What Annoys Jeff this Week?

1. Wet ink. Why, in the year of our lord two thousand and twenty-one, do businesses still require wet ink on basic transactional paperwork. All I want to do is to make a pretty simple deposit into my retirement account. Maybe. If it were a withdrawal, I could see it. Maybe. Although I’m perfectly happy to let anyone in the world put funds in my IRA if the spirit moves them. In the time of instant transactions, waiting around for a few days until the mail arrives, waiting a few days until the return post reaches them, and then the action taking place. It really just feels like there has to be a better way.

2. Plastics. This week I got to enjoy the mandatory de-plasticizing of a new coffee maker pot. The entire house reeks of vinegar after brewing half a dozen pots of it in hopes that I’ll eventually be able to have coffee that doesn’t taste of plastic. At this point I’m not sure coffee tinged with plastic is actually worse than the hot vinegar stench permeating every inch of the house. 

3. One o’clock. For the last few weeks, I’ve struggled to get past 1 o’clock in the afternoon without my head slamming into my desk. I’ve always gotten a little groggy in the mid-afternoon, but this is something altogether different. It’s the kind of sleepy that demands I either get on my feet or go immediately to sleep. It’s not ideal if you’re making even the barest effort to be a responsible and responsive employee. This had better just be a passing thing, because otherwise I might need to talk to the boss about expanding my cube to allow room for a cot.

Research, Test, and Evaluation…

Almost a decade ago a colleague who will remain unnamed started conducting a groundbreaking, though slightly less than scientific study into how large a ball of paper he could make using only class handouts. As this research effort got underway at a time before cell phone cameras, I don’t have any physical documentation, but as I recall it ended up being slightly smaller than a basketball and packed enough weight to be deadly when flung in the direction of your head. Trust me, in the far back rows of a dark, musty auditorium this is what passed for in class entertainment.

In the spirit of the upcoming anniversary of this Big Ball of Paper Test, I seem to have unwittingly begun my own research project into how many (mostly) empty plastic water bottles I can stow in the various compartments of my cubicle before remembering to take them down the hall to the recycling bin. As you can see from the photographic evidence, apparently that number is at least four, which given my usual level of OCD about random crap just sitting around is actually more impressive than you’re thinking it is right now.

And that’s where the test begins… to see how many (mostly) empty water bottles I can fit into my cubicle without freaking out and going on a mad cleaning spree or before one of my coworkers notices and asks WTF I’m doing with a metric crapload of plastic bottles sitting around… and yes, before someone asks, that’s what passed for entertainment this afternoon.

In retrospect, maybe I should have gone ahead and bought the desktop pingpong ball trebuchet when it was on sale yesterday. Now that would have been a productive use of time.

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