Total Perspective Vortex
What really happened to Trillian? Theories abound, but you can see what she's really been up to on this blog. If you're looking for white mice, depressed robots, or the occasional Pan Galactic Gargleblaster you might be better served here:

Otherwise, hello, and welcome.
Mail Trillian here<

Trillian McMillian
Trillian McMillian
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Women, The Internet and You: Tips for Men Who Use Online Dating Sites
Part I, Your Profile and Email

Part II, Selecting a Potential Date

Part III, Your First Date!

Part IV, After the First Date. Now What?

"50 First Dates"

Don't just sit there angry and ranting, do something constructive.
In the words of Patti Smith (all hail Sister Patti): People have the power.
Contact your elected officials.

Don't be passive = get involved = make a difference.
Find Federal Officials
Enter ZIP Code:

or Search by State

Find State Officials
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or Search by State

Contact The Media
Enter ZIP Code:

or Search by State

Words are cool.
The English language is complex, stupid, illogical, confounding, brilliant, beautiful, and fascinating.
Every now and then a word presents itself that typifies all the maddeningly gorgeousness of language. They're the words that give you pause for thought. "Who came up with that word? That's an interesting string of letters." Their beauty doesn't lie in their definition (although that can play a role). It's also not in their onomatopoeia, though that, too, can play a role. Their beauty is in the way their letters combine - the visual poetry of words - and/or the way they sound when spoken. We talk a lot about music we like to hear and art we like to see, so let's all hail the unsung heroes of communication, poetry and life: Words.
Here are some I like. (Not because of their definition.)



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11/17/13 12/1/13 - 12/8/13 12/15/13 - 12/22/13 12/29/13 - 1/5/14 6/29/14 - 7/6/14 9/14/14 - 9/21/14 9/21/14 - 9/28/14 10/12/14 - 10/19/14 11/23/14 - 11/30/14 12/7/14 - 12/14/14 12/28/14 - 1/4/15 1/25/15 - 2/1/15 2/8/15 - 2/15/15 2/22/15 - 3/1/15 3/8/15 - 3/15/15 3/15/15 - 3/22/15 3/22/15 - 3/29/15 4/12/15 - 4/19/15 4/19/15 - 4/26/15 5/3/15 - 5/10/15 5/17/15 - 5/24/15 5/24/15 - 5/31/15 6/14/15 - 6/21/15 6/28/15 - 7/5/15 7/5/15 - 7/12/15 7/19/15 - 7/26/15 8/16/15 - 8/23/15 11/6/16 - 11/13/16 6/24/18 - 7/1/18

Highlights from the Archives. Some favorite Trillian moments.

Void, Of Course: Eliminating Expectations and Emotions for a Better Way of Life

200i: iPodyssey

Macs Are from Venus, Windows is from Mars Can a relationship survive across platform barriers?
Jerking Off

Get A Job

Office Church Ladies: A Fieldguide

'Cause I'm a Blonde

True? Honestly? I think not.

A Good Day AND Funyuns?

The Easter Boy

Relationship in the Dumpster

Wedding Dress 4 Sale, Never Worn

Got Friends? Are You Sure? Take This Test

What About Class? Take This Test

A Long Time Ago, in a Galaxy Far Far Away, There Was a Really Bad Movie

May Your Alchemical Process be Complete. Rob Roy Recipe

Good Thing She's Not in a Good Mood Very Often (We Knew it Wouldn't Last)

What Do I Have to Do to Put You in this Car Today?

Of Mice and Me (Killer Cat Strikes in Local Woman's Apartment)

Trillian: The Musical (The Holiday Special)

LA Woman (I Love (Hate) LA)

It is my Cultureth
...and it would suit-eth me kindly to speak-eth in such mannered tongue


It's a Little Bit Me, It's a Little Bit You
Blogging a Legacy for Future Generations

Parents Visiting? Use Trillian's Mantra!

Ghosts of Christmas Past: Mod Hair Ken

Caught Blogging by Mom, Boss or Other

2003 Holiday Sho-Lo/Mullet Awards

Crullers, The Beer Store and Other Saintly Places

Come on Out of that Doghouse! It's a Sunshine Day!

"...I had no idea our CEO is actually Paula Abdul in disguise."

Lap Dance of the Cripple

Of Muppets and American Idols
"I said happier place, not crappier place!"

Finally Off Crutches, Trillian is Emancipated

Payless? Trillian? Shoe Confessions

Reality Wednesday: Extremely Local Pub

Reality Wednesday: Backstage Staging Zone (The Sweater Blog)

The Night Secret Agent Man Shot My Dad

To Dream the Impossible Dream: The Office Karaoke Party

Trillian Flies Economy Class (Prisoner, Cell Block H)

Trillian Visits the Village of the Damned, Takes Drugs, Becomes Delusional and Blogs Her Brains Out

Trillian's Parents are Powerless

Striptease for Spiders: A PETA Charity Event (People for the Ethical Treatment of Arachnids)

What's Up with Trillian and the Richard Branson Worship?

"Screw the French and their politics, give me their cheese!"

Mail Trillian here

Trillian's Guide to the Galaxy gives 5 stars to these places in the Universe:
So much more than fun with fonts, this is a daily dose of visual poetry set against a backdrop of historical trivia. (C'mon, how can you not love a site that notes Wolfman Jack's birthday?!)


Alliance for the Great Lakes

Hot, so cool, so cool we're hot.

Ig Nobel Awards

And you think YOU have the worst bridesmaid dress?

Coolest Jewelry in the Universe here (trust Trillian, she knows)

Red Tango

If your boss is an idiot, click here.

Evil Cat Full of Loathing.

Wildlife Works

Detroit Cobras

The Beachwood Reporter is better than not all, but most sex.

Hey! Why not check out some great art and illustration while you're here? Please? It won't hurt and it's free.


Kii Arens

Tim Biskup

Jeff Soto


Get Fuzzy Now!
If you're not getting fuzzy, you should be. All hail Darby Conley. Yes, he's part of the Syndicate. But he's cool.

Who or what is HWNMNBS: (He Whose Name Must Not Be Spoken) Trillian's ex-fiancé. "Issues? What issues?"

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

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Reading blogs at work? Click to escape to a suitable site!

Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Smart Girls
(A Trillian de-composition, to the tune of Mamas, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys)

Mama don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
Don’t let them do puzzles and read lots of books
Make ‘em be strippers and dancers and such
Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
They’ll never find men and they’re always alone
Even though men claim they want brains

Smart girls ain’t easy to love and they’re above playing games
And they’d rather read a book than subvert themselves
Kafka, Beethoven and foreign movies
And each night alone with her cat
And they won’t understand her and she won’t die young
She’ll probably just wither away

Mama don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
Don’t let them do puzzles and read lots of books
Make ‘em be strippers and dancers and such
Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
They’ll never find men and they’re always alone
Even though men claim they want brains

A smart girl loves creaky old libraries and lively debates
Exploring the world and art and witty reparteé
Men who don’t know her won’t like her and those who do
Sometimes won’t know how to take her
She’s rarely wrong but in desperation will play dumb
Because men hate that she’s always right

Mama don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
Don’t let them do puzzles and read lots of books
Make ‘em be strippers and dancers and such
Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be smart girls
They’ll never find men and they’re always alone
Even though men claim they want brains

Life(?) of Trillian

Saturday, May 22, 2004  
"Dear Trillian,
I found your blog while searching for an internet dating site. I (laughed my ass off) over Women, the Internet and You. After I stopped (laughing my ass off) I realized there is some good advice in there. Your tips are fantastic. I followed your advice and within a few weeks of posting my profile I met a girl I like a lot. I had three successful first dates where I used your dating tips. The fourth date was when I met (Her). I never believed in (all that) love at first sight (crap) but know I think it's true. I can't thank you enough for the sound advice.

How's it going for you? Are you really going to have fifty first dates? Have any of them been close to what you're looking for? Do they follow your advice?


People helping people, one blog at a time.

Changing minds, changing lives, one blog at a time.

What's the use of getting sober when you're just gonna get drunk again?

Erm, right. Big Beaver is one of a few readers who tried some of my profile and dating advice with positive results. Imagine. Dating advice from a woman netting positive results. You men out there seem so shocked by this. Women write to thank me, hoping their next date will have read my tips. Their words are tinged with relief. When men write me to thank me, their words are tinged with shock and disbelief. Men out there who have scoffed my very simple little ideas which can easily be incorporated into any man's existing bag of dating artillery: Are you really achieving the dating results you want? No? Do what Big Beaver and others have done and try a few of my ideas. Your date will thank you. And you don't have to thank me. It's my gift to the dating Universe.

Maybe all that positive karma will come back to me.

Maybe I'll date a guy who has read or heard about my tips and isn't afraid to put them into use.

Until then, it's onward into the second half of 50 First Dates.

That's right, if you haven't been playing along at home, I have reached the half way mark.

A mid term progress report?


The short version: Dating really sucks.

Maybe that's too harsh.

Unfair, even.

Dating is difficult for me.

Always has been and apparently always will be.

What this exercise is teaching me is that I am destined to be alone.

Not because of my high standards.

Remember, I'm going out with (almost) anyone who asks or agrees to meet for a date.

And when I say (almost) anyone, I mean (almost) anyone. I have tried to be somewhat selective in terms of interests, because if there's no way we're going to hit it off on any level I'm not going to meet for a date just to rack up numbers on my list. The whole point of this endeavor is to meet people. Get out there. Mingle. Go on some dates. Hopefully make a few friends and maybe, oh wouldn't it be grand, meet a man who is special and maybe even, well, you know.

Prove to myself and the Universe there are nice, intelligent, witty, kind men out there who are single and ready and willing to date and who may even be open to a long term committed relationship.

I have some some nice men. Generally, so far, they've all been nice. In their own ways. Apart from a few no shows and a few of whom I should have trusted my initial instincts and never agreed to meet, they've been nice. No serial stalkers, no homicidal freaks, no prison tethers. Nice guys. Guys whom I would not hesitate to hook up with a woman more perfect for them than I. Seriously. Apart from a few notable exceptions, I would not hesitate for a second to unload, erm, refer the men I've met to another woman. A woman I like. A friend, even. They've been nice, good, employed (or employable) men. On paper most would be considered good catches. And they are good catches - for someone other than me.

Because as I said from the start, in the end, it all comes down to chemistry.

When I'm with HWNMNBS (Spare me the sighs, okay? I'm making a point.) it's there. It is that elusive thing we all hope to have with a partner. It's an unspoken (It needs no words) understanding, a laugh so hard you cry and your stomach hurts, a meeting of minds, a sincere interest, concern and respect for the other person.

And no, no, no, no, NO! I have not been comparing my dates to HWNMNBS. I strive to get into an anti HWNMNBS frame of mind before I go out on a date. Wait. Not anti-HWNMNBS. Just void of HWNMNBS.

I start out well. I really do. I consider this an huge improvement. I start out void of HWNMNBS. I really do.

So far, however, by the end of the date (or varying degrees during the date) I end up in an "I know no one is ever going to be HWNMNBS, but I'd like to at least feel something for the guy. I'd like to feel like I want to see him again. No, I don't need to HAVE to see him again, but it would be nice to look forward to seeing him again" place. Apart from BritBarrister (a complete nonstarter because of the distance. and. well. a few other things) I haven't gone home thinking, "I hope he calls!" or "I can't wait to see him again!" For the most part I've gone home relieved to have the date over or, more commonly, collapsing into a puddle of tears of self pity because I miss HWNMNBS. He's not perfect, very far from it, but we have It. And I miss It. And so far not one man I've met has so much as a hint of It. I am hoping to meet someone who makes me forget about HWNMNBS. Someone different, or better or just another It invoking someone.

I haven't met that man. Or if I have met him, he hasn't been interested in me.

That's right. It's not all about me, me, me. It's about the men I meet, too. There have been some "hmmmm, maybes" but they were not interested in me. I'm not their It. I'm not Her.

But. I have met some very nice people. I hope I've begun a few friendships.

And get this shocking revelation: Most of the men I've met are in pursuit of It, too. Ah. Behold the beauty of internet dating: State your intentions right up front. Everyone knows what the other is endeavoring to find. And because I clearly state I am looking for a long term relationship/marriage and that I want children, most of the men who write me, and the men I pursue, are also looking for a long term relationship/marriage and want children. At the very least internet dating separates us into those categories. Mates to the right, players to left. And so far, much to my surprise, the men who write showing interest in me are not players, not looking for a quick and easy lay, no strings attached. They want what I want. It.

Yes. Some want It to be wrapped in a beautiful, slim petite blonde or Asian package (so why do they want to meet me?I keep wondering), but most of them are beyond physical must lists. Sure, of course, all men want a really pretty woman. But, the thing about online dating is that you can screen out men who want a really pretty woman exclusively. Or rather, those men can screen their prey before ever bothering the rest of us. Those of us who are not slim, petite blondes or Asians. Those of us with half a functioning brain, at least occasional wit, sincerity and kindness.

