Friday, 24 June 2011

Coz it takes all kinds to make this world go around...

So there I was, minding my own business as usual, making my mid-morning cup of coffee in the office’s kitchen. I was waiting for the kettle to boil and merrily dug my spoon into a jar of Nutella when one of my male colleagues walked in to get some water. I sighed contently and thinking aloud with the Nutella jar in my hand, I said If you were a man, I’d marry you.

Said colleague looked at me curiously, and then commented that he thinks it’s gay for men to eat Nutella and that he’d rather not gain weight from twirling a spoon around in a jar. I was quite surprised. It was really the oddest statement because he’s barely 23 years old and I’m quite certain his entire body weighs less than my right thigh, knee-caps included.

I glanced at him sideways, pointed my freshly licked spoon at him and said that right there, is the gayest thing I’ve ever heard. He doesn’t want to eat Nutella because it makes him feel like a woman, yet he’s worried about his weight...

I thought about it later that day and laughed silently to myself. It takes all kinds to make this world go around. I shouldn’t be surprised because in all the years that I’m working, in the various posts and positions I had secured, I’ve always worked with the weirdest lot of people.

I blogged about the all kooky quirky men I worked with at the Plant before... you can read that here.

And then I can recall talking about Leon, the guy that came in the office every morning and went on and on, explaining in elaborate detail, the consistency and texture of his faeces that morning... the most fascinating one was after he ate a packet of Cashew Nuts... something like Peanut Butter apparently.

There was James. I remember talking about wanting to buy a kilo of minced meat, removing all the fat from it, and then taking the fat back to the butcher, demanding a refund in my Girls Behaving Badly post... that’s where I got it from... he actually did that!

And there was Sandy, who was a qualified Dentist, an established professional artist with various exhibitions throughout the world and an aspiring Game Driver, working in Tech Support.

But my favourite from all of them was Dean. He was definitely the most fascinating. No one could make me laugh the way Dean could with his particular brand of sarcastic wit that was unparallel to me at that time. I met Dean about 10 years ago when we both worked in the Private Investigative field. He was already in his mid-forties and spent a good 12 years of his youth as a flight attendant for South African Airways. For a solid 3 years in that time, he spent every single weekend in London, flying out on Friday night and returning Monday morning – a nice weekend getaway paid and sponsored by SAA.

But it was Dean’s antics in his personal life had me in fits most of the time. Once he had ordered a Chicken Schnitzel at a Restaurant that came highly recommended by the waiter and he ended up contracting food poisoning and spent the rest of the week hugging his toilet, either throwing up or crapping his brains out. He returned to work LIVID with the Restaurant. He then complained to them telephonically, and when they said that they couldn’t refund him for the meal and offered him a voucher for another meal instead, he threatened to go over there, pull down his pants and shit at the entrance (and he was serious about it too)...

I overheard the entire conversation and it was so funny, I laughed for MONTHS! Every time I recalled his reaction, it would elicit a fresh batch of uncontrollable hysterics.

He had the worst luck. It was always something with him... someone pissing him off or something driving him insane – most times legitimately so.

There was the time he cancelled a magazine subscription, but they billed him for an additional month anyway, without his knowledge. He never received an account after that, so he remained unaware of the R25 that he owed (that’s EUR€2.50 or GBP£2 or less than USD$3). Then one day, after looking around and agonising over the decision for weeks, he went out to buy a new car only to find that he had been Blacklisted, not only in the country, but all over the world. He ended up in court with an appeal and it was this huge thing... all for R25 that rightfully, he didn’t even owe. And again, he was LIVID... cursing them and wanting to slash tires.

But for all his drama, he was hugely entertaining – and it wasn’t only what he said, but how he said it that would send me rolling on the floor laughing. I would laugh so much that he would end up laughing too while shaking his head in disgust at his predicament.

It’s amazing how much of our work lives we take home with us... all the friendships we foster, all the people we meet (and those we’d like to forget) that make enough of an impression on us to be remembered long after we’ve moved on.


  1. All for that's funny. I think i'd also want to slash tyres and even explode some cars.

  2. To be, or not to be: that is the question:
    Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
    The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
    Or to take arms against a sea of troubles--
    --For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
    The oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely,
    The pangs of dispriz'd love, the law's delay,
    The insolence of office - and the claim that he owed R25 for a magazine that he never received...

  3. If Dean spoke in a South African accent I would have loved to have heard him. There's something particular funny about an angry South African voice.

  4. It's incredibly true - what makes our life experiences, anywhere we go, are the people that surround us. I've had jobs that were "eh", but that I absolutely loved going to because of the people I worked with.

    I've also had jobs that look good on my resume, but that I didn't enjoy at the time because of insane co-workers [one of which tried to convince me that my life would not be complete unless I tried E (ecstasy) and when I said, "Uhh, NO thanks," she insisted that should I ever have marital problems, to take some E because it cures all relationship problems and is more economical than going to couples' counseling]. Mind you, this was way before I was even thinking of getting married!! The craziest thing was the she SEEMED perfectly normal.

    I'm always hoping that the imprint I leave behind on people is a warm, positive, and happy one. :)

  5. Haha! People are great. And I can say the same about uni. There are times when I've despised it greatly, but the people there make it totally worthwhile.

  6. hehehe thats a refreshing reading :) and ewww that guy leon !

  7. Great Post.... Loved it.
    and yes it does!!

  8. Jaya - It was really hilarious!

    LL - It was shocking. It has taught me to minimize the number of subscribtions I have and to make sure the ones I do have are always paid up front.

    Mr. GB - His reaction to it was so funny! I still giggle when I remember his twisted contorted face of fury.

    Michi - haha. I love how people want to convince others because psychologically, she was trying to convince herself that it was a cure for every problem she had... and if she had convinced you to pop E, she'd have justified the act and quelled the perpetual nagging feeling in her brain that tells her she's a whack-job :D
    And of course, you already inpsire many wonderful emotions and sentiments - and I havent even really met you yet!

    Nas - It is my opinion that the places we go to aren't as beautiful without beautiful company. You could go to the desert and have a great time with the right people :)

    Mubi - LOL! Leon was every woman's nightmare in the office. I used to laugh hysterically, because I knew exactly what he was doing. He enjoyed their reactions see, so it would encourage him to continue. But with me it was different because before he could even say anything, I'd ask him about his daily poop and expressed genuine interest in it. It took all the wind out his sails.

    Talha - Thanks! And thank you for visiting :)

    Asma - Glad you enjoyed it :)