Fool’s Gold

Fool’s Gold

Speculation arose—again— last week about the occupations of Arlo and Janis. I don’t have much to add, but I thought it might be fun to revisit some office humor from years past. Obviously, Arlo was working for a soulless, multi-layered corporation where it seemed so many worked in the latter half of the 20th Century. As I believe was pointed out by someone else, a lot of other cartoon characters were employed in such places as well.

28 responses to “Fool’s Gold”

  1. The worst part of the cubicle life was the inclination of middle managers to do something each day to justify their position (or to establish their authority), resulting in too many of them emulating the pointy-haired boss in Dilbert. Driving a rig was the most enjoyable job I ever had… though some of the dispatchers were a pain to deal with… it was mostly over the phone.

  2. With a couple of glaring exceptions (you know, the ones that are supposed to “prove the rule”), I was blessed with excellent subordinates throughout my career in management. Therefore, annual evaluations were mainly about reinforcing good behavior.
    The fun ones were the APRs (Airman Performance Reports) I had to write in the Air Force. At the time (and maybe still, as far as I know) “APR inflation” was a thing. Average troops received APRs that made them sound like God’s gift to the USAF. If you wanted to get one of your really sharp young airmen promoted, you had make it sound like he could at least walk on water, if not a few inches above the surface, while avoiding obvious hyperbole. I was very thankful for the Creative Writing and Critical Analysis courses I took in college English.

  3. I’ve had my share of lousy Performance Reviews…ie “Steve seems to spend more time chatting on his Arlo and Janis blog than actually working” Just kidding.

    One motivation for me when I got a poor review was to go out and find a new job. My last job that I had for the last 16 years could be summarized by the phrase “Sometimes people tend to tune you out” With my new job, I finally realized just hard that I was working at my old job! I did make some good friends including the former President of the North American division that at the beginning almost drove me crazy. He recently sent me an email asking if I would consider giving a few lectures at a small University in Northern Japan. Since they would pay for my airfare and lodging, I am hoping to bring my wife along. I last went to Japan in 2017 and figured that would be the last time. Hoping that it actually does.

  4. I believe Dagwood may hold the record of the longest held job with the greatest level of incompetency in all of comics-dom.

  5. At a few places, we profs were told to write our own job reviews and turn them in! My technique was to include some very minor item which, supposedly, could be improved. The inclusion gave more credence to positive portions mentioned.
    This may or may not have generated good self-reflection in the ranks of the profs, but it did decrease the work load of the deans.

  6. One of my duties… ahem… is to sit down with my staff – individually – and discuss the annual job evaluation. But… in the four years since I have gone back to work full time, I have NEVER been on the receiving end of an evaluation! At least there has never been a mutual discussion nor have I signed one.

    Don’t know if that is good or bad…

  7. I have never worked worked for a soulless, multi-layered corporation, but I imagine that I would prefer it to being unemployed.

  8. It was 16 years ago today that a major blackout hit the US and Canada. Some of the comments on Facebook about people remembering were kind of funny. I counted at least 5 or 6 “Nine months later”. The best part of the comments were the numerous block parties that happened, where everyone got all of their food out and cooked out on their grills with their neighbors.

    I was low on gas that morning and normally I would wait to fill up until I left to go home, but I had to take another road into the office and a gas station was convenient, so I stopped. With all of the stop and go traffic, I never would have gotten home

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