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Charlie Hatton
Brookline, MA



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Howdy, friendly reading person!
I'm on a bit of a hiatus right now, but only to work on other projects -- one incredibly exciting example being the newly-released kids' science book series Things That Make You Go Yuck!
If you're a science and/or silliness fan, give it a gander! See you soon!

Wishing Not-Very-Well

(Don’t call it a comeback! Because… well, it isn’t a comeback. It’s just Secondhand SCIENCE, as usual.

This week, we’re touching gloves and punching above the belt with the knockout mouse, which is not at all like Mike Tyson, and apparently also not like cats. Ding-ding-ding!)

It’s budget planning time for the higher-ups in my office, and they’ve asked all us desk monkeys for our “wish lists” for the next fiscal year.

I thought that sounded great. So I sent my Amazon wish list to the CEO. It was mostly filled with Bloom County books and seasons of Futurama.

My wish list is filled, that is. Not the CEO. I assume.

I got a note back from his secretary saying I’d misunderstood — they’re asking about our wish list for things relevant to the job.

Of course. I apologized, made some adjustments and sent the link to my amended wish list. It’s now made up of Dilbert anthologies and an Office Space DVD.

“She didn’t care. Lady probably eats at Chotchkie’s.”

She said I still wasn’t getting it. I asked if she realized that was the Collector’s Edition of Office Space. With director commentary.

She didn’t care. Lady probably eats at Chotchkie’s.

The next day, someone from HR came to my desk to explain what they’re after. Apparently, “wish list” in this context only applies to wishes for items that can be used at the office and would make my work more productive. No problem.

Me: An Ali Baba rock.
HRer: A what?
Me: A big rock I can put over the cubicle entrance, that only moves if I say “Open, sesame!” Like Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves.
HRer: How would that improve productivity?
Me: Nobody could come in and bother me, for one. Also, I wouldn’t have to retaliate against Carl every morning for rebooting my machine.
HRer: IT does that. It’s a security thing.
Me: Oh.
HRer: What have you been doing to Carl?
Me: Nothing?
HRer: Are you the one who put bees in his filing cabinet?
Me: Maybe Carl’s a closet beekeepist, I don’t know. Can we get back to my rock?

In the end, HR rejected my Ali Baba rock on three counts:

1. They thought I only wanted it so I could make Easter resurrection jokes every time I left my cubicle, even though that was only 80% of the reason, max.
2. They said everybody would know the “open, sesame!” password and get in, anyway. I offered to reset it to something like “boogerjuggler” that was harder to guess, but they didn’t go for it.
3. Apparently, Ali Baba rocks don’t actually exist. Not in any of the vendor catalogs the company uses, at least. Though I’m pretty sure Sharper Image has one. They have to.

Also, HR made me send Carl a gift basket to apologize. I found one with twelve kinds of assorted honey. From bees. Because to hell with Carl.

Finally, my boss got involved. She insisted this is a good opportunity, so I should think of something that makes work easier, can be bought for the office and actually exists outside the world of fairy tales. And also isn’t alcohol, which negated my next twelve ideas. It was tricky, but I finally found it:

A pony.

It makes perfect sense. Ponies trot faster than I walk, so trips to the break room will be much faster. When people do come to ask me something, they’ll get distracted by it and I won’t have to pay attention to them. And I can keep gum and snacks and possibly Dilbert anthologies in saddlebags strapped over it, so I won’t have to go to the vending machines or surf Amazon any more.

Of course, my boss protested that the office can’t take care of a pony. But it couldn’t be simpler:

Throw some hay under my desk. The pony can sleep there at night, and we’ll share it when I’m taking secret lunchtime naps.

Ponies eat carrots. We have bananas in the break room, which are basically the same size and color, so that’s taken care of. Also, most of the Splenda packets by the coffee machine are dried up into little cube shapes already, when it’s time for a special treat.

Everybody will help groom it. Who walks to a staff meeting and passes a pony without brushing its mane? Nobody. Maybe the Grinch. Or Hitler. That’s it. Nobody else.

If you can train a horse to pull a wagon, then surely you can potty train an office pony to use the toilet. And even if it’s not perfect, the state of the bathroom still isn’t getting any worse. Our office is a block from a burrito shop. Some days it’s like Jackson Pollock pooped a painting in there.

My case is pretty ironclad, I’d say. I haven’t heard back yet, but I’m confident that come next quarter, I’ll have my very own productivity-boosting, gum-vending, banana-munching toilet-pooping office pony to work with. It’s practically a done deal.

And Carl asked for more RAM for his computer. Jesus, Carl. Get in the game, already.

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HomeAboutArchiveBestShopEmail © 2003-15 Charlie Hatton All Rights Reserved
Highlights
Me on Film 'n' Stage:
  Drinkstorm Studios


Me on Science (silly):
  Secondhand SCIENCE


Me on Science (real):
  Meta Science News


Me on ZuG (RIP):
  Zolton's FB Pranks
  Zolton Does Amazon


Favorite Posts:
30 Facts: Alton Brown
A Commute Dreary
A Hallmark Moment
Blue's Clues Explained
Eight Your 5-Hole?
El Classo de Espanol
Good News for Goofballs
Grammar, Charlie-Style
Grammar, Revisitated
How I Feel About Hippos
How I Feel About Pinatas
How I Feel About Pirates
Life Is Like...
Life Is Also Like...
Smartass 101
Twelve Simple Rules
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V-Day for Dummies
Wheel of Misfortune
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  04/30/05: Goodfellaz
  04/09/05: Com. Studio
  01/28/05: Com. Studio
  12/11/04: Emerald Isle
  09/06/04: Connection

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