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This is a question Absolute Power

Have you ever been put in a position of power? Did you become a rabid dictator, or did you completely arse it up and end up publicly humiliated? We demand you tell us your stories.

Thanks to The Supreme Crow for the suggestion

(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 14:09)
Pages: Popular, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

This question is now closed.

This year was my first time teaching Year 1
For those who are not familiar with primary school year 1 are 5 year olds. This was their first year of formal school.

I had a lower ability group which meant that all the children in my class were unable to read and write last September.

We are a week off the end of the school year, they can now all read and write. Yes some are better than others but all can read and write to some degree.

I have given the gift of literacy to 25 people.

That is absolute power.
(, Sat 10 Jul 2010, 17:16, 16 replies)
So, fresh out of university, I was temping for the Department of Industry, doing general office admin.
Our unit was coordinating a several hundred thousand pound, if not million pound government grant to develop a green, sustainable form of transport for London and the UK.

One of my jobs was to print out, envelope and send the rejection letters - standard letter personally addressed using a mail-merge.

One chap, however, took great umbrage to the rejection, and looking over his file I'm not surprised.

The entries ranged from someone drawing a kite tied to a cart and saying "Green" on it, to designed models, and then this chap's entry, which was a hundred-page study that cost him personally tens of thousands of pounds in the commission of research and materials.

The contact number on the rejection letter was the 'phone at my desk, and a few days later I was called, and the chap on the other end swore and ranted and cajoled, pleaded, begged and then threatened to get me fired over this.

I reported back to my manager, who told me to ignore it, but sure enough round two came, so I said simply "Listen, the matter's out of my hands, I'm sorry I can't help, but that's the way it is."

He went quiet, then apologised sincerely, and rang off.

Three days later, a handwritten letter arrives addressed to me personally, in which the author apologised for his handwriting (his blasted printer is broken at the moment, but rest assured he is investing in a new one!), and also for ranting and raving at me so rudely - he's passionate about the project as it's close to his heart, but that's no excuse for his behaviour.

By way of apology, he enquired, he wondered if I would be so kind as to allow him to buy me lunch at his club, say - next Friday?

I read it.

I re-read it.

I put it in my pocket and kept my gob shut.

I composed a return letter saying that I'd be delighted to join him for lunch next Friday - how kind.

Next Friday came, and I turned up in my cheap whistle to a quiet street in Pimlico.

I find the address - it's lidderally just two massive oak doors and nothing else.

I knock.

I am greeted by a butler.

I am shewn through to the oak-pannelled, gleaming tap'd, classic and detailed, Art Deco bar. This place is straight out of James Bond, Yes Minister, Dickens - all of that. It actually IS the archetypal London Gentleman's club, and not in the rude way.

"Sir, Mr. X sends his sincere apologies, but he is currently running over on a meeting, and will be approximately five minutes late. Can I get Sir anything from the bar at all, and perhaps a paper?"

I order a water - I've got £10 in my wallet and it looks like if I order a beer they'll want a kidney and the rights to my first-born.

Mr X turns up - for one so strong of voice he's an old guy, bordering on the doddery.

"Ah, Mr Vagabond - how good to meet you!" he beams. "I take it you are being attended to in a decent enough manner?"

He's absolutely charming and I feel like the fraud I am. I want to tell him I'm just a temp, there's nothing I can do, and that he'd be far better off taking the head of the department out, as she's got serious leverage. He's a lovely old man, who's done well for himself, and he's just trying to do the good thing - I understand that - he's done his time, he just wants to make the world perhaps a little bit better. He's no saint, he's just a sinner, but trying to do the right thing and help in whatever way he can.

But fuck that.

I'm poor, young and hungry, he's rich, fat and old.

We're led through to the dining room, which is as you'd expect - full of suits discussing Important Matters, and as we are led to his table by the window, he nods to a few of them, muttering to me that he's the ambassador for Hong Kong, he's the owner of Saatchi's account handlers, that's the Minister Without Portfolio, etc etc.

The menu - of course - has no prices on, and he heartily recommends the fish - it's the best this side of Russia.

We drink - of course - a bottle of the correct wine with each course.

Over lunch he continues to try and butter me up, detailing his plans for the project, and how he's going to seek finance elsewhere, but that the government really could do well out of this on the PR front. I listen attentively, nod encouragingly, and, using my scant knowledge of industry from my GCSE Geography, drop in a choice phrase or two, such as "Renewable energy resources as part of the GDP", as I deem appropriate. It works.

We retire to the smoking room for coffee and liqueurs at around 2-30, and I stagger back into the office at about 4-30, pissed out of my skull, and am fired on the spot.

Totally worth it.
(, Mon 12 Jul 2010, 10:33, 7 replies)
November 25 of last year
...I had my second bone marrow transplant due to a tenacious strain of lymphoma. Being that my immune system was non-existent at the time I also contracted H1N1, sinusitis, a blood infection, pneumonia and a fungal infection in the catheter that ran from outside of my chest into my heart. Apart from the obligatory host-vs-graft disease, which, in essence , could kill me outright, I was in what you would call an awful state.
I couldn't breath on my own, the inside of my mouth, trachea and esophagus were filled with festering blisters, I hadn't eaten anything in over a week and was on a constant morphine drip for over a month due to the pain.
I remember sitting in bed one night ( as I wasn't able to lay down as I would suffocate - kinda like the elephant man), hadn't slept in days and the clock was telling me it was 3:00. A.M or P.M, i had no idea, but i remember feeling so weary and thinking to myself that perhaps the jig was up and I should lie down for the most blissful sleep and never wake up from it. To sleep, to dream, to be at peace.
I obviously never chose that route; I couldn't do that to my family, i knew in my heart this was not my "time", but by god (euphemism) I, at that moment, had never wanted anything as much in my life than to lay down and go to sleep, most likely forever.
Glad I didn't. My brother had a beautiful baby girl last Sunday, my sister is expecting in November, and although my balls are officially fried it certainly doesn't hurt to try!
My absolute power was the life or death of myself. I sometimes wish ( albeit wistfully) that many others in positions of "power" could have the same experience. Perhaps the world would be a very different place. Then again, perhaps not.
Apologies for lack of funnies, but I felt compelled.


