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Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Part I: Wherein The Boss Imparts Wisdom


I have worked for several of the world’s worst bosses.

I have also worked for several of its best.

George, the VP of Sales that told me to hang on, that help was coming, the man I regularly sprung from over-long meetings, the man who taught my son a trick sure to win him bar bets and thus cut down his entertainment expenses in college, was one of the best.

I brought the boy, a precocious 10 years old, to work one day.

There was meaningful eye contact made between us before I introduced him to my boss.  “Offer him your hand when I introduce you.  Look him in the eye and be pleasant.  This is the man who signs my paycheck. Do not shame me.”

Dylan grinned, a crooked, self-assured smile.  “Would I do that?”

“Dylan!” booms George, emerging from the corner office.  “I’ve heard many things about you.”

“All good, I hope,” Dylan says, holding out his hand.

George smiles, invites him into his office. 

I tag along.

“So you’ll be going to college, I hope?”

Dylan, my little A-student, believes college is for suckers.  “Yes, sir,” he says.

“Good boy.  Have you been saving money to attend?”

Dylan looks at me and I look away.  There's $25 a month that goes into a mutual fund, but...

George stands up, all six foot four of him, goes to his desk.  “I’m going to teach you something,” he says, rooting around in one of the drawers, “something that will cut your beer costs in half.”  He snaps out a length of white rope.  “Because when you’re in college –“ and here he gives Dylan a sharp look – “and you’ve done your work, then you get to play.”

George smiles.  “You know how to play, don’t you?”

Dylan smiles back.  “Yes, sir.”

Pearl,” George says, “if you’d be so kind – “ And it is here that he waves at me, waves me toward his office door.

I’ve been dismissed.

I leave his office as he hands Dylan the rope, shows him the proper way to hold his hands…




“Mom.  Mom.  Mother.  Mom.”  I look up from my desk to see my son approaching.  “Mom.”

“What?  What?  What?”

“George just taught me how to put a knot in a rope with one hand.”

“In under a second,” George says, appearing behind him.  “That part’s important.”

I squint, cock my head at him. 

“You belly up to the bar,” George says, grinning, “and you say, “Who here wants to bet me a beer that I can tie a knot in this rope in under a second?”

Dylan grins.  “Mom, I am going to drink so much free beer.”

“That’s awesome,” I say, smiling at George.  “What a great skill you’ve learned today.”

“You work on that,” says George, "and you'll never have to buy another beer in your life."  He grins at me.  "Don't you just love Bring Your Kid to Work Day?"



Come back tomorrow for Part II!

32 comments:

Vicus Scurra said...

I can't wait for part 2 - my son, the alcoholic with a rope fetish.

Indigo Roth said...

Hey Pearl!

Oh, FFS! Why didn't he teach ME?!

A good boss is a gift from the universe. I've honestly had just one in 20 years. It was 'Difficult, actually. Tho he said we worked more as an anarcho-syndicalist commune.

Indigo x

Pearl said...

Vicus, doesn't bode well, does it?

IR, the boy can still do it, although I think he's more of a rum-and-coke man now. He has NOT shown his mother (what loves him) the secret to the trick...

Dr Zibbs said...

"Do not shame me" haha!!!

Pearl said...

Dr Zibbs, I was often quite specific with the boy. :-)

Pat said...

Bated breath!

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

Just what we need, someone encouraging a potential college student to 'drink more beer cheaper'.

BamaTrav said...

Well, how the hades rail did he tie it?

Symdaddy said...

They ol' tie-a-knot-in-string trick, eh? That has earned me many a beer in my younger days.

These days I do the tie-me-up trick!

Can't reach my wallet when it's my round then.

jenny_o said...

“Mom. Mom. Mother. Mom.”

"What? What? What?"

Oh, this exchange is SO familiar to me!

And I am SO, SO glad there is a Part II. I hope you eventually learned the trick so that you, too, could get free beer :)

Stephen Hayes said...

I had my own method of getting free drinks in college but I'll be back to find out what your son learned.

Leenie said...

Rope tricks. Yeah. I've got a scout master husband who knows that one. Don't think he told his scouts about bar bets. They'll figure out that one without his help.

Symdaddy--there's the advantage of being a scout master's wife. (crap did I just say that out loud?)

Shelly said...

Hmmm....do you think that rope trick could get me some free manicures? Would you teach it to me?

Mary said...

Hahahha...will be ready to hear. M

R. Jacob said...

I know how to do it na na na na na
now to practice!

Eva Gallant said...

That is so funny...can't wait for the rest!

Mom of A and a said...

gosh!! Why didn't I know this during MY college days?!?!

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

A good boss is a real gift. They enable you to do a good job and feel confident, and then during the Years of Bad Bosses you can draw upon that memory to remind yourself that you're not as incompetent as the Bad Boss is making you feel. Or was that just me?

Joanne Noragon said...

Great bosses were hard to find, weren't they. I'm going to go write the story of one myself, and save it for a rainy ay.

Belle said...

What a great story and a crazy boss.

Mitchell is Moving said...

Do you think Dylan can do a video here of the rope trick. I would love to stop paying for my beers!

NotesFromAbroad said...

OK, so how do you do it ?

Great boss ! Good story, all of mine generally include the part where he asks me a.out for a drink b. to come into his office after work c. a weekend away while his wife is at her mothers.... I lived in LA... bosses there sucked.

Jenny Woolf said...

Everyone needs a boss like that!

bill lisleman said...

I don't know how I made this far without those good bar tricks.

I found something that you should share with your cats.
http://www.kittycams.uga.edu/photovideo.html

Gigi said...

So the ungrateful child never showed you the trick?!

I suggest that you DEMAND that he and George do a video to enlighten us.

And I do have to wonder....why did George just happen to have a length of rope in his desk? Hmmmm, may have to search my bosses desks tomorrow....

Lin said...

So....are you gonna teach us the trick. I could still use a dent in my bar bill years after my college days. ;)

HermanTurnip said...

You may have worked for "some" of the world's worst bosses, but I've had the distinct pleasure of working with "the" worst boss. Ever. Dude was ex-correctional officer who believed that belittling his employees was the way to get them to work at maximum efficiency. And this is an an IT field where we have some very bright people working (and being underpaid) I worked at that company for 7 years before he showed up. I quit 6 months into his tenure, and the crushed look on his face when I told him that I found "another job that's better suited for me, plus I'll be making 20k more, so...ya know, I can't pass that up."

Man, that was one of the best days of my life. And to top that off, I soon learned that ten other people from my old department left because of him. Oh, happy day.

The Elephant's Child said...

You knew that many of us would want to know that trick didn't you?

River said...

Dylan learned the ropes quite early in life. (Most importantly, "Don't shame me, son.")

Pearl said...

I've talked to Dylan about recording the rope trick and putting it on YouTube or something.

He thinks I'm kidding.

I shall have to beat him.

Diane said...

Yes. A beating is definitely indicated. With said rope . . .

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

Pearl, I enjoy your stories about Dylan just as much as the ones about Liza Bean Bitey (of the Minneapolis Biteys) -- and that's a lot! Can hardly wait to read Part II.