Friday, March 30, 2007

Trying to get to you and that booty

For whatever reason, I quite like the term "international pariah."

Now if only someone *ahem* would feed the pariah some poisoned sardines...

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

I Got Your Hey-Oh

1. I am only somewhat amused by the gleaming white toilet currently adorning my neighbor’s side yard. It’s been a month now and I’m more than tempted to gather up a bag of cat shit and dump it unceremoniously in the bowl. I wonder if my neighbor is confused about the generally accepted functions and locations of a toilet. I mean, maybe they're from the hills of Uzbekistan where a toilet is considered a Tool of Satan. Maybe they like hovering over a hole in ground. Maybe it’s an art installation piece and I’m just too uncultured to appreciate its bold statement about the struggle of humanity against oppressive societal norms. Or maybe they’re just lazy. Total toss-up. Also, the piece of plywood propped up against the toilet tank does nothing to disguise the actual fucking toilet sitting in the yard. The YARD, people.

2. Whenever I go to the grocery store I have to drive past a giant green billboard with JESUS in pristine white letters. It’s always confused me because there is no church affiliation stamp to lead Jesus-seekers to the proper Jesus location. Just Jesus. All the time. I also seem to pass the disgusting foot sore billboard, at least more than I would consider my fair share. I’m all for people getting foot ailments taken care of, but I’m not sure it’s really necessary for me to see a giant gaping quarter-sized crusty hole on the bottom of some customer’s foot. Because, EW.

3. My new work schedule makes every day feel like Saturday. Only I’ve discovered I don’t much like a never-ending Saturday. I get the impression I’ve been sucked into some Groundhog Day-esque time warp. Let’s do the time warp again! God, sorry, total flashback to my college days and dancing to the Rocky Horror Picture Show soundtrack dressed up as Snow White. That whole Snow White thing is a complicated explanation; just rest assured I was a bitchin Snow White. I had chin-length dark hair with pale skin and cartoon-proportioned breasts. Put me in a blue dress and it was like sending out a homing beacon to all the cranky dwarves in the world.

4. I’m pretty sure someone just got shot in the house next door. Only logical explanation, really. I heard a pop, followed by an OH SHIT, followed by a BITCH! followed by the sound of rubber not making good contact with wet pavement followed by police sirens about ten minutes later. The last time I heard someone get shot I was living on the corner of Broadway and 16th. Don’t judge, it was a wicked cute apartment. Anyway, as it happened some young delinquent with robbery (and crack) on the brain decided to break into my neighbor’s restored Victorian house. The delinquent was obviously new to the ‘hood because of all the houses to pick, THIS WAS DEFINITELY NOT THE ONE. The guy gardened with a 22 by his side, for goodness sake. His car was covered with NRA and ‘God Bless George W.’ stickers. Put two and two together and you’ve got a gun-toting right-wing Republican. I recognized him for a man not unlike my father, who told me if someone ever tried to break in our house that I was to aim for the head and drag the body inside the house. Didn’t want the little fuckers suing us after a disabling shot. As for my neighbor, he aimed the gun through his window when he heard the lock being jimmied. He missed the first, second and third time. But then he got good and warmed up, jogged out the front door and shot the would-be deviant as he was running down the street. All in all, it was quite the good time.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition

It’s not to say that I’ve become disenchanted or disillusioned, because that would imply I had grandiose illusions and, um, enchantments to begin with. Is ‘enchantments’ really the word I’m looking for? Because short of stewing toad legs and newt eyes in my spare time, I can’t say as I’ve ever let myself be enchanted by much of anything. I’m nothing if not a realist. Maybe a very optimistic realist, but a realist nonetheless. I’m aware that kittens get run over, puppies are bludgeoned and little old ladies have their life savings stolen by men of ill repute, men who normally lack a full set of teeth. Maybe the grannies relate to their lack of toothedness, I have no idea.

