Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Knife Goes In, Guts Come Out

One problem with writing on the internet, is that it's easy to fall into the trap of writing for yourself, and forgetting that anyone can read this crap. Including your wife, your co-workers, your boss, or your priest.

So here's a thing that I feel like I need to write down, but I have to be careful how I do it.

Earlier this week, during casual conversation with Ironman, I mentioned some trifling work-related concerns. Little by little, the conversation became less casual, the concerns less trifling.

I was basically asking for advice from someone who's natural (almost supernatural) people skills and raw management "talent" are tempered with a sort of "Muppet Babies" innocence, and basically eclipse my own amazing awesomeness. Like a sparkling diamond in a dark, depressing sea of vomit, Ironman stands out as, well, something of a niftiness, managerially.

Lest you think I embellish just because he happens to know where I blog, let me assure you that the bar is set relatively low in this regard. The majority of managers with whom I've had the pleasure of working might not inaccurately be referred to as "a hooting band of blinkering cockslots", to paraphrase Oscar Wilde.

At any rate, the upshot of the entire conversation was that, as usual, the problem is me. This stinging truth was delivered by diplomatic hammer, and as I lay on the ground, groping about for my missing testicles, I vowed to do a better job.

Of course, two days later, this promise exploded into festive confetti when I commiserated on the subject of the "bureaucracy" with my lackey. This was an unfortunate choice of words, and the hammer, this time, was less diplomatic. The phone, accursed instrument of Beelzebub, rang.

"If the delicate subtext of our earlier conversation has slipped you by, then allow me to hold your head under the putrescent waters of knowledge," began Ironman (paraphrasing here), and the thing just got better from there. My end of the phone conversation went something like "Yes. Yes. I understand. Yes. Yes." The message was clear. Be careful what you say.

Perhaps I'm a masochist, but I'm hoping for a "be careful what you blog" message. Perhaps this time I'll be able to take a few days off and claim workman's compensation.

Ironman knows I kid. "Just kidding, boss!"

Seriously. Great guy.

In the interests of Changing the Subject:

Son, having recovered from pneumonia, promptly contracted an ear infection. Once he'd finished his antibiotics, instantly broke out in hives, an allergic reaction to penicillin. While at the pediatrician's office (for the fifth time in as many weeks), Son managed to accidentally give the doc a good swift kick in the gnarbles.

This produced in me a strange mixture of emotions that I can only describe as embarrassment, cringing sympathetic pain, regret, and of course, hilarity.

Why is it that all of humanity finds a boot in the nads -- someone else's nads -- so goddamn funny? No other sort of pain or misfortune is witnessed with as much suppressed mirth as having your balls kicked so hard you could wear them for a hat.

Is there some deeper universal bond that joins us all in our appreciation of this phenomena? Some common thread that cuts across cultures? Can it be used to bring peace to the Middle East, as opposed to fodder for America's Funniest Home Videos?

These are the kinds of deep questions that keep me awake at night. Perhaps I should kick Lackey in the nuts, in the interests of improved professional communications.

Spoiler Alert:

Well, I saw this. Which made me think of this:

Which reminded me of something I forgot to mention. FTC insider trading regulations prohibit me from telling you this, but what the hell. Osaka Seafood Concern, the Japanese company that owns a controlling interest in PerpetualStartup, where I work, is undergoing a leveraged management buyout of it's publicly traded stock.

So, I dunno, go buy some stock or something.

2 uninformed opinions:

Leila said...

damn he's good. but just how short is your leash now? power corrupts, yes. what's worse, a tiny sliver of power corrupts in inverse proportion to its significance in the global scheme of things. problem with you, phil, is that, unlike most, you still care about the global scheme of things. therefore you have less power.

Cool Ranch Luke said...

d'Oh! Sorry if I made it seem he's somehow "corrupted", because he's not. More accurately, he's trying to mentor me in the ancient Bushido Way of the Enlightened Manager.

...I am not, in my own estimation, a very promising pupil.