Freddy

Episode 24: Good-bye Chocolate


Of course we think that OUR jokes are funny in IT.

We choose NOT to ask the general public whether or not they agree.

But, I am brave; I am going to post right here, on the public, world WIDE web, one of our jokes.

Yesterday, Freddy left his computer unlocked and went to his meeting.

OOPS.

Before long, MZ found his PC in such a vulnerable state and quickly clicked on his Outlook. It took seconds before the entire group received an email… from Freddie:

Subject: Come say godd [sic] bye

I decided to quit! Sick of working with you, people! Good bye chocolate at my desk…

Coworkers came running. Either to apologize and beg Freddy not to leave. Or because they wanted chocolate before it was all gone.

They found NO chocolate and NO Freddy. And even MZ had already snuck back to her desk undetected (except by me) and muffling her giggles.

With Freddy in a meeting and no chocolate at his desk, coworkers quickly worked to remedy the situation. Before long, the following items were strewn across his keyboard:

  1. A nearly empty package of double-stuff Oreos
  2. Six tootsie rolls (the really little ones)
  3. One dark-chocolate Hershey’s bar, broken in several places
  4. A dark chocolate candy bar from some foreign country
  5. Two Hershey’s Nuggets Truffles
  6. And one tin of milk chocolate Slim-Fast powdered drink mix.

Upon Freddy’s return, he wondered aloud: “Is it Halloween already?”

Bethy the Third then asked him if perhaps he was depressed (being the reason that he had decided to quit) and Freddy quickly replied, “I’ve never been depressed so if I was, I wouldn’t know.”

With that statement, the as-depressed-as-the-average-working-adult coworkers ran to Freddy’s desk and took all of the chocolate to consume for themselves and try to lift their own dreary spirits.

Good thing Freddy doesn’t like chocolate.


Political Link of the Day (I laughed): “…Imagine the Democratic nominee’s day as Barack Palin Obama

Episode 19: The Core Crew


Next week, a VERY IMPORTANT part of my workout routine will be DENIED. Clearly, when one of the project managers was scheduling testing, he DIDN’T LOOK AT MY SCHEDULE TO SEE THAT I WAS UNAVAILABLE. Doesn’t he understand that one of my most important appointments occurs every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 10:00 a.m.? If I missed it, even once, my back gets VERY mad at me. This appointment is the abs/core class in our on-site gym. It’s only 15 minutes, but those are extremely important 15 minutes for my personal well-being.

Next week, however, I will now be stuck in el-crappo meetings Monday, Wednesday AND Friday from 9:15 – 10:30 a.m. Seriously. Do you realize how much I wanted to DECLINE the meeting request? For the sake of my back’s happiness, of course.

When I took my current position, part of the “negotiations” was demanding an expensive, ergonomic, make-the-other-coworkers-jealous chair. Yes… I DEMANDED it. Apparently, I also should have negotiated for a contract that GUARANTEES my ability to attend abs/core classes no matter what.

So to my “Core Crew” (Jason, Freddy and once a quarter, McJosh), I apologize that I will not be able to attend class with you next week. When I return the following week, I hope that I am not sad and weak around my middle section.

(P.S. To Janet: I’m sorry to say this, but I no longer tip over in this class… amazing, I know.)

I think we should make t-shirts with this as our rockin logo.

I think we should make t-shirts with this as our rockin' logo.

Episode 16 – What do YOU wear to work?


If I constantly recorded conversation in my group, I could have a mighty impressive record for HR. I can’t give you any examples; sorry. I can, however, give you a mild conversation that I got a kick out of, between Freddy and the Boss.

Boss: I wear underwears, too… in case you’re interested… and deodorant.

Freddy: Why?

Boss: It’s company policy.

I knew there was a reason our company policy was so specific, but I also know people who either need new deodorant or who are deliberately breaking rules. And, of course, they work in IT.

I’ll tell the INTERNET about my weekend, because the boys never asked…


I often go out for lunch on Fridays with an ever-changing group of coworkers. Last Friday that included Freddy, McJosh and Hoss. We went to Barbacoa and ate outside, which was quite nice. I was excessively tired from the upstairs neighbor and her boyfriend waking me up around 1:00 a.m. and again around 5:30 a.m. the night before. This meant that I wasn’t the one asking questions and keeping conversation alive. So instead, McJosh asked Hoss, “What are you up to this weekend?”

He listed off some chores, taking the wife’s car to the shop, not much else.

McJosh said he’d be playing with his kids.

Freddy mentioned the he doesn’t really like to make plans.

I waited patiently for them to all take their turns and then ask me what I was up to.

I kept waiting.

I’m still waiting.

I’m just going to tell myself that they never asked because they didn’t want to be JEALOUS.

Seriously. My weekend was a bit jam packed.

LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT IT.

Friday night, I enjoyed a delectable dinner of macaroni and cheese with hot dogs. Yum. Then I convinced Mern not to take a nap and instead go to an Olympus High School football game with me. Really. Just because I didn’t go to football games when I attended East High School doesn’t mean I don’t want to go to a former rival high school’s football game nearly 10 years after graduating. (I’m not old; I’m experienced.)

