I’ll try being nicer if you try being smarter!

Archive for August, 2007

Hopefully the mints were poisonous…..


Oooookay. So, as we all know, I relieve our receptionist for one hour a day while she eats her lunch and does whatever else she so desires. I actually love doing this, I find it very good for a type A personality such as myself. Phone rings, pick phone up, send call through, phone call over. Check. Done. No messy loose ends. Courier shows up, take package, sign for package, package accepted. Check. Done. Nooooo mess.

Now, here’s where it gets fun. Obviously, some of our clients will have clients of their own coming in. To begin with, this is a trickier interaction than you might think, for many reasons. The first being that most people are complete and utter fucktards. The second is that in our reception area, there is no company name, no logos, no sayings, no signs. This is because we house dozens of companies, all of whom want their clients to believe that they own this wonderful reception area of ours. So people get all confused, wander in and ask, ‘Uh….is this the such and such office?’, which is in itself a little bothersome, since there are generally two or more of everything here. Lawyers, mortgage brokers, ESL schools, IT companies….there are multiples of all of these. It gets tricky, but generally, we can figure it out.

So all in all, hanging out at reception is a good time that allows me to do what I do best…..waste time in a lazy way.

But once in a while, you get special individuals sent your way at reception. Currently, I have two sitting in front of me. I actually had to start writing this blog, so that I could claim my typing was me trying to do work. Allow me to explain.

This stellar couple first of all smashes into our glass doors. No word of a lie. Upon rebalancing themselves, the male specimen attempts to push the door open. It doesn’t. So, he pushes harder. Huh, still not opening. At this point, he decides that jiggling the door violently will be the smartest way to get around this obstacle. Cuz as we all know, if it doesn’t work the first time, or the second time, just do it the third time but in a slightly more spastic fashion and things will surely go your way. In a roundabout way, this worked, since his jiggling required him to pull the door and then he realizes it seems to be opening. Allllright. So, we are through the door.

Now, the male of this duo is wearing an orange shirt claiming ‘I look scarier when I’m not in costume’. Oh, hahahaha, I’m rolling on the floor. The female counterpart is like, 65, thinks she’s 23, and is wearing entirely inappropriate clothing. She’s also wearing huge black plastic sunglasses in our already very dim waiting area. They kind of shuffle up to me, and then tell me they have an appointment. Okay, and who is your appointment with?

The woman says, ‘it starts with R’. The man says, ‘It starts with E’. Great, we can’t even decide if it’s a consonant or a vowel. Super. But I’m smart, I figure out who they’re here for. I won’t bore you with the details, but it took me like, forever and a fucking day to explain to them that the persons first name was with an E, the last was with an R, that’s why they remembered it differently. This was of course, the funniest thing they have ever heard.

Inappropriately dressed old lady goes to sit down on the couch, while her chatty loser of a son stands around. He starts asking me what this person he’s seeing does. I tell him I really don’t know, because this is a business centre. He asks all sorts of questions I cannot answer about this guys business. He doesn’t seem to understand ‘I don’t know’.

Then, a small basket of mints we have sitting here behind the counter, intended for our clients catches his beady little eye. ‘Ohhhh! What’re those? Erasers?’ No, mints. ‘Huh?’. Mints. ‘What?’ MINTS!! You deaf monkey, they are mints!!!!!!! Sit your ass down and make sure your geriatric mother doesn’t die on my couch!!

‘Oh. Miiiiiiinnnnnts. Can I have one?’ I stare at him for a second, then gingerly pick up the basket and move it in his direction but only far enough so that he can barely reach them. He takes two packages. He walks over to old lady and then before sitting down, he comes back. ‘Can I have another?’ This time the basket is thrust violently into his face, and then slammed back down onto my counter with great rage.

He goes and sits down, and then for no reason, gets back up and comes to see me. I stared at the computer screen the whole time, while he goes, ‘You know what my uncle always said? He always said, if you smile, the world smiles with you. You should smile!’


I ignore him, continue to be enthralled by whatever’s on my screen. Then he goes on asking me how I would rate that little gem of a saying, from 1 to 50. Finally, I make eye contact. “Sir, I have no idea what you’re talking about.”

