Best Of January - Horror Stories From Advertising

By request, I am bringing you the Best Of January... I will not use anyone's real name in my site for fear of getting fired if anyone from work were to find my site and actually read it... No one can prove anything, nobody saw me do it, I know nothing.

I work in a very busy department in an Advertising agency - - The Shipping Department! Save all the glory you see in movies like "What Women Want", Advertising is really not glamourous, ever. Oh yeah, I have an entire department to myself (save the gal who sits across the table from me who I affectionately call RJ), we got to paint the department in all the colors we wanted, and throughout a day there are relatively few interruptions. That's where the "glamour" ends. RJ and I ship about 7,000 packages out in a year. We FTP nearly 8,000 newspaper ads in a year. We e-mail over 10,000 MP3s in a year. Every day is an adventure full of PILES of paperwork, which we usually receive late in the day.

What I love about shipping is that when a day is over and I go home, the load of paperwork has gone out the door and my table is clear, I can just leave work behind me. KK, onto my top 2 stories from January!!!

Fireball - - a little ball of anger wrapped into a relatively friendly-looking exterior. This person is not friendly (unless she needs to suck your life-force and have you stay late to help her), and she has a vocabulary that makes most Hell's Angels blush. She's angry. All the time. At a meeting in early January it was my responsibility to announce to the building postage rates were changing, and to send out a mass e-mail, and distribute a written memo to all. I gladly announced the event saying our meter was receiving the update on a Friday. Fireball burst out to the entire room "YOU'RE WRONG!!!." Everyone appeared startled and confused. Fireball continues on "I BOUGHT MY STAMPS THIS WEEKEND AND THE RATES DON'T CHANGE UNTIL SUNDAY!!!" I was pretty much flabbergasted... what do you say to an outburst like that? I responed with "Our machine receives the update this Friday but..." "DID YOU NOT HEAR ME? I JUST TOLD YOU YOU'RE WRONG! POSTAGE RATES CHANGE ON SUNDAY!!!" I nodded my head and said "I have sent a memo to everyone with the full details," and let it go at that. My memo was sent just before the meeting, and read as follows:

Everyone please mark your calendars!!!

Our US Mail NeoPost scale will be having a rate update installed on our postage machine on January 6th.

IF YOU HAVE PACKAGES GOING OUT FRIDAY, JANUARY 6th, DO NOT USE THE RATES ON THE SCALE BECAUSE THEY GO INTO EFFECT OVER THE WEEKEND!!! Our machine is receiveing the update on the 6th, so please ask us to calculate your shipping rate on Friday if you have anything outbound.

This week (through January 7th) the shipping rate remains $0.37 for letters, and will change to $0.39 on Sunday, January 8th. We can print $0.02 stamps for those of you who need them in the coming weeks.

Please remember when writing a check, it must be for the EXACT amount only - - we can, however, make change for most cash transactions. Feel free to call if you have any questions!

Yay! I win! On to story numero 2.

The Boss - - she enjoys reinventing the wheel because of her power to fire people, and with her Masters Degree which gets brought up in nearly every conversation, why should anyone with an inferior education experience question anything? WHY? The Boss has decided that in my vast knowledge and systematic way of doing things for over a year, my system is horribly flawed because of one phone call one person received because of an office conversation that happened at a station across the country in AUGUST. Let's change a system that works - - a time-saving system that we can train people on and share company-wide. It's a great plan! The Boss says to me "You like roleplaying, that swords and vamipres game, right? Let's roleplay a conversation. Here's a phone call - RingRing." I can only glare. That swords and vampires game? Where'd that come from? Does The Boss want to be stabbed??? I thoughtfully play with the pen I'm holding... "C'mon - RingRing. Roleplay with me - RingRing." I want to scream. The Boss has gone bonkers and I'm going to get 25 to life for a headline that will read "Boss Brutally Murdered with Bic Pen". She finally gives up and says, "Just get all your contact information into a useable format (what does that mean?) and get it to everyone upstairs right away! Don't sit on it!" Um, I think my average turn-around time on stupid requests of 24-hours is pretty good, but hey. I get the document into a paper format, the kind people can take home, look at over lunch, correct while they are downloading their graphs, whenever. I go upstairs with the pages to hand out (an hour after the conversation). The Boss grabs the pages from me and says "What the hell is this?" "The document you asked for." "I want an e-mail, are you having a slow day? This needs to be in an EEEEE-MMMMAAAAIIIILLL." "Fine." I walk out, proceed to my department. RJ sees me come in and upon noticing the expression on my face immediately asks "Are you OK?" I throw the papers on the floor - - which for me is extreme. "It needs to be in EEEEE-MMMMAAAAIIIILLL!" RJ looks, frightened... but then (to save her own skin from my murderous Bic-pen stabbing rage) lightens up the situation by giggling and jumping up and down on the papers strewn all over the floor. I join in... and then waste away the rest of the afternoon doing other people's stupid projects. The EEEEE-MMMMAAAAIIIILLL was sent just before I went home, exactly in the "useable" format The Boss wanted.


