Category Archives: Office Antics

Light Sharing Be Damned!

I really am a huge fan of our new office.  Firstly, everything is shiny and new – who wouldn’t like that? The whole place was designed to be bright and open and thankfully not beige like our old office.  The crisp, clean and modern interior really does just feel nice to spend your days in. 

Due to the mantra of bringing more natural light into our space, HR sent out a memo regarding ‘Light Sharing’.  Essentially this is fictitious corporate jargon that means that they’ve planned the office in such a manner that allows for maximum natural light – accomplished mostly by putting offices and meeting rooms on the interior or short sides of the building.  Brilliant, and it works.  The aforementioned memo simply stated that due to the ‘light sharing’ concept, those lucky enough to be seated at a window were not to put down the blinds. Do not block that natural light that we paid some designer a pretty penny to let into our spaces, right?

One tiny flaw here though.  Those lucky ones (myself included, huzzah!) that are seated along a window happen to be forced to have their monitors actually backing onto the window – that’s where the dual monitor brackets are permanently attached to the desks. So I stare out a window, all day.  Most of this is lovely as I can actually see straight down King street and periodically gaze off at the Earl’s patio I can just see and dream of patio beer.  The downside, however, is that I’m staring due west – which is directly at the sun in the late afternoon.

Apparently those on the opposite side of the office have it much worse as they get full on morning sun, while currently I’m only dealing with about an hour a day. We will see how the seasons change this balance.

In the meantime, as soon as the sun hits my eyes I’m lowering the damn blinds. My retinas have enough issues as it stands. I also refuse to wear a visor at my desk to help me cope, which is a tactic my more rule abiding peers have apparently taken on.



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Filed under Funny Ha-Ha, Office Antics, Pictures Tell a Thousand Words


This doesn’t quite make up for missing the Festive Special party at Jillian’s house this year – but at least it brightened my day up!  Today was our annual company ‘Holiday Lunch’, and they served up the much loved Festive Special from Swiss Chalet.

While it was delicious as always, I was sad to not enjoy the additional 12 ounces of Chalet sauce that I would normally order.   However, the Company did toss in Cupcakes as well, which may have been overkill considering the Lindt chocolates that are already provided with the meal.

Dirty Bird, Swiss Pigeon, Shit Chalet, whatever you call it – its Festive to me!

I know I know, I didn’t finish my chicken.  But REALLY, how are you supposed to eat all of that chicky with that tiny little thing of sauce?  It just isn’t possible.


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Filed under Events in Review, Funny Ha-Ha, Office Antics, Pictures Tell a Thousand Words

Crazy Eyes

Some would wonder how I manage to hold onto my career when I show up to work looking like this:

Check out those pupils!

The fact that I’m a complete hypochondriac works in my favour sometimes – I’m pretty sure every already assumes I’ve just been to some sort of eye doctor before I even get a chance to tell them about the growth on my Retina.

The best part about going to the Opthalmologist is realizing I have everyone else there beat by at least two decades – wait, is that maybe the worst part? I’m a premature geriatric, this surprises no one.


Filed under Office Antics, Pictures Tell a Thousand Words

Lost in Translation

I’ve had my share of confused conversations – most of which tend to occur at the office.  Remember when a Senior Vice President called me a Drug Mule (sort of) in a meeting?

Well, now that I’m in the Land Down Under, I have some phrases I need to translate and store in my memory bank to prevent my tilted head, deer in the headlights look of confusion.  They may speak English, but we certainly don’t use words in the same way!

  • I’ve got to nut it out. Does not mean anything to do with male genitalia, seems to be a variant of ‘sort it out’ or ‘figure it out’.  I’ve heard this one at least five times in just over a week.
  • Cuppa.  Ok, that one is pretty easy – ‘Cup of Tea/Coffee’ – but when someone looks at me and just says Cuppa it doesn’t ring any bells yet.
  • Skinny Flat White.  Another coffee reference, coffee with foamed skim milk.  Not a latte, haven’t figured out the difference yet but one appears to be served in clear glass mugs.  The first time I ordered a coffee at breakfast, the lady said ‘What kind?’ I’ve been confused ever since.
  • Schooner. Pint of beer!  This one was incredibly valuable for me to learn, as I’d been making strange hand gestures at bartenders for a week until someone enlightened me.  Also good to know, apparently they’ll just give you a pint size unless you specifically ask for smaller.  I love this country.

So far, the Aussie’s pretty much speak English so it hasn’t been too difficult to fake my way through – and they mostly seem to speak at the same breakneck pace as I do, which works in my favour.  One comment, however, left me with a very telling look on my face that made everyone in the room stop and think about what I thought had been said.

Change Manager: We don’t want you feeling like a SHAG ON A ROCK

Nancy: *slightlyhorrifiedandsimultaneouslyconfusedlook* ?

Everyone: Awkward laughter

Shag on a Rock

Blush, apparently it means something akin to ‘Bump on a Log’…. not… well, you know.