He then starts what is sure to become an epic dialogue (monologue, for I will not be partaking) on his uncle, who I’m sure is  a stellar man himself. At this point, I cut him off and say, “Sir, I’m trying to do my work.” This is total bullshit, since I’m obviously doing sweet fuck all. But I don’t care.

So then I open this up and start typing wildly, in the hopes that he’ll screw off. It worked. He did. Then his mom comes up, and I notice, on her clearly bought-from-a-suitcase-on-a-street-corner ‘D&G’ sunglasses, she still has the UV protection sticker covering her left eye. Class. She tells me her name is Barbara. I nod. She sits back down. What. The Fuck. Whatever, I don’t care.

So then the person they are meeting walks in, gives me a little nod, which is to mean, “I know these are my clients, I’m going to set up, I will return.” Orange shirt guy pipes up. “Was that the guy we’re waiting for?”  I say yes. He then goes, in the fashion of a four year old who has just been told he’s getting grilled cheese for dinner, ‘Yessssssss! I KNEW it.’ Unfortunately, I had no cookies to reward him with. Only mints. And he’d already taken too many.

The guy they’re meeting with comes back, collects the geriatric, and leaves. Leaving me and ‘scarier when I’m in a costume guy’ alone. He then mumbled something or another about leaving to move his car, back in an hour, blah blah, my mother can wait.

Then he smashed his way out of the door, and I said audibly and with complete sincerity, ‘Thank Fuck.’

Universal Truth #83

Continuing on with my Universal Truth’s  — the things everyone thinks and knows, and are kind of unwritten social standards, but not many people will say. By the way, if you get offended on other’s behalfs (behalves?) easily, perhaps you should consider moving on to another page. Cuz I don’t want to deal with your hate mail. You have been told.

Here it is: If you have man boobies, the world cannot take you seriously. This is a Universal Truth.

Peronally, all I can think about is possible ways for you to cover them up, so as not to assault my senses. I’m fairly sure I’m not alone in this feeling. Look, I understand it’s hard not to be fat, I get that. But I also understand that there are techniques that one can employ so as not to look as fat as they are. In the case of man boobies, they might be: not wearing that button down, thin material shirt; not wearing that clingy t-shirt; strapping the suckers down with duct tape or a bro (did that ever go into production?); constantly holding something in front of you.

It occured to me the other day in the elevator, while I was listening to a conversation between three businessmen. All were dressed fairly respectably. They were having a fairly normal conversation about business. But I realized, as I looked at the one with moobs (man boobs), I just couldn’t take him seriously. He seemed to me unable to be as intelligent as his colleagues. I’m sorry. It’s a character flaw of mine. I might work on it one day. Until then, please:

Maybe it’s NOT just my face….

Please read this. Please. Read this now.

If you have read it (it’s right here), then you now understand most of me. Folks, I’m an introvert. A snarky one, maybe, but it is a huge part of me and impacts my life every single day.

I am a textbook introvert. Social gatherings seriously tire me. They usually start by me being dragged kicking and screaming into them in the first place. I don’t like small talk, it drains me. I often look angry (see the title of the blog), I don’t like being interrupted, it jolts me into an annoyed state. I’m not a quick thinker, I’m not dumb by any means, I just take my time to think stuff through. I prefer my company to yours, no matter how lovely you are. I don’t do superficial. I am a loner by choice, and yes, this is possible. No, I don’t want to go to the club, no matter how much you whine and try to convince me it will be fun. It won’t be fun, it will be draining, it will be tiring, it will depress me, and I will feel awkward standing there all night. People will ask me what’s wrong, why I’m not having fun, how come I don’t want to dance. I can’t understand people who need to talk all the time. My boss across the hall is ALWAYS on the phone, chit-chatting away, or popping into my office to state stupid useless things that I don’t care about. If I leave the boyfriend for three minutes and come back, he’s on his phone. I don’t understand. I’d rather read, or cross stitch or just sit and stare at a wall than go out for coffee. I really don’t feel any pressure or need to be out on a Friday night. I don’t care that this is what people ‘do’. Good for people.

