Thursday, June 21, 2007

I Didn't Really Want You To Do What I Asked You To Do. Everyone Knows That.

When I started here, I didn't find the Rosetta Stone to my fellow co-workers' e-mails among my welcome package contents. Know why? THERE SHOULDN'T HAVE TO BE ONE.

I have failed to properly de-code just about every e-mail sent to me in the last 6 months. Silly me. When my name is in the "TO" spot, I usually think I am supposed to respond/act. Not the case, it turns out.

Several times I've responded to be notified that "I wasn't talking to you, that was so that ______ would do it..that..whatever."

I am now paralyzed with indecision when any one of the 150 daily e-mails arrives. I bet you can actually see me freeze when the notify screen shoots out that teeny, almost transparent preview of the message in the corner.

I've actually had telephone and face to face conversations like this:

Person: "Did you get my e-mail?"

Zoom: "Yes. But I'm not sure who needs to do what."

Person: "But it's right there in the e-mail"

Zoom: "Is it.?. Because I never know what is straight forward instruction and what is heavily veiled attempts to do...what ....I'm not really sure - hence the hesitation."

Person: "OH, you are so funny. Yeah, I can see your eyes moving back and forth, trying to connect the dots when I tell you stuff.

Zoom: "So that's what it looks like on the outside. Ok. But still... I'm not any clearer on what I'm supposed to do..."

Person: "I know. Ok bye!"


I am just not cut out for, nor am I willing to learn, art of subtle hint reading. If you want something out of me, I need in-your-face straightforward notification. If you want to be mysterious, just re-name something in the sentence like my mom does.

My FAM called last night to say she needed help with her digital pictures. I was short on time, so I specifically told her "Look, what I'm about to do? Don't try and follow it. Don't try and learn it. I'm going to apply a quick fix to this situation and we can go over it some time next week when we both have some time."

So what's the first thing to shoot out of her mouth after I start working? "WAIT! Don't you have to hit the CURTELL key for that?"

CURTELL?!? What the? - my entire body seized when just a second later I knew she was talking about the CONTROL key [CTRL]. I had to keep from outright laughing - she uses this term with such determination, as if Bill Gates himself whispered it in her ear. She's got a good sense of humor, but not when she's so frustrated at the computer that she's called me for help. My life depended on holding on to this little re-naming gem she's got going until a later date.

She might be formerly Amish, but that doesn't prevent her from handing out the pain when one "wrongs" her.

I waved her off, saying something about that key not working in the program I was currently using. So I fibbed a little to get her off my back? I was running out of time and she won't remember that "instruction" at a later date anymore than she'll figure out that the Curtell key is actually Control.

If only my co-workers were so easy to figure out.


BostonPobble said...

I, too, am bad at picking up hints. If someone says "a" I assume they mean "a" not "a+b-q" Many arguements have been had with exes over the fact that I took them at their word or didn't extrapolate properly. Ah well. Hope you find the Rosetta Stone soon!

Rev. Brandy said...

Awesome post, as always. I am so sorry about the confusing emails. I am about to be catapaulted into a job where I get 100 emails a day, so I hope like hell I know what to do with some of them, otherwise, I am sunk.