Generally, the men I've met have been (or have pretended to be) interested in getting to know me beyond the boundaries of the bedroom. (A few have tried a maneuver or two, which I will admit gave me little boosts to my self esteem. "Hey, there is at least ONE man on this planet who wants to have sex with me at least once." Okay, so no, that's not so much self esteem as desperation, but it's not as if I've had sex with those guys. That would be desperation.) Most of them ask questions and listen to my answers. Most give thought to the questions I ask them. Most seem to care about things beyond sex and dating. Most admit they hate dating. Most admit they just want to find Her and leave bachelorhood far behind. Sure, in some cases that's a well worn line. But unless my intuition is in need of serious adjustment, the men I've met are being honest and sincere when they admit that.

But of course She is as elusive to them as It is for me. I'm truly not sure which is worse: To be searching for Her, hoping each date will be Her, but not finding Her. Or having It, losing It, knowing full well where It is but not being able to have It. I have an advantage (or disadvantage) over many people, I know what It feels like. I have a scale of measure. People who have never had It look deep into their date's eyes, try to search their soul to see if It's in there somewhere. Yes. I know they are judging me, in most cases much more harshly than I am judging them. I know this is all a game. They somehow know they'll know when they meet Her (and they might - hey, let's face it, HWNMNBS and I "just knew") and when I'm not Her some are disappointed (visibly), others are sadly resigned, and still others live in the moment, make the most of the date and are open to friendship.

There have been some issues I didn't expect to face, or at least as deeply as I have experienced since 50 First Dates began. One aspect of "getting back out there" I was dreading was the whole competition factor. There are lots of very, very pretty women. Single pretty women. Spare me the "we're all beautiful, Trillian" mail. We're all adults. We all know there are pretty women and there are the rest of us. We all know men are sociologically and even biologically programmed to notice pretty women. Biologically? Yes. It's all about breeding. Sex can be all that romantic stuff but, really, it's purpose is to breed and continue the species. Pretty child bearing age women attract men. Pretty flowers attract the bees. There are also very intelligent, witty, wealthy pretty women. Lots of them. I know, you guys are saying, "Where? Where? Show me!" Trust me, they're there. I'm in marketing. I am programmed to know and assess the competition. And my competition is fierce. My only advantage is that I'm not as picky as many of those women.

Yes. Issues I knew were lurking under the surface have oozed out and I am once again confronting lifelong battles I had hoped were behind me. Self esteem. Self worth. Anorexia.

I've often thought I'd like to get back to where I was before HWNMNBS so that I could pretend it just never happened. Well. Here I am, sort of, and going back there means dealing with the same unhealthy emotional and physical traps of being an adult trying to date and meet a person who at the very least doesn't bug you and who is interested enough in you to consider dating.

Confidence? Ha. You go on a date and tell me what your level of confidence is.

This is why I'm so bad at dating and why I hate it. I am not the tiniest bit competitive. I've always let other people win games, races, men...because it matters more to them than it does me. I don't care about winning. For me it's about the fun of the game or race or man, enjoying the experience. I don't have to win to enjoy a game or race or man. Well. I mean. I enjoying "winning" HWNMNBS, but there's a good point: It wasn't a game.

All those pretty girls I see around are vying for men, too. They want It, too. And they're equipped with performance gear I just wasn't built with.

On one date my date hooked up with a very pretty, cool girl right in front of me. He ignored me and ogled every pretty, hot, cool girl at the concert, eventually hooking up with one as I stood there next to him.

Don't talk to me about confidence.

Don't talk to me about how we're all beautiful.

Don't tell me he's a jerk.

Have that happen to you and see where your confidence is as you leave the club.

Yes. The ugly underbelly of dating.

"Gosh, Trillian, you didn't tell us you were ugly. That might have made a difference in what we thought about your 50 First Dates or your advice or even whether or not we read your blog."

For the record, I am not barking ugly. There are men who find me attractive. I occasionally have a good day. And I still get nice assed now and again.

But here's the thing all women (and many men) go through when dating: Our self esteem gets all tied up into whether or not the date likes us, and for women, if he finds us attractive. If he doesn't find us attractive believe me, even the prettiest girl in the world will spend time hating herself or at least one feature of herself.

"I wouldn't be interested in someone so insecure" you protest.

Swut you. We're all insecure when it comes to dating.

I am very confident in other aspects of my life, aspects over which I can control: My career (or lack thereof), my intelligence (or lack thereof), friendships, my family, how I manage my life, my behavior...but the attraction of man is completely, utterly out of my control.

Rejection sucks, but I've gotten used to it - a long time ago. But the thing about dating, again, still, is having to deal with increased rejection in my life. Putting yourself out there, being vulnerable.

Yes. I do it every day just by waking up and going to work and living my life. If you read this blog, you know I'm not exactly shying away from putting myself in the position of being stupid or vulnerable. But willingly adding increased rejection potential by trying to date and meet men takes a certain amount of fortitude. And for me, having had to face the biggest rejection a person can face, having been left nearly at the altar by the love of their life, that fortitude is not easily maintained. The jerk who ogled and picked up another woman while on a date with me is a jerk, of course, and not worth noting or a second more of my time. Of course. But thrown into the pile of rejection I've faced in various aspects of my life, it's more difficult to refrain from falling into the "am I really so awful? what's wrong with me? why? why? why? just one man who loves me that's all I want" trap.

I know this will sound neurotic and insecure and probably a side of me most of you had no clue existed, a side many of you would rather not know. This is the side of me who hangs out on Miss Havisham. This side is surfacing because of the dating progress report.

I promised to observe and report, the good, the bad and the ugly. And in fairness to the Universe, the men I meet, and unbiased journalism, that observing and reporting goes for me as well as my dates.

Should you be thinking it's all a grand lark or game or, FUN for me, it's not. There have been concerns that I may be using these men for my own silly purposes, that I am not truly invested in the men or dating, that I am just looking for good copy. I hope we have now established that I am clearly invested beyond my silly 50 First Dates purposes.

Also I wanted to publicly address this apparent common phenomenon of picking up another woman while on a date. I have had a lot of mail from women who have had this experience. Maybe those of you who practice this behavior (or think about it) will think twice about what you're doing to your date. Sure, of course it doesn't matter to you what your date does or how she feels, you're never going to see her again anyway. But if this is a pattern of behavior for you, or if you don't see anything wrong with it, you might want to look at what you really want from a date. If you say you want The One in your profile, yet you ditch dates for a pretty, easy lay, perhaps you're not really ready or right for a committed relationship with anyone other than Trojan®.

