A Spreadsheet As Empty As Their Brain

, , , , | Working | June 18, 2017

(A colleague contacts me on Instant Messenger to ask about project progress. I need some background so I ask him for the project spreadsheet.)

Colleague: “It’s on [sharelink].”

(I try it out and I don’t have access to that sharelink. So I ask him to email it to me.)

Colleague: “Can’t email it to you; it’s too big.”

(Our mailboxes are limited to handling files of 5 megabytes. That is a h*** of a large spreadsheet if it’s bigger than 5 megabytes, considering the project has barely started.)

Colleague: “Okay, I’ve got access to that sharelink for you.”

(I access it, and see indeed, the file is 9 megabytes big. I can’t open it in situ, so I download it and open it locally. I find that it has one active sheet that consists of 75 lines of actual data, and another 1.7 million blank lines (blank, that is, apart from fancy formatting.)

Me: “Why is this file 9 megabytes big? Why has it got 1.7 million blank lines in it? The f*** are we wasting so much computer space? This is ridiculous.”

Colleague: “Well, if you’re so stupid as to be confused by a simple thing as spreadsheet structure, maybe you need to go on a training course to teach you how to use computers. I have a meeting to go to now. Once you have sorted yourself out and learned how we do things round here, I will contact you again.”

Me: “No worries.”

(I let him get on with it. He never got back in touch with me to ask my advice, which was all well and good, as I was able to spend the rest of the day, uninterrupted, fulfilling my role as technical design authority and performing a code quality review of his (not particularly high quality) code.)

Cementing That Image Into Your Mind

, , , , | Learning | June 18, 2017

(We are learning sex education, and our teacher has broached onto unusual sexual practices and fetishism. Don’t ask how it happened; it just did. There have been several things listed already.)

Student #1: “Enemas?”

Teacher: “Yes, they can also used in sexual practices.”

Student #2: “What about cement enemas?”

(I know exactly where he got the question from. The teacher does not however. You can tell she is trying to imagine the logistics.)

Teacher: “I… I need to lie down.” *leaves the classroom*

Student #3: “Oh, my God! You broke the teacher!”

Desperately Seeking Organizational Skills

, , , | Working | June 17, 2017

(I turn up for an interview, arriving early. I find the reception.)

Me: “I’m here to see [Manager] for an interview.”

Reception: “Oh! He’s in a meeting at the moment; can you wait a while?”

Me: “That’s fine. I’m a little early anyway.”

(I wait 5, 10, 15 minutes. I start to think something is wrong.)

Reception: “I’m sorry; his meeting has overrun. I will give him another call.”

Me: “No problem.”

(Eventually he wanders down, barely apologising.)

Manager: “So, the first thing I want to do is show you around. Oh, let me check if he’s available.”

(Makes a phone call.)

Manager: “Okay, so my engineer isn’t available; I will walk you around the factory.”

(If his organisational skills didn’t fail to impress, the company certainly did! We go from room to room and the place is a mess. We eventually go around to this engineer.)

Manager: “Part of the role is to program this CMM.”

Me: “I’m sorry, I thought it was explained. I made it clear to the recruiter and on my CV, that programming is something I haven’t tried in years and not something I market myself with. I am more than happy to pick it up, but I have to be totally honest; it’s not something I can hit the ground running with.”

Manager: “Okay, well, I will leave you with [Engineer] and see how you get on.”

(The engineer seems pretty decent and understanding. We drag through some questions and answers before the manager comes back.)

Manager: “Okay, I think we are done here. I will speak with [Engineer] and give you a call.”

(Needless to say, I didn’t get the job. The funny side of this story was that a year later I was asked to look at a CV. It was the same manager for a much more junior position. I explained to my boss the story and what do you know?  He didn’t get the job!)

It’s A Shock She’s Single…

, , , | Related | June 17, 2017

(My sister has had a nasty break up with her boyfriend. She’s really upset, but doesn’t like a lot of sympathy. I am out shopping at the time, and decide to ask if she wants a treat.)

Me: “Do you want some ice cream? I can come by on the way home.”

Sister: “I swear to god, I will piss over and break your legs!”

Me: “Okay, I know you’re angry, but you don’t have to be so disgusting!”

Sister: “S***! I meant come over.”

(She did get over it pretty quickly, but I kept the ice cream.)

Should Have Lawyered Up

, , , | Working | June 17, 2017

(I turn up to a job interview and I’m waiting in the reception. I get disturbed by a familiar voice.)

Ex-Coworker: “Hey, [My Name]! How are you doing?”

Me: “Hey, it’s great to see you! I didn’t know you worked here.”

Ex-Coworker: “Not just working here; I’m giving you an interview!”

(The interview goes great! We are laughing and joking, and swapping stories more than answering questions. I meet some of the team and get on well. The job, the people, the company, all seem great. I’m told the job is mine if I want it. A week later I arrange a second interview with the director, knowing that my ex-coworker would have put a good word in for me. I’m quietly confident).

Director: “Good to meet you. Take a seat. [Ex-Coworker] has told me a great deal about you and your experience. I’m impressed.”

Me: “Thank you. I’m feeling very positive about this role as well.”

Director: “Great, great. Let me ask you something. How would you feel about working with copyright law?”

Me: “Er, I’m confused. Would that be a part of the role?”

Director: “Well, we have a legal team, but we want to bring it in house.”

Me: “I will be honest with you; I’ve never studied or practised law. This would be a totally new field for me.”

(The interview goes on in this fashion for another half an hour. We never refer back to the job description, just more and more roles that are totally alien to the job. Each one is not on my CV or hinted at previously. I leave the interview feeling very let down, with an ideal opportunity on my doorstep turned into a total waste. The director shows me out, but not before telling me:)

Director: “I hope we haven’t put you off. I don’t want you to think that we don’t know what we want in a candidate.”

(That was exactly the case; I never bothered to ask for feedback!)

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