I get stressed easily, I get bothered listening to people’s completely inane and useless conversations. I’m not shy, I’m quiet, there’s a difference. I shouldn’t be regarded as a social boob simply because I prefer to be anti-social. The fact that I don’t march around with a bloody banner every time I complete a task at work doesn’t mean I’m not working. It just means that I’ve moved on to the next one, and prefer praising myself rather than making a big deal out of it. Big deals mean people. I don’t like people.

And yes, I get stuck in my head. You will receive a glassed-over look from me if you jolt me out of my thoughts. It will take me a second to wake up. And I’m slow at making decisions, cuz I’m running through every damned scenario, being oh-so-careful to think it through, unlike all you ‘act then think’ extroverts.

Why? Because! I am an introvert! Read the damned article! The article is funny, but true as well. Why am I on this kick? Well, two-fold. First, I’m feeling particularly withdrawn today. Second, I found and am currently reading a book called ‘The Introvert Advantage’ by somebodyoranother.

Actually, here is another great post about introversion. And this person makes reference to the book above (total coincidence). Check it out, it’s very similar to how I would write about it if I wasn’t so snarky and blunt.

I’m rather tired of people (most of whom are extroverts) thinking I’m just a rude bitch. I’m aware I have my rude bitch moments. But mostly, as an introvert, I just want you to shut the hell up and get out of my space. You coming to talk to me uninvited and with no specific purpose is like me forcing you (if you’re an extrovert) to not speak all day. It’s torture. It seriously drains me. There is scientific evidence supporting this fact (it’s in my book and on the interweb…..and hey, if some boob made a webpage about it, it MUST be true, right?). It actually takes me a lot of energy to interact with you, which is why I avoid it and don’t enjoy it. I actually get refuelled (they have a more sciencey term for it, of course) when I am quiet, by myself, or enjoying a small gathering with a conversation I enjoy. I need time away from you, no matter how charming you think yourself to be.

We’re a misunderstood bunch, us innies. In my case, I come off as a snob. But now, finally, the scientific world is backing up my claim to fame. It’s not me……it’s just my face.

Pet Peeve #657? Umbrellas.

They are stupid. And I think they are useless. Okay, okay, I know that apparently they serve some type of purpose….keeping the holder of said umbrella dry. However, something happens to people when they have an umbrella in their hand.

They become complete and utter morons. Observe:

Can my case GET any stronger?

They think suddenly that they are the only person on the sidewalk. This may in fact be due to the umbrella being pulled down over their face. May I recommend at least looking down at the ground a few feet ahead of you and trying to determine if there are other people coming by the presence of shoes in your field of vision? I don’t know. Just an idea.

Umbrella holders also commonly forget to factor in for their extra width. They don’t seem to understand that they now require extra clearance and dont’ make any adjustments for this. This has resulted in several ‘Ow! My eye! You asshole!’ incidents.

Another thing that pisses me off and why I think umbrellas should be outlawed is that the users of the umbrella will stop either before entering or exiting a building. Please, stop doing that. I shouldn’t have to wait just because you think you’re too special to get a few drops of rain on you. Also, if you’re entering a building and you stop to close the umbrella, you create a puddle just inside the door. Please mop it up or be held responsible for the next person to walk by it and slip and land on their ass.

We all know how fun it is to try and hold a single umbrella over two people too. It doesn’t work that well. And it’s annoying to walk by these two people, who look as though they’re in some sort of three-legged race. Their irregular walking and constant shifting around each other leads them to weave wildly through the streets, and as we know, the bastards will stab your eye out before they’re willing to let their friend get wet.

The worst is the ‘drip line’ effect. Yes, that’s my university education in effect. The drip line is where the water hits the ground after falling off the edge of a tree’s limb. The same thing occurs off the edge of the umbrella, often landing on me. This is irritating to say the least. It’s not that it’s cuz I get wet, cuz I already am wet since I refuse to partake in umbrella culture, it’s just the principle.

Half the time the damn things blow open anyways! Leaving you both wet and an easy target for people like me to point and laugh at you.

