I've contributed to perhaps the best humor compilation I've ever read. Available now on Amazon!

My second chapbook, "The Second Book of Pearl: The Cats" is now available as either a paper chapbook or as a downloadable item. See below for the Pay Pal link or click on its cover just to the right of the newest blog post to download to your Kindle, iPad, or Nook. Just $3.99 for inspired tales of gin, gambling addiction and inter-feline betrayal.

My first chapbook, I Was Raised to be A Lert is in its third printing and is available both via the PayPal link below and on smashwords! Order one? Download one? It's all for you, baby!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Kids These Days; or Do as I Say, Not as I Do


Her chair not yet cold, the grief counselor still on-call, Fi, dear Fi, AKA “Female Intern”, has been replaced.

With yet another intern.

Having been promoted from her position as Female Intern – to be an intern no more but to be a real, live employee and therefore permitted the return of her real, live name of “Kara"  – and having moved to the perfumed, lotus-strewn halls of the top-most floor, her chair has gone intern-free for almost two months.

I often sat in it and wept silently.

And now, the Corporate Gods, in their cruelty, have deemed the humble double-wide cubicle currently housing my hopes, dreams, and stapler to be the First Stop on the newly graduated’s road to capitalist success.

I am surrounded by newbies.

Naturally, I am against this.
  
I eye the new Fi with suspicion.  Freshly post-college and just, seemingly, past puberty, her flip-flops are strewn on the floor, her jar of peanut butter visible in the open cupboard above her desk, her iPhone buzzing across her desk with impunity.

We have nothing in common.

She must be punished.

“Kara,” I type, “the new Fi is impertinent and, I suspect, entirely clueless.”

The response is immediate.

Ping!  “:-),” she says.

My fingers fly:  “How shall I kill her?”

“Stapler?”

“Copy machine accident?”

“Recycled-paper landslide?”

“Three-hole punch.”

“Oooh,” she writes.  “Three-hole punch.  How old school.  I like it.  It says ‘I’m here nine to five and I’m not afraid to collate’.”

“That’s me,” I write.  “Old school.”

“Hmm,” she writes.  “Yes.”

There is a pause.

Ping!  “Hey!” she writes.  “Guess what I’m doing?”

I grin, forgetting about my cube mate, who is texting furiously, her little cheetah thumbs ablaze.  “What?”

“At this very moment, I am shoveling cheese popcorn in my mouth as if the world will end in 25 minutes.”

“I miss you so much.”

“I have typed this whole exchange with my left hand because the right one is too greasy.”

“You’re just saying that.”

I grin at my monitor, certain that, one floor up, Kara is grinning as well – and then glance over my shoulder in time to see that the new Female Intern, the new “Fi”, having finished texting, is grinning into her iPhone.

Perhaps there is common ground here after all.




40 comments:

savannah said...

common ground? don't fool yourself, sweet pea! it's a ruse to get you to let your guard down...trust no one. ;~)

(except us, of course!)

xoxoxxoxo

Susan Williams said...

Sing with me:
"All we are saying....is give Fi a chance...".

It somehow seems disloyal, though.
(Not exactly Semper Fi, is it?)
Maybe she should be Fi 2.

haphazardlife said...

As Savannah says, it's a ruse... We had an intern recently who spent all his time texting. Hello sweetheart! You're at work. Texting is not something you want to be doing...

Shelly said...

Don't kill her yet. I'm thinking she might be a valuable campaign operative for the Bitey/ Sqeakers ticket.

Tell her your company does campaign media for the Fur Party candidates...no telling what she can come up with just using that little I Phone...

Pearl said...

savannah, I trust my commenters explicitly. :-)

Susan, Fi 2. Yes.

haphazardlife, So far we've been very lucky. Of the four interns in the last, oh, year and a half, only one has been a mad texter. I think the problem is that we don't hold them accountable. It's a new world, really. I rarely received personal calls at all in my first, oh, dozen jobs; and when I did, they were terribly brief (and usually whispered)...

Candy's daily Dandy said...

The double edged knife..the text message.

sometimes I find that my ever buzzing iPhone causes me great stress. It makes me anxious for all the information I feel I may be missing unless I answer immediately.

it has become such a huge part of our communication today that we are virtually powerless to stop it.

So, like you said, somewhere here we find the common ground.
]

Leenie said...

I guess anaphylaxis secretly triggered by peanuts is out.

(hadda look up that big medical word and spell check still doesn't like it)

Pearl said...

Shelly, well that's true. She probably knows way more about social media than I do.

I wonder where she stands on cat rights?

Pearl said...

Candy, I sometimes "hear" my phone vibrating only to check and see that it is not.

