A Brief Whine

My boss is a pretty verbose guy. He spews forth words like a little volcano of vocabulary. He also likes to put things in writing where at all possible; memos, buck-slips, emails, documents indicating progress on a project, that sort of thing. He’s just never brief, is my point.

Usually these things are a case of him talking into a Dictaphone and me transcribing it, with a cackle, into Microsoft Word. Nice and easy. I type fast and really, a chimp could do that stuff. Occasionally though, he demands a cover note or slide for a PowerPoint presentation. This is fine in theory. I am more than coherent in PowerPoint.

He, however, is not.

For a start, he does not comprehend that you can not fit an infinite amount of words onto one PowerPoint slide – at least not unless you want a font size of minus 300 and are planning on handing out free magnifying glasses and an aneurysm with the presentation. He will hand me tapes full of words that would fill three single-spaced pages of Word and expects this all to fit concisely onto one slide. This is the world he lives in. Despite the obvious faces of disgust I pull when asked to do this, he doesn’t see what my problem is. I don’t have a magic wand, Dark Überlord, that’s what. My name is not Hermione Granger.

I actually like working in PowerPoint. You can do some neat stuff in there – like the time I made a presentation of all the people I hated at my last job. I made mean yet oddly accurate cartoons of everyone, captioned them all, wrote some scathing text detailing their various levels of assholity, made some graphs and pie charts (because no presentation is complete without some mathematical goodness) and synched up appropriate music. Every time Cruella de Ville, for example, would appear on the screen, that song “Bitch” by Meredith Baxter would start up. It was quite excellent! I couldn’t find a song about crusty old procrastinating douchebags for Mr. Panty-Waist so he had to make do with Carly Simon’s “You’re so Vain”. And the Primitives’ “Really Stupid”.

Honestly it was a classic. When it was finished, I brought it in early one morning on my laptop along with some doughnuts and coffee, so that I and my good friends The Evil Queen and Timo could have a locked-door screening in Timo’s office where we ate, drank and gave copious amounts of “The Finger” when necessary, which turned out to be every five seconds on average. Who knew therapy could be as cheap as six doughnuts and some caffeine?

So you see, PowerPoint can be your friend.

Not for my current boss however. Mr. “I would like twenty different bullet points in one document”. Mr. “I have diarrhea of the verbal variety”. Oh no.


26 Responses to “A Brief Whine”

  1. Suze Says:

    I do believe we work in the same office. I like to call my confused wage-giver, the man “that makes a short story long”. He likes to use managerial words like “make the words flashy and pretty”. I know why he makes so much more money than I do.

    I never thought to do a power point presentation on the people at work. Hmm, tomorrow instead of working on those pesky statistics, I will get to work on this. Also, I will bring lots of donuts to spark my creativity. Thanks for the idea. I’ll give an honorary finger for you!

  2. The Guv'ner Says:

    The cover page of my presentation was The Finger! 🙂 It seemed right somehow. I still have the slides somewhere. One day I will upload them for everyone’s bemusement (and maybe even amusement, who knows?) It’s strangely therapeutic getting revenge in such a manner. I felt quite at one with the universe for a whole ten minutes!

  3. trigimper Says:

    Powerpoint is fun, subliminal messages even more so. To amuse myself (which doesn’t take much) I would bury naughty words in documents, reading just the first letter of consecutive paragraphs in my documents could prove quite offensive. Just for obstinacy, somewhere in every document I would also use the word “Whilst”.

    OK on the clangers, how about “Finger Bob” ?

  4. CDP Says:

    “levels of assholity”
    heh heh heh
    My old boss was the most verbose person I’ve ever met. Not in writing, but in conversation. She frequently used the “to make a long story short” and it was ALWAYS too late. She was capable of ignoring all indications that she’d lost her audience…the shuffle, the look at the watch, the listeners taking their own lives right in front of her rather than listening for one more minute…absolutely merciless.

  5. The Guv'ner Says:

    CDP: Hahahaha! I know! you have to love that in a person. The woman here I call The Most Boring Woman In the World is like that. Well that plus she’s boring as all get out. Whenever I get cornered by her I fidget like a two year old and have to qualm the urge to punch her in the chops. Sometimes I try to imagine her face if I pulled out a gun and shot myself in the head. She probably would hand me a tissue and keep on talking about her bunions.

  6. The Guv'ner Says:

    trigimper: OH! OH OH! I am now adopting this PowerPoint philosophy. Hidden smut? YES PLEASE! Thanks for that great idea.

    As for Finger Bobs, I vaguely remember it but looking at THIS link, how creepy is THAT guy? Yoffy. He’s like Osama Bin Laden mated with a compost growing hippy! Nothing like having someone who looks like he’s a child molestor hosting a show for kids where he has to stick his hand up something’s rear. Shudder!

  7. trigimper Says:

    Well yes on sticking your hand up something’s rear – I think Keith Harris and Orville are the beginning, end and middle of not wanting to go there (I think I have a questionable parody mp3 of Orville – done by Chubby Brown). Though Rod Hull’s BehavioUr with Emu comes close. And don’t even get me start on Rolf Harris !.

