Thursday, 26 February 2009

Away Day

Yesterday we went on a kind of "Middle Management Away from the Office Day", which was basically some seminar where they try to get you enthusiastic about your work and your team. It was held at a nearby hotel and food was provided, which is always nice, but often dissappointing. At one stage our boss had made an "Office" style film which he was quite convincing in as an inept manager. It was all quite funny. Then at one stage there was a scene in the background where a male and female employye went into the disabled toilets together, then came out adjusting their clothing. This was quite funny, and apparently stuff like that had gone on in years past. Then we were asked to comment on it andone team brought up the subject of inappropriate office relationships. Junior spent the next ten minutes looking over at our table red faced. He's actually on holiday at the same time as Cat today, but nobody has brought the subject up. I'm sure he was expecting me to tell the rest of the office what is going on so that they can be more open about it, but

Friday, 20 February 2009

Holidays in the Sun

Chris wanted to book some holiday:
Chris: “Ed, I wanted to book a holiday at the weekend. Is it okay…”
Junior: “You want to have the weekend as holiday? That’s fine, have both days off.”
Chris: “No, I want to book a holiday at the weekend for later in the year.”
Junior: “You What?”
Chris: “I want to book a Summer holiday at the weekend.”
Junior: “It’s still Winter. You can’t have a Summer holiday at the weekend.”
Chris: “I want a holiday in the Summer, and I want to book it at the weekend.”
Me: “You want to book some holiday for next financial year?...That should be fine, no one else has booked anything off so far for next year. When are you thinking of going?”
Chris: “July time probably. We went about that time last year.”
Me: “Where are you going?”
Chris: “We’re probably thinking of going to Tenerife.”
Me: “Really?...That shit-hole? Any of the other Canary Islands are better than Tenerife.”
Junior: “How dare you!...Tenerife is one of the best holiday places I’ve ever been to.”
Me: “How many places have you ever been to?”
Chris: “Actually, I remember you telling Dave that you weren’t very impressed by it.”
Me: “It’s overdeveloped, overcrowded, with black sand.”
Junior: “It’s got lovely golden beaches…hasn’t it?”
Me: “No, it’s all volcanic black sand.”
Junior: “Don’t listen to him. It’s bar, bar, nightclub, bar…all along the main street. If you go further out there’s some more dodgy places you can find if you know where you’re going.”
Me: “He’ll do you a map.”

Junior then goes on about him and his mates getting up to no good in seedy nightclubs. As usual his mate Neil gets into a fight or two.

Junior and Cat

Following Junior’s revelation from the other day when we went to visit Mark, when he confessed to be seeing Cat from our office, I was still surprised to see them sneaking out of the front of the building together shortly after I’d left, as I drove through the barrier to get out of the car park. I’m not too sure that he told me hoping that I would tell everyone else, so they wouldn’t have to sneak around.

Thursday, 19 February 2009

Let there be light

Since the canteen has been refurbished they now have motion sensitive lights, so that if there is nobody in a section of the canteen the lights will turn themselves off. Unfortunately we use the canteen for meetings a lot of the time, before or after dinner hours, and the lights don’t seem to pick up any motion if you are sitting down. So fifteen minutes into our meeting the lights will go off and you have the choice of having the rest of the meeting dimly lit from the daylight, or sending someone to go and stand up and walk over to where we think the sensors are every ten minutes.

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Visiting Mark

Having had a long weekend I was a bit depressed about going back to work. When I got in my idea that no-one would have done anything and I would have four days worth of crap to catch up with was confirmed. Then mid morning junior said that he had phoned Mark yesterday and that we were going to go and visit him this afternoon.

Mark has been off work with a bad back for over eight months waiting for physio and lately injections in his back.
We stopped off at Subway for dinner and picked up a meatball marinara for Mark too.

