Tag Archives: work

It’s hard to be offended when you put it that way

This morning my coworker noticed that the toilet in the bathroom near our office was plugged. What follows is the paraphrased conversation that ensued.

Mary (a coworker): Hey Deb, the toilet is clogged and I can’t get it cleared with the plunger. Would you call a plumber please?
Deb (other coworker): Kari, you’re probably good at that. Why don’t you give it a try?
Me: Umm.. Why would I be good at that, specifically?
Deb: Well, you’re good at everything else.
Me: Hard to argue with that logic.

As it turns out, I am good at plunging toilets because I did in fact manage to clear the clog. All those years of having children who don’t flush the toilet has finally paid off apparently.

Good times.


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How do you say “thank god that’s finally over” in Spanish?

Part of my job is to be backup for my company’s receptionist when she is out of the office or away from her desk. The following conversation was made possible by Google’s audio translate feature, and the receptionist’s afternoon off. Also the letters O, M, F, and G.


Me: Good afternoon, [Business Name], how may I direct your call?

Caller: …

Me: [Business name], how may I direct your call?

Caller: Uhhh…Alejandra?

Me: No, this is [Business Name], I’m the receptionist. How may I direct your call?

Caller: Speak Spanish?

Me: No habla Español.*

Caller: No Español?!
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My son is Batman and I am really damn old. Apparently.

My son had his first-ever job interview today. When he scheduled the interview, I immediately texted Ian and my mom: “OMFG he has an interview on Thursday!” Ian said “cool” and I said “yeah” but in reality I was like “How is this cool? I have a child who is actually old enough to have a job interview. I’m a freakin dinosaur. This is SO not cool.” Have I ever told you about how when I was a kid I had to walk uphill both ways to see my grandparents? True story.** I guess it’s not really relevant to this story; just another bit of evidence that I practically have one foot in the grave.
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What a difference a year makes

Today I am 3 dozen years old. I had a great day. I went to work, went out to lunch with Ian & the kids, went back to work, then went out to spend a gift card my in-laws had sent me. I used another gift card from Christmas to buy myself this awesome lego set. When I got home I opened the rest of my cards and presents (Adele: 21 on CD, gift cards to my one of my favorite lunch restaurants, and the Lego Star Wars III video game). Then I took Stephen to his guitar lesson, and afterwards we watched a couple of episodes of the Muppet Show (which I received as a Christmas gift, along with THIS AMAZING THING, which won Ian the Husband of the Year Award.)

Other than the bit about the gifts, the day was actually pretty ordinary but I don’t mind at all. In fact, ordinary is exceptional for me. Though I have been battling depression for many years, the last year or two have been a real struggle for me. This time last year I was miserable. I was working 3 jobs, and hardly sleeping; apart from Christmas Day, I don’t think I’d had a day off since Thanksgiving. To say I was exhausted would be severely underestimating my condition. I was also recovering from a painful rejection from a local vet clinic where I had thought I was a shoe-in for a vet tech job. At the time, some friends of mine and I were developing an exciting non-profit project, but I was so busy with all my jobs I hardly contributed. Early this year that project hit a brick wall, and in February it completely choked. When it became clear that we would not be able to revive the project, I almost lost it completely. I was so depressed that I took my lunch breaks alone in an empty conference room so I wouldn’t have to pretend to be happy and make small talk with people.

Then something wonderful happened. My miserable full-time job got suddenly and dramatically worse, which forced me to finally look for something else. I called the temp agency which had previously been helping me in my job search, and told them I was back on the market. As it happened, they had recently received an opportunity which almost exactly fit the description of my perfect job. I can’t even describe how badly I wanted the job. At last I got what I wanted; the job was mine. I quit one of my part-time jobs and focused on healing myself. Eight months later, I am continually amazed at the difference the new job has made in my life. Of course there are frustrations as there would be with any job, but compared to the positives, these are minimal. I absolutely love my job. The lack of stress and the fabulous benefits have improved my life so much I can’t even do it justice here; you will just have to take my word for it. Maybe by this time next year, I will finally remember what it’s like to feel “normal”. For now, I am more than happy with what I’ve got. Thank you all for being there for me this year; I can’t wait to see what wonders the next year holds and I look forward to sharing it all with you!


Posted by on December 28, 2011 in Family Life, Life in General


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Let Them Eat Cake

A coworker recently commented to me on the strangeness of a common office ritual. Why is it that offices so frequently use an employee’s departure as an excuse to eat cake? I don’t know if had ever occurred to me before how backwards this is. Doesn’t it make more sense to throw a party for your new employees to say “Hey! Welcome to the family! We’re so glad you’re here!” rather than throwing a party for people who are leaving you for someone else? It’s almost like saying “Thanks for going; obviously we didn’t appreciate you enough before or you probably wouldn’t have left. Honestly we’re all just glad to have an excuse to eat cake.”

While I have partaken in many a goodbye cake, I have never seen an office bring in a “first day” cake to celebrate new employees. I even had one job where I arrived for my first day and no one even knew who I was or why I was there (the person who had hired me was on vacation and had apparently forgotten to inform the staff about me). In contrast, when I left that job I got cupcakes and a goodbye card.

I think it’s time we start a new trend: the first-day cake. Who’s with me?


Posted by on October 20, 2011 in Life in General


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