Length = longer every day!

Edit - I did have the foresight to freeze my man gravy, so if you happen to see a handsome man waving a turkey baster around don't be frightened - it's what they told me to do.
(, Sat 10 Jul 2010, 4:34, 5 replies)
I work with livestock...
I work importing and exporting marine aquarium corals and fishes for a major company. This basically means I work in a big brightly lit warehouse full of tiny little tanks, full of tiny little fishes (and larger and larger fishes). Pretty shite job to be honest, but it does come with the degree of sick power some people crave. My job is to go around the thousands of fishes once or twice a day and pull out all the sick looking ones, the ones with "missing bits and extra bits, and funny looking bits too" so mr fishey with one eye, or cotton wool balls growing out of his gills, or no tail - they all come with me into the 'sick' room. Unbeknown to me for the first few weeks of doing this, another member of staff was euthanising the poor buggers. Anything 'unsaleable' or 'unsaveable' was put into a bucket of anaesthetic and killed (humanely, but still..) some of these fishes being perfectly healthy, just being born deformed, á la Finding Nemo.

So I get the job of deciding who is too deformed, or too sick to live each day. I feel like a mini fish Hitler. Although, many a fish has been known to go home with staff members to take refuge in their home aquarium to avoid the dreaded bucket of doom - I myself have had many 'one-of-a-kind' fishes when I kept my aquarium. Seeing as most of us there have a heart, we do attempt to squirrel away the healthy, but unsaleable fish - just out of sight of the management. I dread to think how many wonky fishes they'll find that we've hidden away out in our tens of thousands of litre resevoir when they drain it some day... it's like a little sanctuary of Quazimodo fish out there!
(, Sun 11 Jul 2010, 10:05, 12 replies)
This morning, a boy I know from school was put in his grave far too early.
He felt so completely overwhelmed by the shit in his life.

He crashed his car earlier this year, and almost killed his best friend in the process. Yes, he was drunk, and it was his fault. He was being prosecuted by the parents of his best friend.
Last week, his girlfriend dumped him.

On Monday, he killed himself.

It all sounds so melodramatic, I know. But the thing is, the boy I knew at school, was not a loser. He was funny, cheeky, never had a bad thing to say about anybody. He was extraordinarily popular. He loved a good joke and a piss up. Out of all the people I know - he was one of the last I would have picked to commit suicide.

Today was his funeral. Over two hundred and fifty people turned up. His friends, classmates. The boys he coached at football. The parents of his best friend. His family. His teachers.

All of these people loved him. Yet, when he needed us, he felt he couldn't reach out to us. And that is a fucking tragedy. There is an absolute power in just knowing someone. There is the ability to let the people we know, how we feel about them, and that they're always able to come talk to us. That they can trust us. That we can help them when they need help. That sometimes, all they need to do is turn up, and they can have all the love and support they need to get through the shit in their life and make it through to the otherside.

Bill, we failed you, and we can't bring you back. I'm so sorry that you felt so alone, and wish I'd known you better. I hope you're in a better place, and that you aren't suffering anymore.
You are loved still, and we do miss you.
Rest in Peace.
(, Sun 11 Jul 2010, 14:15, 60 replies)
I used to be a bodybuilder
This might not seem like a position of power per se, but I was what Meat Loaf refers to in Fight Club as "a juicer". Started off with testosterone injections and eventually moved on to steroids. Testosterone is actually pretty cool. Muscle mass increases at an exponential rate, to the extent that you can see the improvement after just an hour in the gym (may have been power of suggestion, with hindsight, but it felt awesome at the time) and it makes your libido go fucking mental. All I wanted to do was shag and work out, work out and shag. I'd come back from the gym ready to fuck and as soon as we were done fucking I was back on the free weights. Amazing feeling, and I ate like a horse - so much meat, so much protein. Regular listeners will have detected that this took place when my girlfriend was not a vegetarian. Although that was the least of her concerns when I hit the steroids.

The only problem with testosterone - apart, before you say it, from the ludicrously, cariacature-style alpha male existence - is that it leaves you wanting more. And then one of your mates down the gym offers you 'roids, and you rip his arm off (not literally, although I probably could have at the time). Now steroids have got a bad press, partly because of idiots like Ben Johnson, but mostly because of the idea that they make your cock smaller. This is absolutely bollocks, but I must discourage you from their use nonetheless, because the six months of my life that I spent on 'roids are a cautionary tale.

I felt like a bull in a china shop all the time, like ALL the time. I was constantly pumped, constantly horny, constantly hungry. The reason why you see so many well-built guys with pot bellies is because they're not doing enough core exercise whilst they're using, and focusing on the arms. With hindsight, it's not a good look unless you're sporting some WWE gold around your waist. But the impractical musculature was the least of my worries. I was constantly starting pointless fights with my girlfriend, I got fired from my job, I had major fallings out with my family and most of my friends. The only people I felt could understand me were my fellows juicers downt he gym. A bunch of knuckleheads talking rubbish about how women should "just understand" and occasionally deviating into football and what Capello did wrong. Every bit as horribly cliched as you imagine.