For those of you who have been playing along at home and noticed a decline in dates, it's because work is so out of control right now. And now, because I've rested on my broken ankle laurels as long as I possibly can, I am going to have to do a lot of work related travel in the coming weeks, so I won't be trying to date as much for a few weeks.

Onward: 50 First Dates. Mid term exam behind us, the real work is just beginning.

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11:21 AM

Thursday, May 20, 2004  
What do men do on their commute to work which causes them to zoom straight to the men's room without stopping in their offices or take off their coats? What gives, guys? What are you drinking or eating on your way to work? Or, what's going on in there? I don't ever want to hear another comment, lame joke or remark about women and the bathroom. The things I've seen and heard in the past four days sitting in front of the men's room has given me a whole new perspective on men.

And it's not a favorable perspective.

It's a perspective I would have preferred to not see.

Women do a lot of things in bathrooms. I admit this. The ladies' room in my last office was more a Swan makeover studio than bathroom. However, in all the years I've been working, I have never, not once, seen a woman take any part of a newspaper into the ladies' room. Much less spend swut knows how long in there reading it or doing whatever it is men do with newspapers in the bathroom.

First: Ewww. Gross.

Secondly: You have job to do for the company, once you do your personal job in the bathroom, should you not be in your office doing your job for the company? If you can waste at least a half hour in the morning in there, are not concerned about the apparent lack of work or ease of your job? You do realize companies look at that sort of thing: What jobs can be reduced to part time or eliminated altogether. (Don't forget, I AM Firedstarter, I know a thing or two about this.) If you think no one notices or cares that you are spending a half hour every morning with the paper in the men's room, and another half hour or more in the afternoon at the vending machines, guess again. Sort of gives new meaning to getting canned.

Thirdly: I could be completely wrong about this, but I'm guessing it's not the most pleasant place in there. Why would you want to spend any more time than necessary in the men's room?

Fourth: Is the men's room really the place you want to carry out conversations with co-workers? Underlings? Your boss? Maybe I'm uptight, but the LAST place I want to have any conversation with anyone is the ladies' room. I make associations with places. I remember conversations not only for their content, but by their surroundings, the whole atmosphere. Do you really want people to remember a conversation and the place it took place: The third stall in the men's room? Not the most evocative place.

Fifth: Ewwww. Gross.

Sixth: (This is more of a plea than a point) Can you please do all your zipping up, adjusting of anatomy and hitching of waistbands and wedgie seams BEFORE you leave the men's room? Please?

My favorites by far are the guys who fold their newspapers like a road map and stick down the front or back of their trousers. I've seen this maneuver before, but I had no idea how popular it is.


To keep the newsprint off your hands and in your pants where it belongs?

To hide your newspaper so no one knows you're reading the paper in the men's room? (I've got news for you: You're not hiding it from anyone.)

To keep your hands free for other activities?

It may sound like I'm paying too much attention to the comings and goings at the men's room. I have no choice. My "temporary office" is a cube which opens directly in front of the men's room. The men's room for an entire floor. And my "temporary" desk looks out of the cube and to the men's room. Consequently I feel like the men's room attendant.

If I am not moved into my "real" office by June 7, I am going to set an array of male products on my desk: Various colognes, after shave, pomade, Binaca, hand towels, condoms, tip basket and maybe even a shoe shine booth.

A guy I used to date liked a particular restaurant because they sold cigars in the men's room. He didn't smoke, but he liked the idea. Men doing manly things like smoking cigars and going to the bathroom.

If I can get my hands on some Cubans I might be able to earn a little extra money.

I can't wait to have a client visit the office. I've already had this conversation twice:

"Hey, nice digs! Let's see your new office!" the client will innocently enthuse.

"Erm, well, I really haven't had time to unpack or get settled, let's just use the conference room." I say politely.

"Awww, come on, don't keep that view to yourself! I know you've just moved, won't look at the dust!" the client rather annoyingly pushes.

"No, really, I'm sorry, it's just a huge mess over there (it is), there's no place to sit (there's not) and we're trying to keep the halls as clear as possible for the moving guys (we are). We're having an office warming party next month, I'll be sure you get an invitation."

Somehow I don't think our clients would be at all impressed to discover the creative driving force of the company, and the person handling their business, is sitting in a cube in front of the men's room.

But maybe that's just me being uptight and worrying too much about appearances.

Which is what my (needs a new nickname) boss told me.

Okay you pig, go right ahead, laugh that Betty/Barney Rubble laugh of yours, you run along to your blissfully ignorant and shockingly crude world of yours. Have a Twinkie. And a shot of Paco Rabanne.

7:47 AM

Wednesday, May 19, 2004  
I recently did something I swore I would never do. Well. Maybe not "swore" as much as "never really gave any thought to..."

I'll just have out with it:

I bought a new television.

Why would I swear to never buy a new television? Or at least not give any thought to buying a new television?

Because I don't watch a lot of television.

Oh there are a few shows I have enjoyed.

And I do like movies.

Oh boy do I like movies.

And that was the driving force for my recent purchase and the catalyst for a chain of events the likes of which can only be described as the domino effect felt 'round the country.

For want of movies, a DVD player was purchased.

For want of DVD player hook-up, a television was purchased.

For want of a DVD hook-up to the new television, cables were purchased.

For want of a place to set the television, DVD player and VCR with easy cable access, a television stand was purchased.

And so it was that I spent far too much time of my life procuring a television and peripheral necessities.

I'll back up a few months.

I have a DVD player on my Mac at home. This is how and where I have been watching DVD's. Cool. Oooh. Ahhh. We're all so impressed. Yeah whatever.

I have a super cool flat screen big monitor so it hasn't been a hardship to watch movies on my Mac.

Except that I have a comfortable living room, and occasionally friends come over and it might be nice to watch a movie while relaxing on the couch.

You know, like normal people.

This presented a two-part (or three-part depending on your opinion) challenge.

Part I
My television is a 13" diagonal my sister cast-off to me. When I was 14. She'd been using for a few years as a spare and no longer needed or wanted it, she replaced her spare with a better set.

