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August 29, 2012

I’m the Urban Spaceman

The new guy is really obnoxious. A real pain in the ass. Nothing means anything to him. He says rude shit all the time and then looks around to see if anybody’s gonna get riled up. He says things like, “Everybody knows that women want to get raped. It’s in their DNA. It’s instinct. They want to be dominated, and if they say they don’t, they’re lying; they’re out of touch with their true nature.”

I know he’s mostly full of shit, that he was trolling in real life, so I was, like, “Here we go,” and the jaws of the rest of the staff, standing around the receptionist’s desk, went slack.

After a second, he looks around and says, “What? It’s true!”

The woman, her name is Terri, says, “How is this guy working here? Does H.R. know what an asshole he is? I think you should be raped, you piece of shit!” And she storms off, I assume to file another complaint.

The new guy wasn’t even phased. “Ha ha ha! Did you see that? Damn, you guys are easy.”

“You might wanna watch it, little guy,” I say. “You’re gonna get fired.”

“Yeah, right,” he says. “Have you seen my numbers? They don’t give a shit about what goes on down here as long as you got the numbers, and I’m beating hell out of all you douche bags.” Then he turned around, leaned over, farted (loudly) and pranced down the hall to his cube, leaving us dodging a putrid cloud of his gas.

He was right, of course, at least in part, and his numbers are extraordinary. Some of us are a little burned out on the whole deal, but none of us ever hit figures like these with any consistency, even in our best days. He’s like a dark master.

But, the job isn’t difficult. I mean, it’s only a few buttons. We punch the clock, and we push the buttons. There’s really nothing to it. Speed doesn’t matter. Neither does intensity, focus or diligence, really. Sometimes, this guy will sit at his desk for six-and-a-half hours, not doing anything, and then, when it’s almost time to clock out, he’ll hit three buttons, one, two, slight pause, three, and his numbers go through the roof! Everybody else is pushing buttons all day long, thinking they’re gonna beat him this time because he’s sitting in there jacking off or whatever, but, no, last 20 minutes of the day, he beats his targets without batting an eye. Then he jumps up and leaves early, laughing like a jackass all the way down the hall to the elevators.

I’m just glad I took the job watching the monitors. I’d hate to have to compete with him. He makes me look good since it’s my job to make sure we make quota, but I can’t get him to shut up, and he’s pissing everybody off. Worse, his talent (for lack of a better word) is demoralizing. He’s screwed up the averages, and the higher ups are threatening to adjust the target figures. He got a raise after three weeks, and he takes home all the bonuses. I’m surprised the rest of them haven’t found other jobs or just up and quit or beat the shit out of him. It’s an impossible situation.

Meanwhile, after hours, I’ve been binging on “Doctor Who.” I was originally attracted to the show by Craig Ferguson’s un-aired cold open on “The Late Late Show” last year. I found the clip on the YouTube, and I watch it every once in a while when I need a little emotional boost, which is, like, only a four or five times every week. In less than three minutes, Ferguson (with help from his puppets and interns) explains the show’s background and appeal. Unfortunately, due to a copyright issue, he wasn’t able to include the performance on the intended broadcast, which included an appearance by Matt Smith, the actor currently playing the Doctor. If you want to share in the good time, go to the YouTube and search “Craig Ferguson un-aired Dr. Who cold open.”

A late-comer to the excellence of “Doctor Who,” I am looking forward to this weekend’s marathon of episodes from last season and the new season’s premiere on Saturday night (9 p.m., BBC America, Insight Ch. 173). I’m hoping against hope that there is something in it that will help me figure out how to deal with my problems at work.