Tuesday, July 25, 2006

An Open Letter to All College Students and Recent Grads Contemplating Their First Real Office-Job Experience

When you are first hired, no matter where you went to school or what your grades and internships were like, you will have to do grunt work. Grunt work is how employers weed the bad employees out from the good employees. If you do the grunt work correctly, you will be given more interesting work. If you do not do the grunt work correctly, you will have proven that you are not as smart as you think you are because you cannot even do grunt work correctly.

You should also listen to people when they introduce themselves, and not call the HR director by the wrong name even after you are corrected. This is especially crucial in a small business where you really are expected to learn each person's name.

If you are hired at a 5-week, 4-hour-a-day job to do filing, you will probably file the entire time. This should not be a surprise to you. If you do it well at a small business, you will earn a good references. References and contacts are amazing currency in the adult world.

If you decide that you cannot be bothered to do this low-key, 4-hour-a-day job with free beverages, snacks and unlimited breaks after less than two weeks on the job, you should have the balls to walk into HR and quit. Chances are if you have this sort of attitude problem they will not be overly unhappy to see you go (since it is unlikely that you will have done any of your work correctly--trust me on this one), so it will be an almost pain-free experience, and you will have acted *sort of* like a grown-up by quitting in person. You should *not* quit by email, addressed to the entire business but misspelling the HR director's email address because you still haven't gotten the name right.

Finally, if you do wimp out and act like a child and quit by email, you should try to avoid sounding like a complete jackass when you do so, especially when copying the partners in the business who have far-reaching contacts throughout your chosen field.*

*For example:

Hello [name of business]ans,

Just writing to let you all know that today was my last day in the office.
No need to be reaching for the tissues, all's well.

I originally came aboard just to help get the office caught up on some filing. Not that filing can ever be completely conquered, but I think we're close to being up to date now.

More important to me is the need to make positive contributions to the lives of others when and where I can. Filing is not where I should be. I know it sounds like a load of naive college-aged ideals, but I am fortunate enough to be allowed to live them out. I need to take advantage of the time that I have and focus my energies on what I hold to be important.

Please don't take this as a denigration of [name of business], but rather as a recognition of a hasty decision on my part. It was an interesting and informative experience, albeit a brief one, and I wish you all the best.

Here's to fulfillment, however you choose to find it,

[name of complete jackass who will never get very far in life and who, for all of his "college-aged ideals," is really just a spoiled child who can't be bothered to do anything that might be inconvenient or boring, including making any "positive contributions to the lives of others," and who mostly "focuses his energies" on hiking with his friends and not showering]**

**My personal favorite line: "Filing is not where I should be." Because, you know, for other people filing is a *vocation*. Also, there were 3 weeks of four-hour days left on this job, with one day that he had already taken off. That's 56 hours of boring but easy work and a non-bridge-burning departure. How spoiled is this kid?***

***Also: "I need to take advantage of the time that I have and focus my energies on what I hold to be important." Is he dying of cancer? This kid is, tops, 22.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

I do not think this means what they think it means.

From Salon.com's "The Fix":

"Tori Spelling's reportedly pregnant with freshly minted husband Dean McDermott. (Life & Style)"

Friday, July 14, 2006

This is the most unintentionally funny thing I have seen all day.

From this article:

"We just did it to be [male prides], really," Stone said

So, do you think he said "dicks"? Because that is my guess, and substituting "male prides" for "dicks" is hilarious. It sounds like the kind of thing that someone's grandmother would say, like calling jeans "dungarees."

Thursday, July 13, 2006


Today I accidentally had so much caffeine that I am starting to run into things. I wasn't even tired, but I had:

Vanilla frappucino (the kind in the glass bottle from the supermarket)
Pot of Earl Grey tea
4 diet Mountain Dews
Vanilla frappucino.

I realized that I had a problem when I couldn't finish the second frappucino. Why did I have so much caffeine? It seemed like a good idea at the time.

I am going to go run and run and run at the gym now, because I am having trouble sitting still.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006


My parents sent me this as an early Christmas present:

It's a cloche; you make round loaves in it:

This particular loaf is rye. It is almost gone now; Mater-Eater-Lad and I have been eating fresh bread toast with loads of butter for a few days now. I highly recommend getting one for yourself.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Weekly garden update





Super close-up (note that you can actually see the holes in the landscaping fabric):

Bell peppers:

More substantive posts soon!