In short, umbrella usage is rude. The devices themselves are stupid and useless, cause accidents and create friction between me and the rest of the world. You will not melt if you get wet. I promise. Skin is waterproof. Clothes can go in dryers. And sometimes it’s fun to just say fuck it and let yourself get soaked, and not have to worry about holding the umbrella just so.

I don’t own an umbrella, so in this case I’m not a huge hypocrite. I’ve also made others aware of their deep-seeded umbrella hate. For example, last night while walking the dog, a guy and girl were trying to share an umbrella. As we’ve just learned, this meant they were weaving wildly, AND forgetting to compensate for their extra width. They had one of the little spikes headed straight for my boyfriend’s eye. He lifted his arm and oh so calmly batted the umbrella away. The waterphobics underneath panicked, cuz they thought they’d poked his eye out, and cuz they got wet. Suckers. We laughed and kept walking.

Hopefully they learnt a lesson. Probably not. But it was funny.

What do you mean I can’t speak English?

Background info: I hated university. Absolutely despised it. There. Now we may continue.

When I was in first year University, I had the brilliant idea that I should take a well-rounded courseload. You know, sample a bit of this, a bit of that and see what I liked. This was obviously a smart move, keeping all my doors open for my no doubt brilliant and exhilirating future. People would bang down my door to hire me with all my amassed knowledge in oh so many fields. So sign me up! I took a courseload something akin to this: Enviromental stuff (as it was my major and all), Geography stuff, english, economics, philosophy, dance, psychology, and anthropology. Well rounded indeed, no? What a brilliant plan!

This was a dumb idea.

In my eager naivety (I think that’s spelled wrong), I thought to myself, ‘I know! I shall sign up for philosophy! I can have all kinds of deep thoughts that can’t be wrong! Ahaha, I’m ever so smart.’

So I signed up for philosophy. I took Philosophy 145, described below:

Critical Thinking
An analysis of basic types of reasoning, structure of arguments, critical assessment of information, common fallacies, problems of clarity and meaning.

Okay, so, I like to argue. I do a decent job at it. I like information, I think fallacies are funny, I crave clarity (hate people who are unclear or unable to get to the point), so sign me up! I’m gonna become an intellectual, goddammit!

I went to my first day of class. Actually, this was my first university class ever. I was scared out of my mind. I was lost from the word Go. Seriously. For four months, I wanted to cry every Tuesday and Thursday, from 10:30-11:20. I had no idea what was coming out of the professors mouth. And he wrote the textbook, so that was no help either. I went to office hours, begging for help and it always made sense there. It was just after I left that my brain totally went to mush.

I did every assignment for that class. I went to every lecture. And multiple times people, I would receive assignments back, with a mark of ‘0’. ZERO. I completed the assignment. I filled in every answer. I got every single one wrong, and he didn’t even give me a pity mark of ‘1’ for like, filling in my name. It was horrid. I think I wound up with an incredible D+. I’m sure I didn’t actually earn that grade, but was rather given it out of pity and his own self-preservation to keep me out of his class the next semester.

This crushed my ego. Did they not KNOW who I was? I was Talea, THE SMART KID! I went to smart kid elementary school, I took all the advanced classes in high school. I skipped a grade! I was an overachiever, Type-A personality! I did not GET D’s!! Alas, I took my D+ and moved on.

Okay. That was philosophy. Then came microeconomics. What ever possessed me to take economics is completely beyond me. Even seven years after the atrocity, I still can’t pinpoint it. It was coincidentally enough, right after my stellar philosophy class. So I would fly across campus to make it there with 250 of my closest friends. I didn’t even bother wiping the tears of failure from my face on the way there, I knew they were only going to continue on into this lecture.

The thing is, I thought I understood economics. I was never brutally confused as I was in philosophy. I got it. Supply and demand, monopolies, blah blah blah. Check. But the thing is, every test I wrote, I totally bombed. I have no idea why. To this day, I don’t get it.

That’s the sign of really not getting something. Thinking you get it, then finding out you don’t, and having NO IDEA as to why.

I dont know why I wrote this. Probably because I’m bored out of my skull here at work. Ah, work. The job that my fantastic university education landed me (thanks UW!). All that work, that disappointment, the tears, the stress, the hating of the city, the hours of reading, the thousands of highlighters, the mounds and mounds of Kraft Dinner, the acquired caffeine addiction, the homesickness, the early morning lectures, the late night studying, the researching, the writing, the horribleness of everything………..all of it culminates to this folks.

