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This is a question Workplace Boredom

There's got to be more to your working day than loafing around the internet, says tfi049113. How do you fill those long, empty desperate hours?

(, Thu 8 Jan 2009, 12:18)
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This question is now closed.

Motorway madness
I spend a lot of time working on the motorways of the West Midlands. I'm one of those guys you see in a by the side of the road stylishly bedecked in hi viz yellow trousers and coat with hard hat and ear defender accessories.

Anyway, you might have noticed the occasional set of brick & concrete steps that lead from the hard shoulder up the sides of cuttings. I like to brighten up the day of fellow workers and passing motorists by descending those steps in showbiz fashion, kicking out to the side with each step and waving my hard hat aloft, shaking it cabaret style.

The minutes fly by.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 21:04, 10 replies)
May be off-topic, but ...
Hopefully you will forgive me saying what a pleasure it is to have frankspencer back, and also on the same page as apeloverage.

Truly we are blessed this day.

I should insert a pathetic work-related story here, but well, I feel all sort of awestruck in their presence.

I've dried.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 21:00, 1 reply)
Gmail Harassment
I have started a gmail account with a fictitious but sensible sounding name and have emailed lengthy enquiries to my colleague. Poor sod has had to conduct significant research to address these enquiries, which are of course followed up with requests for supplementary information. In the email sig I have included a fictitious contact phone number which adds authenticity, safe in the knowledge he will never call it because he is a lazy git.

He is going to skin me alive when he finds out.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 19:03, 1 reply)
Google search the name of the person selling you tat on the phone
An earlier call from some analytics company revealed the girl doing the pitch has a Facebook profile photo of her wearing a dinky bikini- distinctive names are of course a help here. Sort of low level single serving stalking.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 17:30, 8 replies)
when at work, I...um..
No, wait. My work, right, is sort of like...

Um. Bugger it. Here is the birth of Jesus in rubber duck form.


(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 17:29, 9 replies)
The trick is to be quite senior, and befriend the IT people...
Let me start out by saying that when motivated I am a very good employee, and will give blood sweat and tears when required. However, piss me off and demotivate me and I tend to do sweet F.A. This post relates to me in the latter frame of mind.

A major part of being abe to skive off is being pretty senior, this is for several key reasons:
It's difficult to get in trouble for arsing about when you are the 'boss'. Therefore going for a boozy 2 hour lunch with like minded friends isn't a problem. Also you can schedule meetings and appointments for yourself and go surfing at 3pm (or to the pub).
You generally set your own workload and tasks. So if you don't feel like doing anything, then don't. Also if needed you can invent whatever excuses for delays etc. and no one can call you on it because you are the 'top guy'.
You often have your own office. If people see you sitting behind your desk engrossed in something they assume you are working hard. Not passing the hours on the myriad websites available for general distraction.

In addition to this being well 'in' with the people that do IT is vital. I don't know if I would work somewhere without internet access. And I would certainly try and access 'fun' websites and circumvent 'security' blocks. To this end recruit the IT people who are supposed to keep you out. In my last place we had a big 'swap meet' most weeks to exchange downloaded music and movies etc. By keeping them sweet I never found out whether anyone was monitoring the sites I accessed (many and varied) or for how long (8 hours a day).

In this way I passed about 9 months of my 'career' as a Financial Controller, earning shitloads of cash while doing exactly nothing. If it makes you feel better I still did a lot more than the MD who came into the office about 2 days a week and responded to my warnings about lack of profitability and dire financial outlook by giving himself a massive pay raise. I only left because I was so bored and sick of the sight of the twunt that I had to get a 'proper' job to save my sanity.

Anyway, the final plus side of being a senior level skiver is that you have plenty of cash in reserve if you or your employer pulls the plug and you can normally get an even more highly paid job off the back of your recent 'experience'. Cheers.