Mark was glad to see us. He’s not been out much. You would have to be desperate for company to be glad to see Junior.
We started off asking how he was getting on. He’s having his injections next week and thinks he might be coming back to work the week after that. Then he asked us about the changes to the department at work. We told him all about the comings and goings while he ate his sub. Then as we relaxed a bit more Junior asked how his girlfriend was coping with looking after him. To be polite, Mark asked how Junior’s love life was. He knew that he was having trouble with his girlfriend before he had gone off sick. Junior explained that she had left him just before they were going to move into a nicer flat together, leaving him £1000 out of pocket, having already paid the deposit. We figured out that it must have been about six months ago. They had been going out together on and off for about eight years. Then surprisingly, in an unguarded moment, he confessed that he was actually seeing someone from work, and that he was hoping that things might work out with her:

Junior: “You know who I’m on about, don’t you?” (to me)
Me: “I don’t know
Junior: “You’ve heard all the rumours though?”
Me: “I’ve heard
the odd thing.”

He went on to tell Mark that he had been seeing Cath, who had worked on our section for a few months. I knew that they had been places together, because she had split with her husband last year and they were both going out “on the pull”. The boss had also been suspicious and had started rumours about the two of them, but we had assumed it was just the boss winding people up. I was probably more surprised that one of the office rumours was true, and that he had offered the information up freely.

Junior: “This is all in strictest confidence.”
Me: “Of course.” (with a

Thursday, 12 February 2009

Women's trouble

One of the women in the office has just been off for some time recuperating after a major women’s operation. She came down to talk to some of the girls down in our section:
Vicky: “...I still can’t lie on that side since my operation. I went to the doctor again yesterday. He couldn’t understand it because it’s not where they did any cutting.”
Me: “Did he check that he hadn’t left his watch behind… or his mobile?”

Office Smells

Cat came down the office to ask Becks about some trouble she was having with an Excel file:
Cat: “What can I smell?”
Becks:”I don’t know.”
Dave: “Is it a good smell or a bad smell?”
Cat: “Neither really. I was just curious what I could smell.”
Then for all the time she was crouched down between Becky and Dave she was sniffing around, her nostrils flared. Sniffing Becky’s blouse, then turning round to sniff in Dave’s direction. Sadly she left to go back to her own desk without figuring out what or who the smell was.

Friday, 6 February 2009


For reasons known only to themselves the powers that be have installed a machine downstairs that measures weight, blood pressure, body mass index, heart rate, and few other things. It’s there for six weeks and they are encouraging people to try it each week to see if they lose any weight, fat, or height. People were queuing along the corridor and the people in charge of instructing people how to use it were telling people that it takes 5 minutes to run through the programme, so some of them will be waiting for over an hour. Of course the skiving element made a day of it. I went down with Chris and Eric, mid-dinnertime (people weren’t going to use their dinner hour to do it, if they could skive off during work time) when there was just one woman using the machine. I came out as slightly portly for my age. Eric came off really badly with a high blood pressure reading, which he put down to being really nervous of people watching him. Chris got a certificate of skinniness, but got very anxious because his blood pressure was close to being average for his age. He scared himself into thinking that your blood pressure just carries on going up as you get older. We tried to explain that low blood pressure is just as bad as high blood pressure, and that being average was good, but he wasn’t convinced.

Thanks to Biggest Loser Club for the photo.

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Snow 2

Then I come in this morning, driving through snow, and find this as my first e-mail:

IS Service Desk running with Reduced Staffing Levels due to weather conditions


I was quite heartened to get this e-mail from the boss. Everyone read it thinking he was going to complain at the very end of it:


Did you know


Believed to be Britain’s coldest ever winter and when diarist
John Evelyn drove a coach and horses down the River Thames, which remained solid
for two


Snow fell every day in Britain between January 22nd and March
17th. With temperatures rarely more than a couple of degrees above
freezing, fifteen foot snowdrifts blocked roads and


Believed to be the coldest winter for 223 years, with Britain
covered with snow from Boxing Day until early March. With so many
football matches being cancelled, the Pools Panel was invented to make up
results for unplayed


It snowed one Sunday night and the country ground to an
halt. Public transport decided not to bother, as did 1 in 5 of the
country’s workforce. However, almost everyone from the Technical
Services & Projects Section of E.ON’s Asset Information Management
Department made the effort and got themselves to work.

DONE! And with a bit more to come KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK!

Although he has wasted a load of time surfing the internet to find some amazing snow facts.