Tuesday, August 30, 2005


My wife, kids, and I were sitting around the other night, chatting about everything and nothing, with the TV running in the background, when a commercial for eHarmony ran. Somewhat wryly, I told my wife that I love her in at least 29 different ways... a not-so-sublte jab at the 29 different dimensions that the matchmaking service measures in their alleged personality profile. My older daughter didn't get the joke, so we explained it to her. Minutes later, another eHarmony commercial came on. The wife and I looked at each other, laughed, pointed at the tube and exclaimed "Big-un, that's the commercial we were talking about."

"Dad, you and [stepmom] should do an eHarmony commercial."

"Sorry, kid, we didn't meet on eHarmony... we met at a wine tasting, remember?"

"Oh yeah. Can't you cheat?"

"Ummmmm... how would we cheat?"

"Well, you could sign up for the service now."

"But they'd know we're already married, kid."

"That's okay. You could both say that you were gonna cheat on each other, and signed up for eHarmony's service. Then you found each other's profiles, and when you met, you realized that you really did love each other after all. Think about it. You could say eHarmony saved our marriage."

Friday, August 26, 2005

It's Good to be a Guy

I'm a guy, and damn proud of it. I'm a beer-drinking, cigar-smoking, gadget-loving, fart-joke-telling guy and I love every minute of it. I don't play games in my relationships, I tell it like it is, I stand on my own two feet, and I freely admit my shortcomings.

What is it with men today? Am I the only one who thinks this whole metrosexual thing has gotten completely out of hand? It's bad enough that women spend billions of dollars per year on cosmetics, shape-enhancing clothing and body-enhancing surgery, but that's almost understandable. After all, women have been told for generations that "looking good" was one of the most fundamental things about being female. But now, men (though I hesitate to use that word in this context) are buying in to the same line of crap. They're out getting manicures, botox injections, and spending obscene amounts of money on the latest fashion trends. Hell, there's a guy I work with that wears make-up to conceal the bags under his eyes. Make-up!! I don't think of the bags under my eyes as flaws to be hidden, they're battle scars, received during my twelve-plus years as a parent and my nearly twenty years of being an underpaid cog in the corporate machine -- battle scars that I show with pride. What ever happened to driving a fast Camaro and wearing jeans and a T-shirt?

I'll tell you what happened. It was a combination of marketing and femi-nazis. It all started with the feminist movement. Women (rightly) began demanding equality. The idea of equality is great, I'm all over it. But somewhere along the line, women realized that equality required that women start doing some things that men traditionally did. I suppose they realized that they didn't want to be turned into men with wombs, so they started trying to feminize us instead. They started innundating us with the whole "you don't talk to me enough" crap. Next, they started trying to get us to wear pink. Before we realized what happened, we were wearing make-up and getting botoxed. What the fuck is wrong with us?!?

I think it's time for men to take back the penis. After all, what has surrendering our masculinity accomplished for us? Do women buy us drinks in bars? No. Don't they still get pissed when we fail to hold the doors open for them? Yep. Do we get laid more? I don't think so. Those metrosexual pseudo-males are just fooling themselves. Oh sure, they may have more female friends, but in the end, they're just that -- friends. Women say they want a sensitive, communicative, thoughtful man, but they still go after men who are men.

I'm not advocating that we try turn back the social clock... that a woman's place is in the home, that a man is the king of his castle, or anything like that. But I am saying that it's time for women to realize men that are NOT just women with a penis. We think different... we behave (or misbehave) different... we ARE different. Women, let us be men. Men, quit trying to be women.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

I Now Pronounce You...

We were married in an intimate outdoor wedding on Saturday. The wedding, and the reception the following day, couldn't have been any more perfect.

It rained most of the night before the wedding, but on Saturday morning the weather was relatively cool, the sun was shining, there was a little dew on the grass, and a little mist rising from the river behind us. We were married in an English garden, where the flowers were in full bloom, and the scene couldn't have been more perfect.