I lived a bunch of different places, on a few continents, and the 13" diagonal Sharp (with separate UHF dial and telescoping rabbit ear antennae) stayed at my parents' home base, used by me when I visited. The rest of the time I never had, much less purchased a television. If I wanted to watch television I went to a friend's place or watched at work. (this is not unusual in my business, there are people who have the job of advert watcher - they are paid to watch and review adverts by competing companies and agencies) When I moved to Chicago my parents showed up with a load of stuff they thought I might want or need. Among that stuff was the 13" diagonal Sharp (with separate UHF dial and telescoping rabbit ear antennae) and a new VCR purchased specially as an apartment warming gift. My father and I spent two hours and two trips to Radio Hack figuring out the daisy chain of adaptors and cables and splitters required to attach that new spanking VCR to my old 13" diagonal Sharp (with separate UHF dial and telescoping rabbit ear antennae). We got it in the end, and I have been viewing VHS movies on the 13" diagonal Sharp (with separate UHF dial and telescoping rabbit ear antennae) ever since. Well. Until I got the DVD drive on my Mac.

Part II
All the video stores in my neighborhood have quit carrying VHS movies.

(Potentially) Part III
I don't have cable access.

I'm not getting into the why of this. I just don't have it, okay?


Parts I, II, and III
Really old television, VCR, no cable.

My kind hearted brother gave me a DVD player.

Naturally the DVD player could not be attached to the 13" diagonal Sharp (with separate UHF dial and telescoping rabbit ear antennae). No amount of daisy chaining adapters, splitters or in home A/V cobbling was going to get the signal from the new DVD player to the 13" diagonal Sharp (with separate UHF dial and telescoping rabbit ear antennae). The guy at Radio Hack tried to figure out a way, poor geek had out the catalogs and warehouse inventory sheets, but couldn't come up with the integral piece required. He is going to use it as a final exam for the final exam in the home electronics class he teaches at DeVry. If they figure out a way to make it work they're going to call it the Trillian's Obsolescence Avoidance Technique. Or Trillian's Too Cheap to Buy a Television Technique.

So the DVD player was given to my niece (who has a television manufactured in this century).

I didn't buy a new television for the DVD player because I've been holding out for The Big Signal Switch. Everyone says it's going to happen, no one seems to have definitive answer as to when, and so I make do with 13" diagonal Sharp (with separate UHF dial and telescoping rabbit ear antennae).

This is when my parents stepped in and made me buy a new television. Or rather they gave me money and took me shopping for a new television. (That's another blog - if you enjoyed car shopping with my father, just wait until you go appliance shopping with him.)

Yadda yadda yadda (blog to come), last week I took delivery of a spanking, and I do mean SPANKING, new 27" flat screen stereo surround television.

And now for this week's Reality Wednesday

The Cable Guy
A consumer will attempt to attach a VCR and DVD player to a new television.

A television is delivered to the home of (not so) Dumb Grrrl.

Delivery guy is helpful but without cable, an antennae or the proper cables for her VCR, he is unable to do anything except set the television on floor and plug it into the outlet.

(not so) Dumb Grrrl examines her VCR. She fetches the original owners' instruction manual.

"The plugs are color coded. It's really simple." (not so) Dumb Grrrl explains. "All I need is one audio and one video cable. A yellow and a white."

(not so) Dumb Grrrl holds up the VCR an shows the back of the VCR to the home viewing audience and then takes the camera and dangles it behind the large television to show the home viewing audience the several ports in the back of the television.

"I would go to Radio Hack, but I need to check out DVD players - if they have one on sale maybe I'll even buy one." (not so) Dumb Grrrl explains.

She heads to a Big National Consumer Electronics Retailer.

She is armed with her VCRs owners' manual, her new television owners' manual and information on DVD players printed from various websites.

She is wired with a hidden mic and video recorder.

She walks into the Big National Consumer Electronics Retailer. She looks up at the signage hanging from the ceiling hoping to figure out where to find the cables she needs. Through the specially fitted camera in her baseball cap we see roughly what she's seeing. To the right, then the left, then back to the right, the camera pans the warehouse sized store. There is a blue tint to everything. At first we think it's some sort of night vision type effect through the lens of the camera. We soon realize it's the interior of the store painted blue and casting a blue phosphorous glow over everything. The camera settles on a sign proclaiming "DVD" and we hear (not so) Dumb Grrrl's steps toward that area of the store.

"I started there because I knew "Home Theater" means those gigantic rear projection televisions and Metallica worthy speakers. And I wanted to have a look at DVD players. I just assumed DVD players, CD players and related paraphernalia like cables to attach those items to a television would all be in the same general vicinity."

Through the Cap Cam, we pass the music aisles (hey look! Lenny's on sale!), past the digital cameras, through washers, dryers, washer/dryer combo units, refrigerators, PlayStation games, vacuums and then finally the DVD player aisle.

The view comes to rest on model after model. It settles on a silver model with a list of features which takes up two plastic sign inserts. We hear a slight murmur as (not so) Dumb Grrrl reads the various functions, capacities and features. "ColorStream Pro progressive-scan component video outputs deliver extraordinarily colorful images to compatible TVs and virtually eliminate dot crawl and flicker. Hmmm." We hear paper shuffling. The camera tilts down, we see the owners' manual for the television, we see a finger sliding down the table of contents, we hear more muttering, "Color Stream, Color Stream, I remember something about that..." More flipping of pages of the manual. "Right! There it is." The camera tilts back up to the DVD player. "Digital Cinema Progressive (3/2 pulldown) delivers smooth, true-to-film images with maximum resolution to progressive-scan TVs. I don't know what 3/2 pulldown Digital Cinema Progressive is but I like the sounds of it."

The camera rests on a yellow price tag shaped "Special!" sign next to the DVD player.


The view jerks around wildly and comes to rest on a DVD player with only three bullet pointed features. Multilanguage/subtitle select functions, 1 disc capacity, ergonomic remote.

We hear footsteps. Confident, perhaps even a bit cocky footsteps.

"Hi there! Are you in the market for a DVD player today?" we hear a bellowing out like a sports announcer.

The Cap Cam pans slowly to the left. An overly blonde, overly tanned 20 something guy in a blue polo shirt emblazoned the Big National Consumer Electronic Retailers logo comes into view. He has a blue phosphorous haze aura around him. The yellow of the enormous sale tags reflects on his overly blonde hair. He is either a replicant, child of the corn or the son of a professional golfer.

(not so) Dumb Grrrl answers carefully, weighing each word so as not to over stimulate the replicant, erm, associate, "Just pricing them. I actually..."

"We've got some great deals right now. This is a good time to buy. This unit (heading toward the 'Whoa' priced DVD player) is a fantastic deal. This is the only DVD player you'll ever need. Of course you'll want to upgrade your television with a unit like this, but we've got some great deals on televisions."

