Charlie Hatton About This
About Me
Email Me

Charlie Hatton
Brookline, MA

All Quotes


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!

The Poster Parentage Predicament

I’ve been invited to attend a conference this weekend.

When I say “invited”, of course, I mean that my boss’ boss’ boss’ boss’ boss at my new office came by and said, “hey, maybe you should go to this conference for us“.

I call that an “invite”. Or possibly, if he were another boss or two up the chain, an “offer you can’t refuse”. Either way, I’m packing a bag on Friday and shipping out to represent the group. It’s very exciting. I might have to get a haircut, or buy some new socks or something.

As it turns out, this trip comes with an extra perk. Before I left my old office, I actually submitted a proposal to present a poster at this same conference.

(For the record, I was also “invited” to write that proposal. I’m a pretty popular guy, when it comes to things that might ship me the hell out of town for a few days.

I never thought of it that way. And now I wish I hadn’t. Super.)

The poster was accepted — and soon after, I ran screaming out of the office to my new job. Which was completely unrelated, of course. Mostly completely.

So the kids who were left there have been tasked with putting the poster together, rather than me.

“Smirkers before ex-coworkers, and other stuff that rhymes like that.”

(I was “invited” to still prepare and present and explain the poster. But there are only so many hours in the day, you see. My debutante dance card was full. So with considerable regret, I politely declined.

Hey, polite declines can too end with the word ‘suckers!’. Can TOO.)

I’ve offered what help I could from afar, and even seen a preview of what will be the final product. But it looked like I wasn’t actually going to witness the poster “in action”, since I’d left the job and begged out of the meeting. That was before I was “invited” back in.

So now I’ll be at the conference. And with perhaps some free time to stroll over to the poster area to see what’s what. And therefore, there’s but one thing I can possibly do this weekend:

Find the poster. Pretend to read it. And ask LOTS of loud, pointed questions about everything on it, and not on it, and what should be on it but isn’t.

Because it’s fun to get out of a drudging construction job. But it’s waaaaay fun to also know where all the bodies were buried before they laid the concrete. The smart ass in me can’t resist sauntering by and nonchalantly remarking:

Say, shouldn’t that number be a seven? I’m no expert, but where you’ve said four there, I believe it really ought to be a seven. Any right-thinking person would say so.

You might think this would backfire. And it might, if the poster is close enough to a broom closet that they could drag me in there unnoticed and waterboard me in the mop bucket. But failing that, I’m actually in pretty good shape here.

If there’s something wrong on the poster, it’s probably my fault, from back in the day — I mean, I wrote down ‘four’ as the answer for just about everything I had to guess at; it’s just simple law of averages that one of those should probably have been a seven.

(Or so I’m told. The law of averages is too complicated for me to understand. I just assume the average of any set of numbers is — that’s right, four. See how handy?)

The thing is, even if I’m to blame, what’s going to happen? I’ve flown the coop. Cheesed the joint. Scrambled the omelet. Four. I’m in no position to fix anything; in fact, I can point out my own caused problems with near impunity. Why, I may just march right up to that poster and exclaim in a loud accusatory tone:

Who’s the drooling idiot who thought that part there would work? Yes, right there — between the beginning bit and the ‘four’. That part?

Even if they say, as they may well have reason to do:

YOU did. It was YOU what put that part there, even when we protested and shook our heads sadly at your wanton hubris!

What’s the consequence? Nobody else knows me at the conference. I can claim to be an innocent passerby and mark them all as delusional, and who’s going to prove me wrong? I’ll go give ’em hell and high water, and watch ’em squirm in the heat. It’s rare to so fully and completely have the upper hand. Even though I like those guys — and I do — I’ve simply got no choice but to rain on their poster parade. It’s what a smartass do. Smirkers before ex-coworkers, and other stuff that rhymes like that.

Oh. Wait.

I just got an email from those guys. They say they’re going to include my name on the poster, given the work I put in. Now if I harangue them, I’m not just busting other peoples’ innocent chops, but mine at the same time. That’d be MY good name I’m sullying. Crap.

So I guess I’ll just go to this thing, and go see the poster and be all polite and nice and lovey-dovey when I talk to the guys who put it together. I guess that’s how it should be, smartass compulsions or no. I want to stay on good terms, and not burn bridges, and think of this as a networking opportunity, and blah blah blah… Fine.

I just hope no jackholes come up asking smirky questions while I’m visiting over there, or we’re going to have words. Ain’t nobody gonna talk smack about MY poster, sparky — y’hear?

Permalink  |  1 Comment

One Response to “The Poster Parentage Predicament”

  1. ema says:

    somebody managed to say…really? Why you guys just don’t sequence? I don’t remember if I took the mop out of the bucket before, but he’s still there

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

HomeAboutArchiveBestShopEmail © 2003-15 Charlie Hatton All Rights Reserved
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
Unreal Reality Shows
V-Day for Dummies
Wheel of Misfortune
Zolton, Interview Demon

Me, Elsewhere

Standup Comedy Clips

Selected Clips:
  09/10/05: Com. Studio
  04/30/05: Goodfellaz
  04/09/05: Com. Studio
  01/28/05: Com. Studio
  12/11/04: Emerald Isle
  09/06/04: Connection

Boston Comedy Clubs

 My 100 Things Posts

Selected Things:
  #6: My Stitches
  #7: My Name
  #11: My Spelling Bee
  #35: My Spring Break
  #36: My Skydives
  #53: My Memory
  #55: My Quote
  #78: My Pencil
  #91: My Family
  #100: My Poor Knee

More Features:

List of Lists
33 Faces of Me
Punchline Fever
Simpsons Quotes
Quantum Terminology

...Bleeding Obvious
By Ken Levine
Defective Yeti
Divorced Dad of Two
Gallivanting Monkey
Junk Drawer
Life... Weirder
Little. Red. Boat.
Mighty Geek
Scott's Tip of the Day
Something Authorly
Unlikely Explanations

Full Archive

Category Archives:

(Stupid) Computers
A Doofus Is Me
Articles 'n' Zines
Audience Participation
Awkward Conversations
Bits About Blogging
Bitter Old Man Rants
Blasts from My Past
Cars 'n' Drivers
Dog Drivel
Foodstuff Fluff
Fun with Words!
Grooming Gaffes
Just Life
Loopy Lists
Making Fun of Jerks
Marketing Weenies
Married and a Moron
Miscellaneous Nonsense
Potty Talk / Yes, I'm a Pig
Sleep, and Lack Thereof
Tales from the Stage
Tasty Beverages
The Happy Homeowner
TV & Movies & Games, O My!
Vacations 'n' Holidays
Weird for the Sake of Weird
Whither the Weather
Wicked Pissah Bahstan
Wide World o' Sports
Work, Work, Work

Alas Smith and Jones
Berkeley Breathed
Bill Hicks
Dave Barry
Dexter's Laboratory
Douglas Adams
Evening at the Improv
Fawlty Towers
George Alec Effinger
Jake Johannsen
Married... With Children
Monty Python
Nick Bakay
Peter King
Ren and Stimpy
Rob Neyer
Sluggy Freelance
The Simpsons
The State

Plugs, Shameless
100 Best Humor Blogs | Healthy Moms Magazine



Feeds and More
Subscribe via FeedBurner


RSS 2.0
Site Hosting:
Solid Solutions

Powered by:

Title Banner Photo:
Shirley Harshenin

Creative Commons License
  This work is licensed under a
Creative Commons License

Performancing Metrics

Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape

Valid XHTML 1.0

Valid CSS!

© 2003-15 Charlie Hatton
All Rights Reserved