage for all to enjoy.  After crashing car, take train from Alderley Edge (where we’ll be bunking down in Richard’s parents’ country home — sans parents, of course) into Manchester city centre and take in the sights.

March 23 – 25:  Trundle around England by car, train or foot, visiting assorted friends in Chester and Macclesfield.  Tour The Theatre of Dreams and surrounding Trafford Centre.  Drink lots and lots of lager.  Find and eat an entire wedge of Stilton.  Have proper doner kebab and chip-shop curry, preferably late at night after tastebuds have been numbed by Boddington’s.  Visit Richard’s grammar school and grumble while he tells me about its founding in 1502 and how I “don’t know what old really means.”  Sit by some roaring fires.  Amuse people with my heavy Texas accent.  Tour stately homes.  Go shopping for English groceries to smuggle home in luggage.  Attempt to survive extended periods in abysmally cold weather.  Have fun.

March 26:  Depart Manchester for Alicante.  Visit Richard’s parents at their home in Torrevieja.

March 27 – 28:  Enjoy relatively balmy Mediterranean climate.  Relax.

March 29:  Depart Alicante for Manchester.  Depart Manchester for Houston.

March 30:  Collapse, exhausted, into bed.  Wake up mere hours later to find ourselves back in real world and back to work.

I’ll try to bring some fish and chips back for you all, but no promises.

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The glue on the envelopes here at work tastes like beef fajitas.  I’m not sure how I feel about this.

On one hand, it’s gross.  Fajita beef-flavored glue?  If I was going to make glue in flavors, beef would not be one of the choices.  Grape, maybe.  Or cherry*.  Or something unexpected, like cream soda.  But not beef.

On the other hand, it’s the only thing semi-interesting to happen to me all day: licking beef-flavored envelopes.

God, I need a change of pace.

*Why is it that when manufacturers give flavors to normally non-flavored items (like Robitussin or anti-snore spray), the only acceptable flavors are in the fruit or mint families?  Ruminate on that for a while.

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Because of doofuses like this…

Me:  How are you doing today, Mr. Doe?

John Doe:  Fine.  But I have a big problem with my retiree medical insurance.

Me:  Okay, and what seems to be the problem?

John Doe:  I’m afraid that I’m going to lose my coverage.

Me:  Well, I show here that you’re covered through the end of this month.  The only reason that it wouldn’t continue past that point is if you didn’t send in a check for the next month.  Is there a reason that you’re worried about losing your coverage?

John Doe:  I received a letter in the mail from Giant Company You Work For that said that since I was 65, I had to do something about Medicare.

Me:  Hmm.  That doesn’t sound like something that we would send out.  Do you still have a copy of the letter?

John Doe:  No.  I threw it away.

Me:  Okay…  Can you tell me what the letter said?

John Doe:  I don’t remember.  Something about being eligible for Medicare and having to do something.  There were some instructions.  I think they wanted me to send something in.

Me:  Did you follow the instructions on the letter?

John Doe:  No, I threw it away.  I told you.

Me:  Alright, well…  Do you remember anything else about the letter?

John Doe:  It just said that I needed to contact someone if I had questions.

Me:  Who did it tell you to contact?

John Doe:  There was a phone number.

Me:  Did you call it?

John Doe:  No.  I called you.

The conversation went on like this for a few more minutes, until I finally managed to get Mr. Doe off the phone with a promise that I would try and figure out who sent the letter, what is was and what is needed of him.  So I’ve spent the rest of the afternoon calling and emailing people both in and out of the company, pestering them over a letter that doesn’t even exist any more.

I love my job.  I love my job.  I love my job.

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