Length? About 9 months and thousands of forum posts...
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 17:19, 1 reply)
Pointless saboutage.
One of the lads was sitting down at his desk and his deer-stalker hat is on the desk next to him. Hmmmm.....I need to distract him. So I get the manager involved in this; I send him over to the lad to talk to him about stats and manage to walk past to swipe his hat. I'm successful; he's gone back to his work and hasn't noticed it gone. I get some blue-tac and some A4 paper. After a quick 5 minutes with a felt tip, I've ripped out 2 eyes and a mouth and felt tipped the features onto them. These are not small ones; they're a good 2 inch diameter each for the eyes and about 4 inches for the mouth (yes, I know us men always over-estimate with inches but on a scale with my monster that's about right)(you lying cunt)(no I'm not)(yes you are, Billy Bullshit)(shurrup) I then stick them to the side of the hat, not the back, and setup another run to drop the hat off. Success! The hat stays there and we all wait until the end of the shift. He's deliberately distracted as he's leaving his desk and sticks his hat on regardless. He's now leaving the building with a crap Picasso face blue-tac'ed to the side of his head.
The next day one of the guys from our team walks in, smirking like a loon. He'd got a text from the deer hunter on the way home from work saying "I'm in SPAR trying to buy some cans and the guy behind the counter asked me why I got a face stuck on my head you utter bastards!"
Another triumphant shift in the office, result.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 17:12, 1 reply)
Special names
I have access to a large number of databases containing personal information and there is noting more satisfying that finding those people with special names ...

Ahem. May I present some of the all time greats and todays special

Sarah Hogsflesh - the M4 will take you to her lair
Wayne Kerr - from somewhere near the A30
Jane Adcock - I bet she did
Knowledge Kutekwa - not a native English man I suspect
Anita Bush - indeed ...

And the best thing? It looks like work ...
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 16:59, 14 replies)
self-mailing
Stock up on Jiffys and then post yourself stuff. A stapler, a blank pad, a desk tidy - it doesn't matter. You'll have the novelty of receiving a parcel each day, and the frisson of getting the comapny to pay for the utter futility of your frivolity.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 16:31, 8 replies)
Workplace learning
Buy one of those self-help CDs like "Improve your Effficiency" or "You can Work 24 Hours in Five Minutes". Throw the CD away and replace it with the audiobook of "Cyndi's Oral Initiation" or the latest AC/DC album and sit listening to it all day at work with the self-help box on prominent display.

"I had some time to spare so I thought I'd make good use of it, boss [you gullible Nazi prick]"
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 16:27, 6 replies)
Environmental issues
Start a focus group on making the office a greener place and then spend at least one afternoon a week in the cafeteria talking bollocks with some like-minded colleagues. At the end of the month, buy some pot plants and tell the boss you've got to take some time off to reduce carbon dioxide levels at your desk.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 16:21, Reply)
Helping colleagues
Suggest to the boss that you help new and/or junior members of staff fit in by spending time with them and showing them the ropes. But only suggest this when the red hot secretary with gravity-defying tits starts in your office. Then do everything possible to show her your ropes in the cramped but sufficient stationery cupboard as she ruins her first-day stockings by kneeling on staples.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 16:18, 4 replies)
paper
Print off something - anything - on a bit of A4 and walk meaningfully from the office as if you're going to a meeting or to query something. Then go home and spend the afternoon reading magazines or violating soft fruit. Return to work later with your piece of A4 and you'll get brownie points for your proactive approach to problem-solving.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 16:11, 1 reply)
self abuse
Get on the internet, load up short-term memory with indecent images, walk awkwardly to toilet and ejaculate into a fistful of tissue. Repeat up to three times daily. Think of the savings you're making on tissue alone.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 16:06, 6 replies)
Train in vain
When on long train journeys, I send emails back to the office mocking my fellow passengers. Recently, I noticed that the fat Greek woman next to me was reading over my shoulder as I described her son as a "drooling lycanthrope retard" and her as a "clinically obese bearded freak".
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 16:00, 7 replies)
The Tally
There is a rather annoying bloke in the office I work who has a mudane, soul destroying job in which he rings up people all day, everyday, asking them to confirm their name. Or something.

He uses the same expressions on a daily basis, so much so that myself and a fellow co-worker started to tally the results, until we got too fed up and annoyed at listening to him all the time.