The ceremony was short and sweet, with my (now) father-in-law officiating the proceedings. It was everything we had both hoped it would be. The kids were stunning, and the bride was absolutely radiant.

During the ceremony, her father got to the part about wives subjecting themselves to their husbands. I looked at the now Mrs. Me and quietly quipped "Remember that." Nobody else heard it, but the three of us all got a laugh out of it. Next, her dad looked me straight in the eye and ever-so-slightly emphasized "Husband, love your wife." We all laughed again at that.

I've been excited about my wife since the moment we met. I've been in love with her for almost as long. I've been looking forward to marrying her since the day I proposed. But the reality of becoming her husband, and the wedding itself, far exceeded my wildest expectations.

I know that there will be tough times... that's part of being married, but I felt the presence of God on our wedding day, and He was pleased. If our ceremony was any indication, we will experience a long, blissfully happy marriage. I'm looking forward to every minute.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Goin' to the Chapel

... and we're gonna get married...

The little lady and I are getting married this Saturday. As you can probably imagine, I will be incredibly busy preparing for the pending nuptials. Considering how much I've got to do before the weekend, I won't be able to spend as much time posting here as I usually do. Something's gotta give, and my blog time is one of the sacrifices I'm choosing to make in order to make sure that my bride's day is everything she's imagined.

But fear not. I will drop in if the opportunity presents itself, and next week I will be back in all of my witty glory.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Today, I'm a Man

My daughter got her period last night. As a dad, this is a day I've been dreading from the moment she was born. As soon as the doc said "Congratulations, it's a girl" I've been worried about her growing into a young woman, getting her period, going boy crazy and subsequently, me having to beat the insolent lads off with a large stick... or more accurately, threatening them into submission by casually showing them my impressive gun collection. (The only problem with the latter approach is that I'm missing one small detail -- the impressive gun collection.) After all, I was a young, horny, irreverent, trying-to-get-laid punk at one time, so I think I know as well as anyone what my daughter's prospective boyfriends have in mind when they ask her out on a date. They think that paying for dinner and a movie is teen-speak for "bartering for sex." The better the dinner and movie, the better the chances for sex.

The night started out pretty quietly. This, however, was only because the kids were outside playing. My better half got home from work, the young-uns came in from playing, and we had dinner. From there, things got really hectic before I could even blink. My younger daughter had some sort of drama that I couldn't fix. My older daughter egged her on, and my wonderful lady was the only one who could calm my younger daughter down.

While she was talking to my younger daughter, I chatted with the older one. We chatted about nothing in particular, because I wanted to neither encourage nor chastise her for egging her sister on when sissy decided to cop an attitude. Then, right in the middle of our conversation about nothing, she says "Hang on, dad, I've got to poop." I kind of chuckled, because my older girl usually says that she needs to potty, or use the restroom or something like that, and always gives me shit (pardon the pun) when I say that I've got to take a crap.

So I'm hanging around the house by myself... partially grateful for the moment of peace, partially concerned about how my younger daughter is doing when I hear my older daughter....


I figured she ran out of toilet paper. (The kids never think to make sure there's toilet paper before they sit down on the pot.)

"Yeah kid?"

"I need you to come here!"

"What's up?"

"I got my PERIOD!"

"Are you sure?!?" (I asked this because she said this about a year ago, and it was a false alarm.) I poked my head in the bathroom. She actually showed me the toilet paper with the blood on it. I was a little shocked, but I was also convinced that it wasn't a false alarm this time.

Meanwhile, my younger daughter and my girlfriend are still chatting. I open the door to my younger daughter's room and tentatively poke my head in the doorway.

"Ummmmm.... honey?"


"Can I borrow you for a minute?"

"Sure." She meets me in the hallway. "What's up?"

"Well, [older daughter got her period. I figure you're a little better equipped to deal with it than I am. Do you wanna take over?"