I shouldn't have been surprised when I found out my girlfriend was cheating on me. In her position I'd have done exactly the same; she couldn't talk to me, she was too afraid to leave me lest I turn violent, of course she'd seek solace in the arms of another.

It may have been a BIT harsh to shoot them both, and the copper who came after me, though. Amazing how good the wi-fi is in a tent on the Northumberland moors.
(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 15:23, 13 replies)
The power of words
A while ago, I worked for the swine flu call center. Calls where pretty boring, usualy some one who's sick, or worried about a kid or elderly relative, so not always the most cheery bunch.

Then I get a call from a guy about his son who has susspected swine flu, he's very polite, funny, upbeat and dosent panic when I say his son may have swine flu. Really nice to talk to him, makes a pretty depressing job for a university graduate a bit easier to manage.

Then, he has one last question, he's just been diagnosed with stomach cancer, will he be at risk. The words hit me like a hammer blow. He'd been so upbeat, so cheerful, yet he was dealing with cancer.

Relavence? No matter how absolute your power seems, no matter how Much influence you wield, your life could come crashing down around you after a quick check up at the doctors. Taking that diagnosis and refusing to give in, refusing to let it destroy you, that's the only power worth having.
(, Tue 13 Jul 2010, 16:20, 4 replies)
Log Tables...
How many of you remember Log Tables?

Lovely books full of pages of Logarithmic Tables. No logical order to them. No rule to determine what number comes next.

Just pages and pages of tables of numbers. Like .00345 .01235 .01987.

You get the picture.

Anyway, my Housemaster saw fit to grant me the position of House Monitor at the age of 17.

You were required to assist in keeping the rest of the House in check - unruly chaps aging from 11 to 16.

One weapon you had (used before sending the young scally to see the Housemaster) was *COPY*.

This required the scamp to copy a page of a book onto a sheet of narrow lined A4.

My book choice? That's right. Log Tables.

The conversation wouyld go along the lines of...

Me: Jones, Patterson II, why are you running in the corridor? You know it's not permitted.
Oiks: Sorry, SatchmoR.
Me: Right, I want one side of A4 copy in my study after prep tonight. Page 6 of your Log Table.
Oiks: 1 page of Log Tables?
Me: No, two!
Oiks: Two?!?
Me: No, four!
Oiks: ...remain quiet...

So, after prep, they'd present me with the dutifully copied Log Tables.

Then I'd check three values.

If two or more were wrong, they'd have to be redone.

My Housemaster said I'd put Eichmann to shame.

Then demoted me.

Chokky-Starfish!
(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 16:15, 12 replies)
Things I have absolute power over.
1) Buying a wind-up radio and not winding it up.
2) Going out in the garden and pretending to mow my lawn but not actually plugging it in & making lawn-mower sound effects with my mouth so the next door neighbours think its turned on. After 4 hours of "mowing" and the grass still as long as it was at the start. Why would I do this? I haven't.
3) Painting a windowsill red, then putting my cat's food dish up there. Ooohh, unlucky red paws.
4) Laughing at people with AIDS. (I have chosen not to do this.)
5) Making a Powerpoint presentation about the levels of discomfort I would feel throughout the day if I had a massive shit at 7am and decided not to wipe my arse at all.
6) Fucking a Penguin biscuit. Impossible.
7) Not reading 'Dubliners' by James Joyce but telling people I have and it's shit, then telling them it's actually brilliant, then telling them I haven't read it at all.
8) Legally changing my name to Virginity Ballbag.
9) Going to visit my Nana in her residential care home and convincing her that the staff ARE stealing from her. Fun.
10) Farting.
11) Not farting.
12) Discussing nominations with other housemates. Naughty.
13) Bluetoothing photos of all the shelves in my house to complete strangers.
14) Making sex noises at a vicar.
15) In new company talking in a slightly more pronounced northern accent than my actual northern accent, then suddenly dropping it and talking in my actual accent. Omid Djalili is so funny. And fat.
17) Missing out number 16.
16) Putting in number 16 after all but after number 17.
4) Numberwang.
(, Sat 10 Jul 2010, 10:52, 3 replies)
I'm gifted with the power to upset some(but not all) QOTW users over something in my profile I did mainly for my own amusement.

(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 16:04, 11 replies)
I don't have any power at work or home
So I make up for it by using my superior man strength to pick my cat up by his front legs and make him dance for me.
(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 16:38, Reply)
Fucking with your players, or LIONS LIONS FUCKING LIONS AAAH
I run an online game that some people take far, far too seriously. When you run a game like this, changing a single number in a database can have some pretty massive repercussions for those who play the game all day.

One day I decided that my game didn't have nearly enough lions in it.

So, a new level one monster was conceived:
You hear a low growling behind you, and spin around.
It's a lion. An honest-to-God seven-foot-long, four-foot-high monster - a 250-kilo beast with three-inch teeth, and it clearly wants you for dinner. It must have crept up slowly while you were killing that last monster. Everyone knows, after all, that lions are sneaky bastards.
Suppressing for the moment your natural reaction - that is, to rapidly and thoroughly empty your bowels while squealing "LION LION AAAARGH IT'S A FUCKING LION" and flailing your arms around as it gobbles you up starting with your feet so you can watch - you ready your weapon, hands trembling, and see about giving it what for!

Pretty simple. Fairly mundane. Just a lion. Level two:
You wander through the Jungle idly looking for some action. Within moments you spy a little green man, no higher than your knees. He's wearing scruffy gardening clothes and wellington boots - some sort of goblin, perhaps? Either way, you ready your weapon and creep up towards the creature as it delicately sniffs a nearby flower.
Just as you get close enough to deliver a killing blow, the foliage next to the little man bursts outwards with a rustly crash. An enormous lion leaps through, snapping the goblin out of the air in one quick bite and leaving only boots behind. It swallows, turns to you, and grins. The sneaky bastard just stole your kill! Are you going to stand for that?