You can download the excel recorded results here: www.2shared.com/file/4637896/e53bf584/Tallyho.html

Bit of background information; he's always going on about his friend Colin, so if he spoke to someone called Colin on the phone, we'd give him a little trophy.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 15:48, Reply)
I'm Barred
I work in Data Recovery and to be fair there are some great times to be had at work. Plenty of interesting work, each case unique and a nice warm feeling when you've saved someone massive hassle or got back priceless sentimental pictures etc and yes you see ever type of porn known to man (It isn't all good trust me!)

However there is always one time of day when all the interesting work has been done and its left to the machines to scan/image/recover/copy or backup.

At this point your left sitting there surounded by dozens of monitors with blue bars ticking away with nothing left to do. Anyone that uses torrents etc will know these sadistic little sods never tell the truth concerning time left. So staying behind an extra hour to get another job started overnight will have you frowning hard enough to break walnuts between your eyebrows when at 99% suddenly 42 seconds becomes 18 hours.

Blue Bar bingo is always a good way to pass the time with bets starting at 1 a bar but my absolute favorite way to pass the time is to shock unsuspecting or new employees.

There is nothing like watching the absolute disgust on the face of a workmate while he's shaking a grateful clients hand and you've made damn sure he's seen that picture you found of said hand buried wrist deep in places hands really don't belong.

What has been seen, can never be unseen!

*First post after many months of lurking
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 15:33, 2 replies)
Spoon
Once my mate taught me how spoon-bending was done when I worked in a bar.

Maybe a more interesting story some other time.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 14:53, 9 replies)
Today has been dull...
I have managed to get all of my work done in an hour, with all my other meetings being cancelled or postponed due to a) people being on leave, b) emails this morning making meetings redundant, or c) half the office being out sick with this flu plague that is wiping out London...

With that in mind, I've been trying to pass the time, ahem, productively. So far I have:

1) managed to spend so long on the toilet that I lost feeling in my legs, having dropped my bodyweight by a stone and listened to an entire Biggles audiobook (yes, I have some real crap on my iPod).

2) spent an hour wondering what to get my wife for her birthday, then asking her for a list, then another hour surfing the net looking for gifts...

3) spent an hour looking at snowboard gear in the sales, then figuring that I'd be better off spending the money on some time at the snow-slope. Although, there is a Burton jacket I rather fancy

4) fell asleep at my desk for what my outlook calendar assures me was an hour and ten minutes. I woke with a start in my empty office and made a cup of tea.

5) booked all my leave for the next 12 months, despite the new leave year starting a mere 8 days ago.

6) emailed every one of my friends with random messages just to get a response...

I wouldn't mind if I was on minimum wage, working as an office junior, but I'm senior management and I earned something like 50 just taking the dump I went for...makes me feel slightly guilty, but rather gleeful at that thought!

* edit for maths - I earned less than anticipated for the toilet stay
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 14:41, 5 replies)
When you don't answer your phone after several attempts
It is highly likely the receptionist will pop into the office to leave a note on your desk.

What she won't expect is to see you sat there, unable to speak, with brown drool coming out of your mouth, as you had been trying to see how many maltesers you could fit into your mouth at the time.
I sadly speak from experience.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 14:36, 12 replies)
Waitrose Fish Counter/HMV Tills
When still at Waitrose, I never ceased to find ways to pass the dull, cold hours staring at fish. I would swap the labels for the organic and normal fish and watch yuppy shag-wits loudly extol the superior colour of the "organic" produce and verbally shit on the lurid pallour of the "farmed" salmon. Yup. They truly do know nothing.

Or we'd catch flies. On a fish counter, flies are like having a games console with you. You could shoot them out of the air with the disinfectant spray, set to either jet for a true marksman or spray for a sawn-off shotgun "you're-goin-down-son" kind of effect. Once they were down, we'd either spray them with Cillit Bang against the clock to see what kind of fly survived longest. The bluebottle, clocking in at a massive 2 seconds, is the reigning champion. That or we'd throw them, still wet, into the ultraviolet zapper-strip thing that all counters have, and watch them crackle. Or we'd put them in an olive pot with air-holes and bung em in the freezer for a couple of minutes. Pull them out and they're utterly dead. Put them in the palm of your hand and the heat resurrects them and off they fly, for you to catch and freeze again. Flies really were the gift that kept on giving.

