I feel the need

I feel the need

Monday, April 2, 2012

Wanna know how the story ends? Buy the book!

Hello all!

I can't believe this stopped
being funny.
It is with a joyful heart that I write to you today.  I'm sure many of you noted that I haven't been quite as hilarious lately as I have been in the past, and that was for one very good reason:  Elsie stopped being funny.

I can share this with you now, because now it's starting to be funny again.  Some weeks ago Elsie called me on a Friday afternoon as I was trying to sort out a major scheduling issue with a customer.  Elsie demanded to know why I was cleaning up the daily list of sales calls, clearing out mistakes and removing names that were on the daily list more than once.

I didn't think I had to explain that, but I said, "Well, I'd like for the two of us to not embarrass Dunder Mifflin."

She was very agitated, and asked why I felt the need to correct these mistakes.

I thought we'd already gone over this, but I said, "There were mistakes on the list, and I didn't want us to embarrass the company by calling the same person three times in a day or by offering special sales to someone who already purchased at a higher price."

Then she got ugly.  "But why do you feel the need to do this every day?"

"Because there are mistakes on the list every day."


Now, I wanted to say, 'because you're a nitwit and you never do anything consistently or right.'  but I didn't.  Instead I said, "Look, it's a visual thing, we'll go over it on Monday, but it's almost 5 and I have to call back a customer and sort something out with him."

We ended the call, and I made a couple more calls getting the customer happy.  Then the phone rang.

It was Elsie.

She was completely out there.  You know the sound people get in their voices when they are having some sort of out of body rage experience?  That was Elsie.

"I just don't know why you feel the need to go behind my back and correct my mistakes."

Are we all reading the same words?

"Look, Elsie, I told you, it's a visual thing.  We'll go over it on Monday."

And that's when we both lost it.

"Why  would you even do that?  Why wouldn't you tell me what you were doing?"

"Okay, fine, you want the truth/"  I was channeling  my finest Jack Nicholson, "Here's the truth:  I have told you when you make mistakes with the phone list. I've pointed things out.  NBM has pointed things out.  PM has pointed things out.  YOU DON'T LISTEN."

She was quiet for a second and I thought we were done.  No, she was just reloading.

"You know what I think, Sarah?  I think you're the one who doesn't know how to enter the phone list each day.   I completely understand it, I'm the one who does it the right way, and you're the one doing it wrong.  And I don't appreciate you going behind my back and correcting whatever mistakes I make."

"Look, we have to talk about this later, I have to do something for a customer yet."

"You just have no idea how to work the system.  You've been doing it wrong this whole time and just telling people you're the one doing it right when I'm really the one who has been doing everything right and consistent since the first day."

All I could think at that second was, "IN WHAT UNIVERSE?"

We ended the phone call.  That was the day I cleaned out my desk.  The following Monday I had a little sit down with NBM and PM and said and quietly as I could that I hoped I could depend on them for a good referral as I started looking for a new job.  Strong words, I'll admit, but there was no way I could possibly continue working in a place that was going to keep her on as an employee after that rant.  And, given her history of rants, I felt pretty sure that for whatever reason, they were never going to let her go.

NBM and PM said some very nice words to me.  But reality is reality...and I didn't bring anything back to my desk...except  my radio because I am not living without my Bob and Brian in the morning.

I mentally had an expiration date of 3 weeks.  I have a couple phone numbers I can call, everyone should, and I wasn't going to call them for three weeks.

Today, exactly three weeks from that moment, Elsie was shown the door.

I knew it was coming, but I didn't know when.  You could feel it in the air.  I figured it would happen over the weekend, or they would chicken out, given she'd just had a fender bender on Thursday.  (Oh, you didn't hear about that?  And you're not following me on Face Book why?)

I've never been around when someone got fired.  I've been fired. My husband's been fired a couple times.  It's devastating...especially when you're a good employee stuck in a situation that has less to do with you and more to do with the economy or whatever.  But I've never been around when bad employee gets the boot.  I didn't want to be there today.  I wanted to take an early lunch.  So did PM.
So, we've got the Red Sea parted...what's next?
Oh yeah...wrath of God down on NBM.

Yep, you heard me.  She basically laid down a good old fashioned witch curse on him. 

Having been fired, having talked to people who have been fired, I know that while we all would like to curse the person firing us, and put some sort of eternal curse on them...we don't.  We're adults. This is a society.  Even a person who doesn't see it coming for miles  doesn't reach to the heavens and actually call down a deity.

So in that, Elsie lived up to every expectation I had.

Oh...and it wouldn't be an Elsie story if I didn't have one last parting giggle.  Of course when told to box up all her stuff, she couldn't do it.  Not in one box, not in one trip to the car, not in one half hour. Nope, she had to wash her dirty dishes...left over from Saturday...and she had to box stuff up and have PM carry a couple loads to the car for her.  Best of all...she left her vacuum cleaner behind...and had to call me and I had to meet her this afternoon and give it to her.

I can't look...is it still there?
I wonder if that George foreman grill is still out in the shop.

Best of all, while I'm very cautious about New Elsie, I can tell you this:  She used to work here at Dunder Mifflin.  She was very beloved.  So much so that our toughest sales guy teared up and HUGGED HER when he saw her. 

I wonder if New Elsie will know what this is.
Her first order of business tomorrow?  She's going to clean her office.  She asked me what sort of person used the office.  When I asked why, she said, "Because every piece of paper in every desk drawer is soaked in coffee."

Yeah, I think I'm going to like working with her.

Or maybe she'll be hilarious in her own way.  A way that doesn't involve me having to do her job.

Either way, it's a win for me.  And win for you, my reader friends because I'll be able to finish the Elsie Books  (And yes, there will be at least two, I'm hoping for three)  and get them out.

All I need is someone who will...you know...format them for me, market them, edit them, proof read them....oh, and for free! 


  1. Sarah, you have expressed the perfect melding of joy and empathy in this moment that I have come to expect from you. Congratulations on the decision that DM made 3 weeks ago.


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