Or To Mute Or Not To Mute
In my past life I was a "consultant". Which translates into: If you aren't a part of the problem, you can make a shit load of money prolonging the problem with bullshit "solutions" that will cause even bigger, more complicated problems and make other people's lives a living hell.
At some point in time I decided that being on the outer level of Dante's inferno wasn't as much fun as being IN Dante's most inner circle of Hell and made the leap to an in-house Analyst position. Translation: I was now the poor SOB who's life was made a living hell by consultants. Yeah, I never said I made smart career moves.
One of the things I learned about corporate America is "THE MEETING". The Meeting is code for: we are going to either sit in a conference room or sit on the phone and listen while someone from management either:
a) Tries to get us to drink the Kool-aid and think that whatever Bull-shit idea he/she is presenting is going to be the orgasmic life changing event they say it will be.
b) Shows us just how long a person can hold on to their will to live while being shown endless power points before jumping out of the 3rd floor window. (Which BTW is just high enough to cause some major damage, but not high enough to kill you. And you had better believe that my Satan-run former employer would have brought me a laptop and asked me to work on shit while I was being wheeled into the ICU.)
Anyway, I had to attend a big meeting one day with the "vendor/consultant/pain in my ass". This meeting included several members of my team and since we were all feeling especially lazy that day everyone dialed in from their own desk. (Instead of getting our fat-asses up and walking to the conference room to do the one speaker phone call. Our little passive-aggressive way of sticking it to "The Man" and his pocketbook.) Since I worked in cube-ville not only could everyone hear me on their phones, but the sound of my voice in real time as well.
The best part of the meeting was that I was now the "Client" and not the vendor, which really saved my bacon. During the call, Mr. Pain~in~My~Ass~Consultant (we'll call him Bill) was going on and on and on and on and on about something that was going to make my life seem like it was going to go on and on and on and on. Not to mention that "Bill" had a way of being condescending to even a post-it note and talked to you as though you had never heard the word college, let alone graduated from one. So, after about ten minutes of "Bill" talking and my nerves being shredded, I clicked what I thought was the code for muting the phone... and said "I AM GOING TO KILL HIM!!!!".
Only, muting the phone had about a ten second delay. Just long enough for my homicidal feelings to cross the sound barrier and the inter-state phone lines. Now, my boss couldn't hear me ask for a raise when I was standing two feet from her, but you can bet your sweet ass she heard THAT comment. After some really quick back stepping and some incredible Bullshit that even I am amazed I pulled out of a hat, the meeting concluded. I quickly checked my insurance policy to see if they covered "Foot-in-Mouth" disease and any injuries that I could incur while being incarcerated. Later I got to have a nice little "chat" with my supervisor about "appropriate" talk which included something about playing nice with other kids and how I should monitor my "inner voice" a little better.
But we all know how well that has worked in my life... :-)