Filed under Awk-ward, Funny Ha-Ha, How Embarrassing, Office Antics, Pictures Tell a Thousand Words

Panic at the Office

I was minding my own business this afternoon at the office, working my way through some annual (and horrific) spreadsheet reports and listening to some Pixies tunes off Youtube.  I heard the ‘ding’ of a new email come through and happily tabbed between Excel and Lotus – and there it was, an email bomb.

Sender: (InsertCompanyName)Learning Network

Subject: Assignment – ‘Proper Use of Email and the Internet’


Dear Nancy Francis:

You have been assigned the “Proper Use of Email and the Internet” online course.  Please complete this course within the next thirty (30) days. 

We welcome your feedback on all training.  Select “Evaluate” on your transcript to access the course evaluation.

I immediately assume that this has been manually assigned to me because someone has been eyeballing my internet usage.  Panic sets in:

  • Facebook – Not only is it fairly public knowledge that I’m a Facebook whore (I have a completely public profile), but I routinely have Facebook open all day at work and use the Chat feature shamelessly.
  • Gmail – Similar to Facebook, I leave a Gmail window open all day to keep an eye on my personal emails (the ones that aren’t directed at my biz address, which most are) as well access to their chat service.
  • Search History – We all know I’m a hypochondriac and am constantly googling, and thanks to situation that lead to my near infamous experience at Shopper’s Drug Mart I would just die if a coworker (or worse, a superior) had access to my cache
  • Youtube – Possible culprit.  Why burn the battery on my ipod when I can just listen to music online? Although I imagine there is probably a better source for doing so.
  • Obsessive Internet Use – Just in general. Banking, Travel Reviews, Booking Travel, Wikipedia, Discount Websites, Maps, Twitter, Menus, Research…
  • Blogging – Reading & Writing.  Enough said.

 Of course, I start thinking that if my usage was flagged because of some new policy about streaming video I would have a clear excuse – everybody knows I go bonkers and zone out for the month of October because of these reports.  But then my brain goes into overdrive – Will they look into my past usage? How much detail can they actually get? Who exactly looks at this information? Does my Boss know? Is this like a formal write-up or just a warning? Panic. Panic. Panic.

Just as I’m about to shut everything down, clear my cache and vow never to Facebook at work again, my coworker sputters out a nervous ‘Did anyone else get assigned some course?” The chatter then erupts around the office.

 I guess it wasn’t just me.  Crisis averted, back to my regularly scheduled programming.


Filed under Events in Review, Funny Ha-Ha, Office Antics

Less is More

I spend about 80% of my day right now thinking about moving and other general house stuff.  I sleep the other 20%.  Either than the logistics of the move itself, I’m really caught up in the whole idea of cleanliness and organization and how I’d like to improve in both of these areas.  

I’m what you would call a Clutter Bug.  I’m not down right messy, but its really hard for anything to look sufficiently clean when there are still a billion things on every counter.  I firmly have my parents to blame for this, as they keep everything and their style of décor is definitely.. well, busy.  Don’t get me wrong, my Parents have a beautiful home which is remarkably well decorated (why didn’t I get that gene?) and well kept, but there aren’t any clear surfaces anywhere.  Case in point: The Kitchen Table.  There is always a vase with fresh flowers, a fruit bowl, an antique cigarette box, a photo and a pile of mail on one end.  Always. This cluttery feeling is very homey to me and comfortable, but I think I need to get it under control a bit in my own environment.

My sister Sandy was infected with the Clutter Bug when she was younger, and then pretty much over night she sterilized her environment and hasn’t looked back.  Her homes have still had very warm touches to them, and there is definitely evidence of life everywhere, but its neat, clean and organized.  I want that. 

Jillian has this godly skill as well.  She apologized profusely about the ‘mess’ of her apartment when I was over last night, and either than a book or two lying around as evidence of where she spends her time, I honestly could see no mess.

Nancy, on the other hand, is drowning in stuff.  I love everything, and have a big difficulty throwing out little memories.  I’m not a hoarder, not even close, but I have enough of everything to satisfy a large family – not just one lone lioness.  Jillian and Eleanor went through my closet earlier this year and I chucked about 50 pounds of clothing, the closets didn’t show evidence of the lightened load.

My cluttery ways are not just inflicted on my home environment either, I definitely have a busy workspace as well.  So much so that my boss recently threatened to make me move to a new desk just to force me to have to purge some of my stuff while packing.  I quickly spent that afternoon tidying up and throwing away a lot of the ‘stuff’ that I usually just have pinned to my board or lying on my desk.  To give you an idea of my desk environment today:









I think I’ve made some progress.  Lets hope I do a better job at my new house!


Filed under Office Antics, Story Time

Nancy = Drug Mule

I recently discussed some funny things that have happened at my office, and awkward things that have been said – another doozy came out in a meeting this morning.

This was a small meeting with two very Senior Managers, two middle Managers and Myself.  We were discussing the legalities behind having Insurance policies issued in Canada printed in the United States – apparently an illegal endeavour.  One of the Big Cheeses’ then said “Its pretty much like smuggling large volumes of Coke into the country.”

So now Nancy is a drug mule.  Everyone laughed.  I think that was an unnecessarily hyperbolic reference and now slightly fear for my job security – and my freedom


Filed under Awk-ward, Office Antics