Or we'd cut up fillet steak and put it through the mincer, cram the resultant mince into a humus pot and bingo, a fillet burger. Price it accordingly and you walk home with 6 worth of fillet for 99p. Those burgers were lush. If there's one thing I'll miss about that job for the rest of my life, that's it.

Once I made a frog out of pink and green cake boxes. He was a mascot for a while. Barry Lode, The Waitrose Toad. Of course, all things must pass and after 4 years, I left, thus affording me the chance to do what I'd been planning all along. Firstly, fill a bag with cow and pork blood, tie a knot in it and lob it at the wall clock (which got me and a collegue in trouble as a mystery shopper saw me do it) and, on my last day, make a Big Art Attack. I cared no more for the management nor the yuppy customers and, for that day, the fish counter was a sort of seafood mosaic of a shark attacking a single herring.

Now, I work at HMV and, after the shock discovery that our computers can actually go beyond the intranet and out into the big world-wide-web, I waste time reading Charlie Brooker, while it's addictive quality has actually endangered the supervisor's job security as he spends every Saturday staring mesmerised at the Sky Sports website, waiting for live football scores.

And that, all in all, is what they paid me mooney to do.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 14:07, 2 replies)
I like
to pretend in my mind that I'm not really here, the guy beside me is actually a painfully annoying hologram and the accountant guy is a walking condom filled with vaseline. Office life eh? Only made special with interesting biscuits.

And smoking. Lots of it.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 13:58, Reply)
I recall..
Working for the UKAEA in Dounreay Nuclear Power Development Establishment, middle of nowhere. What you have to understand about this place is that it was I believe the first fast breeder reactor in the U.K. and back in those days this meant danger. Hence sticking it pretty much as far away from London and any major conurbanation as possible.

With this great responsibility and danger came great wealth to the land, really just to sweeten the deal to the locals that Parliament has planted an experimental nuclear facility on their beautiful and untouched environment. This ridiculous amount of GBP which began flowing North in the 50's still lingers to this day and still we have thousands of overpaid and underworked people dossing around as the place is slowly dismantled. It's a fantastic gig if you can get it, great pay, great holidays, very secure, looks great on a C.V. and of course theres fuck all work to be done and less so by the day.

So erm, anyway this long-winded story is the precursor to my lazing about half asleep in the Estate Records Office, spacing out the window watching the rabbits frolick in the irradiated fields.

As one beautiful little creature bounds care-free through the toxic flowers and shrubs and finds itself on the man-made concrete supply road. Meanwhile a giant crane steams into view, the first of its 18 or so wheels connecting at pace sweetly with little bunny foo-foo.

As I consider whether or not I'm dreaming, the rabbit promptly explodes into a fine mist of red, punctuated with heather coloured fluff and dark gristle, as the behemoth rolls on blissfully unaware of the atrocity.

Well maybe not completely unaware as roughly 20 minutes later as I slowly raised my weary head from my folded arms I spied one of the janitors, no doubt just awaken from his own slumber in the cupboard, scratching his head, pondering the bloody mess complete with shovel in hand wondering exactly how you shovel up freshly blended rabbit with a consistency of dishwater spread over an area of about 8 metre squared....
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 13:35, 5 replies)
Blue Peter Competition
Today I am putting together my entry for the Blue Peter competition, "design the new 50p coin".

www.bbc.co.uk/cbbc/bluepeter/central/getinvolved/index_competitions.shtml

Can anyone tell me how to post pictures?

Might I be bold enough to suggest this could be a good B3ta challenge?