"Sure." She heads for a closet and says "I've been preparing for this for a while."

I head into my younger daughter's room. "You okay [little one]?"

"Yeah dad."

We hung out on her bed for a while, hugging, talking about nothing. Eventually, we got into a tickle fight. I overwhelmingly had the upper hand, because I'm not very ticklish.

Next thing I knew, it was time for bed -- not for the kids, but for the adults. I don't make the kids go to bed at any certain time during summer vacation. The kids though, didn't want any part of it. The little one wasn't done trying to tickle me, and the older one was a little jealous over the fact that her sister and I were having a tickle fight. Now, considering that the older one just got done telling me that she's having her period, I felt a little odd about treating her like my little girl. But fortunately, I got over it pretty quickly. We all spent the next five minutes or so screaming, and tickling each other until we were all out of breath from laughing.

In the end, my older daughter's first period was really a non-event. She's still my little girl, and she's still the same kid she was only a few hours earlier. Part of me realized that she's growing up waaaaaaay too fast for my taste. Part of me realized that there was nothing I could do about it and vowed to enjoy her childhood while it lasts.

I've also got to give my woman a lot of credit -- more credit than words can express. She made the night a lot smoother for all of us. She didn't blink when the young 'un needed her. She didn't bat an eyelash when the other one got her first period. She handled the whole thing without breaking a sweat. She's legally a stepmom-to-be (nine days from now, she'll officially be a stepmom), but she handled the whole scene more adeptly than I could have -- especially the period part. Last night, she once again proved that she's as much of a mother as the kids' biological mom.

Last night was a strange trip. My kid got her period, so it was the realization of a long-dreaded moment for me -- a long-dreaded moment that turned out to be a non-event. I realized that my kids are growing up, and they're growing up too fast. I reacted by living in the moment and enjoying their childhood. I was reminded how awesome the Mrs.-to-be is as a parent -- not a step-parent, but a parent. It was stressful, but at the end of the day, I had such a natural high that I couldn't get to sleep.

Tuesday, August 9, 2005

We Need to Talk

It's a phrase that strikes terror in the hearts of the bravest of men -- the fear-invoking "Can we talk?" The only thing worse than the dreaded "We need to talk" is when you get a phone call or an email saying "We need to talk tonight." At least when "We need to talk" comes up, the agony is momentary and fleeting. When you hear "We need to talk later" your mind has more than ample time to come up with every worst-case scenario in the book.

In my relationship with the better half, I take pride in the fact that we have honest, open and consistent communication. But in the end, I'm still a guy. I can frequently tell when something's wrong, but I don't always catch it. And even when I do see that something's not right,I don't have women's intuition, so I almost always fail to pinpoint exactly where the problem lies. Of course, being a guy, I always know that I'm the problem. (That's a JOKE.)

I know that communication is key to any relationship. But that phrase is about as serious as it can get. That phrase scares me more than the prospect of going into a doctor's office for a checkup, and having the doctor walk back into the examination room, solemn-faced, after the tests are done and saying "You may want to sit down for this one..."

I'm not naive enough to believe that you can have a relationship without using "Can we talk" at all, but there should be some sort of tier system set up for this. Saying "Can we talk" when you're having a bad hair day is completely different than "Can we talk" about totaling the family minivan, which in turn is in a completely different category than "Can we talk" about gambling away the family's life savings, which still doesn't compare to "Can we talk" I've just hired an attorney and I'm moving out. What I'd like to recommend is something as follows...

Tier 1: "Have you got a second?" I'm having a bad hair day. This is a time where it's nothing really major, but you'd like your spouses undivided attention for a couple of minutes so you can vent. It's not your spouse's fault.

Tier 2: "Have you got a minute?" You forgot to put the toilet seat down, or I had a really bad day at work. It's something slightly more major, but not your spouse's fault, or it's nothing major, but it is your spouse's fault.

