Friday, June 29, 2007

Cow-Orkers XI: Inflation

Mary just stopped by the CubeDesk of Hate and was shocked. It's clean, relatively speaking. Granted there's a board to ensure one of the four monitors doesn't fall off the edge of the desk and there's a semi-circle of keyboards and mice (and a docking station for the lappy), but gone are the piles of papers, books, food wrappers, Pot Noodle (empty and full), empty bocutlery, napkins, dictionaries, toys, CDs, you name it.

Oh, some of the stuff is still here, but most of it actually has a place to be, even though the DoH is considerably less roomy than the CoH. But the old clappy-hand fly-swatter (release trigger and two hand-shaped pieces of plastic slam together) which she loathed was nowhere to be seen. She's a bit high strung; she'd jump every time she heard it which, of course, only made me use it that much more.

Anyway, this is not the REC and the CubeDesk of Hate she was oh-so-familiar with when once we were colleagues. She's now with $BigCarCo and decided to visit us on a break while she's here in the building on some sort of training. While she didn't drop of a heart attack, she did manage to let out one of her incredibly shrill shrieks (patent pending) to indicate her surprise, a noise I'd almost forgotten, and one which is only slightly less painful than a carbide-tipped bit in a Hole Hawg making its way through the ear.

I busted her padding her numbers once. Our tickets are limited to single subjects. Ask multiple questions in unrelated areas and we'll split the ticket into multiple pieces ourselves. Come back at us with another question about something completely unrelated to the problem we've just resolved for you and we'll open a new ticket for that (or, more likely, tell you to do it your own damned self because you should know by now that this is how shit works). But a follow-up question about the same damned thing in order to get further clarification? No. That stays in the current ticket.

Not Mary's customers, no siree. And the reason I found out was that I took a fresh ticket out of the queue because it dealt with one of my specialties. About a minute later she peered over the cubicle wall and started ranting, "REC! You can't that ticket! It's mine!"

First come, first served, sweetie. That's how the queue works.
"No. Look at the creator. I made that ticket so it's mine!"
"It's a follow-up that I am going to answer."
A follow-up? I remained silent, giving her my WTF face as I tried to piece this together.
"I have a customer and they asked a follow-up question in their ticket and so I made a new SR to answer it."
Bingo. Now I grokked. I also knew how she had managed to increase her production to compete with my insane numbers.

I laid it out for her, explaining that 1) it's the queue and first-come, first-serve is the law of the land; 2) the question was my specialty; and 3) follow-up questions don't get new tickets unless they're completely unrelated to the subject of the ticket.

And that should've been the end of it. But it wasn't. Had she shut up there she might've been able to keep using this little trick. Instead she went off to bitch to the manager and came back five minutes later very quietly, dragging her tail between her legs.

It was a few weeks before relations normalised. There were other annoyances like the incessant slumber party yapping with another cow-orker and her long phone calls home to a South Pacific nation with a language that can only be described as a concoction of staccato noises, diphthongs, triphthongs, and a general shrill tone. I've dealt with worse. Hell, I have worse now.

The visit over, she turned to go to the door. As she walked away I pulled out the flyswatter. For old times' sake. All were amused... all except Mary who jumpede, then yelled out like Wilma Flintstone, "Ooh! REC!" as she clenched her fists, put on a frumpy face and marched off to see some of her other old colleagues. She shoulda known.

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In compliance with $MegaCorp's general policies as well as my desire to
continue living under a roof and not the sky or a bus shelter, I add this:

The views expressed on this blog are my own and
do not necessarily reflect the views of $MegaCorp, even if every
single one of my cow-orkers who has discovered this blog agrees with me
and would also like to see the implementation of Root Cause: 17-Fuckwit.