Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Creative Accounting - You're Doing It Wrong

This opens up with a question that taken at face value could seem quite reasonable - but I know a thing or two at this stage, and will not fall into traps like this so easily.

The Boss : "What's twelve feet in inches?"

Now the answer to that one is a straightforward 'One hundred and forty-four', and I am momentarily tempted to give it, but that would be mental suicide round here so caution is required. If in doubt, repeat the question back at the asker.

Here's me : "Twelve feet in inches?"

The Boss : "Twelve inches. How many inches in 3.12 metres?"

See what I'm saying here? But still, this doesn't seem so bad.

Here's me : "Hang on a second... " (looks up online conversion thingy) "...about ten foot three inches".

The Boss : "That can't be right".


Here's me : "I'm pretty sure it is."

The Boss : "That's not what I'm getting."

Here's me : "Alright, ten foot two-and-eight-tenth-inches?"

The Boss : "No. Three-point-twelve. Three metres is nine-feet-ten-inches, plus point-twelve is ten feet ten inches."





Here's me : "No, point-twelve metres is... " (consults online doofer again) "... about four and a half inches".

The Boss : "No, it's a foot."

I am becoming petulant now.

Here's me : "It's NOT. Twelve inches is a foot. How could twelve centimetres also be a foot?"

The Boss : "It's not twelve centimetres, it's point-twelve metres."

Here's me : "Yes! Yes! So! Now! Three metres is nine-feet-ten. Plus point-one-two metres is another four and a half inches."

The Boss : "It's not point-one-two, it's point twelve."

I'm kind of laughing a bit now despite it all, but this enrages her and forces her to drive her point home.

The Boss : "Look. Point-ONE. In between there is point-ONE-TWO. Point TWO..."..

...spoken in the manner of educating a slightly backwards and possibly deaf child, she is actually writing the numbers out on a piece of paper in an angry fashion and punctuating her speech by jabbing the pen aggressively into the page...

"..point TEN, point ELEVEN, POINT TWELVE. And twelve is a foot."

and then stops and glares at me like I'm a total idiot.

That's Carol Vorderman fucked then.


  1. I'm going to go out on a limb here, and suggest said Boss would also tell you Imperial units are better, more intuitive, and easier to use than this new-fangled metric system, with it's kilometres of beer, and straight bananas.

  2. Almost certainly. It'll get worse before it gets better too - no-one, anywhere, ever, should have to consult any form of calculating apparatus to convert metres to centimetres, yet I am witnessing it happen.