"I saw that 'unit,' I think it's a bit too much 'unit' for me right now. I just bought a new television, I'd like a good DVD player but I don't really want or need a lot of fancy functions. I'd like a recorder, but I know that's going to cost me more than I really want to spend. So I'm thinking I'll just get a really basic 'unit' for now, something to get me by until I want and can afford a 'unit' with more features."

"Uh huh, uh huh, yes, that's sound logic, but if you really want a recorder, you might as well get one now." the replicant smiles out this well worn sales pitch.

We sense (not so) Dumb Grrrl's patience wearing thin.

"No really. I just want a very basic DVD player. You know what, I think I'm just going to wait. But I need an audio and video cable for my VCR."

"Right over here." the replicant, erm, associate leads the way to a wall of cables and plugs and things in small packages hanging from a metal grid. He plucks down one the largest package from the grid. "This'll get you set up."

(not so) Dumb Grrrl notices the price above the place where the package was removed. The Cap Cam fixes on the price above the packages: $119.00 $119.00?! For cables?! Remaining calm, (not so) Dumb Grrrl says, "There are four cables in there. I only need two. A yellow and a white."

"If you've got a new TV you'll want the yellow, blue and red cables." the replicant, erm, associate smugly insists.

"My television has red, yellow and blue, but my VCR does not. I only need the yellow and white. Audio and video outs. That's it. Two cables."

"We don't sell them separately. And you'll always use these. When you get your DVD player you'll need them. You might as well get them now, then you'll be ready when you get your DVD player."

"Don't DVD players come with cables?" (not so) Dumb Grrrl asks, immediately regretting the question.

"The cables manufacturers supply are very basic. You can have a the best DVD player on the market, but if you don't have good cables you're going to get a sub-par image and sound quality. You want gold plated and magna coated co axials, without that you're just wasting money on a good television and DVD player."

"Why would a manufacturer supply cables that wouldn't show off the features of their product? That seems like a bad marketing decision." (not so) Dumb Grrrl feigning innocence asks.

"Electronics manufacturers make electronics, that's what they do. Cable manufacturers make cables. That's what they do." the replicant, erm, associate smugly enlightens (not so) Dumb Grrrl. "You want the very best cables out there. (proffering the $119 ($119??!) cables) You've got yourself a nice television, you want to get your money's worth out of it, don't spoil it with inferior cables."

"But I don't need all of these now. I only need an audio and video cable." (not so) Dumb Grrrl insists. "Do you sell them individually?"
The replicant, erm, associate rolls his eyes and walks, briskly, to another aisle featuring a few VCRs. "This is the VCR department. Maybe Mike can help you." the replicant, erm, associate realizing he has wasted good sales time on (not so) Dumb Grrrl is in a hurry to pass her off to anyone he can find.

"Mike" appears. "Mike" appears to be a person who, until his company lost a government contract and had to lay him off, is an engineer of some ilk. "Mike" is wearing the same blue polo shirt emblazoned the Big National Consumer Electronic Retailers logo as the replicant, erm, associate, yet he doesn't fill it out the same. "Mike's" shirt hangs on him. He wears a t-shirt under it, visible peeking out through the completely buttoned up collar and just above the elasticized arm bands which flutter loosely around his arms. "Mike" looks tired. "Mike" looks like a man who is on the verge of losing his home because since the lay off he's had to take any job he can get and that mortgage payment is a big chunk of money, a bigger chunk than he brings home selling VCRs at Big National Consumer Electronic Retailer.

We hear an audible sympathetic sigh from (not so) Dumb Grrrl.
Later, at the show wrap up, (not so) Dumb Grrrl says, "I instantly felt sorry for "Mike." If for no other reason than he has to work with the replicant, erm, associate. I had his entire life story written in the first three seconds I saw him. He was nice enough, but obviously not a sales person, which I think is a good thing, but the poor guy is stuck in VCRs - who buys a VCR these days? Even the top end, most expensive VCR on the market right now is under $200. His commission payments, even on a good weekend, can't be more than $100. The replicant, erm, associate, earns that with a few sets of cables. I thought my job was a Hellish nightmare, then I met "Mike."

Cut back to the Big National Consumer Electronic Retailer show room. We hear "Mike" and (not so) Dumb Grrrl talking.

"You're right, you don't need all those cables. We've got the video cable, but not the audio - they've got those over in stereos - but they're gold plated magna coated and you don't need that. And the single cables are $15.99 each. Go to Radio Hack and you can get both for under $5." "Mike" confides.

(not so) Dumb Grrrl blurts out, "I want to buy a DVD player. Nothing fancy. It would be great if it were a recorder, but if it costs a lot more that's not that important. I really just want to be able to rent movies."

Though the cap cam we see "Mike" looking surprised and a little confused. "Did you talk to the replicant, erm associate about DVD players? He's the DVD specialist."

"Yes, but he wanted to sell me a 'unit' which costs more than my rent and then told me I'd also need $119 ($119?!)set of cables for the DVD player and my old VCR. That's all too rich for my blood and I don't think I need or want all that."

"Yeah, there are a lot of features on the expensive players people never use. You've got a great television, you're really going to enjoy your movies on that. You only need a basic DVD player." though the cap cam we see "Mike" nervously look over his shoulder. "Come on, I'll show you something."

"Mike," looking over his shoulder all the while, steals around the corner to the DVD aisle. He goes to the end, and there, on a near floor level shelf, are two DVD players. The yellow price tags read $39.99 and $49.99. The cap cam excitedly zooms into the DVD players.
"These are good, basic players, not a lot of features and functions, but they'll get you watching movies." "Mike" quietly explains. "The basic guts are the same as the more expensive players, just without all the extra electronics required for the extra functions. My mother has one of these, she's very happy with it."

"I'll take it. And I guess I'll need cables..." (not so) Dumb Grrrl dejectedly sighs as the cap cam slowly wanders to the cable grid.
Cut to the show wrap-up, "I knew I didn't need the gold plated magna coated cables, but I felt so sorry for 'Mike.' I suspected he wouldn't get commission on the DVD player because he's the VCR guy, and even if he did, commission on a $49.99 DVD player isn't going to feed the kids or put a dent in his mortgage. I was going to buy the swutting insanely expensive cables just to boost 'Mike's' commission. Yeah. I felt sorry for him. Maybe that's his sales technique. And if it is, fine, call me a sucker, it worked on me. Besides, I felt such loathing and contempt for the replicant, erm, associate, that I wanted to have the smug satisfaction of purchasing the cables he wanted to sell me from "Mike" instead. This is what happens when you go to these places. All this psychology and sales pressure, when all you need are a few cables for your VCR. I love gadgets and electronics and know quite a bit about it, I go into these places more knowledgeable than a lot of people, but even I get flustered, pressured and otherwise annoyed by these guys. It's worse than buying a car."