Tier 3: "Can we chat for a few minutes?" You've been leaving up the toilet seat all week, and I'm really tired of it. It's something slightly more major, and it's your spouse's fault, but it's still not a big deal in the grand scheme of things.

Tier 4: "Can we talk for a bit?" You've been spending way too much time with your friends, way too much money on beer, etc. This is relatively major, it's your spouse's fault, and if the behavior isn't changed, it could lead to some major relationship problems down the line. And leaving the toilet seat up in no way, shape or form will ever qualify for a tier 4 "Can we talk for a bit" statement.

Tier 5: "Can we talk?" You need to quit drinking. You need to quit spending all night, every night, in front of the computer. This is something that, if not handled immediately, severe damage to the relationship is imminent.

Tier 6: "Can we talk? You'll need to put the remote down." I caught you cheating. I know that you've drained our life savings on your gambling problem. This is something that, if not completely addressed immediately, the relationship will likely end.

This proposed tier system will help your spouse understand the severity of the problem you're trying to address, will lead to better communication over the long haul, help prioritize the whole "Can we talk" system, and prevent unnecessary terror on the part of the spouse hearing the dreaded phrase -- usually the man.

Monday, August 8, 2005

Sir, Yes Sir!

When I went to Boot Camp -- a little over a half of a lifetime ago -- one of the first things I heard was "When you speak, the first word out of your mouth will be SIR, and the last word out of your mouth will be SIR. Do you UNDERSTAND?!?"

"Sir, yes SIR!"

"I can't hear you!"

"Sir, yes SIR!"

Sure as hell, for the next three months, the first and last words out of my mouth were sir. There were a few exceptions... when I spoke to another recruit, I didn't have to say 'sir.' When I spoke to a female, it was ma'am instead of sir. I used gentlemen when referring to multiple men. I used ladies when speaking to multiple women... which didn't happen very often in boot camp.

Using gentlemen really threw the drill instructors for a loop.

[Saluting as I approached] "Gentlemen, good afternoon GENTLEMEN!!"

[Drill Instructor 1] "Recruit, what in the FUCK is GENTLEMEN?!?

[Me] "Sir, the word gentlemen is the plural of the word sir, SIR!"

[Drill Instructor 2] "Carry on, recruit."

[Me] "Sir, carry on, aye-aye, SIR!" And away I went, smirking on the inside. But I'm digressing.

I also learned in boot camp that all military officers are to be called 'sir' by all enlisted personnel. Between boot camp, and that knowledge, I grew to detest the word sir by the time I got out of the military. I was not brought up to automatically refer to my seniors as sir and ma'am. I was brought up that those words were signs of respect, and that respect was something to be earned, not something that automatically came with age, a commission in the military, or an education.

After I got out of the Corps though, a subtle change ensued. I discovered that once I was no longer required to use the word sir, it started flying out of my mouth, unbidden. It started with my bosses at my subsequent jobs. Then it rolled down to my co-workers. Eventually, I started calling waiters, checkers at the supermarket, gas station clerks -- everyone -- sir (or ma'am, if they were female).

It's not that I respected these individuals, per se. It's more like I didn't disrespect them, and since I didn't disrespect them, I could at least show them some semblance of respect. And I've noticed that this modicum of respect seems to go a long way. But I still hate being called sir. It makes me feel like my dad. But again, I'm digressing.

The point is, I used to hate saying sir because the word was designed to convey respect -- respect that I didn't necessarily feel, because the person I usually called sir didn't deserve the word. As time passed though, and I was no longer forced to use the word, a subtle change in my attitude occurred. It wasn't that sir was a sign of respect per se. It's more that using the word sir is showing a modest amount of respect -- just enough respect to convey that you don't disrespect the other person.

