Life Lesson: Morning People Will Probably Eventually Rule the Whole World

Life Lesson #6,120: Do not get dressed in the dark. Even if it’s only dark because it’s cloudy outside and you’re too lazy to turn on the light.

That is how you discover your shirt is inside out. At work. At 10:00 in the morning. After two meetings. With the C-level executives* in your office.
*CEO. COO. CFO. C-More-Important-Than-I-Will-Ever-Be-O.

I am not a morning person. I have never been a morning person. I was not a bright, chipper small child up with the sun. I was not even a person before noon during my teen years. In my 20s, I continue to bodily drag myself out of bed before the hour of 9:00 in the morning. Maybe by the time I’m 50, I’ll have a healthy relationship with dawn, but right now, we’re mortal enemies.

BAD SUN! SHOO!

Closing the curtains doesn’t even help. I still know it’s there.

But every now and then**, I have to drag myself out of bed on a cloudy, rainy or snowy morning. This is a strange blessing and curse all rolled into one. For one thing, the sun is forced to refrain from taunting me, due to being locked behind the shelter of clouds. But, on the other hand, it’s still blissfully dim and all I want to do is stay in bed. So getting ready becomes even more difficult.
**Sporadically and spontaneously and generally on the most inconvenient days, because I live in the South.

As has been mentioned previously, I work in a proper corporate business office, where I am expected to wear proper corporate business attire. There are skirts and heels and fancy shirts and dressy sweaters and other things I have had to spend a bunch of money on to ensure that I look appropriate and good at my job.

Hurray!

Of course stars and sparkles appear when I successfully get dressed in the morning. Does this not happen for you?

I am successfully good at accomplishing other morning activities (showering, hair brushing, makeup) in a lit bathroom that has bribed me into awareness with promises of hot water. But no amount of wardrobe budget and steamy showers can spare me the horrors that come with getting dressed in the dark.

Grumblemumblebitchwhine

Selecting the proper attire in a dark closet clearly requires a lot of finesse.

I have a tendency to select items at random and fling them out of the closet onto my bed, signifying that they are destined to be part of the day’s outfit. Lots of these items are black, because I am a champion at color-coordinating. After other preparations are complete, I tend to hurl these clothing options onto myself, achieving a successful dressed state.

Grrrrrgrumblemumble

It’s hard to see the stars and sparkles in the dark.

However, some mornings***, I am not quite so successful. Apparently.
***Like THIS morning.

Some mornings, not all of the clothes go on the right way. And without the supervision of the blindingly bright, evil dawn sun, there’s no chance to catch the devious, inside-out shirt until well after I’ve left the apartment.

You know, until after I’ve finished my second meeting of the morning.

I need more coffee for this nonsense

It was not subtly inside out either, guys. There were tags and seams and possibly the opposite side of shirt-decorations visible.

So in other words, guys: Happy Tuesday. I hope your clothes are on the right way.

It’s Probably Time We Talked about Baby Showers

Or: It’s Probably Better if My Pregnant Friends Don’t Read This One.*

*But if you do, just remember – your pregnancy is super special and like no one else’s and I love you and you deserve a thousand baby showers.

Guys. Guys.
**Also, ladies. Ladies. Because generally, you’re all a little more involved in this.

We need to sit down and have a rational discussion here. A rational discussion about office baby showers.

Nope. Definitely awkward.

Because this is just a really awkward conference for everyone involved.
Click for source, which I’m sure wasn’t awkward and was amazing and thank you for letting me use your picture.

I think it’s cool when people make babies. Awhile back, we discussed the fact that I clearly love babies because I am a sane***, non-sociopathic human being. And I think we should, in fact, celebrate the fact that women are going to produce entirely new people through the magic of science and reproduction.
***Ish. Sane-ish.

AAAAAHHH-ZEEE-VAIN-YAAAHHH

In my head, all new babies are shown off in Lion King fashion.

That’s cool stuff, guys. That’s science.

And, in the right context, I support the baby shower. Because every woman-in-the-process-of-making-more-people needs stuff. Babies require a lot of stuff. Diapers, blankets, cribs, various carrying devices, clothes…A LOT of stuff.****
****I have not made any people, so I base this list entirely on the gigantic registry lists I have hunted through for baby shower presents. I know I’ve left things out.

