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Stingy, Maybe, But They Love To Share!

, , , , | Learning | September 18, 2021

It’s said that the richer they are, the stingier they are, and uni professors are no exception. My thesis professor once “invited” a bunch of students out on his sailboat and then charged them for the food. But this story I’ve been told is probably the best example. [UK Professor] is organising a conference. [Italian Professor] is an expert in the field.

UK Professor: “Are you coming to the conference in May? You could give a presentation about your recent research. [Famous Researcher] will be there; you could get to meet him at the dinner.”

Italian Professor: “Eh, I’d like to, but the budget — my department won’t cover all the cost.”

UK Professor: “Well, I have a spare room; you could stay at my place.”

Italian Professor: “In that case, I’m coming.”

Fast forward to May. The Italian professor arrives and is shown the room, and guests and hosts have dinner together. Later in the evening, the Italian professor, who just retired for the night, knocks on the bedroom door of the UK professor.

Italian Professor: “Can you help me with this? I’ve forgotten to pack a toothbrush.”

UK Professor: “Sure, there must be a couple of new ones.”

Italian Professor: “No, no, I don’t need all that. I was wondering if you’d lend me yours.”

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An Urgent Issue That Needs (Ad)Dressing

, , , , , | Working | September 17, 2021

[Coworker] joined the team before we all started to work from home. I’ve met her twice and can’t stand her. She’s opinionated, she will force her opinion on everyone, and she is generally willfully ignorant of the world around her.

I had completely forgotten about her until I had to go back on site. The team decides to meet for lunch. I get there late and find only one chair left, next to [Coworker]. I fake a smile and sit down.

[Coworker] is already giving a speech about something inane.

Boss: “Well, yes, err… thank you, [Coworker]. How is everyone else?”

A few murmurs of general positive comments come from the group.

Boss: “Just one point of business, I promise, but while you are all here… while we are on video calls for the company, please can we remember that there is a dress code of sorts?”

Groans come from everyone.

Boss: “Now, now, I’m not asking for full business wear, but you need to be presentable; please, can we wear clothes and keep basic hygiene in mind? Hair brushed — you know, the basics.”

I’m a bit surprised that he has to bring this up. Everyone I’ve spoken to is professional and knows the basics of being in a business. Then, I find out who has the issue.

Coworker: “Well, I don’t think the company can tell us what to wear in our own home. It’s hot; I can’t wear my normal clothes!”

Boss: “Again, I’m not expecting you to. I wear a T-shirt and shorts. I’m just asking everyone to be presentable.”

Coworker: “Well, I don’t see the rule that working from home I have to…”

She continues for several minutes about off-topic and barely relevant points.

Boss: *Getting frustrated* “Your contract states that you must wear smart and presentable clothes. Okay? So smart and presentable clothes, please.”

Coworker: “But I think—”

Boss: “No, not think. Not open for discussion. [Coworker], please wear appropriate clothes.”

Coworker: “I don’t see why I am being singled out.”

Boss: “I’m not singling you out. I am making myself clear, as you seem to need additional explanation. [Coworker], please wear appropriate clothes when on video calls. Everyone, please wear appropriate clothes when on video.”

Coworker: “Then I will need additional breaks so I can get changed before each call.”

Boss: “No. Okay, [Coworker], we need to talk privately.”

I asked around after lunch, and it turned out that [Coworker] had been working in her stained pyjamas, even in video calls with senior management. There were even rumours of her bottoms falling down (mostly off-camera) as she bumbled around on video when she was supposed to be paying attention.

Eventually, they made her work in the office because of all the complaints. Thankfully, she manages to get dressed now.

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Aren’t Kids Just The Cutest?

, , , , | Related | September 17, 2021

Our family has an odd little habit: if we want a kiss, we hold up our finger to the person and they kiss it, and then we press it to our cheek or lips. Of course, we kiss normally, too! This is just a quirk we enjoy.

When my daughter was little, she came running up to me with her finger held out.

Daughter: “Mummy! Mummy!”

I bent down and kissed the finger.

Daughter: “I had a poo and my finger went through the toilet paper!”

I went and washed my mouth out with soap.

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We Won’t Be Pooling Our Efforts

, , , , | Friendly | September 17, 2021

We buy an unfinished project house. The bare bones are all there; it just needs a kitchen and decoration. In the back are the makings of an in-ground pool. Going through all the work to build a pool put many buyers off. We have no desire to have a pool — certainly not one that takes up the whole garden! We plan to make it safe and fill it in. It’s far less work and suits us fine.

The day after the moving vans leave, the neighbour’s kids are craning to see. One of them comes up to me.

Kid: “When’s the pool going to be finished?”

Me: “Huh?”

Kid: “The pool in the garden.”

Me: “Oh, sorry. I don’t know about that.”

Kid: “Oh.”

He wanders off. I think it’s a bit bold, but kids say what they’re thinking. Then, the neighbour comes over.

Neighbour: “Hi. I’m [Neighbour] from next door. Got yourself quite a project.”

Me: “Hi, good to meet you. I think we can get it done pretty quickly.”

Neighbour: “Oh, I’m a plumber. Might be able to help with the pool if you need it.”

Me: “Thanks, but I think we will fill it in. We’re not much for swimming.”

Neighbour: “What, all that work and you’re going to just fill it in?”

Me: “Yeah, pretty much.”

Neighbour: “We had an agreement with the last guy. He took all the supplies through our garden and the understanding was that the kids got use of the pool.”

Me: “He certainly didn’t mention anything like that to me, sorry.”

Neighbour: “Well, what are you going to do about it?”

Me: “Nothing? I’m not building your kids a pool. Tell you what. Any pool stuff laying around, you can use. Help yourself.”

Neighbour: “We don’t want a pool; we need the space for the kids.”

Me: “You and me both, buddy.”

The very next day, the low fence was boarded up to full height. Not the best first impression, but I still don’t understand what he expected.

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If You Talk Big, You Have To Work Big

, , , , , , | Working | September 16, 2021

[Sales Guy] is one of the younger sales guys who is either some sort of bank robber or greatly exaggerates his lifestyle, as he is in an entry-level job on entry-level pay. [Sales Guy] hasn’t done anything today and it’s already 11:00 am. He wanders over to us and interrupts people actually doing some work.

Sales Guy: “Might get a new car this month.”

Coworker #1: “Didn’t you say you just got a car?”

Coworker #2: “Or were getting one?”

Sales Guy: “Yeah, yeah, I did. Don’t really like the colour.”

Coworker #1: “Oh, sure. Yeah, I might buy a new house. Don’t like the colour of the bathroom.”

Coworker #2: “What’s a bathroom? I just let my butler pick it up off the floor.” *Laughs*

Sales Guy: “Whatever, you guys. You’re just jealous. You’re not swag like me.”

Coworker 2: “What’s a swag?”

Sales Guy: “I hate you guys.” *Storms off*

Me: “He can’t even drive. The guy needs to get his head down or they will get rid of him.”

Coworker #1: “No chance; his mom is a friend of the boss.”

Turns out I was right; he didn’t last the week. [Sales Guy] made some stupid story up about how the other guys were stealing all of his sales, not thinking that they could check all the emails and phone calls he wasn’t making.

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