Friday, June 23, 2006

Bring Your Family To Work Day Rant

Today is 'Bring Your Family To Work' Day. It's also 'Bring Your Pet To Work' Day. Remember when it used to be just 'Bring Your Child To Work'? There would always be 10 or so kids tagging along to see what it was like at Mommy's/Daddy's work. It was all well and good. The kids really got a glimpse of what Mommy/Daddy did all day after they left in the morning.

Now to be PC, we have to have a whole building full of kit, kin, pets, livestock and poultry using up all the meeting rooms to make 'DNA on a stick' (gummy stuff on toothpicks), playing games, touring, snacking: just generally yelling and racing around. Not exactly the picture of what we do at work on a typical day. (I said a typical day...some days we do have our moments. I'm still scraping silly string off stuff from one of those particular days a couple of years ago.)

You can break the whole lot of them down into two groups. The employees who actually come here to work are with their 6-16 year old kids participating in the activities that have been set up to show how biology works and what we make here at the company. The employees coworkers always complain about have disappeared completely from work and the festivities. Their children (average age of 3) left unsupervised, have taken the rest of the company hostage.

I know some of the kids out there. My buddy Eli came up to see me and she was very reverent. She seemed to be really enjoying learning about biology. Her brother Rob was downstairs experimenting with Wheat Germ DNA. Mum is sticking with them and they are participating in the actual activities of the day. Their Dad is a scientist. They were getting it.

As for some of the others...if they really want to see what Mommy/Daddy does in a typical day, I have set up a checklist of tasks. First one done gets to call in sick and then go golfing:

*Arrive 20 minutes late to work.
*Oh, did that meeting start at 8:00 a.m.? Arrive 30 minutes late.
*Interrupt and ask questions about what was discussed the first half of the meeting.
*Doze through the remainder of the meeting.
*BS a report about the meeting and defend it vehemently when inaccuracies are pointed out.
*Drink enough coffee to get good and cranky.
*Take it out on a subordinate.
*Go through folks' lunch bags in the office fridge and take out things you like.
*Spend a half an hour discussing the Brewers out by the mailbox.
*Make an hours worth of personal calls
*Take a two hour lunch.
*Come back with garlic breath and no mints.
*Take an hours worth of personal cell calls.
*Disappear from your desk leaving your constantly ringing cell phone behind.
*Pass the buck no matter what you are asked to do or accused of.
*Fail to plan ahead for a project and sponge supplies off coworker. (Do not consider replacing).
*Jam the copier making posters for your kid's soccer game and then just walk away.
*Take your two allotted 15 minute smoke breaks even if things are really busy.
*Lose track of time talking to fellow smokers and come back 20 minutes late.
*Play solitaire on the computer while maintaining an "I'm Extremely Busy" look on your face.
* Pocket a few office supplies.
* Sneak out early.

But I digress. When is PC too much? Does Fido really need to know that Daddy is in IS? Do the rest of us who don't want to bring granny and the goldfish to the gummy festivities get a paid Holiday? It's impossible to work with all of the running and screaming in the office area. I believe I will start my own tradition. 'My people' will choose to celebrate Bring Your Pet to Work Day in the privacy of our own home. It is sacred to us. Yeah...that's the ticket.

(Before you ask me to add "Write Your Blog Entry At Work" ...I am done working for the day!)

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