Friday, July 11, 2008

Workplace Angst

Due to the fact I'm constantly whining about it, anyone who knows me is aware that I have a very boring job as a contractor (ie, temp) for "Redmond's largest software company". Like most contract workers, I'm not at liberty to say exactly what my job entails, but I can confidently tell you, like Larry King's sex life, it's not worth talking about. It involves search engines and customer reviews and the use of lots of different and dull Access based programs. It's so dull, that when I had to switch to a different project last week that involved a fucking Excel spreadsheet and the typing of either the letters "y" (for yes) or "n" (obviously, for no) that I found it to be a pleasant and interesting change from the drudgeries of my normal Access-specific workday routine despite the fact that I had to type "y" or "n" 15,000 times in those tiny little Excel boxes. At least the time went by quickly and I didn't have the time to fret over the usual things that irritate me at work, like the braying laughter of certain co-workers or misuse of storage space in the refrigerator or the irritating problems caused by having only 4 single occupancy bathrooms in an office with 40 to 50 employees or the irritating summer presence of an endless stream of Ducks braying down lower Stoneway on their way to Lake Union.

Actually, I will bitch about the bathrooms for a moment. First of all, I have to admit that there are good as well as bad points about our bathroom facilities. On the positive side, I don't have to face the awkward situation of using the urinal next to friendly but uptight heterosexual male co-workers. Oh, I'm guessing that most of the men here are to some degree or another, gay-friendly but there's still that awkward moment with straight acquaintances when you encounter each other, dick to dick so to speak, in the mens room. I always feel like they're nervous that I might be trying to catch a look at their one-eyed trouser snake, so I make a point to pointedly look straight up at the ceiling while I'm taking a whiz. I think they're doing the same thing but tend to do so while nervously whistling.

Of course, occassionally, I DO want to check out what they have to offer in the dingle-dangle department so I have to surreptiously sneak a look to see if they measure up to expectations. This usually only happens if the dude in question is either really hot, out of the ordinary (meaning super tall or short or strange looking) or if they're jerks and you need confirmation that rude, nasty assholes are, hopefully, badly hung.

The one person you never want to stand next to at an urinal, is your boss. It's just...awkward and weird; like catching your grandparents making out on the front-porch swing. Icky.

Unless, of course, you have a different plan for climbing the corporate ladder...and your boss is cute and hung.

The main thing that bugs me about our single occupancy bathrooms is the fact that we obviously have to share them with the ladies which also means we have to share them with that little metal trashcan that sits next to the know the one I'm talking about...the one that smells like Death and Life and Fecundity all wrapped up in a stink sandwich. Aunt Flo's Final Resting Place. The Stable where the old cotton ponies go to die. Don't make me spell it out any further, people...

Probably the problem is, I haven't had to live in a household with a menstruating female for 20 years so I've gotten unaccostommed to life with a healthy, vibrant and actively functioning vagina. And when I did live with one, it was my mother's and therefore not a part of my day to day consciousness; I think most people prefer to think of their parents and relatives as having the smooth plastic and non-defined genitalia of a Ken or Barbie doll, if they think of it at all...Regardless, I'm not an expert at living with vaginas and I could be overly sensitive on the subject and maybe the smell isn't that bad.

OR, maybe the stench is out of control because the damn janitorial staff doesn't empty the fucking tampon trashcans often enough, or bother to scrub them out once and awhile with some fucking Lysol, or maybe we just have some stinky slobby women working here on strange diets that funk up their bodily secretions...I dunno; your guess is as good as mine.

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