Sunday, May 21, 2006

There seems to be some cosmic connection between my impending surgery, my immune system, and the suggestions of my coworkers.

Last month, my PA made the comment, “couldn’t you put this off for a little while longer?”

Ta dah! I got strep throat for the first time in 15 years, resulting in the surgery being postponed for another month.

This past Thursday, another coworker comments that I should be eating light, and trying to take off a little weight before the surgery. I won’t even go into how rude that suggestion is in itself.

Ta dah! That very night, I came down with a vile case of food poisoning, and have lost six pounds as a result.

I’m glad I’m not supposed to go back to work anymore before the surgery; I shudder to think what the next “suggestion” might inflict upon me.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

In pursuit of the Wild Bagel

Here in the Cubicle Jungle, we constantly get product reps in the office, hawking the latest cutting-edge technology in all things cut-pile, polished, and coved to the Interiors group. These reps often bring food, usually of the pastry variety.

Sometimes a fellow monkey will alert me to the presence of pastries; more often I hunt alone. Tuesdays and Thursdays are the best days for a hunt. Before the sun looms high over the Jungle, I watch the elevators for reps bearing boxes. The boxes will have curious markings on them like, “La Madeline,” “Corner Bakery,” or “Starbucks.”

Once a rep has been spotted, it is only a matter of patience. Interiors will nibble at a few pieces, and then leave the remainder out on the plain for the other animals. One has to move quickly, for there is a Rhino in the Jungle who has been known to take ice cream left over from birthday celebrations back to his desk- still in the half-gallon container.

As I made my way to the area this morning, I saw another monkey scurrying back to his desk, dropping a light spray of crumbs from the prize clenched in his greedy hand. Food is confirmed. A small huddle surrounds the box. Hands reach in, snag a piece, then skitter away to eat their find at their cubicles. As always, the Ostrich, wearing his bowtie,* turns up his beak at the whole affair. Nothing but crumbs is left after the feeding frenzy is done.

The Circle of Lard continues…

*a.k.a. “Designosaur.” ManThing has a gift for assigning animal characteristics to people. He hit it spot-on with this one. I snorted.

The way to his heart.

CAD Monkey: How do you feel about free sushi for dinner...and you can eat it at home, without pants??

ManThing: This isn't from someone who wants to get rid of their fishtank, is it?

CAD Monkey: No, I went out to lunch with Big Boss and [two other coworkers] at [our favoritest sushi place]. We over-ordered, and had a waiter cool enough to "turn his head" and let us take the leftovers. I've got some volcano roll, some russian roll, salmon, snapper, mackerel, and white tuna.

ManThing: Sushi, pantslessness, and WoW! All my favorite things in one night!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


Hot damn!

I still refuse to play golf as a means of ass-kissery, but I just found out the Managing Principal likes sushi. Sushi eating is definitely an acceptable form of schmoozing.

Guess who I'm having lunch with today? I ain't ashamed.
I went to Starbux this morning for my usual double tall soy caramel macchiato. The barista made it with real milk instead of soy. It was tasty, but I will pay for it later.

[stomach rumbles ominously]

Oh, how I will pay.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

A few weeks ago, we all received e-mails that an independent survey firm might be calling some of us, as part of a study the company was doing on employee satisfaction and turnover. I read it, and then promptly forgot about it.

My phone rang today: “Hi, [CAD Monkey], I’m from BlahBlahBlah Survey Company. Would you have time for a fifteen- to twenty-minute survey on employee satisfaction and turnover?”

Awww, crap.



Dilemma, Part the First: I hate the career I chose settled for (or at least I do this week, again). Going to lunch with two coworkers and engaging in a conversation that included way too many “and another thing!” statements didn’t help my frame of mind for the day, either.

Dilemma, Part the Second: This is a good company; so, do I give my honest opinion, or the opinion I’d have if I weren’t bitter and jaded against the industry?

Dilemma, Part the Third: Open cubicles make for difficulty in giving an honest opinion over the phone. I’d rather be overheard saying “hemorrhoids?!?” than giving my honest opinion of my office experience. Okay, maybe not. But you get the picture.

I settled upon the wuss-tacular answer set of “pleased with the company, outwardly optimistic of the future, with bitterness suppressed behind iron bars.” Then, I kept repeating “4” for the next fifteen minutes. (It was a 1-to-5 scale)

At least it got me out of working for a little while.

Funny thing is, I heard Hack n' Snort get his phone call a little while later. He asked if he could call the guy back from a conference room "for more privacy." Ha! It's probably so I wouldn't hear him say how great it is that all he has to do to get great assignments is play golf with the Boss Man.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Flossing is Fun!

