Thump thump thump

And that was AFTER filtering out all the Gurus, Ninjas and Rock Stars
One of the less palatable aspects of my job is bidding on government contracts. It would be less of trial if I thought it would be worth the effort, but it’s a complete waste of time.

Most state entities openly thumb their noses at the procurement regulations and carefully word their specifications to favour certain outcomes. The state officials have very itchy backs that require lots of scratching before you’re granted entrance to the preferred circle.

The fact that this is technically illegal is neither here nor there. The government occasionally makes a few disingenuous noises about “rooting out corruption” before election time, but the practice continues because few private firms have the stomach, stamina or stones to take the matter to court. They understand the power of the Dark Side.

Nevertheless, my boss insists that I keep hitting my head against this particular wall, because Senior Management Logic(TM) dictates that if something doesn’t work, you keep doing it until your skull pops.

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The power point

Seriously, what is the point of a minion that won't do your bidding?
I am working on a project proposal at the moment. It’s a bit like a marriage proposal, but with less chance for regret down the line.

It’s a rather hefty undertaking and the person leading the team is one of your stereotypical pie-chart wielding financial experts – although I use the term “expert” rather loosely here. Actually, “leading” also requires some poetic license.

Midway through the process, he instructed us all to use the same template to format our input to the proposal document. This seemed entirely sensible until we discovered that the “document” we had to use was actually a PowerPoint presentation.

I’m just going to let that sink in for a bit.

Once our ghasts stopped flabbering, we made repeated requests to Mr Experty the expert to switch to a more appropriate format. Clearly the man went to the Grumpycat School of Management, because all we got was a whole bag of no. Even when we prepared a Word document that duplicated the look and feel of his PowerPoint template exactly, he wouldn’t budge. We finally had to bite the bullet and commence with the unutterably laborious process of cut ‘n’ paste to shoehorn roughly a hundred pages of information into a series of slightly misaligned text boxes.

I’m guessing that Mr Experty has spent his entire working life making bullet-pointed lists and isn’t prepared to admit that he is confounded by the intricacies of other business software. Also, he is an imbecile.

=/=

They're like Pokemon, but with an acid attack
I saw the following comment online a few days ago:

“Equality is not subjective. If someone does the same job as someone else, then they should both be paid the same.”

Fair enough, but…

It presupposes that the context and circumstances are equivalent. What if two people work at different companies and one company is doing badly? What if one person has been on maternity leave while the other person hasn’t? What if one individual has a different reporting structure to the other? What if one person has a hairy arse and spends their day fidgeting as a result of razor burn?

It’s all very well to wax philosophical about equality as a concept, but you can get bogged down when you try to apply it in practice.

Also, how people perceive value IS subjective: one person may prefer to be paid less if they can work more flexible hours. Another may regard a shady parking spot as a bigger perk. I might treasure a bucket of corrosive drippings above all else.

How many shady parking spots equal a bucket of drippings? If anyone can point me towards a handy reference guide, I would be most grateful. Until then, I’m going to continue to assume that when it comes to equality, your mileage may vary.

Digital snipe hunting

I would make an excellent genie
The trouble with my boss is that he sometimes confuses the concept of “initiative” with “the ability to read minds”.

He erroneously assumes that my colleagues and I possess the eldritch ability to navigate his profoundly non-linear filing system. I’m sure it makes perfect sense if you have the right kind of brain lesions, but I freely confess that it’s beyond my ken.

I only wish I was joking:
It burns!

Sic erat scriptum

I've red-lined your document for you
Speling Nazzi’s are loosers! It dusnt mater how u spel sumthing as long as ppl no what u mean, rite?

If you find yourself nodding in agreement to the above sentiment, please kill yourself immediately. Thank you.

It’s ironic that a society obsessed with status and designer labels can be so tolerant of shitty spelling. The same people who are quite content to use Twitterspeak to fill out a job application would never be caught wearing a Rollex watch or Leevi jeans and they certainly wouldn’t want an iFone.

Then again, I suppose there’s no real need to learn to spell when autocorrect is the default option on MS-Word. Google seems to be leading the charge in other areas. For example:

Showing results for Emperor Palpatine.
Search instead for Pope Benedict.

Still, it’s not all bad. It won’t be too long before Ow! My Balls! becomes a reality. I’m looking forward to that.