    I miss the innocence of Johnny Morris – ten points if you can name the Ring tailed lemur without googling.

  8. The Guv'ner Says:

    Haha, Orville was wrong no matter how you played it. Stupid green duck.

    Johnny Morris. Wow that is a name from the past for sure. Animal Magic! Don’t remember a damn thing about it but I remember HIM!

    And Basil Brush. Hated that bloody fox and his wise ass mouth.

  9. So@24 Says:

    You actually made a power point of people you hated at your job!?

    THATS HILARIOUS! I actually started chuckling to myself in my cubicle after reading this. Brilliant, brilliant.

    PS. LaughingThru and I were talking yesterday about how when we read your blog, we always think of it in a cockney accent. Weird?

  10. The Guv'ner Says:

    Haha, well oddly enough I like to speak in a Cockney accent while i’m driving of all things. I talk to myself. I’m all, “OI! Get orf the faaaking road, innit!” It’s more fun than it sounds. My friend Theresa and I (and she IS English!) drove all the way from San Jose to Death Valley once talking like that. It never got old.

    I have a Scottish accent. Just imagine the Proclaimers stamping their little feet and reading. 🙂

    The PowerPoint was the most relaxing thing I’ve done. I always secretly wanted to slip it into the projector at a big meeting and let them watch that instead. Naturally, it would have to be on my last day…

  11. minijonb Says:

    oh man! i want to see a copy of that powerpoint!!! even if i don’t know the people involved, i bet it would still be awesome. now i need to plot something like that for my exit music here at my current cube-farm…

  12. katrocket Says:

    I’d also like to see your PPT, and go Cockney driving with you someday. Fun!!

  13. The Guv'ner Says:

    MiniJon: It would be an exit they’d be talking about for years! :):) One of my slides featured the company chairwoman bending over showing her naked butt and one of the other execs kissing it. Bet that would’ve gone down well. And maybe I should’ve rephrased that sentence…

    Kat: Dude, try it. The Cockney driving. “Get in your own lane, faakker! Oil ram moi cah up yer arse!” Oddly, Canadian accents are my favourite accents by far. Once I figure out how to adequately imitate one I’ll try that on my next road trip. “Wanna overtake me, eh? I’ll smack you on the toque with a moose, hoser!”

  14. catherinette Says:

    Why isn’t this magical powerpoint of yours on youtube?? It totally should be!

  15. The Guv'ner Says:

    Catherinette: Because I like my ass “unsued”, thank you! 🙂 Plus it would be funny only to employees of said Company of Hades. But I will dig it out and have a look JUST IN CASE…

  16. The Lady Who Doesn't Lunch: Says:

    Has he ever seen a Power Point presentation?

    Having that much text kinda defeats the purpose of Power Point.

    Sounds like an excuse not to memorize his materials.

    His punishment should be sitting through such a dull, dull presentation as the kind he expects you to make for him.

    I’ll bring the rope.

  17. The Guv'ner Says:

    Lady: It’s not actually a slide presentation, it’s for print only, but even then you can’t force three pages of solid type onto one slide with graphics as well. Silly man. Maybe I should do it just to show him what he’s asking. It’ll look like lots of bugs on the page! 🙂

  18. pistols at dawn Says:

    This seems to be a usual way for people to take their revenge, but I still think it’s kinda nerdy. I’m a fan of the classics, I guess, and I don’t see how you can improve on cutting someone’s brake lines.

  19. Diane Mandy Says:

    Souns like your post might as well be projecting his own Wiki rather than using PowerPoint. What a waste of a great tool!

  20. The Guv'ner Says:

    Pistols: It’s your (not so) inner psycho that makes me remember why I like you. You don’t mess around you just cut to the chase. Good job.

    Diane: If he ever discovers Wiki we’re sunk. He also is of the impression he can give me a printed PowerPoint deck and I can recreate it electronically from scratch in about 10 minutes. Yup. That’s going to happen.

  21. MsPuddin Says:

    only time I’ve made a power point before was for school. I could write about people I hate on my blog, who cares if they read it * gulp * your funny making a PP out of that sh*t though…

  22. The Guv'ner Says:

    Miss P: Nah. I just had way too much time on my hands. It was still satisfying though.

  23. ~:*:*:Pixie:*:*:~ Says:

    OMG – you are sooooo much fun. Can I come work with you????

    I could do a PPP but it would just look like a re-cap of “Office Space”…

    Ooooh! Look! It’s Hawaiian shirt Friday!


  24. The Guv'ner Says:

    Haha, luckily that place was chock full of assholes so it was a relatively easy process to cartoon it all and caption it. It practically wrote itself!!!! 🙂

    I still live in hope someone with authority will instigate Friday afternoons as Margarita Fridays! No luck so far.

  25. BeckEye Says:

    I have a song for the crusty old procrastinator. Provided he has a lot of money. “Soon Forget” by Pearl Jam. It’s…not nice. But it sounds like a cute little campfire song played with a ukelele.

  26. The Guv'ner Says:

    Beck: I will check out that song if only because I am bitter and twisted and if Eddie Vedder on a ukelele can inspire any more bitterness out of me, so be it! :):)

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