Blogger R, J, & A said...

I love it! EEEE-MMMAAAIIILLL! Josh says that will be his knew catch phrase. I love it. You HAVE to read the blog Dooce - a link is on my site in the lower right hand corner. It is about this non-anonnymouse (haha that was better than trying to actually spell it)anyway about a woman not hiding her identity who got fired from her job for things posted on her blog. She talks about it in her profile and you can search her blog for "dooce" posts - they are hilarious - just like yours :)

4:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ha Ha....that was awesome!!! I wish i could have been a fly on the wall when this stuff took place! I'm telling you, I have difficulty holding back fuel that is just bubbling when things like that happen....I would have been fired way before all that got started LOL. From working at a medical facility I never had the co-worker problems...it was all the patient demand crap that got to me. And with military it got worse when someone who was rank heavy (or liked to throw their low manned rank in your face becasue their boss was an ass) killed me. I maybe married into the military...but I am still an ordinary citizen....sssoooooo BY LAW, REGULATION OR WHATEVER YOU WANT TO THROW OUT THERE...I can call you by your first damn name if i please. Sheesh let me stop this is your blog. This is great stuff missy!!!! I enjoy reading it!!! ~~~ Jazzy

9:53 AM  
Blogger Collin said...

Yeah, Dooce was one of the first, or at least most noticed. So much that a slang term arose around being fired for your blog as being "Dooced". She even has her own Wikipedia entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dooce

I've sat in on a weeting quite awhile back where "The Boss" was involved (assuming we are talking about the same boss: starts with R and ends with the gnashing of teeth). The thing I noticed most was she talks about things as if she's the foremost authority on the subject, even if she knows nothing about it. This was over two years ago, so I no longer remember the details, but it had to do with website design and cross-platform compatibility. Anyhow, I feel your pain.

And I'm betting I know who Fireball is as well. This was, again, a few years back. I was working on an ad for her and she made me so crazy, treating me like I was an idiot, that I almost went to my boss and said I would quit if I ever had to work on anything of hers again. Of course, I didn't do that and believe it or not she's better now than she was then, at least with my department. There are times when the anger shows though.

Also, a few posts ago you mentioned being a player of MMPORPGs, but you never said which one. So. Um. Which one?

12:23 PM  
Blogger Conqueress said...

Rosie - Tell your husband I have a new catch phrase being posted later this week which I'm sure he will enjoy more than EEEEEE-MMMMAAAAIIIILLL. Be sure to check back ;-)

Jazzy - My husband works with the military too. I still call people "Sir" or "Ma'am" but to say it and for it to be expected are two different things...

Collin - You are absolutely right, but I am confirming nothing. I wasn't specific about MMPORGs because I've played so many. By order of my recent favorites:
1) EQ2 - EverQuest 2(I currently play every night, love that you can level grind, harvest, do quests, craft, go raiding... a wide variety that appeals to my many moods)
2) DAoC - Dark Age of Camelot (Account is active, play once a month... unfortunately with recent PvP patches the game lost some serious oomph for casual gamers, i.e. people with jobs)
3) WoW - World of Warcraft (Played a couple months, never got hooked, to repetitive, not a huge variety of things to do)
4) Eve Online (Great concept, love the graphics, lost its steam after a couple weeks)
5) SWG - Star Wars Galaxies (Couldn't stand their graphic drivers, yuck!)
6) Ryzom (Got in on the Beta, had a lot of fun until people in PvP came into the villages and killed you over & over & you couldn't escape)
7) Tale in the Desert (Developed as an educational game to teach about ancient Egypt... very cool except when you have to run across the desert)
There ya go! Do you play sometimes? Let me know if you want more insight anytime!!!

8:37 AM  
Blogger Collin said...

I used to play MUDs in the BBS days, and I also used to play a lot of off-line computer and console RPGs, but that was back before kids. Now I find that I play a bit, enjoy the heck out of it and then something distracts me for a week or two and I've forgotten where I am and what I was doing, or even occasionally how to play the thing. So I love them, but I probably won't have time to really get into them again until the kids are grown up and off doing their own thing.

12:21 PM  

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