As my attitude shifted, and I began to use the word sir more often, I found that I received more respectful, polite and friendly treatment in return. When the Marine Corps forced me to show respect, I railed at the idea... probably because I had no choice in the matter. When I was no longer forced to show respect, it became second nature, and a whole world opened up for me. Once again, the Marine Corps gave me something that I can use for the rest of my life. It taught me respect. It taught me respect, despite the fact that I really didn't want to learn the lesson.

Friday, August 5, 2005

My Thoughts on Enzyte

Everyone's heard them... the commercials for Enzyte, "the once-a-day tablet for natural male enhancement." Every time I see or hear a commercial for Enzyte, I can't help but laugh. When I see the commercials on TV, I can't help but chuckle because the commercials are witty and amusing, and the perma-grin on Bob's face is just hysterical. I smirk when I hear the commercials because of the absurdity of "natural male enhancement" and I can't help but throw out a few involuntary guffaws at men's insecurity over their penis size.

Let's think about this for a bit. I'll admit that a lot of women think that penis size is a factor in sexual gratification, but every time package size comes up (no pun intended) in my conversations with women, they say that it's a factor, but it's not the end-all, be-all of a sexual encounter (thank God for that). But just for the sake of argument, let's assume that size really is all that matters.

If size were really all that mattered, and assuming that Enzyte did work as advertised wouldn't every man on the planet be using Enzyte? That's the thought that really gets me laughing my ass off. Let's picture it for a second. Little Joe discovers that Enzyte makes his schlong bigger. He gets more confidence, gets the women, and can... ummmm, deliver... when it's crunch time. Suddenly, Average John isn't getting the chicks and wonders why. Eventually, in a drunken stupor, Little Joe (who's not so little anymore) lets his little secret slip. "I'm taking Enzyte, the once-a-day tablet for natural male enhancement."

Average John now knows the secret and starts taking Enzyte. Now Little Joe (who's not so little anymore) and Average John (who's not so average anymore) are both more confident and they're getting all of the women. Suddenly, Big Jim's not scoring, and of course he's wondering why. Before you know it, Average John (who's not so average anymore) lets it slip to Big Jim (who's not so big anymore, because he's not on the Enzyte yet) about the magical pill known as Enzyte, the once-a-day tablet for natural male enhancement.

And soon, Big Jim (who wasn't so big anymore, because he wasn't on Enzyte) is now taking Enzyte too. Now, every man who's a man is taking Enzyte, the once-a-day tablet for natural male enhancement. So Little Joe isn't so little anymore, Average John isn't so average anymore, and Big Jim is in on the secret too, so he's not Big John anymore, he's Huge John... and relatively speaking, everyone's back where they started. Meanwhile, every woman on the planet is a little happier, "because size is all that matters" and Enzyte, the folks who bring you the once-a-day tablet for natural male enhancement is ecstatic. So are their shareholders. But again, relatively speaking, the guys are all back where they started, because everyone's member grew by such-and-such an amount. How could anyone with half a brain help but laugh at the thought?

I'll bet you thought I was going to endorse it, didn't you?

Thursday, August 4, 2005

Love is a Good Thing

Tonight's one of the first nights I've had alone with my sweetie for quite a while. Now, I've got to preface this by saying I love my kids, but at the same time, I love time alone with my honey too. Anyone who's a parent will surely understand this.

This isn't the first time I've been in love. Looking back, I'd say this is probably the third time I've been in love. But there's something different about this one. It's deeper... more natural... less complicated...

I'm not going to even discuss the first one, because that was somewhere between puppy love and real love. The second time I fell in love -- my first real love, was with my ex-wife. I was in love with her for twelve long years. I don't need to discuss why our relationship failed, but I will say that it was her actions that caused the divorce. For almost twelve years, I busted my ass to make the relationship work. She was demanding, argumentative, and irresponsible, but I loved her. I spent a lot of time walking on eggshells, wondering when the next drama would occur, but I loved her. When we parted ways, I was crushed and wondered if I would ever find love like that again.

