Sunday, July 29, 2007

Slave Friendly

Some time ago.

I am in a Conference Room. As anyone who has ever found themselves in such a place will attest, they are not good places to be.

This is not the first day of my attendance, in which me and my fellow ‘delegates’ are subjected to the relentlessly enthusiastic attentions of a gentleman in a faintly shiny suit who has armed himself with a laptop, a projector, a whiteboard that is apparently ‘interactive’, a 100-watt shit-eating perma-grin and a covert desire to rob his audience of any vestige of individual will.

He is saying something about ‘brand strategy’ whatever the fuck that is. He grabs a remote-controller type thing with a little flourish. Big deal.

‘Let me give you a flavour of what we’re talking about.’ He says as he turns to the whiteboard thing and commences a theatre of disillusionment via the gift of Power Point. ‘Flavour’? I have literally no idea what he is talking about.

I disliked him when I met him. I now idly wonder whether it would be possible to blind him using his own fucking laser-pointer.

Of course I shan’t. Whilst not actually ‘working’ I am ironically still At Work. As such, the unwritten contract between employer and employee – that employee will pretend to give a flying fuck about the company that employs him during the hours of nine and five – is still in effect.

I look around me. Black Guy, Asian Fellow, Chap Who Looks Like A Friendly Donkey and Gay Guy But Doesn’t Know It Yet are visibly suffering. But are bound by the same contract as I.

Our tormentors’ voice has become akin to the noise of a washing machine in my mind. I am conscious of it, but am trying not to let it bother me too much. But it’s not working. I try to think of nice things. This serves only to remind me how not-nice my current predicament is.

I resolve to try and think of something even more annoying than this man’s zealot-eyed babble in the hope that this will sufficiently distract me from the thought that I would currently gladly castrate myself and shove the two detached spunky pods in my ears JUST SO I DON’T HAVE TO FUCKING LISTEN TO HIM ANYMORE.

I decide to think of the more annoying thing only in italics, so I can differentiate between the noises in my ears and the noises in my head.

Here we go.

Him: prattle prattle prattle building audiences and driving response through creative thinking.

‘It’s always like this around here … but at least we can get our credit sorted.’

Yes. That works.

Him: prattle prattle creating the Yes momentum.

Well! That’s a lot less than we’re paying now!

Oh. This is good.

Him: prattle prattle prattle address the Need not the Want.

‘Josh! Your Dad’s found your scoootah!’

Excellent. I’ve gotten through it in one piece.

He lays down his remote control-thing and ostentatiously checks his unnecessarily swanky wristwatch.

Him: Right then guys. I’ve earnt myself a short break – why don’t you take one too? There’s a coffee machine in the hall, or if you want to go up to the deli [it’s not a ‘deli’, it’s a canteen] they have that really nice Slave Friendly coffee. It’s much better.


Him: What?


Him: That’s what it’s called isn’t it?

It appears that he is perfectly serious.

Him: You know. Slave Friendly [Christ don’t say it again]. You see it everywhere now. That’s it isn’t it?

He looks around, imploring.

Me: Em. ‘Fair Trade’?

Him: Yes yes yes. That’s it. [Panicking, red, flustered. Gestures] You all knew what I meant.

We really didn’t. He exits quickly.


Blogger Ms Baroque said...

Oh, dear, oh dear.

Still - a very vivid description! I feel as if I'd been there now.

11:21 pm  
Blogger Misssy M said...

No but you see they use the nets with the bigger holes to harvest the coffee. Stops the slaves from being caught up, ground up and percolated.

It's quite simple really.

11:21 pm  
Blogger Peach said...


(him, not you)

12:54 am  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

Baroque: You wouldn't EVER want to be there.

Missy: Christ. He probably thought that also.

Peach: Well. Yes.

1:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A cunt is a cunt is a cunt. Market that.

7:34 am  
Blogger Liam said...

Ahahahahaha! That is brilliant. It's things like this that make me glad I'm not high enough in my company to be made to go to the annual conference (which last year went on about "Leading from the Heart" and "My Shiny Whatmycompanyiscalled." These people all neeed shot.

9:07 am  
Blogger me said...

He actually said it? twice? wow. the lobotomies must work then.

Almost makes me miss working in an office environment

9:45 am  
Blogger Sakura said...

Oh god I hate those meetings. Where they get out the white board and big sheets of paper and make you do role playing - who gives a fuck really ? Not me that's for sure, that is 24 hours of your never get back.

Their enthusiasm makes me sick too. It's not as if we haven't heard those catch phrases before.

I suppose he feels better that he can drink his slave free coffee - what a wanker.

1:29 pm  
Blogger Sewmouse said...

Every time I hear one of those "motivational" type guys talking, it always sounds to me like they put together their presentation using a generic "Presentation MadLibs" program.

"Remember, the way to _verb_ your _noun_ is to _adjective_ _adjective_ the _noun_ _verb_"

3:35 pm  
Blogger Dandelion said...

I would love it if that man went home and googled "slave friendly", and ended up here. That would make me smile.

4:16 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

Anon: Well put. Sort of.

Liam: Welcome back. I think.

Me: He really did. It's not where I work at the minute I HASTEN TO ADD FOR ANY IT TYPES READING THIS AT CANARY WHARF.

Sakura: I feel your pain.

Sew: Welcome.

Dandy: Oh God I hope so.

8:23 pm  
Blogger Clarissa said...

He's probably a bible selling evangalist on Sundays.

9:29 pm  
Blogger Lee B. said...

You should have lasered the fucker's eyes out.