The Lion Obfuscation Project starts at level three:
Something catches your eye, and you put your senseless rampage on hold for a moment. Something flickers and dances, peeking from behind a tree - perhaps a snake, or a tentacle, or a... is that a tail?
Is that a lion's tail?
Your knees knock together as you whimper-whisper a pitiful mantra familiar to the noble lion: "oh no it's a lion oh no oh bloody hell it's hiding behind that tree but the tree is so small maybe it's only a little lion but they're such sneaky bastards oh shit oh shit oh shit" The lion understands this mantra the way a fighter pilot understands the beeping of a locked-on target, and seven feet of grinning, snarly beast leaps from behind the two-foot-wide tree. Lions really are sneaky bastards like that.

The eventual goal is to make the player paranoid about anything and everything. A lion could be lurking around any corner, behind any tree, inside any seemingly-awesome box of treasure. Level Four:
Not really paying attention to where you're walking, you stumble into an enormous web! You struggle to free yourself while visions of enormous spiders run through your mind and down your legs!
After several terrifying, sweaty moments you disentangle yourself and realise that this isn't a spider's web at all - it's made out of yarn. Yarn with a familiar, musky smell - yarn spun out of some sort of fur, perhaps even...
The lion cannons into your back, knocking you to the ground. Sneaky bastard!

At level five, we begin to sow those seeds of paranoia. By now, we've set up some rules, that the player expects us to follow.
A very tall man approaches you, wearing a leather trenchcoat and a large hat that casts his face into shadow.
"Excuse me, do you have the time?" he asks, in a rather nervous and timid voice.
"Sorry, pal," you reply. "Watches are hard to come by, 'round here."
"Is that all you wanted me to say?" responds the tall man. "Can I go now? Please? Oh God, no! Don't eat me! DON'T EAT ME!" The tall man pulls the homemade tape recorder out of his jacket and bats ineffectually at the "STOP" button with his huge, unweildy paws. "AAAAAGH!" he continues, shaking the tape recorder. "AAAAAAH FUCK AAAAH MY FEET!" As you ready your weapon the tall man hurls the tape recorder to the ground, his hat coming loose and exposing his long, luxurious mane. He stamps on the tape recorder until the screaming and crunching noises stop, then turns to you, growls, and pounces.
Sneaky bastard.

To fuck with your players, you have to start off slow. Build up expectations. Lions will never hide in plain sight; the player knows this, now. Any lion that appears before them, and doesn't bother trying to hide itself - well, it might be harmless, right? Level six:
You come across a clearing in which a small gathering of woodland creatures sit in rapt attention - they focus on a raised pedestal, atop which sits a throne, atop which sits a lion, atop which sits a crown.
Could it be...? Has the Improbability Drive seen fit to manifest the brave monarch of an imaginary world? Could the dreams of millions of children become flesh and blood, in this place?
The lion watches you with an air of loving benevolence as you timidly approach. He nods, bidding you to kneel.
One heavy paw whips around and impacts against your head, throwing you ten feet to your right. Through the dancing purple spots, you have an excellent view of the stitching in a nearby rabbit. They're not rapt, they're stuffed. And that's not the lion you think it is - it's just a fucking lion. A sneaky bastard of a lion.

Level Seven was kind of a gimme:
There's something wooly and white, grazing innocently just behind those ferns. Excellent - a meal you won't have to fight for! You ready your weapon, and sneak up behind the sheep.
A branch cracks beneath your feet and your prey spins around, the sheepskin flying off to reveal the lion underneath. It pounces. Sneaky bastard.

On level eight, we begin to break the rules we've previously set up. Like the underground sections in Silent Hill during which your radio doesn't work, any change to the status quo, any change to the rules, offers prime fucking-with-your-players fodder. Sometimes it's good to remind your victimsplayers that the rules are for them to follow, not you:
You come across a lion, stood seven feet high on its hind legs, utterly still, with a lampshade on its head.
You lower your weapon in disgust. "Oh, come on! That's not even -" the air is knocked out of you with one mighty swipe of its paw. Hell, it worked. Sneaky bastard.

You can break the rules and then start following them again in the same breath; often this is more effective than breaking the rules and continuing to break them. On level nine we go back to following the rules again:
"Shh!" You stop in your tracks, looking at the bespectacled man crouched on the ground just in front of you. "You'll frighten it."
"Frighten what, exactly?" you whisper.
He turns his attention back to the ground. "See this, here?"
You look where he's pointing. "No."
"Aah," he taps the side of his nose knowingly. "Precisely. My friend, what you do not see is called a trapdoor spider, and it's really very clever. If you look closely at this little patch right here, you'll notice that it's not truly a part of the jungle floor - it's a hinged section made out of dirt, moss and a spider's silk. The spider in question is hiding just behind it. These little strands of webbing, here, let it know when something's approaching, and then whoosh - out it jumps, grabs its dinner, and back in faster than you can say LION-" and he's gone.
For a heartbeat it's hard to say what just happened. It was as though the ground erupted beneath him, there was a flash of sandy fur, claws dug into his skin and pulled, and then he disappeared. It all happened so fast you're not sure you didn't imagine the whole thing.
A muffled voice from underneath the soil screams "LIONS LIONS FUCKING LIONS AAARGH NO NOT MY FEET AAH FUCK AAAHHH!"
The scream cuts off as the lion realises there's still more prey above the soil, and bursts out of its trapdoor to grab you!
Sneaky bastard!