I’ve spent the past few weeks simmering down from my full boil of righteous anger after a boss of mine was treated horribly. This, in turn, means that what little morale we had left around this place has gone directly down the shitter. It’s gone down so far and so hard, not even Heidi Fleiss can relate. Here was a man standing up for us, speaking his mind (as he was encouraged to do) and running our department with the kind of intelligence that makes me struggle with ever referring to myself as a Smart Kid. Then one greasy old cheeseburger of a woman gets her panties in a twist, smiles smugly and says There’s the door, sonny.

It started back in October, when my boss, we’ll call him the Can Can Man, got wind of some change in the air. The change had the kind of odor that accompanies Important Decision Makers within general crumbling companies that are struggling to keep their very large heads above water. This odor is greatly reminiscent of dirty asshole, because more often than not these Important Decision Makers have their heads firmly lodged in someone else’s rectum. And if I had someone’s head lodged up there, I’d have a hard time keeping that particular area clean, too; hence, the smell of dirty asshole. Not pretty flowers, just asshole.

The rest of us got the news at the start of January. Happy New Year, ya’ll! It was a shock to say the least because, hello, we make money. Oodles and oodles of money. The Big Company? Not so much. We’re better and quicker and faster than The Big Company because down here in Aw Shucksville, Arkansas, we don’t fuck around. It’s too hot for all that. Plus, there’s a rule in the handbook about putting your head up where the sun don’t shine. It ain’t sanitary, it ain’t healthy and it sure ain’t conducive to getting your work done and heading on home for a cold beer on the front porch.

The thing about The Decision (the one that puts me out of a job in X amount of months) is it really does look good from a high-level perspective. Can Can Man made a note to point this out because it’s best to understand the rationale THAT PUTS ME OUT OF A JOB. But when the Big Company brings in a third party to run test after test, wouldn’t you think it would be a good idea to utilize that information? The information that says this company right here in Arkansas, whooo-eee do they get their shit done right- ya’lls yankee system ain’t near as fine as what they got right here, and we reckon you’ll lose a bunch of money by trying to reabsorb their business. Can Can Man thought so, too. And he wasn’t shy about saying it.

Ultimately this was his downfall. The Big Company just wasn’t used to hearing such clear, succinct words. After all, it’s rather hard to understand someone when they’re speaking from the general location of your colon. Can Can Man had valid points: why WOULD you destroy a system that generates millions of dollars to put it on your decrepit and function-less one? Why would you ignore processes and procedures that we can prove generate a substantial profit? Why would you ignore study after study after study that says THIS is the better system THIS is the better process and THIS is the better company?

Why? Because someone way up high, someone so high on the food chain they’ve retired their personal ass hat, said so. They deemed it so, and so it shall be.

They said it was Can Can’s fault that we were leaving in droves. They said he should have done more to keep us here until the end. The end where they hand us our meager severance check and we all pray for a job in the middle of this forest called Little Rock. What they didn’t, and don’t, understand was this: He was the reason we stayed as long as we did. He was our morale booster, our rock of knowledge. You don’t find those qualities much nowadays. Mostly you get the Vice President who kiss-assed his way to the top, or the one that knows his job but couldn’t begin to grow appropriate personnel skills.

And so, because I’m too low on the ladder for anyone to really listen to me, here’s what I’ve got to say:

Dear Big Company,
You are very cordially invited to go fuck yourself.
Robin Holmes

Overall I’m just gravely disappointed, and I hate it that I didn’t expect to feel any other way. What little loyalty I had left was destroyed by the treatment of Can Can Man and you can bet I’m going to smile when you fall flat on your ass. Of course, you won’t really fall. You’ll just move your losses here and there, claiming that they’re capital interest or some such flumubbery. That spreadsheet where you showcase your loss-recoup time will casually be thrown in the shredder and you’ll all pinky swear not to tell the board of directors about your giant failure. No one but us slow-brained Arkansans will remember how you made a poor decision and went about that decision’s execution like a two-year-old and a plate of spaghetti.

I wonder how long it will take before I get fired for running my mouth.