After a time, the grieving became redundant, I decided to move forward with my life, and I started dating again. But one thing I knew was that I wouldn't "look for love." I knew that if I looked, I'd either be too picky, or that I'd end up settling. Neither option was appealing to me, so I decided to take it one day at a time. I figured I'd play the field, see what comes along, and ride the ride with no preconceived notions. During the ride, I dated a few women. Some of them were just plain fucked up. Some of them were good women, but the spark wasn't there.

But in the end, I lucked out... or, more accurately, God allowed me to meet the right woman. To make matters better, I didn't have to play the field for that long. We met at a wine tasting party and I knew almost instantly that she was special. I've discussed her a few times in earlier entries, so I won't rehash that. But I will say that she's more special to me today than she was when we met.

The love that we have is one of the most natural things that I've ever experienced. I can't gush about her enough. She's smart as a whip. She loves my kids. She's emotionally together and solid. The only reason I don't wonder "Why didn't I meet her first?" is the realization that if I hadn't, I wouldn't have my kids... and I wouldn't trade them for the word -- despite all I had to tolerate during my first marriage.

When I wake up in the morning, I look over at her, and I'm at peace. I can't help but reach over, caress her soft, milky skin, kiss her gently and be happy... even knowing that I have to go to work. When I get out of the shower, and she's moved to my side of the bed (because it smells like me), I smile and go all gushy inside.

When I get to work, I think about her periodically every day and all is right in the world. When I get the occasional email from her, it's even better. Sometimes I can't help but send her a quick note just to let her know I'm thinking of her.

When we get home from work, we always take a minute to just hug and look into each other's eyes. We don't immediately say anything, we just hold each other, and the stress of the day evaporates, and we're ready to take on the world... or at least relax for the rest of the evening, or play with the kids, or whatever.

There's nothing like laying together on the couch. Sometimes we talk. Sometimes we watch a movie. Sometimes we just "be together." But no matter what, it's as good as any high I've experienced in my life.

When we go to bed, she's the last thing I see at night. We always cuddle for a few minutes, and all is right with the world. On the rare occasion that I have insomnia, I can watch her sleep and I'm content.

Sure, we have our occasional off days. We don't argue though. We express our concerns and disagreements, but we always realize that we're in love, and that we're in it for the long haul. I've never experienced anything like it. Though I love my kids as much as I love her, it's different. Parenting is more confrontational, because kids naturally push their parents' limits. This is calm... soothing... comforting... exhilarating... LOVE. This is the woman I'm choosing to spend the rest of my life with. That said, I'm gonna get back to the couch and snuggle with my sweetie.

NOTE: Tonight's entry is a little different from most nights. This entry is a stream of consciousness, as opposed to me going back and editing what I'm saying. There's no checking for typos, no checking for grammatical errors, and no editing for clarity. Tonight, I'm speaking from strictly from the heart. It's probably a little more disjointed than most entries, but I'm talking about love

Tuesday, August 2, 2005

Let the Daggars Fly

I'm not a big fan of corporate politics. I realize that they exist, understand that they're not going away, and can play corporate politics as well as anyone. But the fact of the matter remains that I don't like it. Corporate politics impede progress company-wide, provide too much power to certain people that don't deserve it, and undermine the endeavors of competent, loyal employees. Though I realize that corporate politics is a fact of life if you're merely a cog in a company's wheels, I honestly can't think of any real benefit from that type of environment.

Well, corporate politics bit me in the ass today. Before I tell the story though, I've got to give a little background about my job. I'm an IT guy... the type that does a little bit of everything. I do everything from answering questions about how to perform a certain function in Microsoft Word, to configuring laptops when they arrive from our vendor, to making sure that email works properly, to making sure that our network talks to other networks. Like I said, I do a little bit of everything.