Until now, we've played by the rule that we don't fuck with the player outside of the fourth wall. That is, we don't use the mechanics of the game itself as fucking-with-the-player material.
At level two, the player encounters a professional romance writer, and ends up fighting her. At level ten, the encounter begins the same way, and until the lion shows up, the player thinks they're fighting a much weaker foe:
You come across a clearing in the jungle. Soft sunlight filters through the canopy of leaves, casting little spots of radiance upon a peaceful-looking, bespectacled woman who sits on a log and writes in a tattered notebook.
You decide to head over and sit down beside her. "Hello," you say.
She looks up, glasses sparkling in the sun. "Oh, hello! I'm a professional romance writer!"
The paw seems to come from nowhere, swatting her around the back of the head and knocking her glasses to the ground. Her head drooping on a broken neck, she collapses forward with a tiny sigh. You give the sneaky bastard lion a nod, and draw your weapon.

At level eleven, we use the special events hook to present something that at first looks like the player is getting some awesome loot. We use the same formatting as the "real" crate-finding message, so the player is blissfully unaware that... well, this:
You found something!
You come across a wooden crate, with a small parachute attached. You spend a few minutes prying it open.
You found:
0 Medkits
0 Ration Packs
1 lion! Sneaky bastard!

At level twelve, the double-bluffing begins in earnest:
Something suspiciously leonine is stalking around the jungle just behind those trees there. Readying your weapon, you decide that this is one lion that isn't going to get the drop on you.
You leap out from behind the tree, and attack!
Or rather, you stop mid-thrust. That's not a lion at all - it's some wanker who thinks he's funny, pratting around in an unconvincing pantomime lion suit. There are patches coarsely sewn on here and there, some suspicious stains, and one glass eye is hanging off on a thread.
You snarl. "You daft sod, I nearly hit you! Don't you know that's a good way to get yourself killed?"
The pantomime lion stands up on its hind feet, and clutches its zipper. Slowly, wordlessly, it pulls it down. The lion unfolds itself from the lion suit and stands smiling down at you, seven feet of muscle, fur, and teeth.
You crane your neck back to look it in the eye. "You sneaky bastard."
The lion nods once, slowly, and raises an immense paw.

These lions are tucked away in about three hundred other monsters. It was tempting to make more, but then that'd take away the surprise. Level twelve:
Jungle fighting is hungry work. You'd kill for a sandwich right now.
Fortunately - perhaps Improbably - there's one sat on the log next to you. A six-inch baguette with some fresh-looking lettuce crisping the edges.
With no small amount of caution - you remember vividly the episode with the curry - you pick up the sandwich and look inside. When nothing springs out to maim or embarrass, you take a suspicious bite.
Hmm. Not bad. Not bad at all. Except for this hair that's now stuck between your teeth. It's long, and blonde, and extends right back into the sandwich.
Who do I know with hair like that?
You pull on the hair, and a tail flops out of the bitten end of the sandwich.
Oh no.
A long, sandy-coloured tail with a tuft on the end.
Oh, no no no no no.
You turn the sandwich around, and peer underneath the top layer of bread.
A muzzle bearing dusty fur and three-inch teeth lets out the briefest of growls before you let the bread fall back into place.
You sneaky bastard.
You have precisely two seconds in which to wonder what you'll do with a lion sandwich before the lion in question gives up its disguise, seven feet of muscle springing out and snapping at you.

At level fourteen, we admonish the player for believing in the rules we've set up:
There's a ceramic flower pot in front of you. About six inches across, seven inches tall.
There's a pair of distinctly leonine ears poking out of the top.
Really, it isn't all that unlikely. Lions, as everyone knows, are sneaky bastards.
"You're going to have to do better than that, mate," you say to the flower pot. "I can see your ears, you know."
Two heavy paws thump against your back, knocking you onto your belly. You hit your forehead, hard, on the ground. With ears ringing, you see the lion through a curtain of fuzzy red dots as it stalks over to the flower pot and lifts out the pair of artificial ears before sitting the pot atop its head like a hat. It looks at you with a certain amused expression, as if to say "Fool! Lions are very large and can not fit in flower pots!"
Of course they can't. How silly of you.

And on level fifteen, we set up those rules again:
It's not a bad life, this Jungle Fighting lark. Plenty of fresh air, exercise, birds singing, leaves rustling in the wind, lovely sun and that bloody annoying itching sensation in your underwear. It's been bothering you all day, and now it's getting worse - it feels as though there's something writhing around down there. Perhaps something you picked up in Squat Hole.
You cast a quick glance around for other contestants, before thrusting one hand down the front of your pants to have a furtive scratch.
The lion bursts out of your underwear, spins around on the spot and pounces.


Lions are fucking ace.

EDIT: Yes, this is a real game; Linky for those requesting it!
(, Fri 9 Jul 2010, 20:11, 4 replies)
Morality and children.
One day at school, aged around 10, I was quietly passing one lunch break
with a friend when the school nutter, fresh from suspention for setting fire to a bin, came up and started to hassle us. I struggle to recall the exact details, he may have called me a name, kicked me, tried to trip me, the usual stuff a bully gets up to around that age.

