Once upon a time, in an office far far away I participated in the weekly staff meeting. Each week we would converge in the manager’s office to talk about everything and anything and get mostly nothing done.
Since I now work from home for myself with myself and by myself, I haven't been to a staff meeting in quite some time. So this morning, in the spirit of office jobs, I decided a staff meeting was in order.
In other words, I was in the mood to sit around a table and get nothing done.
All active employees were invited to the kitchen table at 8 am. These days it is only myself and my dog on the payroll. But this morning we had a guest employee. My husband. He spent the morning working from home. Lucky for him he gets to attend our first ever staff meeting.
First on the agenda, roll call. Me – president of company – raise your hand - here. Boss – token mascot of company – raise your paw – here. Guest employee – husband working from home ---- husband? HUSBAND?.....he agrees to also be here.
After roll call, we reviewed the agenda. First on the agenda…..
I’m sorry, we interrupt this meeting for a very important announcement – the coffee is ready. I go over to the French press and pour myself a cup. Which brings me to the first item on the agenda:
The company coffee pot
Possibly the most important office equipment we own and deserving of high priority on our list. Remember a few weeks ago when the coffee pot decided to lay down and die on my counter not before pissing itself of hot coffee all over my counter and floor? After cutting costs (lay off all staff but myself - oh wait, that works nicely, eh?) and reducing overhead (achieved by feeding company mascot only once a day) we have found room in the budget for a new coffee maker.
All in favor? Two hands and one paw. Good. Next up –
It has been brought to management’s attention that someone has been pooping by the garage door.
Management frowns upon this.
We will excuse the guest employee because it is not his brand. Therefore, we look to the other active employees to take the blame – Boss or myself. No need for confessions right now but someone is either going to curb this habit and take it outdoors or find a log in their breakfast bowl in the morning. Ain’t that right Boss?
Boss looks the other way.
Actually Boss is busy taking notes. He sits in my lap and taps on the keys. This is one of his favorite things to do while I say funny sounding versions of his name and other nicknames – Doodlebug, Noodlebutt, Doglet, Mr. Nibs all of which have been ruled as not harassment although I could see where you might think they are.
Chris looks over at me, “Is this what you do all day?”
No. Not at all. This is just what we do on Wednesday – staff meeting day. Duh.
Next on the agenda: use of company e-mail for personal use.
Motion to not only continue to permit this but highly encourage it too.
Next item: Dress code.
There seems to be some confusion from our guest employee that one should actually arrive at work each day (code for walk downstairs and sit at the kitchen table) fully showered and dressed. Around here we have a dress code. You can either wear your pajamas with crazy bedhead OR you can wear a collar around your neck. So next time you show up to our meeting please do not offend us by showing up clean, dressed and collarless, ‘k?
Ruling that every Friday be deemed Coffee Friday and recognized as paid holiday in the workplace.
Motion that bacon bones be distributed on a daily basis.
Overruled. Even guest employee voted against this.
And now a short pause in our meeting for the ceremonial humping of the red blanket (note that only canine members of the meeting should partake in this no matter how appealing the red blanket looks).
Now that we have that out of our system, back to our agenda. But wait, Chris comes up to me and shows me his sock.
“Look at this,” he says.
Here it is. (Half) Chinese (husband) sock torture – not only do you have to wash all of the socks but I will force you to look directly into them too. I am confused. What am I looking for in the sock?
“Look closer,” he says.
Ah, now I see. There it is, Boss has marked Chris’ sock, covered it in all sorts of yellow stuff. This is totally normal office behavior; just management’s way of showing you that even as they piss all over you, they still own you. In case you were wondering, Boss – small canine though he is - is still in charge.
We have a good laugh. Which is actually the telltale sign of any good office meeting. With that, we closed the agenda for the day. But not before we made the guest employee get up to pour the president another cup of coffee. Notes were submitted for approval, minutes were approved and business went on as usual.