A shitty blog started in the hopes of filling the hours of idleness at work. Sigh.

Oh yeah. I almost forgot. Since I came from out of province, I had to write the English Language Proficiency Exam. The ELPE for those in the know. It was me, and 300 Chinese kids.

I FAILED. Please note, English is the only language I speak. I don’t understand how they deemed me unproficient.

I should have taken the hint.

Dear Clients……

I understand that my desk is situated in the same room as the supplies, photocopier, vending machines and all-important mail cart. I understand that you must pass by my desk to get to all of these things. I understand that my desk is right near the door and there is no way to avoid me on your quest to fetching your latest stationery catalogue, creating your newest photocopies or fulfilling your current salt craving.

What I don’t understand is why you all feel like you are duty bound to speak to me. Especially in the morning. I make NO attempt to hide the fact that I hate small talk. I also make no attempt to hide my contempt for any time of day prior to 11 A.M. So why for the love of all things holy do you ALL insist on talking to me in the morning when you come in to my office?

Shit! Leave me alone! And PLEASE don’t stop and stand directly in front of my desk and ask me stupid questions as though I was four years old. When I am answering you in one word sentences and seem enthralled by whatever is on my computer screen (which is most likely facebook or this blog), TAKE THE HINT! I don’t want to talk to you.

Also, please stop with your play by play of my current actions. I am aware of what I am doing. It is one of the benefits of being a sane, conscious individual. When I yawn, I do not need you going ‘Ohhh! Looks like someone is tired!’ Again, I will reiterate….do not talk to me as though I am four years old. When I look stressed, do not say ‘you look stressed! Boy oh boy!’

And unless you want to get punched directly in your face, DO NOT INFORM ME THAT I LOOK ANGRY. Please note the title of this blog….It’s Just My Face!!!!! Seriously, you walk past me every day, ask me how I am, listen to my unenthusiastic response given to you with my best deadpan face so as not to encourage you to continue with this stupid act, and yet you constantly act shocked that I don’t jump up and greet you with a cheer and pom poms.

I am here to work.* I am not here to: listen to your sexual conquests, listen to you groan about your Wednesday morning hangover, chat about the weather, discuss why exactly I am tired, comment on my wacky habit of yawning, discuss the latest treasures you have retrieved from your mail slot, or answer your dumb questions as to the state of my face.

Please. Just leave me be. Just ignore me as I ignore you. Then, I will be happier. You may even see me smile.

*By ‘work’ I mean, anything I deem important/fun. This very rarely includes small talk with you and your counterparts.

A tactic of mine…

It’s no secret that I hate going to the gym. It’s just so damn boring. And lying around/reading/crosswording/cross-stitching (I know, I know, but it’s very mentally soothing)/sleeping/stabbing ones eye out with rusty utensils are all so much more fun than going. And all require less effort. And if there’s one thing I am (besides too blunt), it’s lazy. I am a lazy bastard.

So, I need motivation when I actually get to the gym. As we also all know, I’m not exactly motivated by the staff at my gym. (See here if you haven’t read my musings on that particular subject). So I require other sources to get me and my arse to move.

I know others have this problem, as hundreds of books and an entire industry have been dedicated to getting people to move in their free time. I’ve got it figured out though.

When I have to do cardio, I always try to get the machine behind the fattest person there. I figure, if she can get that to move, then I can certainly move, and plus, you get hypnotized by the jiggling. Jiggle jiggle jiggle, and all of a sudden, your time is up.

This secret will halt the current obesity epidemic.

Note: If you are in America, there is a high chance that everyone is obese. Don’t panic, you won’t have to try and pick. If this is the case, I suggest arranging the treadmills/elipticals in a circle. That way, everyone wins. You can be mesmerized by each others large behinds with nobody feeling left out.

Finally. I’ve done it. I’ve used obesity to cure obesity. Watch for it folks, hypnosis by jiggling shall be the next huge trend. Move over Atkins, here come the fatties.

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