We went to watch our nieces who were performing with a drill team camp at half time. Little Jane, the three-year-old, stole the show. Her t-shirt was nearly the same size as her, her hair just barely fit into pig-tails and she was the best little hip shaker on the field. Annie and Emma did a great job, too, of course.

We left after the show (before the football game finished) and then I stalled by taking Mern to buy kitty treats at Dan’s because I REALLY needed to get them NOW. By the time I returned Mern home, all the lights were off and she noticed a few little heads peeking out the window. We walked in and the kids yelled, “Surprise!” They were so excited to be in on the secret. Especially Abe and Jane who previously only knew that they were going to have a sleep over… SOME WHERE.

The rest of the surprise birthday sleep over went as follows: pizza, decorating cup cakes, laughing in the front room, watching All Dogs Go To Heaven, almost sleeping, waking up to a sick Jane, not particularly enjoying the mattress that I slept on, and eating McDonald’s breakfast with ibuprofen.

When I got home, I really considered taking a nap before remembering how much I hate waking up – if I fall asleep now, I might not want to get up and clean up (myself and my home) before the swimming party / pot luck.

So I managed to stay awake by cleaning the kitchen. We’re talking about really cleaning here, too. Spraying the sink and counters down with Lysol, letting it soak, and scrubbing it clean; vacuuming then mopping the floor; wiping down the stovetop and microwave; cleaning the dishes and loading the dishwasher. I also cleaned the laundry room which mostly meant sweeping up kitty litter that those darn cats had tracked out of the box. Now I can walk barefoot in there again.

Eventually, I got my place cleaned up, cleaned up myself then went to the store to pick up food. That’s a lot of getting up when I really just wanted to lie down.

Before long, the party was happening at my place when Bean and her little cutey, Adie came over. We, of course, played with Pogi and Adie got the giggles playing fetch while Bean was changing into her swimsuit in the bathroom. Just as we were finished getting ready to go out to the pool, Kow, J and their three little girls pulled up. Yes, it’s true, internet. I like to hang out with married people and their kids. We had a fabulous time.

After swimming, we chowed down on sandwiches—croissants from Costco are delightful. Then my fabulous friends helped clean up and we sent Bean and Adie on their way. Kow, J, the girls and I then went for a little ride over to Iceberg for shakes, which we ate in my parking lot while waiting for Nettie and Dave to stop by and say hi. Eventually, all of the married people left and Joel-in-the-box came over to finish my shake. Have you seen the size of the ‘mini’ shakes? Trying to describe it with the word “huge” would be an understatement.

I then made Joel-in-the-box come with me to my indoor soccer game (at 11:10 p.m.) where I scored a couple of goals in the first half and therefore assigned myself to play defense in the second half. Yes, I scored in defense, too from just over the half line. I think the goalie was trying to guard a player instead of his goal. After soccer, we finished off the evening watching the US men bring home the gold in basketball.

Okay, are you still with me? We’re on to Sunday now. I’ll make this day short: breakfast at Mern’s, church where two people talked to me (I sort of gave up making an effort anymore), dinner at the parents’, birthday cake and presents, then home to feed the cats and water the plants.

So there you go, internet. That was my weekend.

Episode 15 – The Difference is the Same


Three years, four months and 11 days ago, I started working at my current company as a prodigious, exceptional secretary. (And you thought we didn’t use that term as a job title anymore.) It was then that I had to depend on Diet Coke breaks with Janet to get my scoop on what was going on in the mighty IT groups for whom I was only doing their filing. She hinted at all of the humorous, bordering-on-reporting-to-HR activities in her group. One of these activities happened to be simply updating a word document with sayings from one particular team member. They called them Fredisms.

I am now in the Fredism group; nice (four positions in three years is how Larrie climbs the corporate ladder). And even though Janet has left me to take Diet Coke breaks on my own, the word document continues to get updated. After our meeting today, one more Fredism was added to the list:

“If you’re unscrewed, good for you.”

Wouldn’t you like a taste of a few more Fredisms? Here are some highlights from that cherished document—enjoy:

  • I remembered to forget.
  • Maybe Yes. Maybe Know.
  • If a tree falls in the forest and you’re not there, will it fall on you?
  • If you don’t drink, the memory of knowing things sucks.
  • The ball is now in her arena.
  • He is a giant Midget.
  • We want to be as professional as possible. In our head, we have things.
  • MaWoman (referring to a hermaphrodite)
  • It used to could. It’s no longer coulding.
  • You say but why?
  • Me and God talk all the time.
  • You should listen to me; I am like a God.
  • I am attending your school of lazy.
  • The difference is the same.

