New and Unimproved Workplace Rants

Some of the people here have taken to what I think of as a positive rudeness. They will interrupt a loudmouth to let somebody else talk.

It is very funny to see the look on a loudmouth’s face when they get yelled down because they interrupted somebody (usually a woman, of course) who was already talking.

Jill: fish, fish, fi…
Bill: crab, crab, cra…
Grandboss: I DON’T THINK JILL WAS FINISHED, I’m sorry Jill, can you finish what you were telling us about fish?

… so are the Days of our Lives.

As a USPS worker, I occasionally get sent to Oklahoma for training on equipment (the last time was in October 2021, when I was based in Anaheim. I transferred to Portland in July). In November, I was notified that I had been assigned to two other ones, one in March and another in May. In December, I got an email telling me that my attendance in the May class had been cancelled. That leaves the one in March, to convene on the 29th.

Early this month, the NCED was hit and damaged by a tornado for the first time in its history, and the housing facility was restricted access for an unknown period, putting my attendance into doubt. But yesterday, I was told that I would definitely be going. So I asked a supervisor when I should expect to be given my travel arrangements. She told me that I was supposed to have gotten an email about it a month ago.

I’ve scoured both my personal and Postal emails back to the beginning of the year, and there haven’t been any notifications at all. On top of that, I’m getting intimations that travel arrangements and payment for food and lodging are handled entirely differently than they are in Anaheim, AND I HAVEN’T BEEN BRIEFED ON HOW ANY OF IT IS SUPPOSED TO WORK!

So this has been kicked up to yet another supervisor, who won’t be in before Monday. Meanwhile, my scheduled days off are coming up, and I will be out until Tuesday night.

So … now we’re phasing out our desktop phones. And apparently I’m supposed to have a time machine:

:information_source: Follow up by Tuesday, March 14, 2023 4:00 PM.

Announcement Number: P-2023-0253 March 15, 2023

Hey, how about people who don’t pay attention in meetings and repeat things that have already been said? Those are the people who are like sand in my underwear.


(Sorry if that’s been mentioned before, I’m one of those people who don’t pay attention to the thread and repeat things that were mentioned before… often in the OP!)

I’m that guy. But it’s because of my really bad hearing. Zoom or Teams meetings are fine. I can do what I want with the volume. I have hearing aids and on a zoom meeting can also wear headphones. And I don’t have to deal with any weird room acoustics. Went to a meeting yesterday that had 20 people. I heard maybe half of it. One of my co-workers got the nickname ‘The mumbler’ for good reason.

I get more out of meetings when I’m not physically there.

I fully understand. I have a hard time filtering voices from background noises. Large, in-person meetings were rather difficult and stressful. Then I learnt that 90% of what was said was just repetitive junk.

You know what, that’s a really good point - nice work, this will be a plus point in your next performance review. It took someone with real balls to be heard on this. If only someone had mentioned it before.


We got rid of our desktop phones a year or two ago. I turned in my phone and got a Jabra Bluetooth headset in return.

What’s funny is just about two years before that, they made a big deal of replacing all of our old desk phones with new Skype compatible desk phones. Then COVID hit and nobody was working in the office anymore, and all those shiny new phones just sat there.

So then they wound up switching from Skype to Teams and ditching the phones altogether. I actually prefer having a headset. I can Bluetooth it to my cellphone and my computer, I can listen to music on my phone and if a call comes in (either thru Teams or my cell) it pauses automatically and starts back up when the call is over.

I still feel betrayed by the dropping of Google Glass… I was really counting on glasses that could do real-time captioning of conversations.

I was so glad when Zoom/FaceTime/Team meetings started up for the same reasons you were. And so frustrated at the Time Suck that is The All-Hands-On-Board Meeting.

So, my solution for anyone attempting to hear in in-person meetings is to supply each participant with a stack of white cardstock and an extra-wide Sharpie.

Before someone can raise their hand, they need to jot down their comment on multiple sheets (à la Bob Dylan*) and flip them over as they speak.


*The classic video for Subterranean Homesick Blues…

or Weird Al’s palindromic version…

I had that problem with a lot of the meetings I was in in work. Not because I’m hard of hearing (though that may come) but because my French is adequate for everyday financial discussions, but totally lost for following 3 different people talking at once, with every second sentence in joual.

Many, many years ago, when I was a manager (never again!), I would have a quick, ten minute weekly meeting in my office with my team at 8:30. That would give everyone enough time to check their emails, get coffee, and socialize with each other (gotta keep those social wheels greased). I would go over anything I might have and then do a once around the room to see if anyone else had anything. I didn’t want it to last longer than ten minutes, because no one likes wasting their time in a meeting with that one person who loves the sound of their own voice.

Now with Teams (oops, my camera isn’t on again - why does it keep doing that?), I can actually get shit done, while Bill (not his real name) drones on and on about shit we already know.

I HAAAAAAATE 8 o’clock meetings. Worst are the company-wide safety meetings, with 60+ people trying to cram into a training center on the opposite side of the property from the administrative and production areas. Woe unto the person who shows up at 8:01, or – Og forbid – needs to use the restroom prior to sitting down to a 45-minute slideshow presentation.

Speaking of phones…this is a bit complicated, I hope I explain it right. Our desktop phones have small LCD screens, with the functions of the buttons on the screen above or beside the button. F’rexample, I’m looking at it now, and there are four real-world buttons under the screen, and “Redial,” “New call,” “Forward all” and “Do not disturb” on the LCD.

Say you’re on a call, and you need to forward it. You reach towards the “Forward all” button, but then another call comes in. There’s nowhere you can put it on hold, and in addition, the “Forward all” text has now vanished, so you’re only able to pick up the second call, which will either cut off the first one, or pop it into some queue elsewhere on the screen.

The guy who set this up had little more than a shrug when I pointed it out early on. “Yeah, that’s how it’s set up. There’s a way around it…” and he directed me to an online .pdf that was a page or so of dense type in which, for all I could tell, hopping on one foot and singing the Notre Dame fight song in Korean were steps 73 and 81.

Another fun thing we had to get used to in this phone system was that when you’re dialing a number, you start to hear the dial tone again after the third digit you press. “Oh yeah, that’s to let you know your line is connected.” Riddle me this, Batman, what was the dial tone when I first picked up the receiver indicating?