Since bankrupting new mothers is usually frowned upon, a baby shower is in order. One baby shower. One baby shower that your friends and family come together to throw.  This should result in a giant present fort of supplies and adorable things for new parents to use to take care of their future tiny person.

Not quite as good as a Christmas present fort

One giant present fort. From one baby shower. From people who love you and do not feel oddly obligated to buy you awkward things when they’ve never even met your family.

But then there is the now-longstanding tradition of the office baby shower. The office baby shower is frequently thrown during the work day – during a lunch break or squashed between meetings when everyone is already frazzled. Sometimes, they are thrown immediately after the work day ends, so you are obligated to stay late or look like a cold, evil baby-hater.

Honestly. I may need spinal surgery

No excuse is acceptable for missing the office baby shower.
(But getting accused of baby hating will apparently make your stick figure body disconnect from your stick figure arms)

Don’t get me wrong. Sometimes, you’re friends with your coworkers. Sometimes you’re even the really good kind of friends that see each other outside of work and actually hang out on weekends. That’s cool. Then you should get an invitation to the real baby shower, which should be an actual event showering love and affection on the expectant mother*****
*****This is my favorite phase. She’s “expecting.” Expecting a baby, but, you know, it really could be anything. “The expectant mother was expecting a human baby, but was really surprised when she had a litter of robots instead.”

In most offices, however, the office baby shower is a strange combination of awkward discussions avoiding the topic of how the baby will actually come out, and people milling around waiting for enough time to elapse that they can politely leave. In case you were wondering, the time you have to stay increases exponentially if there’s cake. Cake means you have to stay longer, otherwise you look like a glutton who uses babies as an excuse to cram sugar in your mouth and run away.

People are frustrated with the last-minute panics of remembering to bring gifts, and the mental debates of how much they were required to spend. In general, even the mother feels awkward.

So can we all just agree to cancel these?

…No? Well then can we all just agree that the cake should never, ever, ever look like this?

Nightmares. So many nightmares

This little terror is courtesy of Cake Wrecks. Click for source and hours of entertainment!

Because if not, I’m bringing this cake to your next office baby shower.

I Am Not Even a Little Bit Country

No matter what y’all think.

Today’s Blog Post Is Brought to You By How Late I Was Stuck at Work on Tuesday

A few years ago, my brother was living in Texas with his family.

Texas was never my favorite state. I don’t listen to country music. I don’t drive a big truck. I don’t know how to line dance. I have exactly zero understanding of how cattle are herded.*
*But I am super good at making sweeping, inaccurate assumptions about things people like in Texas.

But I really wanted to go visit. And so I went. And you know what?

I found something I really, truly love.

MAH BOOTS

They do, in fact, look this stylish in real life.

Forget glass slippers. Cinderella was clearly clueless about footwear. Cowboy boots are the most magical shoes. For one thing, they let you swagger with every step. For another, you automatically pose like a gunslinger when wearing them – even in normal, everyday, non-gun-slinging situations!**
**Which is every day of my life, because I am the worst at being southern and don’t own a gun. All southern friends are responsible for my survival in a zombie apocalypse. Hi friends!

Yee haw!

Ahem. Yee-haw?

For another thing, they are more comfortable than slippers.

Mmm...comfy

Bye bye bunnies…Oh come on guys. They’re slippers. Don’t call PETA.

But best of all, I can wear them to work under my fancy pants, and no one knows but me.

Ok, maybe i should rephrase that

And that’s all a girl ever wants. Secret boots. And fancy pants.

Public Service Announcement #33: Do Not Ignore Headphones in the Workplace

Or: Cubicles are Wildly Undervalued and I Am Jealous of Everyone Who Has One

I work in an office that has run out of space. The Company is growing, which is fantabulous*, but it also means that cubicles have become a high-value commodity and offices are non-existent. Because of this, Marketing has migrated into a “collaborative workspace.”
*Totally a word. And The Company pays me for wordsmithing, so it’s pretty silly that you’d question me about words.

What this means is, we are no longer entitled to the luxury of walls. My office space looks like this:

Do not question my professional pigtails

Note that those are not cube-boxes. Those are deskspace mini-cubes. The few “walls” don’t even come out past the desk chairs.
But we do have desk chairs. So basically, we’re pretty spoiled.