They’re Back… Financial Insecurities


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Welcome to this week’s excitement installment of Therapy Thursdays – yes, it is Thursday, not Friday, yet. Deal with it. The doctor is in and Larrie decided that she does, indeed need to show up for her appointments for the sake of entertaining all you Sciolist fans. Sometimes, however, she does wonder if this is actually entertaining or just proving Freddy’s point that she’s crazy… (P.S. Click on the link to the right for the survey if you haven’t already taken it. Seriously… you’ll get a GOOD laugh.)

DOC: You made it.

LRE: Hooray. That’s what my supervisor should say every morning and be PROUD of me for winning the battle of mind over mattress.

DOC: It’s a battle?

LRE: Every morning… a life-long war and I take it one snooze button at a time.

DOC: You think you’re funny, don’t you?

LRE: Clearly.

DOC: So let’s start off with any insecurity you are feeling right now.

LRE: Right-o. We can start with financial insecurities.

DOC: But I thought that the chiropractor cured you of that and you are now financially ready for a MAN?

LRE: That’s what I thought, too, but then I read this article on MSN about credit scores. Can you believe that incurring library fines can ding my credit score?! UNBELIEVABLE.

DOC: Well, it is your fault for not taking the book back in time.

LRE: Clearly, but what’s the library got to go and report this back to the credit bureaus for?

DOC: What kind of a sentence is that? Aren’t you an English major?

LRE: Yes, and eventually, a master of writing technically.

DOC: I take it that only affects your writing and not your speaking, though.

LRE: Indeed.

DOC: Okay, so you’re feeling financially insecure now because you have library fines?

LRE: Keeps me up at nights.

DOC: Really?

LRE: Sure, that seems like a good reason for only getting four hours last night.

DOC: It might actually be easier for you to stay awake at work if you slept more.

LRE: REALLY? You DON’T say.

DOC: I could try and help you with that.

LRE: How? Ambien?

DOC: Sure, some imaginary Ambien prescribed by your imaginary psych.

LRE: I won’t even take that stuff if it’s imaginary. Maybe next week, I’ll tell you why not.

DOC: Fine then, back to the library fines. What book didn’t you return on time?

LRE: Books. The Design of Everyday Things, The Form of the Book, Liberal Fascism: the Secret History of the American Left, from Mussolini to the Politics of Meaning, and Freelance Writing for Magazines and Newspapers.

DOC: Was it worth it?

LRE: Mostly. I’d recommend all of the books, but the last one, which I never got around to reading.

DOC: Maybe you should try checking out ONE book at a time.

LRE: I can’t; it’s physically impossible for me to leave a library or bookstore without at least an armful of literature.

DOC: Sounds like a tough disease for your bank account.

LRE: And credit score.

DOC: Since I AM a doctor, I’ll use my impressive Latin vocabulary to create a name for your disease: chronic libri-effercio-ligatio.

LRE: Sounds like a spell from Harry Potter.

DOC: Maybe it’ll make your armfuls of literature levitate so you don’t have to carry them out to your car.

This may come as a surprise to no one: people think I’m crazy


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Freddy told me. He thinks I’m crazy. Other coworkers around agreed with him. Or at least they didn’t disagree.

Freddy: I read your blog. You’re crazy. What’s it called when you have voices in your head?

McJosh: Schizophrenia.

Freddy: Yeah, that.

Instead of concentrating on that conversation and the fact that the Lead in my group diagnosed my multiple personalities, I concentrated on the fact that it took reading my blog for him to figure that out. Do you know what that means? They actually think that I am normal at work. Man, I’m good.

Reasons why they think that I am normal:

  • My signature on emails looks like all the other SQAs (Software Quality Assurance Testers) in my group – nothing there about the crazies in my head.
  • My desk is just as messy as the other SQAs.
  • I work a 9-5 job.
  • My emails sound quite professional (unless you’re a developer and you tell me to “stand by” for a new release of an application – how could I NOT reply with “standing” and therefore lie about the fact that I was sitting in my ergonomically-happy chair?).
  • My voicemail message sounds fairly normal.
  • MOST people call me Lauren.
  • I wear jeans and a collared-shirt on most days.
  • I type really fast.
  • I stare at the clock waiting for 5pm.
  • Most of my sticky notes posted around my cube are boring and work related (e.g.: “InputString1: String, InputCurrency1: Currency, TFS2358-4490331, TFS2361-4490332 – what? It makes sense to ME).

Reasons why they might not think I’m normal.

  • Sometimes I send emails that say, “Standing…”
  • I check my email at midnight or on vacations.
  • I draw cartoons in meetings about Stacky defenestrating another coworker, Bret.
  • A FEW people call me things other than Lauren – like Skinny, Man-toes, Larrie, and Trashy.
  • I’m really tan.
  • I type really fast.
  • There are the other sticky notes in my cube that say not-so-boring-work-related things (e.g.: “Dear Lauren, I love you. Love, Someone Secret.”).
  • I don’t smoke or drink coffee or alcohol.
  • I rarely swear and am not obsessed with sex.
  • I blog about my normalcy or lack thereof.
  • And a Bush calendar hangs on my cubicle wall with pictures of many of my coworkers taped up next to him; they LOVE being placed so that George puts a loving arm around them!