As an employee, I think I'm pretty damn competent in my job. Sure, I don't know everything, but considering how many hats I wear, it's nearly impossible to do and know everything. I'm a little bit irreverent (sometimes I'm a flat-out smart-ass), but knowing what I know about corporate politics, I know who I can be myself with, and who I have to play the game with.

Yesterday we had a new V.P. start. Through a comedy of errors, we didn't have his new laptop, cell phone and blackberry waiting for him when he started. Now in the grand scheme of things, this isn't a big deal. New hires always spend the first day or so learning the ropes. So the fact that his laptop wasn't ready didn't cause him any lost productivity.

I'm not going to say who, in case some of my co-workers read this blog entry, but somebody, somewhere in the company got her panties in a bunch that everything wasn't perfect when our new V.P. arrived. Now everyone in our department knew that we dropped the ball by not having things ready when Mr. V.P. arrived on the scene, and we jumped through hoops to make everything happen in less than one day. Our company is just large enough, and our department is just short-handed enough that making this happen in one day is no small feat. Though we deserved to get hassled for not having everything prepared before the new guy's arrival, we should also get kudos for making this all happen in less than eight hours.

Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch certainly didn't help things along with her constant "Is it done yet?" phone calls and emails. But I will give her credit, she was polite every step along the way. I should know, as I was the one she was calling and emailing for the status updates. Now, Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch is one of those people who not only likes corporate politics, she thrives in that environment. You know the type... she's a little overly friendly in your presence, dishes just a little scoop on what's going on with the higher-ups, knows all the gossip on all of the people in the building, takes her position a little too seriously, but because of her political savvy, she's got more power than she deserves. I know it seems like I'm digressing, but I'm going somewhere with this.

The point is, I know how Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch operates. She's personable, so I can't say that I don't like her per se, but I don't trust her, and consequently I don't have any respect for her. I do, however, realize her position in the political game, and give her the respect I need to give her in order to not make my life a living hell at my job. So, when Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch called or emailed me with these status requests, I quickly and thoroughly responded to the best of my ability. In the cases that I didn't know where things were at, I asked the person who did know to contact her and let her know where we were at. It was the best that I could do under the circumstances, and it was the best they could do. At the end of the day, the new V.P. had everything delivered to him, and I gave him a quick tutorial, providing him all of the information he'd need in the short-term, and giving him my business card so that he could contact me over the long-haul with any questions or concerns. He was very cool, and I look forward to getting to know him better.

So I come in to work today, and my supervisor pulled my department in for an impromptu meeting. Apparently, we were giving Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch attitude. Apparently, we "weren't positive enough," we offended her, and Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch contacted the Human Resources department about our collective attitudes. Our supervisor had to call us in to give us a little pep talk about our attitudes, and to make sure that this didn't happen again.

The supervisor is a great guy. I've got a lot of respect for him as a manager and as a person. He understood going into this meeting that the whole thing was bullshit. I was blindsided by the whole situation, but kept in mind the fact that it was Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch that instigated H.R.'s involvement, and took it with a grain of salt. It was a stark reminder that Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch apparently has some deep-seated insecurities, and that I need to continue treating her with kid gloves, but I didn't take anything personally. My co-workers, however, took things a little more personally. I mean they were upset. My supervisor and I reminded the co-workers who were involved, and tried to get them to understand that they can't possibly please Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch. We explained to them that the whole scene was an informal discussion, not a formal H.R. reprimand, and that this situation was nothing but reinforcement that Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch was to be treated like the queen she believes herself to be. I also reiterated, for the record, that while we dropped the ball and didn't get things delivered as expected, we still did the best we could under the circumstances, up to and including treating Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch as respectfully and courteously as we could. I reminded everyone there that sometimes it's possible to do your best and still fail... that it's possible to take a little failure, do the best you can with it, and still have it be a colossal failure in the eyes of other people.

In the end though, it was a matter of Ms. Panties-in-a-bunch flexing her political muscle, playing the system, and spanking our department's collective pee-pees. Let the daggars fly.