Monday, April 13, 2009

Whoa! That is Cold!

I have a kitty with a cold, and it is one of the funnier things I’ve witnessed lately. He can not figure out why he keeps sneezing, and whenever he does snot bubbles out his nose, halting him in his tracks. Last night he buried himself deep under the covers then couldn’t even purr because his nose was running so badly. When he feels a sneeze coming on he stops dead in his tracks to brace himself, but it still almost knocks him off his feet. Poor kitty, to be so sick for my entertainment … but I assure you I am highly appreciative of his efforts!

Anyway, one of our vendors fired our Sales guy a few months back, and has had a tough time filling the position (I don’t know why, considering the state of the economy, but they have), so his manager has been making all the sales calls in the meantime. Today the new replacement showed up.


I do not get the warm fuzzies when vendors do this; I get more the you’re-schedule-can’t-possibly-be-too-full-to-see-me’s, which I find a bit insulting. Maybe my schedule is exactly too full to see you. Ever thought of that? Howsabout you make an appointment, like the other 98% of the business world? Then I don’t have to stop what I’ve scheduled to accommodate you.

Yep, I was busy, but I welcomed her aboard anyway, seeing as we’re having a problem with the product and I want it cleared up yesterday and, truth be told, that’s most likely why she came out: she’s just obtained the position and wants to do well. Good on her.

So we walk through the situation while I take her on a tour of the areas of the plant she’ll need to know, and my Sanitation guy joins us as he’ll be a point of contact in future. We’re going over the equipment, which is the mix-and-delivery system for some HD cleaner, and what should have been a 15 minute meet-and-greet turned into a one hour discovery session.

I have a good feeling about this one: she’s enthusiastic and knows the product. Yay! We’ve pulled samples for testing, and come up with a three-prong plan of action. My Sanitation guy and I are ecstatic! Then, catastrophe; she reaches for a valve she has no business touching, and turns it as she says, “I wonder if there’s anything in this one?”

Um, yes. Yes, there was something in “that one”. It’s called water. It is shocking cold, wet, water. The kind that bursts full-force from … yeah, you guessed it … the nozzle attached directly to the effing valve YOU JUST TURNED!!! The same shocking cold wet water that then blasted directly into my face and chest!!


My very first cogent thought was, “Damn, this is funny!” … but my next thought was, “Why’s she laughing?” … and then I so very (very) much wanted to unleash a stream of invective the likes of which she’d never witnessed. I like to think I’ve got a good sense of humor, and accidents don’t particularly bother me (that’s what they are, accidents, get it?); but I sincerely do not like to be laughed at. I can handle it if I laugh first, signaling you that it’s okay to laugh with Lisa, she’s cool with the sitch. But if you laugh before I do, well, then you’re just laughing at Lisa, and that is a big stinkin’ no-no, my friend.

So I’m standing there in the washout bay, dripping wet (Sales rep shut the valve almost instantly upon realization of her folly, but those puppies are under a lot of pressure, so I got the full monty), with my Sanitation guy struggling valiantly not to laugh, and Sales rep practically rolling on the floor she was laughing so hard. And pointing. And cackling at (what felt like) the top of her lungs. At me. The funny wet one.

I tell you my head almost exploded. I’m pretty sure steam erupted from my ears. My Sanitation guy was having a hard time containing himself, and was waiting for me to laugh, then wondering why I wasn’t laughing, then really getting worried that I would never laugh and oh, shit, now what? But as I watched these thoughts scroll blatantly across his face, then I saw the humor, and a little giggle escaped my lips. Then a bona fide chuckle, followed by a genuine guffaw, and pretty soon the tree of us were laughing maniacally.

But here’s the thing; don’t laugh at me. I don’t like it. At least check to see I’m okay first! It’s like when you see someone trip and fall in the street. First response: “Whoa! Are you okay?” Second response (upon confirmation s/he really is okay): “Damn, that was funny! Could you do it again for the camera? I want to show my friends.”

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