I bravly ran and told the diner lady. "Right!" she cried, grabbing my foe in a fierce lock. "He's been like this all week, hit him!" He was trapped, unable to escape entirly at the mercy of an old lady from the rough end of Sunderland and the boy he had just picked on for fun. "Go on, give him a thump!" demanded the harpy of the lunch line. Looking between the two, then down at my little fists, I made my choice. "No. Not like this, this isn't justice. I'd be just as bad as he is." came my response, then I turned and walked away, leaving a very relived little boy and what I imagine was a very amused old woman in my wake.
(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 23:32, 3 replies)
babysitting
it's scary to think that parents have given me absolute power over their kids for the evening. kids are so gullible. i've so far managed to convince various children that:
toothpaste comes from caterpillars
moths are the ghosts of butterflies
i am related to dracula
lampshades were made for dressing up in
gnomes are evil
butter grows in dark places
adults get twice as much monopoly money as kids
donkeys are aliens
and the list goes on. absolute power over children may not seem much to people in real positions of power, but it can be funny as fuck at times.
also, every child i've babysat could make a decent cuppa by the age of 7 ;)
(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 23:27, 22 replies)
I work as a teacher by trade.
The school where I work is quite old, and as such has one of those coal cellar things. It's basically a tiny room no larger than 10x10 feet, accessible through a trap door and with a small air vent just big enough for someone to crawl through leading out into what is now the cemetery of a local church. We try and keep the students in the dark about this thing, but it's a school and rumours spread, and we often have to warn the little shits away from playing in there and getting trapped or something.

Anyway, one day I began plotting about some of the fun I could have with this pit (apart from getting off with the well fit history and french teachers in there), and I told a few friends about it, and they were more than up for it. So we chose a day, and decided "let's go for it".

It was a Friday, and chances were that at least one kid would be near the cellar after school, and lo and behold there was one, a monstrous little turd called Wayne. Picking him up by the scruff of his neck I screamed "RIGHT! YOU WANT TO SEE THE CELLAR? SEE IT ALL YOU LIKE!". I carried him over to the trap door and threw him in. He started screaming for me to let him out but I put the bar across and smoked a jazz cigarette and started listening to an audiobook about clouds. After an hour or so of this (and by the time most of the kids had gone home) I took out the hose I had brought with me, attached it to the school septic tank and sprayed him down with shit. His fault for not climbing out of the vent and legging it home. I repeated this cycle a couple of times (phatty, audiobook, shit hose) before his lump of a brain caught on and decided to make an exit through the hole.

Cue phase 2 of my plan! Using a leaf blower I had filled the vent with rusty nails, razorblades, used syringes and glass powder! The little toad faced an agonising crawl through this tunnel of hell, covered in shit and bits of sick. Halfway through I had set up some strobe lights that went off at random intervals, and war sound effects cranked up to deafening levels. He was in the tunnel for a good couple of hours, scared out of his wits and physically and mentally exhausted, and then to top it all off, he came out in a graveyard! It was about midnight at this time, and I was crying and shaking with laughter!

This is where my friends came in. They came up to him and pretended to help him, asking what had happened and who his parents were. They pretended to call his mum, and claimed that they were going to take him to the hospital and meet her there! And like a wazzock he went with them! He got into their Honda Accord and they drove off into the middle of nowhere and raped him in the back! OH YEAH DID I MENTION MY FRIENDS WERE PEDOS! WHAT A LAUGH RIOT!! THEY LEFT HIM BLEEDING IN THE WOODS!!

Anyway, after all that all the students think I'm well wicked now and do whatever I want, the Monday after I ran around the town giving everyone high fives. My lessons often involve me beating all of the kids at street fighter, people applaud me in the halls, I have threesomes with the history and french teachers, I can do 300mph wheelies on my motorbike, my grip is strong enough to crush an apple and that 6 year old hasn't been the same since.
Cheers,
(, Mon 12 Jul 2010, 20:10, 9 replies)
I was the master
Of a rescue dog called Lemmy.

He was amazing, he'd bark when the doorbell went, he'd sit when I told him, stay on command and come back to me the moment he was called and he'd even go and get his own lead when it was time for walkies.

The power didn't go to my head as Lem was absolutely fucking brilliant. He knew I was the boss and he did everything (that he understood) I told him.

I was well gutted when he got dog-cancer and died.
(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 15:26, 5 replies)
I was made school prefect…
..but lost the ‘privilege’ when a fight broke out one lunchtime. I was caught shouting, ‘TWAT HIM IN THE GONADS’ instead of running off to get a teacher. Wrong thing to do, apparently.
(, Fri 9 Jul 2010, 14:49, Reply)
I was made bus steward
That’s right, the warden of the school bus (normal size, not short).

I’d set the school record for detentions the year before, so I was somewhat surprised by this development.
I never actually did anything really bad, not anything that would warrant suspension or report at least, just juvenile showing off in class, sticking Barnaby’s head in the bass drum type of thing, so I guess they thought a bit of responsibility would set me straight.

Well I set that bus straight.

By which I mean I sat on the back seat with my friends and I got to play my tapes on the stereo.

No more teen girl fodder of choice at the time “Dirty Dancing OST” for this bus! Hell no, I think you’ll find we’re listening to Incesticide, Siamese Dream or Pearl Jam’s 10. Oh yes we are. Now sit down and face the front.

And the people loved me for it. I was Che Dervel. Banisher of Swayze and absolute ruler of this 54 seating (+10 standing) republic.

I have absolute command and authority.

I will determine when it is hot enough to open the sky light.
No, you can’t flick yogurt at the French exchange kids.
I don’t believe you can stand forward of this point and disturb the driver, now get back to your seat.

I am all powerful.

“What are we doing today?” you ask? I’ll tell you! We’re listening to Disintegration as I’m feeling a bit moody and I’m going to chuck this cassette out of the window whilst holding onto the tape so we can all look out the back window and watch it bounce on the road!

Years later I watched Napoleon Dynamite do similar with an action figure tied to some string.
And I thought, “oh, bum. Maybe I wasn’t that cool” “maybe the people didn’t love me?”

Then I remembered that I had long curtains with an undercut and wore boots from the army surplus shop and “let” the kids listen to grunge. I was clearly cool and of course the people loved me.