The weather outside today is gorgeous, so I sat in my car, windows down, sunroof open, to eat my lunch. As I continued to sit there, the prospect of returning to work became less attractive all the time. I even made a list:

Things That Sound Better Than Going Back to Work
  1. Flossing my teeth over and over
  2. Donating blood at the bloodmobile parked behind me, even though they'd throw it out afterwards (I lived in Germany, thus I fall into their "permanent disqualifications" group)
  3. Faking a doctor's appointment
  4. Faking a child, then faking that it was sick
  5. Staging a "cat health emergency"
  6. Faking my own illness (wouldn't be hard, as I ate my entire Chipotle burrito- and now feel barfish)

In the end, I settled on going back to work, and writing this list. That killed at least another five minutes.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

For the love of all that is decent and holy!!

Designosaur, who, up to this point, has had absolutely no concern for reducing the costs of the design, has “brilliantly” had the idea that we should lower the height of all the parapets on the two buildings to save some money.

Great. That’s just great.

I wish he would have thought about that before we started drawing the 24 wall sections that will be affected by this change.

Conversely, he is refusing to use off-the-shelf items for various other parts of the project. How much money are we saving there, huh? Huh?!? [pulls out hair]
Monkeys drink more alcohol when housed alone, and some like to end a long day in the [cubicle] with a boozy cocktail.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Architect Porn

Now that ManThing and I have rid ourselves of the mundane House of Monkey, and moved into a super-cool loft, I am one step closer to becoming an architecturally pretentious ass. Not that that’s a goal of mine, or anything.

ManThing and I love the new place. It is dripping with architect porn.* Today began the final phase of ensuring the loft is 100% cool, instead of just 94%: the nasty-gross carpet in the bedroom is being ripped out and the concrete beneath resurfaced and sealed (as it should be).

[arms crossed, CAD Monkey nods her head imperiously]

I have developed an intense loathing for carpet over the last two years, as a direct result of living in a house devoid of the fluffy menace. There’s just something attractive about not getting constant sinus infections as a result of your floor covering.

The bad part of all this is we had to disassemble all our bedroom furniture, and cram it into the master bathroom. In the process, I managed to smash both the foot and the big toe of my Golden Leg.** ManThing reminded me about how I’m not supposed to move things. Ever. For this very reason. Somehow, I can work a drill while half-drunk on mojitos, without incident, but can’t move furniture worth a damn. Guess I should stick to “drunken use of power tools” and leave “sober moving of large objects” alone.

*exposed concrete structure, an interior brick wall, primary colored paint (red), sealed concrete/ hardwood floor.

**My left leg; the one that has to support me for several months after my surgery, by itself, while the bones in my right hip are “setting.”

Friday, May 05, 2006

First thing this morning, I discover Designosaur’s latest edict elevation sketch laid ever-so-sneakily on my desk. Just as I’m beginning to bang my forehead on the desk in frustration, a co-worker walks past my cube and asks, “how’s it going?”

“Fine, except I’m wondering how this is supposed to work.” I point at the elevation, where Designosaur has shown a light fixture mounted to a 2 ½” window mullion- which is surrounded on all sides by vision glass.

“Ah, that’s just a little thing.”

“Yes, but it’s one of so many other things.”

“As long as you’re having fun, that’s all that matters.”

“SNORF. Yeah, I’ll let you know when that starts.”

Thursday, May 04, 2006

There are clients touring our office this afternoon, so a few days ago we got the “clean up your sty cell cubicle” e-mail from the Big Boss. I never do too much cleaning for these events, because an empty desk is a sign of an empty mind.

Thanks to the power of the ‘net, you’ll never know whether I managed to keep a straight face while typing that. Heh.

Every time a client tour is about to come through, I always picture myself in a small room at the end of a dark corridor; behind a door which reads, “Beware: CAD Monkey Sector.” When the tour comes by, Big Boss warns them, “that’s where all the production people are. We don’t go in there.” One hapless tourist sneaks closer to the door to peek through the small window at what lies inside. He sees me, sitting at my desk, hunched forward, scowling at the monitor (life inspires fiction, no?). I turn my head towards the view window and snarl at him; lunging out of my chair, against my chains

The tourist scampers off, whimpering.

He can't say they didn't warn him.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Something my favorite designer keeps forgetting about is that a building elevation drawing will never be seen that way in the real world. He keeps asking me to to things based upon how they line up on a flat piece of paper, where you see the entire face of the building straight-on, without perspective.
See, there’s this concept, called a viewing angle, which negates some things being seen from a normal person’s perspective. For example, a pedestrian will not see the mechanical unit on the eighth floor of a building from the ground, so why are we spending money (and my precious precious time) trying to cover it up with some whoopty-do fancy screening?
Someone standing in front of the building’s entry won’t notice that the mullions of the windows don’t line up between two faces of the building that are 40 feet away from each other. Yet, I keep finding myself being told to line ‘em up, anyway!
I would expect things like this from a rookie, but this is Designosaur we’re talking about here. He should know better.