Basket Weaving for Dummies
I apologize in advance if you came here actually expecting information regarding basket weaving. My misleading headline has lead you astray. I sincerely apologize for wasting your time. At least there aren’t 42 self-loading videos on this page. I guess it could have been worse. –Ed
For a fun mental exercise I will often take modern situations and problems and try to extend them, in my own inimitable fashion, to a hypothetical construct in my mind loosely based on my concept and interpretation of an indigenous people’s village.
Does this make good sense? Is it accurate? Does it result in increased understanding of how things work? Is it, in even the slightest way, particularly useful? Perhaps not, but I enjoy it and besides, it’s my brain. That’s the one place on this planet where I get to make the rules. No wonder it’s so crazy in there.
One day there was a visitor to the village who observed two people sitting on the ground and weaving some baskets. It was clear they were not equally skilled at the task.
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It’s a job
How would you come off if someone secretly recorded video of you doing your job? Would you pass that test? Would you come through with flying colors?
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Worst Movie Bosses
Ever since I reviewed the movie Horrible Bosses this last Monday, I’ve been thinking about bad bosses as portrayed in the movies. You’d think by now I’d be an expert on this but I kind of struggled. I couldn’t think of very many.
Of course, the first one to come to mind was Bill Lumbergh from Office Space. I’ve seen that movie so many damn times. Lumbergh is a classic boss, always moaning about “TPS reports” (whatever the hell they are) and trying to get employees to work on the weekend. He’s not a very good listener, either, and becomes nasty when the consultants he hired turn on him. LOL!
Other than that, the only other bad boss I could think of was the Meryl Streep character in The Devil Wears Prada. Yes, I’ve actually seen that movie, but I barely remember it. Sure, she seemed like a biz-natch to have as a boss, but, deep down inside, didn’t she really care about her worker? After all, she told that other company they’d be idiots not to hire her and then there was that smile at the end of the movie that told us she was nice. You know, deep down inside. Not that it may have matter by then.
That was about it. That was all that came to mind. So I turned to the internet. Ah, I found something called “The Top 10 Worst Movie Boss” on Spike.com. Now we’re talking. Let’s see what they thought of that I didn’t.
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Horrible Bosses not horrible enough
In writing this review I’m going to bare a little of my soul. You, the reader, will get a rare glimpse behind the facade to see the real Tom. So hold on to your britches.
I had heard about a movie called Horrible Bosses and, as you might expect, I was a bit intrigued. You see, I’m a devotee of the “my boss is a flaming bag o’ douche” genre, so just the mere idea of this movie grabbed me right from the start.
As usual, I didn’t even know this movie existed until it had already completed its commercial run. I don’t exactly keep up on trendy current events. In fact, I thought it was “coming soon” when it was already “done and gone.” I’m savvy that way. I’ve always had trouble keeping up with the cool kids.
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Does your boss ever give you conflicting messages? My boss is pretty much nothing but.
“You do not answer phones,” he tells me. “I didn’t hire you for that.”
Meanwhile, boss is in an “important” meeting where he’s telling someone that is paid to be there how great he is…
Boss, shouting from his office: “Yo, Abyss boy. Will you get that?”
That only happened about 42 times today.
Also, the boss says, “I didn’t hire you to work the retail floor. If you’re out there that’s because you choose to do it.”
Oh really, douche nozzle? I can mother-fucking guarantee I’ve never not once in my entire life “chosen” to work the retail floor.
[customer walks in]
“Yo! Abyss boy! I’m in another important meeting and I’ve got the rest of the team in my office being reprimanded for actually doing what was our policy as of yesterday. Take care of those customers!”
And so it’s back to the retail floor I go. “Yes, boss. Here I go choosing to do that again.”
Isn’t it exhilarating having flaming tard idiots telling you what to do? Like I overheard my boss put it the other day, “I provide for my employees. They wouldn’t have a place to live or food on the table if it wasn’t for me.”
I guess that explains why we put up with your bullshit. We have no other choice. Have you seen a wee bit of my heritage, the coat of arms for my family?
Me? I’m the so-called “talent.” I have specific technical skills my boss pays about 10 cents on the dollar to get. I wasn’t hired for my retail, sales, or phone skills. In fact, that sort of shit makes me want to vomit up my gall bladder. But then what will I ever do for my daily dose of bile? My boss likes to lounge around and pontificate about how he didn’t hire me to do those sorts of things. Yet he has structured everything so those duties plus vacuuming the offices and cleaning the toilet with my tongue constitutes the bulk of everything I do. The “talent” portion of my day is slim to none and on a lot of days doesn’t exist at all. I’m just a fucking pawn on a chessboard. Even so, I’m still such a pathetic pussbag I try to do my job to the best of my ability. That’s the key weakness my boss exploits.
Things work in very mysterious ways around here. Employees are inept and incapable of making the tiniest of decisions or wiping their own asses without the divine oversight of management. Information has to be kept secret from employees. New policies can only come from management and it is vital that they are then sprung on employees as a complete and utter surprise.
I’ll try to provide an example.
The office manager called a meeting and told us, “We will not do in-store orders any more. That policy has been changed. Period. If an in-store customer wants something we don’t have, they can order it from our web site.”
Six months later the employees are still dutifully adhering to that policy, the last known instructions and directives from on high regarding the subject.
Then the CEO finds himself out on the floor and is telling customers left and right, “Sure, we’ll order that in for ya. Anything you want.” The employees shrug and figure the policy must have changed and, like always, no one let us front line workers know. Any of us. In the world of business “osmosis” is a powerful management technique. I’d rank it right up there with Kaizen!
Around here the employees are usually the last to know anything. I guess it makes the bosses feel big and powerful and important. “I know more than you, mothafuka! Ha ha ha!” Shit, when we have a sale that has been planned for months we don’t know one thing about it. We find out from our customers.
Of course, once the CEO sniffs out that the employees are a bit confused, that can only mean one thing. It’s time for a meeting where the CEO will personally demonstrate his all-knowing powers and awesomeness.
“It has come to my attention,” he starts, “that some of you are confused about the in-store ordering policy.”
Um, actually, no. Fuck no! You are the only one who seems to be confused, you overwhelming prick.
“I’m here to clear this up for you. We always handle in-store orders for our customers. Why wouldn’t we? I want their money!”
Why wouldn’t we? Maybe because your right-hand man expressly forced us into a meeting and told us the exact opposite thing, dill hole.
“If you can’t keep this straight, write it down if you have to.”
You think there is a problem with our memories? We are the only ones who actually remembered anything, you pompous ass. It’s not our fault that the omnipresent and omniscient “management” has no friggin’ clue and is doing their absolute best to destroy this company and destroy us as individuals and employees. Eat my balls.
There is a very good reason why I don’t own a gun.