Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Do Not Ask For Credit

Often when The Boss is having a day off, she likes to spend some time the day before making a list of things for me to do while she's away. I don't really understand why the fuck she doesn't just do them, rather than sending me lengthy cryptic e-mails, but hey.

This morning that pile was refreshingly absent. One thing only - some documents to be sent out, special delivery, the customer needs them by tomorrow. Excellent, sez I, and carries on with my day, as happy as a dog with two danglers in my Boss-Free-Zone.

It was all going pretty well till round about lunchtime when a different customer phones me in a mad panic. He is having a major problem. Uh.. how to explain this. If you don't know what a "Bill of Lading" or a "Letter of Credit" are - actually don't worry about it, it's boring as fuck and knowing won't enrich your life any. The two need to match up, where they both exist, and if they don't people start to get very edge about often very large sums of money. And this customer, his don't match up, and he's just realised, and he has to lodge these documents with the bank before close of business tomorrow.

It's a tiny mistake. There's a six digit number missing from one of the documents. These documents are always checked and re-checked because mistakes in them are so costly, but on this occasion a mistake was made - and thank fuck, not by me.

So anyway I need to find the original document, to find this six figure number, and I have no idea where the hell the Boss might have put it, so rather than look through the huge, teetering piles of documents, files, folders and what have you that are both all over her desk and the floor for a good few metres all around it, I phoned her to ask her. I'm not exaggerating, it looks a troop of chimpanzees had an orgy in a stationery shop over there.

Here's me : "Where are the documents for that Bahrain shipment?

The Boss : "In the file."

Here's me : "Yes. Which file, and where is that file?"

The Boss : "On my desk."

Here's me, looking over at her desk forlornly : "It's fair to say that your desk looks like a fucking bomb site."

The Boss : "Don't worry. Just phone Martin. He'll give you the reference."

Here's me : "Who's Martin?"

The Boss : "Tom."

Here's me : "Oh, fuck."

The Boss : "Just phone him! His number's in the file!"

Well that's a big fucking help, thank you.

About an hour later, in between trying to find off the customer who by now sounds like he's having some kind of embolism, I found the file. Inside is a good half inch of paper. It has been stapled together maybe fifty times, and not just in one corner, just randomly all round the fucking edges, so when you try to actually turn a page it turns into this madly fucking clever origami concertina.

Just what the fuck is all this stuff, I wonder. My files are about ten pages or so. How the hell has she got half a ream of paper worth of information on one job? I look through and the answer becomes clear. Imagine you get an e-mail from a customer, a booking. You print it, and open a file. You reply, then print your reply - which of course prints the customer's original e-mail in the file - and then put all of that in the file, too. You do this over the days and weeks that a booking runs for, until the file itself contains page 1-18 of an email exchange, followed by pages 2-18 of the same exchange, and so on.



So finally in the midst of all this I found the bloody thing, placated the customer and got the necessary corrections sorted out and everything is mostly ok. It took all bloody afternoon but it's mostly ok.

On the way home I was thinking to myself, y'know, there's a certain tact you should use when you're dealing with situations like this, I've found, because nobody likes to have serious fuck-ups thrust in their face, so it's better to be fairly helpful about the whole thing wherever possible. Anyway. It was sorted, at least, and hopefully The Boss would in some way appreciate this tomorrow rather than trying to nail me on some charge real or imagined purely so the focus is not on her.

Round about this stage was when I realised that I'd forgot to post her other fucking documents.

I'm considering just doing a runner.

p.s cheers Stewart ;)


  1. Poor boy. Have a good wank and try to relax. Tomorrow will be a disaster, but it was bound to be anyway.

  2. I know that feeling - its horrid. Good luck!!

  3. Oh, Koala! See, this is what long-term stress does.

    I take it this customer is on the mainland, so a motorcycle courier won't do?

  4. Frame her for a terrible work deed. Do this over six months or so, so it's impossible to undo. Then fire at will. You'll have worked up so much heat by then you won't give a shit about what she'll have to deal with. Plus, she'll only forget in ten minutes. What are you having for lunch, anyway?

  5. Maybe you could get there before her, remove any signs of a note, then look suitably puzzled when she asks if you've done it ?

  6. Fuuuuuuuuuuccccccccckkkkkkkkk... Deadmeat SK.

    I'd say take the moral highground about some imagined thing and get snotty at her. Attack is the best form of defence and all that shit.

  7. One day you will pull aside a filing cabinet in search of the legendary Rubber of Sanity, to reveal a small door in the wall. In here you will either find a tiny cupboard where The Boss sleeps at night, insane clippings and demonic scribblings in red ink all over the insides, or...

    a tunnel that takes you inside The Boss's MIND.
    Here you will be trapped forever, and become The New Boss, slowly going more and more insane like she did, trapped for all eternity until a new Dogsbody, sorry, victim, is found to take your place!

  8. Did you do a runner? I can recommend it: I just didn't go to work yesterday because I simply couldn't face another day. Didn't phone in sick, didn't email, and didn't answer when he called. I think I may have quit. It feels fucking great. There is life outside the hellhole that is the office run by a chaotically disordered fucking nutter.

  9. Luck of the devil, I mean, Irish! I had decided to immediately come clean and so grabbed this document first thing to go and hold it like a comedy Mexican holds a sombrero while apologizing BUT spotted a mistake on the document and improvised wildly - "You made a small error on this one too, so I haven't sent it, obviously".

    I call this a win.

  10. That is a quality win. Well done that man

  11. Thank you folks! :)

    Barista, the "Being The Boss" movie you have outlined here is sort of haunting my thoughts now...

  12. I thought Koalas were slow whitted beasties! Well done spotting the error. Keep up the great blog even though you have to stay at work!

  13. Wow, a customer of our shiny new port here in Bahrain! :)