Posts Tagged ‘SickDays’


Our office has a strict “No Nuts” policy…


Anyway… Some of the folks who work here have severe peanut allergies. So we aren’t allowed to bring peanuts, peanut butter, etc., to work.

Fair enough. I don’t want my sandwich to kill anyone.

But there’s a small group here that call the peanut policy “discriminatory.”

Typhoid Mildred is their ringleader. Mildred doesn’t believe in allergies. She thinks anaphylactic reaction is something you can “walk off.”

Mildred and her peanut crusaders claim that the “anti-nut lunatic fringe” are “fakers who want special treatment.”

They really get angry about it.

They whisper to each other about “Fragile Jill” and “Nutless Tom” as though having an allergy was a lifestyle choice… An EpiPen, a fashion accessory.

They also wave Snickers bars around recklessly.

I’m sure if Nutless Tom collapsed in Mildred’s cubicle, she’d shake her finger at him and say “You’ll get no attention from me, ya blubbering baby.”

That right, Mildred. He’s just like a child holding his breath…Only a little more permanently.

She’s okay with peanuts, but today she told me to stop wearing aftershave.

According to Mildred, I smell like a woman and it “gets up her nose.”

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Arrive at work to find Farook from Accounting measuring my cubicle. He looks trapped. Trapped in my cubicle.

I say “Good morning, Farook.”

He says my cube is 3 square inches wider than his. And that I’m late.

I was hoping for “Good morning, Alan.”

Email from Farook. We need to talk about my cubicle. Something about “favoritism” and “standards.”


Farook arrives at my cubicle. He asks if I got his email. I say “Yes.” He sighs painfully. I smile politely. He storms off.

I’m in the bathroom. Next thing I know, Farook is standing behind me. He demands to speak about my extra 3 inches. I suggest this might not be the appropriate venue and zip up quickly.

Farook enters my cube and takes some digital photos.

Back from lunch to discover Farook in my cubicle with Trudy from Human Resources and my boss, Clark. Clark looks tired and annoyed. There is a lot of measuring and debate.

Email from Farook telling me that none of this is personal. He trusts I understand.

Memo from Trudy. Customer service cubicles are being reconfigured due to “irregularities.” Workers arrive Monday. We are advised to box files, disconnect computers and be prepared for minor inconveniences next week.

Revised floor plan arrives from Trudy.

Near riot as staff argue about changes to the cubes. Typhoid Mildred calls Farook a “bleeding eedjit.” Nutless Tom laughs. Mary Margaret cries. Otto demands to be moved closer to the washroom. Pandemonium ensues…

Turns out the only two who aren’t affected by the move – me and Farook.

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We had two feet of snow yesterday.

In response: An email from our friend in Human Resources, Trudy Cousins.

She advises us that it often snows in the winter.

Thanks, Trudy. Anything else?

We are also told that heavy snow storms can result in challenges for employees getting to work.


Trudy just wants to remind us that in the event of a severe winter storm, we are still expected to make every reasonable effort to report to work.

She also provides simple tips that will help us get to work while the rest of the free world is following the police advisories to stay off the roads except in the case of medical emergency.

Her tips include:

If you know a storm is coming, give yourself extra time for the morning drive
Purchase quality snow tires
Pack a shovel and blanket in the trunk of your car

I wonder what advice she has for getting to work during a nuclear attack…

If your car is vaporized, give yourself extra time for the morning walk
Purchase a quality radiation suit
Duck, cover and roll to the office

I called Trudy to find out policy on an insurance issue. But apparently she left early.

Guess she wanted to beat the traffic home.

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We had a “team breakaway” this morning.

It wasn’t my boss Clark’s idea. His notion of a breakaway would be to bus us all to another state and never look back.

It came from Trudy in HR. So it’s a corporate thing.

We started off by playing a game called “Mine Field.” Stuff is scattered on the floor and you have to “guide” your blindfolded partner through without blowing them up.

I worked with Farook from Accounting. It didn’t go well.

I told Clark that he’d have to write a letter to Farook’s parents explaining that he died valiantly in battle. Clark didn’t laugh.

Up next, we had someone come in to do our “True Colors.” It’s a very precise psychological test that is premised on the theory that human beings can be broken into one of four colors. Apparently we’re not as complicated a race as we like to think. I’m “Blue.”

After our colors were accessed it was time to find out what kind of “geometric shape” we are. I’m a “triangle.”

Most people are “square.” As a collective, they’re pretty pleased about it.

When I questioned the validity of labelling people as specific colors and shapes, Typhoid Mildred called me a “narrow minded little triangle… And a blue one at that!”

We ended with “Trust Exercises.”

I was partnered with Otto. I don’t trust him and he doesn’t trust anyone. We both agreed we weren’t going to do them. I think it’s the first thing Otto and I have agreed on.

Baby steps…

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My coworkers have tried to sell me chocolate bars, girl-scout cookies and bags of mints. I’ve been asked to sponsor walk-a-thons, dance-a-thons and caber toss-a-thons…

(The last one was Typhoid Mildred. I think she was pulling my leg.)

This puts me in an awkward situation.

If a stranger shows up at my home asking for money to support homeless, unwed, crack addicted, bunny rabbits, I can say “thanks, but no,” shut the door and go back to my TV.

And I can do it relatively guilt free.

But when it’s my boss, Clark, asking me to donate to his daughter’s track team – not the same deal.

It feels like… extortion. Career limiting extortion.

The problem is that if you pay, you’re a mark.

That means parents from cubicles far and wide will swoop down on you with cookies and sponsor forms.

And if you don’t pay, you’re a bastard. A bastard who hates children.

But I have a solution. These kids need cash for school equipment, trips and recreation? Okay. We should all have a small amount of money deducted from our paycheques and put aside for this.

We could call it… I don’t know… Taxes.

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