Cut back to the Big National Consumer Electronic Retailer floor. Through the cap cam we see "Mike" glancing around, "No, you've got all your cables with the player. You're all set right there. You won't notice much, if any difference with the more expensive cables. This cables with this player are very good. The manufacturer isn't going to risk the integrity of their player with bad cables."

"That's EXACTLY what I thought. But the replicant, erm, associate said the cables with the players aren't good." (not so) Dumb Grrrl enthuses.

"Mike" looks nervous. He is looking over to his aisle, the VCR aisle. "Let's get this written up, I'll go get it for you. It's not heavy and the box is small, shouldn't be any problem for you to handle."

"Thanks!" (not so) Dumb Grrrl happily enthuses.

"Mike" returns almost immediately carrying a small brown box containing the DVD player. He doesn't stop as he passes (not so) Dumb Grrrl. "I'll take it up front for you, follow me." he quietly says as he passes (not so) Dumb Grrrl.

"Mike" leads (not so) Dumb Grrrl on a circuitous route of the Big National Consumer Electronics Retailer. Through the cap cam appliances, computers, furniture, telephones, stereos whiz by at alarming and dizzying speed. (not so) Dumb Grrrl is nearly running to keep up with "Mike" as he weaves, ducks and dodges his way around the store and by other consumers. He lands at a vacant check out til. "Sheila will take it from here." he says. Coming in very close to the cap cam he whispers, remember, Radio Hack. Don't let them sell you the gold plated cables. No more than $5 for both. Got it?"

"Got it. The dog barks at midnight." (not so) Dumb Grrrl whispers in return.

Cut to the show wrap up. "The whole thing became very clandestine. It was kind of fun. I got home and attached my new, cheap DVD player to my television in seconds flat. And the picture and sound is amazing. I cannot imagine that any cable or DVD player would be, COULD be any better. But the problem of the cables for the VCR remained. I went to Radio Hack to buy the original cables I set out to procure at the Big National Consumer Electronics Retailer and went through the same rigermarole with the gold plated magna coated schpeel. I stood firm, stood my ground and found the cheap cables on my own, after the Radio Hack guy didn't want to deal with me. True to 'Mike's' word, I came in under $5. Of course they wanted to sell me a cell phone and calling plan as I made my $4.75 purchase, but I whipped out my super sleek super cool cell phone from a competing company and that ended that conversation. The trick to these places is to go in prepared and better versed than the typical sales associate. It's rare to chance upon a 'Mike' in these places, so it's in your best interest to do a little research beforehand. Never buy the gold plated anything and remember you can always Just Walk Away."

8:53 AM

Monday, May 17, 2004  
Proof there is a God
Because I'm in Hell
Part Something, 12? 13? 38?

True to their word, my new office in our new building has no furniture. Nothing. Not a stick.

My boss, HR, the interior planner, and I kid you not, even our chief of staff were unable to find a desk for my new office.

"You knew there wasn't going to be any furniture, why are you mad?" my boss asked defensively.

"We'll see what we can salvage in a few weeks, Trillian" HR consoled me apologetically.

"We didn't know you were getting an upgrade! It's not my fault!" the interior planner yelled (yes, yelled) also defensively. Too defensively.

"There, there, Trillian, I'm sure we'll find a desk and a shelf or something when the dust settles." Chief of staff smarmily tried to console me, patting my shoulder.

Okay. Yes. I knew there would be no furniture, yes, as my boss pointed out, I knew there would be no furniture.

But did they really need to add insult to the injury? Salt and iodine have been rubbed into the wound.

a) My new office is indeed larger and more spacious than the old.
b) My new office has a stellar view. I had no idea it would be that great.
c) There are no spare offices at any rank, and so until furniture is found, my office is in a cube.
d) A spare cube, I kid you not, in front of the men's room.

You're beginning to think I'm right about the God thing now, aren't you?

"Sheesh, Trillian's in Hell! OMG! G! For her to be in Hell that means there has to be a G!"


The Apocalypse is near.

I saw these four guys on horses when I left the office today. They didn't look like horse cops.

I know many of you work in cubes. On cubefarms. And you are probably zipping to your email to dash off a "Ha! See! Cubes suck! You spoiled brat! You prima donna! About swutting time you had to endure life in a cube! You're not in Hell, you're MILTON!!!! Where's your stapler?! There's a closet in the basement you can use!!!"

Spare me the email, okay? I know cubes suck. This was not a lesson I needed to learn. Let us not forget I was given a promotion for all my hard work, effort and creative genius. My new (and really greatly improved) office was the one and only benefit I got from my promotion. No raise, no shortened hours, no efficient assistant, no company car, nothing. Just a bigger, better office.

With no furniture.

So here I am on the cube farm. And it is a true cube farm straight out of Dilbert.

In front of the men's room.

"Hey, Trill, is that so bad? Let's look at the positive side of this. All the men will have to pass by your cube to use the bathroom! Think of it! A parade of men passing by your cube all day!"

Oh, I thought of it. And I've seen it. Yes. It is a veritable parade of men.

Men in a hurry. Men with that frantic look on their face. Men with sports sections. Men holding themselves and unzipping in preparation for their goings on in there. Oh yeah. That's a great way to meet men.

Have you ever sat in front of the lavatory on an airplane? You know how you hear the constant "Whishhhhh" of the flushing? Yep. That's what I hear. Under the guffaws and chatter and socializing of the rest of the cube farm inhabitants I hear the flushing of the men's toilets.

What I really am going to love is when they come out, all relieved, hitching up their trousers, making that furtive look around, up and down the hall, clearing their throats and some, noticing me for the first time, "Oh, (ahem) hey Trill, what are you doing here? Didn't you used to have an office?" (as an aside, guys, why do you clear your throats as you leave the men's room? Does peeing make your throat funny?)

Now who's in Hell? Now who doesn't believe in God?

Justice really is apparently blind and swift.

Because justice doesn't realize I'm the one who was given a promotion and a spanking office. She is blind to the hours and effort I put into this job. She is swift to kick me when I'm down and put me on a cube farm, in a cube across from the men's room.

