Archive for October 27th, 2010

By The Water Cooler !!


Those exclamations are justified. At least when it comes to me and my ‘office’ experiences. Foot-in-the-mouth-itis is a common ailment I suffer from. And now that Parul has opened a gateway to get hold of her book (pretty please , I Luuuurve your blog. Could you send that book over? No? You prefer reading the post first? Oh well. You asked for it 😀 ), I have no choice, but to disclose my office escapades (if you call it that, since I’m still employed (and not thrown out yet!!) ).

Here goes  –



So we are all sitting in a conference room, having a call with our on-site coordinators. The call goes on and on and on and everyone on this side is getting fidgety, eager to get out of the ice-cold conf-room and get back to their work.

But no one says anything. The on site coordinator drones on like a cassette recorder whose stop button doesn’t exist. I lose track of the content and in order to stay awake, concentrate on  a game of Sudoku from a friend’s mobile.

“…….and specially, we don’t want defects being raised from module <module_name> . We wont get any thanks for just the number of defects. Try and focus on….blah blah…blah….. Have I made myself clear? So <my_name>(who does all the defect-raising)), what do you have to say for it?”

And me, who was busy dozing, caught only two words out of the entire content….”Thanks” and “<my_name>”.

So obviously, being the generous person that I am, I said, “Thats not a problem , you are most welcome. I’ll make sure that we capture all defects from module <module_name>. And yeah, please don’t thank me for it. After all, its a part of my job profile. Ha Ha Ha”.


More silence.

Client : I’d like to talk to <my_name> after this call.





Once again, seated in a conf-room (I tell you, the root of the problem lies in these rooms. Its the atmosphere!!), tele-conferencing with the client (the same one with whom I’ve interacted with for the last ONE YEAR). The entire team is present, a major brainstorming session is in progress, when the client (on the other end of the line) , lets call him Ramesh, asks for my suggestion.

Me : I was thinking Suresh, what if ….

Here, I heard a lot of disturbance around me and people looking at me as if I’d lost it.

Me : (pressing the mute button) What?!!

A colleague : Dumbo, he’s Ramesh.

Me : Aarghh..Shit. Did I say Suresh?! Drat it (switching on the microphone again) Err…sorry about that Suresh, I got your name wrong.


Me : Shit.! !! Ooops Sorry. Err…umm…Ramesh, okay, so as I was saying…blah blah…

(after some time)

Client : The plan seems fine, how about the estimations?

Me : We can do like this Sur….Ram….Sur…Ram….Suresh…Dammit!!

Thud. Thud. Thud.

(that was me banging my head against the table)

Client : Ummm….My name is R-A-M-E-S-H. Until now I had no idea it was a tough name to remember.

Me : (now the butt of laughter around the room) Really sorry about that Suresh. Sheesh!! Gosh. I need a break. Sorry to interrupt, but it’s not my lucky day today. Kindly excuse me.

By now, everyone was doubling over with laughter….yeah, even my manager 😦

Client : (to my receding back) By the way, WHO is Suresh??

And you know what?? I have no idea 😦 . I don’t know ANYONE named Suresh. I’ve NEVER had a colleague OR a classmate by that name. I’m still not sure what happened that day 😦


FITM3 (well NOT technically, but more a case of bad timing)

This was when I was a relatively new employee. Also, I was new to chatting (at least on the chat-engine types 😀 )

So here I am, chatting with BFC on yahoo. I complain to her that my lead is a snotty oaf and she’s driving me up the wall. BFC is full of compassion and sympathy.

A while later, the lead calls out to me regarding some new work. I’m not sure how to do it. So she comes over to my desk. And while we are working on the issue, a pop-up from yahoo messenger appears on the screen. From BFC. Containing the text , ” Is your stupid lead still troubling you?”


The lead saw it. I saw it. Since she had the control over the mouse, I could only wait for the pop-up to disappear. Though my lead didn’t say anything then, she was royally ticked off. She made it a point to harass me to the extent of leaving the company, but that’s another story 🙂 .



I had a colleague and manager , in the same project who shared the same name. Lets call them both Ashish.

I was sitting late in office (since the manager wanted to review a mail, but he had conveniently left for dinner ) twiddling my thumbs for him to return. At one point, I was so ticked off that I ranted to my friend Ashish (not the manager) on chat. The crux of what all I typed was ,”Our Manager is a jerk. I’m so sick of him bossing me around that I almost plan to report him to the Delivery Head”.

And as usual, I sent it to THE manager himself.


The matter was shoved under the carpet with the manager and me pretending it never happened. Though ALL my friends had come to know of the incident and were laughing themselves silly over me.

Luckily, there was no action taken. I quit within a few weeks……it was all the pressure of something NOT happening 😀


BTW, a quick refresher course on the rules of the contest :-

  • You need to write a post telling a story or an anecdote based in an office. It could be about you, your spouse, kids, neighbour, whoever – it just needs to be based in an office. It can be funny, serious, somewhere in between, but it needs to be based in an office. It can feature a single protagonist or multiple characters, but it…yes, I know, you got it.
  • You need to link to her post
  • You need to put By The Water Cooler in the title of your post
  • You need to leave her a link to your post in the comments section
  • If you don’t have a blog, leave her your entry in the comments section and it will be counted

Good luck 🙂

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