I've been conditioned.

Leenie, no, it seems the little noob is peanut-resistant.

Simply Suthern said...

We used to tie a small canister with a string to the cubicle storage flip up door. We would fill it with shredder confetti. Nothing says good morning like confetti in your coffee.

joeh said...

I vote for the three hole punch...don't forget to wipe your prints.

esbboston said...

"She must be punished." - *snickers twice*, almost LOL, 85%

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

Time to start rearranging her desk when she steps away, hiding things, inserting strange incomprehensible things into her drawers (desk) like gummy bears in the paper clip holder. (yes, I did that) Get your over the wall neighour to do the dropping elastics like worms thing..(you shoot them at the ceiling and they fall ..maybe in her coffee cup). (yes, I did that) Time to start leaving strange notes taped to her computer screen like....fax machine 10 minutes don't be late then leaving strange decorative objects from the dollar store there for her marked from your secret admirer. (yes, I did that)
There is no end to the gentle amusements a new Fi can provide.

Bodacious Boomer said...

If cheesy popcorm is your kryptonite, get some from Garrett's in Chicago.

It's legal crack; but make sure to buy some pants with expando waists.

Mitchell is Moving said...

This made me smile. Here's hoping!

vanilla said...

Take a deep breath and think for a moment. Before you "kill" the new Fi, recall when Kara was the old Fi you were going to destroy; and now look at the relationship you have with her. New material. Mold it.

bill lisleman said...

I've eaten caramel corn like the world is about to end. Do you think some exec noticed that you are good at Fi grooming?

Ms Sparrow said...

Methinks you are the designated Mama Bear!

terlee said...

Too soon to tell if FiFi (Fi2) is a viable cube mate. Only after multiple trials and tribulations will the truth come out...

TexWisGirl said...

i'm hopeful fi 2.0 will give you plenty of story material.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Old school. I like how you kick it.

Twisted Scottish Bastard said...

Don't trust the newbies. They just want your job, and probably your chair as well.

Susan Kane said...

As always, you made me smile. Go to CostCo and get one of those gigantic containers of cheese balls. Put it on the Fi's desk, and see what happens. If she digs in, great. If not, use the three hole punch.

Douglas said...

We never had interns where I worked. Perhaps in the corporate offices where paper shuffling was/is and art form but not down in the "trenches" where real work was alleged to have been done. What we had were "summer hires". These were people who sought some kind of gainful (but benefit-less) employment during some period when they were not able to hang out on the quad or go to nightly orgies at the frat house.

Jacquelineand.... said...

Hmmm, smear a bit of Nutella on the seat of her chair?

Indigo Roth said...

Hey Pearl! You know, I think it might be better just to tie her up; with the Aardvark Apocalypse imminent, you'll need fresh food supplies. Want to borrow may chainsaw "for office defence"? Indigo x

Austan said...

Now, now. Just because she's new doesn't necessarily mean she's Fi-Foe. Give her a few weeks. Then if she hasn't shaped up, grind her bones. :)

Gigi said...

FI2 has NO idea what she has wandered into.....I can't wait to see how this turns out.

W.C.Camp said...

Speaking as a Father who has a daughter in college that has to endure an internship at the same time while maintaining her grades - PLEASE PLAY NICE & teach those kids everything you know so they will make for top notch employees someday ... Anyway you'll have more people to share the appetizers at lunch! W.C.C.

Joanne Noragon said...

They just seem so pert and indestructible these days; are you sure, even with help, you can succeed.

HermanTurnip said...

I had a girlfriend while in the Air Force named Kara. Couldn't read this post without thinking about her. I want to both thank you and curse you for making me remember such things. ;-)

jenny_o said...

Sounds promising!

But if it doesn't work out, show no mercy :)

Rose L said...

Be wary of the newbie. She probably will start leaving thumb tacks on your chair, screw with your files, put gum under your chair, bend all your paperclips so unusable, and post your on YouTube without your knowledge!

River said...

Sometimes common ground takes a day or two to show itself.

The Elephant's Child said...

And sometimes common ground is a shared quagmire. Or mud.

Roshni AaMom said...

woohoo!! Another one to mold!!

Silliyak said...

I know Minneapolis is a really big place, but I hope you're no where near or otherwise connected to the shooting. Fingers crossed

Tempo said...

Embrace the future pearl, get the iPhone and join in always remembering of course to keep ones enemies(potential victims) close...

Linda O'Connell said...

Ah, but unless her perfume is overpowering, you will survive. I, on the other hand have to deal with three Mis in their twenties who think it is funny to scent their area with their own skunk spray.

Pat Tillett said...

Don't ever let your guard down. Especially to an FI... They are trouble....