Oh. And. You should see these cubes, erm, "modular panel systems." I got out my PMS chart to try to match the colors. I couldn't find anything even close. Forget color in nature, I couldn't find a color on the PMS chart.

Sort of a beigy, tanish yellow with grayish peuce swirls. Yes. Swirls.

My office, on the other hand, is a nice bright white, with a very pleasant, calming blue and green carpet with frosted glass and big mahogany door. Oh. And. A floor to ceiling, wall to wall window. One huge pane of glass. That's right. Uninterrupted glass. Floor to ceiling, wall to wall. Stunning Westward view. And not a splinter of furniture. It's an office you'd see in a movie or soap opera. It's the kind of office where men enter under the premise of urgent business, close the door, shove papers off the desk, rip off their business attire and get down to real and serious business.

"Um yeah, okay. Maybe it will be a good, humbling experience for you to be out there on the farm, perhaps you will appreciate your office all the more, and be more in touch with the cuboids."

Give me a swutting break. I AM in touch with the cuboids! Given the opportunity would you stay in your cube or move to a real office? Spare me your democratic social awareness. You'd be knocking over the cube walls beating a trail to any office offered.

A swutting cube in front of the belgiuming men's room. Belgium.

Prove to me this isn't Hell.

6:09 PM

Sunday, May 16, 2004  
Actual conversation which took place in my office:
Tech Department Guy: "Hi Trillian, I've got those parts for your printer."

Trillian: "Hi Tech Department Guy. I thought you were going to be here Monday. It's Wednesday. We, the entire company, are moving tomorrow. In case you haven't heard."

Tech Department Guy: "We're stuck working all weekend re-setting up the computers."

Trillian: "Bummer."

Tech Department Guy: "Yeah. This is the least of my problems right now."

Trillian: "Gee, thanks for caring. I've got some boxes to pack in the storage room, I'll leave you to it."

Tech Department Guy: Pulls boxes of components out of his back pack and points them at Trillian. "I don't know how to install these. I've never worked on a printer like this! Do you know what to do?"

Trillian: "Ummmm. Well. I think maybe the heads go in those slots, you know, when you lift the lid here...wait a minute. You're the Tech Department Guy. It's your job to know this. I'm just an end user."

Tech Department Guy: "No you're not, you know more about your system and Macs than anyone here."

Trillian: "Flattery will get you nowhere, and by the way, that's not exactly flattery."

Tech Department Guy: "You have a better chance of fixing this than I do, besides, I've got other things to do."

Trillian: "'Other things to do'? I put in a help call over a week ago, you give me nothing but grief for two days, promise to fix it Monday, show up on Wednesday, hand me a bunch of parts and tell me you've got other things to do? No. I'm sorry. I've had it. End being nice and cooperative. Because you know Monday? When you didn't show up? And I rang your office and wasn't exactly pleasant with you? THAT was being nice and cooperative. What you are about to witness will make you long for that unpleasant conversation. We're going to begin with your boss. (puts phone on speaker and dials (by memory) Tech Department Guy's boss, gets voicemail) Don, hi, this is Trillian. Tech Department Guy is here and handing me a bunch of parts which may or may not actually be for my printer. You know, the one which hasn't been functioning for over a week? The one I put in the urgent care request on last week? Perhaps I am expecting too much, perhaps there is something I don't understand, perhaps you can clear up my confusion. Why would I install parts and fix my printer when we have a Tech Department who are paid to do this? Does fixing and installing printer parts not fall under the jurisdiction of the Tech Department? If you could just give me a call to clear this up for me I'd very much appreciate it. Meanwhile Tech Department Guy is not leaving my office. I know you're very busy with the move and you need all the hands and brains you can get, though it's possible I'm doing you a favor by detaining Tech Department Guy, no matter, I know you're busy, AND SO AM I, so it's in everyone's best interest for you to call me as soon as you hear this message. May as well try your luck with the printer or have a seat, Tech Department Guy. Don doesn't have a good track record for returning phone calls and you're not going anywhere until that printer is functioning or Don rings to tell me I am in fact supposed to be repairing it myself."

Tech Department Guy: "I can't stay here, I've got a lot to do."

Trillian: "And now you know how I've felt for the past week."

Tech Department Guy: "Look, I don't know anything about this printer, or for that matter Macs. If you'd just use a PC we wouldn't have this problem."

Trillian: "So now it's Steve Wozniak's fault, is it? Maybe we can give him a call, perhaps he can help you."

Tech Department Guy: "Are you okay?"

Trillian: "No, I am not 'okay,' I have had it with you tech department guys, who don't do anything but tell us to re-boot, jiggle cords, unplug and re-plug, and blame the mainframe, Macs, the planetary alignment and the guy who quit two years ago for every computer related issue. It's your job to maintain and repair our computers. If I don't or can't do my job, I get fired. You guys don't or can't do your jobs yet you get promotions on your already insanely high salaries. Funny how you can read every email which comes and goes out of this company, you have access to everyone's personnel files, salary files, EVERYTHING, and yet you cannot repair or even attempt to repair a printer. No, Tech Department Guy, I am NOT okay."

Tech Department Guy: "It's not my fault. I'm not trained on this equipment."

Trillian: "So on that ever increasing staff, what is it now, 20 of you guys? They send you to fix something about which you know nothing? And yet you didn't bring this to the attention of the dispatcher? Tech Department Guy, if I were you, and I knew I was going to have to deal with me, and I didn't know anything about the equipment, I would bring it to the attention of my manager or SOMEONE, so that I didn't make a fool of myself in front of ME, and further jeopardize the already shaky reputation of my department, perhaps to the point of potentially causing myself to be made redundant."

Tech Department Guy: "I really have to go, here are your parts."

Trillian: "No. You're not going anywhere."

Tech Department Guy: "Trillian, I have to go."

Trillian: "But what about my printer?"

Tech Department Guy: "You know more about it than I do, you try to fix it."

And with that he was gone.

I made two more phone calls to his supervisor, packed the remaining contents of my office and left.

What joys and wonders will await us Monday morning in the new office?

The mind boggles.

Perhaps the move will miraculously restore my printing capabilities!

Perhaps furniture will have miraculously been allocated and appear in my new office!

Perhaps my (needs a new nickname) boss will miraculously become a normal, functioning, or at least not obnoxious and annoying human being!

Perhaps a change of scene is all we all need to boost morale, increase productivity and ease mounting tensions!

Perhaps I'll wake up from this drug induced state of calm and optimism and face the reality that miracles do not happen.

6:53 PM

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