12:04 pm  
Blogger FOUR DINNERS said...

We've got him next week. We've had the rest of 'em so we might as well have him 'n all.

The working world is increasingly full of total cunts. Several of my union members are currently training to be cunts on the 'if you can't beat 'em join 'em' philosophy'.

I'm so glad I'm retiring in 5 years (unless The Dragon dies in which case it will be then) unless I die which will also be preferable to living around these creatures.

7:54 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

Clarissa: I had him down as more of the scientology type.

Lee B: Welcome back.

Dinners: Jesus. Steady on. It's only work.

9:43 pm  
Anonymous monkeymother said...

I suspect, on all counts, that he'd been eating too much tuna.

6:26 am  
Blogger londongirl said...

Slave Friendly. Crikey. And I thought I had foot in mouth disease.

6:45 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

mm: I do not know what that means.

LG: It was rather spectacular.

Come on people. Am I the only person in the country sent into fits of rage by the 'scoootah' thing?

7:12 pm  
Blogger DJ Kirkby said...

I began to fight off a 'micro sleep' as soon as the word conference began to resonate in my mind, it's a reflex from having had to waste too much time in conferences. I am impressed that you stay awake through them, I never manage to! I may try your technique next time though with my luck I will mutter the intentionaly anoying and distracting thoughts out loud...Oh dear, I appear to have rambled on a bit, sorry bout that...

8:40 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

DJ: Don't apologise. And I have actually said them out loud now and then. Fortunately, I'm annoyed by very random things so no-one GETS IT and just tend to assume that I am a bit mental and avoid me. Which suits, to be honest.

9:40 pm  
Blogger bittersweet me said...

I didn't understand the 'scoootah' reference, sorry

10:11 pm  
Blogger Mr Farty said...

We had one of them management pep-talk audio-conference thingies today, all attentively listening in on our headphones at our desks. Have you any idea how hard it is to concentrate on your blog when some tosser is yammering in your ear for a whole fucking hour?

10:11 pm  
Blogger FOUR DINNERS said...

Soz. Feeling shitty then. Back to normal pissed now....

10:15 pm  
Blogger tea and cake said...

I like the way the 'scootah' woman says 'twenty-five thousand' then checks with the bloke who falls over a 'scootah' that (she Says) is always there...You'd think they might have already discussed such a small loan.

sorry, so glad not to be in an office enviro. too.

Mind, I work for toffs, who, well blah on that way, and I just say 'yeah, that's a great idea' then do it. Or not.

sorry, it's late. g'nite, now.

10:56 pm  
Blogger Angela-la-la said...

The scootah woman is marginally less hateful than the thunder and footie man.

I want to kill them all, starting with their leader, Vorderman.

1:43 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

Bitter Sweet Lady: You are applauded for your lack of knowledge regarding early morning and I suspect all day-time tele-vision advertising output.

Farty: But. Do you see. You could have written your blog AT THE SAME TIME ON THE VERY SUBJECT YOU WERE EXPERIENCING instead of waiting until you had a different job like me.

Dinners: This 'world-wide-web log' has no need for apologies. Glad it's just normal drunkedness now.

Tea: Oh but Jesus. The happy-go-lucky 'thumbs-up' from Scooter Man? CHRIST. It's no fucking wonder they have to re-mortgage their house for the third time.

Offices are the living equivalent of prison- or war-movies. They really lay bare the essentials of humanity. Except they have LOADS more women in them. Which makes it even more terrifying.

Angela: I wondered for a minute. I remembered almost instantly and became so cross I wanted to pull my head off and kick it around in much the same way as the gent in the ad fancied his own pretend kick-about with his non-existent mates would, whilst telling his dim wife how good it was to speak to 'normal people you can have a real chat with', caressing a football and pissing-away any equity or any fighting financial chance his children would have whilst filming the whole thing on a camcorder that was worth more than his current stake in his own home.

THANK YOU. More mental aversion for me.

8:21 pm  

CEO: Yes well you say that, but frankly Cyprus is full of fucking Greeks, but Greeks with a grudge. Grudgy Greeks. Ha ha ha. And it's an awful place too. A rock. A dry rock full of grudging Greeks.

Cypriot woman: My family are Crypriot. We have been persecuted for years. How dare you, etc etc. (for 10 minutes)

CEO: Do you like feta cheese?

Cypriot woman: Yes.

CEO: See? Greek, but with a grudge.

11:30 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...


7:09 pm  
Blogger thinkpink said...

Oh Dear GOD

1:39 pm  


1:43 pm  
Blogger DJ Kirkby said...

Help, I turn my back for a couple of days and some people who seem a bit bonkers show up and leave comments here...or is it just me not getting the joke again?

9:50 pm  

"Seem a bit bonkers" compared with what, I wonder?

11:04 pm  
Blogger Pie said...

You are the top result on Google for 'slave friendly'. You should be given a shiny badge.

And I love that advert. It's exactly what family life is really like. And that woman's voice is not annoying whatsoever, not at all.

1:57 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

DJ: Maybe.

NWM: Alright you. Get your own fucking blo- doesn't matter.

Pie: Do you know? She comes from the town I currently live in (note to stalkers - not for much longer, so don't get excited). NO-ONE talks like that unless they are being paid.

9:00 pm  
Blogger Shell said...

just back from A&E where perma-splints have been applied to my ribs .. a bloody brilliant read as ever. twitching and dribbling from the start, i was (see? you affect word order too!)(they don't splint saliva glands. sadly.) .. conferences ... ack!

11:05 am  

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