(* = Lingo alert)
The other day I came to work and the usual greeting was flying around “the bakery*”.
“Good morning! How are you doing?”
“Pretty good, thank you. How about you?”
“I’m good. Thanks.”
So ends the brief conversation until you bump into another colleague and the exact same dialogue would occur until everybody has greeted everybody. For the longest time I’ve come to accept it as part of the morning routine in the workplace. Then one day out of the blue, not sure why – might have been my breakfast, I got annoyed by the patronizing nature of these morning exchanges. So I decided to tweak my response to see what kind of reaction I would get.
Colleague C (Cheerful yet whimsical): “Good morning! How are you doing? What’s shaking these days?”
Fong Bao: “Ah, it’s ok. Not a whole lot.”
Colleague C (Taken aback by the unexpected answer): “Oh…….what’s wrong?”
Fong Bao: “Oh, nothing. It’s just one of those days.”
Colleague C (Looking aimlessly around and fumbling for words at this point): “Well…….hmmm…….ok…….cool…….”
A nervous smile and a few more “hmmm’s”later, colleague C was gone. His awkwardness was clearly palpable.
So what’s the point of this exercise? Nothing really. Just a more interesting way to start the morning at work.
Disclaimer: Should the above scenario remotely resembles anything you’ve seen on Seinfeld or The Office, it is purely coincidental. Fong Bao did not watch a lot of aforementioned shows.
Item du jour
A fleeing Taliban, desperate for water, was plodding through the Afghan desert when he saw something far off in the distance. Hoping to find water, he hurried toward the oasis, only to find a little old Jewish man at a small stand, selling ties.
The Taliban asked, ‘Do you have water?’
The Jewish man replied, ‘I have no water. Would you like to buy a tie? They are only $5.’
The Taliban shouted, ‘Idiot! I do not need an over-priced tie. I need water! I should kill you, but I must find water first!
‘OK,’ said the old Jewish man, ‘it does not matter that you do not want to buy a tie and that you hate me. I will show you that I am bigger than that. If you continue over that hill to the east for about two miles, you will find a lovely restaurant. It has all the ice cold water you need. Shalom.’
Muttering, the Taliban staggered away over the hill. Several hours later he staggered back, almost dead.
“Your @&%*&@% brother won’t let me in without a tie!”