I imagine I have now moved into school mythology, an almost celestial entity, and that the kids still huddle round bus stops on cold winter mornings dreaming of my return.

And in their dreams just as the water in lonely roadside puddles begins to reflect dusks crimson glare, in the distance would come the glorious sounds of Sonic Youth heralding my triumphant return, that I will set upon despoiling all things hallowed by boy bands and that grumpy driver with the big eyebrows, and that I will spread a righteous glory of such benevolence that would see me reign forever.
(, Fri 9 Jul 2010, 10:22, Reply)
The power over middle-aged ladies' sexual fantasy gratification
When I worked for a mxing desk company as a test engineer, I had to test, diagnose and repair any gremlins that crept into the 48-channel monster while it was assembled in South Cornwall. All of a sudden my usual day's work was put aside as a previously-sold console was being shipped back in as an emergency case needing TLC and fixing and had to be done WITHIN 3 HOURS so they could get the thing back out- apparently mid-tour the thing had cocked up and they didn't have a spare backup. So, as I laboured away taking the thing to pieces and chasing the elusive fault through the 48 channels, 8 busses, 10 AUXs, 8x4 matrix, master section MIDI mute assignments and meter bridge. With minutes to go and with managers standing around watching, shuffling and grumbling and looking at their watches, I finally found the cause of the problem- a faulty NE5532 IC putting out a DC offset on the main L-R buss.

Quick as a flash I desoldered and replaced the chip, ran the console back through the automated end of line test sequence, air-wrench spun up the securing nuts and screws and handed it over with 15 minutes to go before the dispatch driver had to leave with it on board.

Modestly accepting praise from my immediate managers for saving their reputation, I asked whose musical event, nay UK national tour had been saved by my skill, my intuition, my manual manipulational prowess and above all working half an hour over the end of work so I had to hitch hike back home after missing the bus.

"Ah! Daniel O'Donnel's UK tour is BACK ON thanks to you".

The power to end it was in my hands and I FUCKED IT UP by NOT FUCKING IT UP! Scores of middle aged flushed ladies with repressed desires to either a)seduce the chirpy curly haired singer into a bed of lewd debauchery or b) take him home and feed him up and knit him a jumper (thinks Father Ted here) got their audience with D O'D because of me.
(, Fri 9 Jul 2010, 1:18, 11 replies)
I'm the person who decides whether to refund your bank charges or not.
and generally, i'm pretty nice about it and i'll listen and understand. i don't agree with bank charges (if you look at the letter of the law, they ARE fucking illegal whatever the court decision was.) other people i work with act like they're some kind of almighty superhero and take pride in never cutting anyone any slack. those people are arseholes and prannocks and deserve to be punched in the genitalia.

the power trip comes thusly and if you've ever worked in a call centre you'll understand.

people who call up and are nice will get listened to and i'll do all i can to bend the rules to get them their refund or overdraft increase or whatever. people who call up in a rage will also get listened to as long as they don't get personal. i completely get people who call up and say "i'm not having a go at you, you're just doing your job, but you can understand why i'm pissed off." i do understand why they're pissed off and i'll help them out.

but people who call up and swear at you, call you names, talk down to you and threaten you can fuck right off and are going to get precisely nothing. if you can't treat a fellow human being with a bit of decency that's all you deserve.

i once had a nurse who lives in my city tell me that now she knew my name she would make sure i got the shittiest treatment possible should i ever be unfortunate enough to visit her hospital and hoped that day came soon. my manager and i closed her account down for being abusive.

hardly absolute power but still. if you can't treat people with respect you can fuck right off.
(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 21:58, 35 replies)
My sister was a typical teenager - ie, horrible.
One day when she wouldn't get into line, my dad threatened to pick her up from school wearing a silly hat.
(, Wed 14 Jul 2010, 14:12, 16 replies)
You can only do it once
There's not many times at work when you can gain a position of power over the 'management' but I managed to achieve it once.

I worked for a medium size company when I was fairly young and naive. Through hard work and dedication I'd managed to claw my way into a junior management position, and although I was glad for the extra responsibility and experience I was being paid like a pauper because I was basically younger than my peers.

Every six months I was promised a raise in line with my colleagues but it never materialised even though the working hours got longer and my responsibilities larger.

The straw that broke the camel's back was the day that I hired a new member of the team and he managed to negotiate a salary higher than my own. This I was told to accept because 'the experience you're gaining is worth more than money'.

With those words of wisdom ringing in my ears, I promptly went out and secured a job offer from their biggest rivals worth 35% more. Plopping said offer in front of my boss on a rainy Friday afternoon and watching him squirm was one of the highlights of my life.

Backed into a corner, they reluctantly put their hands in their pockets, to which I thanked them kindly for the counter-offer and then told them to stick their rotten job.

Now that's a feeling of real power!

Length? Three months gardening leave thank-you-very-much
(, Tue 13 Jul 2010, 12:52, 5 replies)
Children .. the gullible fools
When i was a young chap my mother thought it would be a good idea to put me and my brother in charge of the party games at my little sisters birthday party.

We then proceeded to con them into following a series of arrow post it notes around the garden through the house , out of the bathroom window back to the garden , into the shed and then starting all over again claiming they'd missed something on the way.

Meanwhilst we scoffed a shedload of party food and watched telly whilst the gullible fools completed at least 8 full circuits.
(, Sun 11 Jul 2010, 4:00, 2 replies)
The cuter the kid, the more powerful he is
A mate of mine at Uni has a little kid called Aron. Aron is four years old. His bright eyes and naivly excited demeanour make him very cute. And he knows it.

Aron is a huge fan of Bob the Builder. One day, he noticed that the wallpaper in the living room was starting to peel. So he grabbed his little toy hammer and started his builderswork.

