Tuesday, February 12, 2008

More Work Nonsense

Sometimes my department meets to discuss things in a conference room.

Often, these discussions require pictures be drawn on the whiteboard surface of the wall-covering closets in that room. Each time this happens there is a two-minute break while someone retrieves the Big Bag O' Markers from wherever they are kept1.

Then there is a minor riot as various people scream "Not on the bottom cupboards!" at the presenter, because the bottom cupboards have a rough surface that holds the ink. I did that analysis by the way. All the others ever do is yell about how the ink doesn't come off the bottom cupboard doors, but leaves a smudge.2

Then there is a couple of minutes while one or another of my colleagues urges the would-be artist to ensure they are using dryboard markers, since for reasons that escape me the Big Bag O' Markers includes a couple of non erasable types that are easily mistaken for one of the other sort. Why we keep the erasable and non-erasable markers in the same bag eludes me. Doubtless there is a good reason that I'm just too new to the department to grasp.

Then there is the general gloom, doom and despondancy as any attempt to erase the previous stuff left by whomever used the cupboard doors last leaves multi-coloured smudges.

On Friday it all became too much for this writer.

I went down to Staples and purchased a 4 dollar spray bottle of dry erase erasing fluid. Yes, I know that doesn't make any sense from a common sense standpoint, but the phrase "Dry Erase" is a marketing euphamism and not a scientific fact. Dry Almost Erase, or Dry Smudge, while being more descriptive lack the sales potential of Dry Erase. Even I can see that.

On monday morning I snuck into the conference room with my magic spray and a couple of paper napkins and proved that a quick spritz would remove ink from the Doors of Never Using For A White Board and the Official Whiteboard of Smudge with almost no elbow grease requirement at all.

Once again my colleagues amaze me with their ability to rise above adversity and achieve a speedy resolution to the challenges that plague us. Visio diagrams. Whiteboards. Is there any limit to the vexing issues that will bring us to our knees?

Next up: I run an experiment to see if buying my own dryboard pens can offset any part of the controvesy the Big Bag O'Markers always generates. They cost four bux for a set of four, which explains why they are so rare here that people who have them lock them up and refuse to lend them out to each other. Four fbleeping bux. A dollar apiece. Staples even sell generic black dry erase markers cheaper than that.

I hate my life and dislike intensely quite a few of the people that infest it.

  1. a departmental secret I haven't yet proven myself worthy of knowing
  2. Easily remedied as it happens, but I'm getting ahead of myself

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