Offensive Office

img_5774-1Today Kish decided to join me at the office and brought along some cleaning supplies.  During her visit, I heard just about every synonym for “dirty” you can imagine.

Filthy.  Disgusting.  Grimy.  Ridiculous.  Dusty.  Obscene.  Soiled.  Appalling.  Squalid.  Oh my God, would you look at the amount of dust and dirt on this cloth!!!!!!!!

Well, the last one isn’t quite a synonym, but you get the idea.  It was directed at the condition of my keyboard, mouse, and mouse pad, which admitted were looking a bit well used and were caked with what looked like a troll’s earwax.  That is not to say that our office cleaning crew does not visit my office, but their once-overs just don’t get to the level of things like bookshelves, door knobs, phone buttons, or computer mouses.  And how many office workers really pay much attention to the condition of their workplaces?  Sometimes it takes a fresh eye to put it all into the proper filthiness perspective.

Now everything in the office has been cleaned with tender loving care, and my workspace has that brisk, sharp but not unpleasant Clorox disinfectant wipes scent.  I feel more productive already.

Into The Clothing Danger Zone

Yesterday I got one of the endless number of emails trying to sell me something that bombard my inbox.  This one was trying to sell me “Barbie PJs.”  The picture showed what looked to me like standard PJs that were pink with a silhouette of a Barbie head on the top.  “Hmmm,” I thought idly, “I wonder if Kish would like those, or hate them.”  And then I hit the delete button.

newthumb_3__3I wish I could effectively communicate to that company, and others that try to sell me women’s clothing, how absolutely unlikely I am to buy anything they’re offering.  I haven’t bought Kish any kind of garment — or footwear, hats, you name it — for more than three decades, because I long ago learned that I have no sense of fashion and really don’t know what she likes and what she doesn’t like on the apparel front.  In short, if an item can be donned or doffed, I’m far out of my depth.

This profound condition of clothing cluelessness became clear when I tried to buy Kish some clothes one long-ago Christmas, and each purchase — boots, a blouse, a winter cap — was a miserable failure that she looked at quizzically.  “How did you happen to buy purple boots?” she asked after opening one of the presents.  “I thought purple was your favorite color,” I stammered in response.  “No, it’s green,” she said.

Fortunately, I had retained all of the receipts for the ill-advised gifts, so she was able to return them and get some things she really liked and wanted — and we moved forward with the implicit understanding that I would never again try to buy clothes for her.  In fact, I’ve always suspected that the “returns” department at stores was created by a department store proprietor who, after totally flubbing some gift for his wife or girlfriend, realized that there was a desperate need for a special area where puzzled women could discreetly return the reckless clothing purchases of misguided males.

So don’t try to sell me “Barbie PJs,” or poofy fashion scarves, or knee-high boots.  Those kinds of purchases fall entirely into the “Kish self-purchase category.”  I’ll happily buy her objects, or even perfume if I receive sufficiently explicit instruction that can be communicated to the helpful saleswoman at the perfume department at Nordstrom’s.  Attire, however, is in the danger zone.