Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Airing Of Grievances

It's Christmas Eve and I'm still at work, and I'll be working tomorrow too. This makes my holiday mood more Festivus than festive, but since I fail utterly at the feats of strength I'll go right to the airing of grievances:

***

To the guy who installed the earth-loving energy-efficient timed lights in the bathroom where I work: yes, I'm sure people forgetting to turn off the lights when they leave the room wastes lots of electricity, and a motion-sensing timer that turns off said lights when nothing has moved for awhile -- and thus the room is presumably empty -- is a good idea. That said, consider the possibility that in a women's bathroom of all places, you should wait more than THIRTY SECONDS before deciding "Hmm, there has been no motion since the bathroom door opened; that MUST mean the room is empty, so let me plunge the room into darkness!"

At the very least, install some type of sound sensor so that, after the lights turn out, if words like "Goddammit you stupid assholes!" are emitted from anywhere within said bathroom, the lights come back on.

***

To the arrogant ducks residing in the pond by the street on which I travel to and from work each day: let me remind you that my car, small and fuel-efficient though it may be, still weighs a HELL of a lot more than you do. Thus far, when I've driven down the road and saw a couple dozen of you waddling in the middle of the road, I've screeched to a stop because I don't want duck viscera clogging my car's undercarriage. But in light of the salt and sand and chemical de-icing gunk covering the roads since last week's snowstorm, duck viscera would be a less-corrosive improvement over what is currently covering the underside of my car.

This is your first and final warning.

***

To the homeless guy to whom I gave a five-dollar bill last week and instead of saying "thanks" he yelled at me for not giving him more: actually, I have no grievance against you. I know damned well my five dollars won't improve your life; only a cure for schizophrenia would do that, and medical science doesn't have one. I wish the voices in your head would stop tormenting you. I wish that, when America closed its horribly abusive public insane asylums a few decades back, we could've avoided discarding the baby along with the bathwater. If I see you tomorrow at the Christmas-dinner-for-the-homeless I must attend, I will wish you a merry Christmas and mean it sincerely.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Cap'n NoStar said...

Merry Christmas, Jennifer.

2:06 PM  
Blogger Kevin Carson said...

On the subject of bathrooms, I hate to sound like a total geek, but the problem is designers who get all their input from the *top* of the pyramid and no feedback at all from users.

That's why most large institutions outfit all their bathrooms with those godawful overdesigned Georgia-Pacific paper dispensers at $20 a pop, which require you to practically break your wrist to get paper out and make it almost impossible to get more than three squares at a time without tearing it. Especially idiotic, when you could buy a plain old spool dispenser at Home Depot for under $1, and it would actually work well.

My pet peeve is hot air dryers. Not only is it irritating to have to stand there for minutes waiting for it to dry your hands sufficiently. Worse, there's no paper to grab hold of the bathroom door with (which it's wise to do, considering most people don't wash their hands and the inside bathroom door is the first thing they touch after their naughty bits). Worse yet, with air dryers the door handles are probably a lot dirtier, because fewer people are willing to go through the hassle of washing their hands if they have to deal with one of those goddamned things. Worse still, there's something of a negative network effect, because it makes even less sense to bother washing your hands if you're just going to touch an even dirtier than normal door handle.

They've got one of these at the local public library. This is the same place where the IT person installed the horrendous gold-plated turd Word 2007 on the desktops in place of the at least tolerable Word 2003.

A trip to the public restroom is an object lesson in bureaucratic dysfunction.

6:02 PM  
Anonymous A Moose said...

"work" means that you take too much. Make it difficult, people take less, short of what they need into what they "absolutely need"

12:09 PM  

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