His mother appears about a half hour later, aghast that a significant portion of the wallpaper has been stripped off-

"Aron! What are you doing!?!" she asks.

Aron drops his hammer, looks up at his mum with the biggest, most innocent eyes he can muster and says

"I was getting the job done"

Did he get punished? Naaah of course not!
(, Fri 9 Jul 2010, 14:31, 2 replies)
I should never have stolen the car.
But the judge was quite lenient, suggesting an Anti Social Behaviour Order was required, and I should go and help out in the community music centre.

A young man with an electric lute was trying to cover "China in your Hand", but couldn't get the sound right. I suggested a few effects might be in order, and after a bit of fiddling, it all came out pretty well, which shows you the importance of Asbo Lute T'Pau Wah. Or Chorus at least.

The concert that evening was a great success, aside from being entirely fictitious.
(, Fri 9 Jul 2010, 13:06, 4 replies)
Fear is absolute power.


Mums know it, “the bogey man will get you”. Advertisers know it, apparently we should all be worrying about the speed of our digestive transits? Governments know it, using rafts of anti-terror laws to bring in draconian police powers.

Fear is the ultimate trump card played to gain control of any situation.

An example that happened in a local school last week.

A teacher is arranging a class assembly about insects. A couple of days before she’s handing out the costumes for each of the class. Little Johnny is told he’s to be a Ladybird. But Little Johnny doesn’t want to be a Ladybird because he’s a boy and Ladybirds are clearly girls. The teacher ignores his protestations. Little Johnny’s upset, his parents step in and complain. The teacher ignores their complaint. So the parents do what any upper middle class parents do and phone up OFSTED.

The parents probably laid it on a bit thick, but even so I suspect fear of being sued played a hand in OFSTED’s advice to the parents.

“This is potentially a case of discrimination and therefore a matter for THE POLICE!” The parents, scenting victory, contact the police (no really they did) who arrive at the school the following morning to make their enquiries. And little Johnny is in the front row of the class assembly dressed as an ant.
(, Wed 14 Jul 2010, 13:06, 17 replies)
The power over life and death!
I have arachnophobia and I have it bad. I don't really mind other wee beasties, but spiders not only can not fly away but have webs! You can jump and throw them off you, but by god if they've webbed you they'll come right back! They'll swing about attached to your arm and you never know if they're truly gone. I dislike them so much I even have what I call "spider attacks". This is where I half wake up at night and see them crawling over my room or my pillow. Sometimes they look like giant prawns. This causes much amusement to my sister who often sees me jumping across the room, swearing and running in circles.

The other month, what with it being summer and the horrid things coming indoors to keep cool, I spotted IT. IT being a HUGE ENORMOUS MASSIVELY GIANT spider on the wall. There was no way I was leaving that thing in the house. Who knows where it would end up? With the possibility of that being on or anywhere near me I had to act.

The problem is I'm one of those people that some would call "too nice" and others "a big pussy". I can't kill things. It's too mean. It didn't do anything to deserve to die, except for being very big and incredibly scary but I guess to spiders I'm very big and incredibly scary too. I'm not smooshed so why should it be? Damn damn damn.

So a plastic air freshener lid is fetched, along with a piece of card. The regular "spider catching kit". My sister placed the lid over the top of it (at this point I was hopping in circles and squealing near by) and together we take our time getting the card between the lid and the wall.

A problem arises. When we try to move the lid with the card, the card bends and leaves an escapable gap. However, together we are an intelligent pair and I run off to fetch our saviour- the spatula! Sneaking it behind the card I flip the lid and card over and we're off! She's got the door, I've got the beast! The night is fresh and oh my god what if it lands on me when I put it outside?!

As she throws the door wide open in the night any passers by would have been privy to the sight of two squealing girls in their nighties, one holding the door like an over-enthusiastic actor and the other throwing lid, card, spider and spatula out into the night, loudly declaring, "FUCK!"

Scary as that bloody thing was I held the power to its very life, but the beast was gone and once again the Vix0r and her sister had saved the day!
(, Sat 10 Jul 2010, 19:02, 5 replies)
Orchestra Conductors
So. Conductors are usually meant to be respected by the people they're waving their arms at, which is all well and good. Or it would be, except... You know all that weird workplace-speak that makes no sense? When you have a score in front of you, it gets weirder...

"Play it like a pirate slag!"
"There's not enough depth to this. I need a bigger bottom."
"Don't ignore me just because I have a bendy baton!"
"I keep meaning to tell the bassoons off for playing badly, but every time I look up they're smiling at me. I don't have the heart to destroy the happiest section in the orchestra!"
"Trumpets, you.... hm. You're all dressed the same, white t shirts and jeans. If only your playing was as synchronised."

Counting in:

"One two three FOUR PLAY!"
"One two ohhh shit!"
"One, two..." **smacks the first violin round the head with the baton** "Raise your bow, dammit!"

Plain odd:

"Clarinets, make it dark. Make it like ebony. But blacker, smoother, like black glass. If black glass was a sound. Play that." **clarinets play, orchestra is stopped** "No, no no! Did you not hear a word I said?"

"I need to stop sucking my pencil. Rubbers don't taste nice."

This is only tenuously linked to the question, sorry. Musicians, feel free to add your own. :P
(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 18:35, 3 replies)
Birthday Treat
For my birthday just gone, my girlfriend gave me absolute power over her. I was allowed to do anything I wanted to, and she'd go along with it.

So I went down the pub and got hammered whilst she cooked the dinner.
(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 14:28, 5 replies)
I enjoy having power over others
I was once a dom for a female submissive.
She said "Hurt me!"
I said "No!"

Everyone was happy.
(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 14:14, Reply)

This question is now closed.

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