The Manager’s Logic Is A Bit Spotty

| Working | May 7, 2013

(At our laboratory, we recently changed the way we clean glassware after doing a chemical test. The new cleaner is cheaper and more ‘green,’ but lower in acidity, so it often leaves pale spots of calcification on the glass. This unfortunately interferes with the test unless scrubbed off, doubling the time for cleaning.)

Manager: “Hey, how come you’re grinding away at those retorts?”

Me: “That new cleaner doesn’t do such a good job. The white spots mess up the reading.”

Manager: “Oh… but that always happened, didn’t it?”

Me: “No, the spots only started after we switched the cleaner. They never happened—”

Manager: “Where’s the paperwork on that?”

Me: “Pardon? I’ve been reporting the spotting problem—”

Manager: ” Yes, I’ve read those. But where’s the paper trail showing that there were no spots on the glassware with the old cleaner. Eh?”

Me: “Well, we didn’t write down that there were spots, because there weren’t any. So—”

Manager: “Ah, exactly my point! You didn’t write down that there were no spots. So, how can you prove that this problem only started?”

Me: “I’m not following.”

Manager: “If you didn’t write down what wasn’t happening, how can you prove it wasn’t? You can only prove what you wrote down, correct? Yes, correct! So, if you didn’t report a lack of spots before, you can’t prove there were no spots before, right?”

Me: “…I really can’t argue with that.”

Manager: ” Which is why I make three times what you do!” *smiles*

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