So far I've got "2009. Buy a house for... 50p"
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 13:32, 5 replies)
I found a enw and novel way of wasting away time at work.
I work in IT and have recently found a new way to while away the hours I'm paid to do nothing. I look at the emails in the mailbox "ITSupport" read them, and then leave the office (it can take several goes to achive this), go visit the person that sent the email and then I go and fix their computer! (I;ve got nothing better to do) I'm getting stick from my work colleges over this as we keep getting emails thanking IT for my quick response. My boss is begining to act like he likes me and alot of people are now actualy talking to me when I see them.

Go figure, I find a new and interesting way to pass the time and I seem to becoming quite popular (outside the IT department) for it. Go me.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 13:22, Reply)
My brother, again.
As part of his air force training, my brother had to go through various survival courses - and other courses just in case of capture. (Incidentally, they no longer do the name, rank and serial number thing. The rubric now is just to talk, because people only ever know a small part of the big picture, the loss of a plane'll mean that plans are changed anyway, and it's just not worth pissing off your interrogator.)

Part of the capture thing involved his being held in a stress position for howevermany hours it was. Part of the trick here is to concentrate really hard on something else. There's a story of one guy who built himself a mental house - he calculated all the dimensions and how many bricks he'd need, and when he left the forces, built the thing. I'd like to imagine that it fell down - but apparently not.

My brother's strategy was simply to count - for several straight hours. If he lost count, he'd start again. At the debrief, he was telling his instructor about this strategy.
"Crist, Enzyme's brother," his instructor said. "That's the most boring thing I've ever heard. I'm glad I'm not you."
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 13:19, 4 replies)
I took my PhD seriously.
I spent a long time trying to ensure that the bibilography contained at least one name for every letter of the alphabet. (I think I failed on "X", but who wouldn't?)

I spent almost as long hiding song lyrics, book titles and anything else I could think of in the body of the thing.

Well, how else was I going to fill 80k words?
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 13:12, 10 replies)
Ahem
www.b3ta.com/questions/addicted/post332694

Runs away and hides
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 13:06, Reply)
in my old job working on a huge estate
there was 'technically' no free time.You got in at 8,you took the quad bikes out in the rain and sleet to the edge of god-know's where,and you started breaking up firewood and hauling it back,or rebuilding a moat,dam or whatever the fuck it was,or you hunted deer off the boundaries as they ate the trees in the plantations.
Oh,you got stuck out seven miles from home with an empty quadbike tank?Walk seven miles back,grab a petrol can,walk back to the quad,fuel it up,drive back.
You got stuck with your hand under a huge rock?Shame.Wait 'til it goes black,saw it off,and walk back,and then we'll phone an ambulance.Don't drive the quadbike one-handed along the edge of crevasses or lakes.you will die.
Into this nightmare job strode I,intent on doing nothing and damned if I wasn't going to be paid for it. The plan was obvious.
Take a pack of silk cut,a good book and an umbrella,tell your boss you're 'going to check the fencing at ardna-whateverthefucktheplacewas-murchi',belt off along dangerous,potholed roads at thirty (and let me tell you,thirty on a quad is fucking fast.You come off at thirty,and you will die.) to the far edge of the estate,set up the umbrella as a tent,light a smoke and open your book.Come back in seven hours,damp and forlorn-looking,claiming you chased a deer or some shit.Go home having been paid to sit in the rain and read.
Best job I ever had.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 13:03, 3 replies)
Not me, but...
A teacher I knew in college was ex(ish)-navy. One day he regailed us with a story about how life on ship can get really incredibly boring. So, to lighten the mood many of the crew pretended to be riding motorbikes. Before they started to 'walk' the would pop out the kick start bit (peg?) jump on it and make the noise of the engine (Vroom!) then twist the right wrist with apporpriate sound effects and go.
Well, one day some top brass people were visiting and a crewman went past at high speed on his 'bike' (imagine the doppler effect engine sound).
"Stop that man!" said the surprised VIP to one of the people showing him round.
"Cerainly, sir," said the sergeant (do the navy have sergeants? I dunno - equivalent thereof. Anyways...) "Cerainly, sir," he said and kick started his own bike in persuit!


Length? An ocean-going vessel of some sort, so not small.
(, Tue 13 Jan 2009, 12:38, 24 replies)

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