This has led me to become a believer in giant headphones. I support them for a variety of reasons:

  1. They make it legitimately impossible for me to hear my coworkers when I’m working.
  2. They clearly signify to my coworkers that I cannot hear them.
  3. They have a microphone on them, so I can use them in place of my telephone headset for conference calls.
  4. See reason 2. This is important enough to repeat.
It's very productive

These headphones are clearly not small.
Also, this is my zen and productive work pose.

However, no matter how giant my headphones are, I have found that my coworkers still firmly believe that I am listening to all the conversation going on around me. Now, it’s true – the conversation is much more interesting than work. But as someone who is held responsible for creative** writing, as well as practical business*** writing on a regular basis, I need a bubble of clear headspace to accomplish my mission.
**Manipulative
***Also manipulative

Seriously

This is an accurate representation of this situation happening.

When I become aware of people looking at me expectantly, I’m forced to do the polite thing and pull my headphones off to find out what was said. I mean, maybe my valuable advice**** is needed. Or maybe a new assignment has come down the pipeline. Maybe, as productive and essential marketers, everyone decided to get started on a new campaign idea.
****Valuable advice available here, here and here.

Every. Single. Time.

IT WAS A TRICK.

Nope.

This is never the case. And so I return to the delightful land of my cone of silence*****.
*****Or music. Cone of music. Same thing. 

Whereupon the cycle promptly starts again.

Seriously

So value your cube space, my friends. Value it…and send me some walls.

I Don’t Know What that Costs

No, really, I don’t. I work in Marketing. Marketing tells people why they want things. We know why you need it, why you crave it, why your life simply is not complete without it.

But I don’t handle the pricing.

I have no idea what three hours of a developer’s time is worth. If you asked me, I’d say “Mountain Dew and a box of Reese’ Pieces.” But for all I know, it’s actually a 2-liter of coke and five Slim Jims. I don’t know what it costs The Company to dedicate a project manager to an assignment. I don’t even know what junk food they eat.*
*It’s not that I don’t care. It’s just that I work with them less.

I don't understand.

Is this not how people are quantified?

It’s a little bleak, but I like to think of Marketing as working a long con. It’s my job to get to know you.** It’s my job to find out what your needs are, so The Company can anticipate them. We’re here for the greater good***, to make sure you get find the right products and services that will make your life better.
**The royal “you.” The one that means everyone, and doesn’t mean I specifically spend my time stalking you. I definitely don’t do that. Because I’m not a weirdo. And I have no idea where you live. Why are you closing your blinds?
***Consumerist Evil.

It's possible I don't know how jobs work

“Women who wear boots and fluffy skirts like things that can be carried in bags.”
– Factual Marketing Observation

And get paid. I have college loan debt. I am really, really interested in getting paid.

But there is an inherent problem with working in the Marketing Industry. That problem is Sales. Sales does not care what you want, or what you need. Sales cares about what you think you want to buy. Sales cares how we can bend your needs to match The Company’s products. Sales really, really, really wants you to buy what we have to sell.****
****Ok, ok, I do too. But I really want to make sure you want it, too. I have to do research and stuff. That’s why it’s called “market research.” Duh.*****
*****This is not why it’s called “market research.”

And here at The Company, Marketing has almost nothing to do with the prices of what we sell. Sales handles that. Because they’re selling it.****** It’s an obvious assignment of responsibilities.
******And because Marketing is a rabble of adorable, creative-minded individuals who probably can’t be trusted with math.

Seriously.

You never know just what might happen when you give Marketing numbers.

But this never stops anyone in Sales from asking our department complex questions about how prices are determined and issued. In essence, when tasked to determine the price of a good or service provided by The Company, Sales comes running up to Marketing and asks “How much does this cost?”

Marketing does not know. 

More importantly, not only do I not know, I cannot be trusted not to make up an answer.

Vortex eyes of doom!

Nothing The Company sells costs $7. Unless you ask me. Then absolutely everything The Company sells is sold for $7. Because math.

So, by all that’s good and right in the world, can everyone please stop asking Marketing how much things cost? We don’t know, and we don’t care. We only care if you want it, if you’ll buy it, and if you’ll Tweet about it.

I should probably just start pointing out the comic on my desk

NOPE NOPE NOPE.

From The Oatmeal. Go show him all the love, because he’s brilliant, and this makes me happy.
Click this and cheat to the comic in question.