Teaching A Baby To Talk

My son is a year old and he has already learned a handful of words. Clearly, his favorite word is “Dada”, as he uses it to interchangeably express ‘hello’ and ‘goodbye’ and ‘happy new year’ and about 25 other things. For my son, “Dada” basically functions like the word “Aloha” for native Hawaiians.

Anyway, while the words “Dada” and “Mama” certainly make his parents proud, I worry about how far these words will actually take him in life. For instance, I certainly doubt the word “Dada” will impress anyone in a job interview. So, I’ve decided to start teaching him some of my favorite words that will assist him in all facets of life…

Words to use in a job interview:


Words to use in an office meeting:
Spreadsheet (use it as a verb, as in “Let me spreadsheet the proposal and get back to you.”)

Words to use when making a deal:


Words to express dissatisfaction (I have many of these):
Perfect (once he has mastered the use of sarcasm)
Finally (once he has mastered the use of sarcasm)
UN-acceptable (Please note, I know that “unbelievable” and “unacceptable” are not spelled with multiple capital letters or hyphens. I’m trying to illustrate how they should be pronounced.)

Words to describe someone untrustworthy:

Words to use to charm a lady:

And there are dozens of other words that I’ll be introducing shortly. I’ve told Charlie many times that having these words as part of his vocabulary will be the catalyst to spearheading a veritable conduit to the pinnacle of success in life. Charlie agrees fully, as he always responds with an enthusiastic “Dada!” at the end of my sermon…. which, I’m pretty sure is his word for expressing approval.

Some Needed Improvements To My Cubicle

Foot traffic has been down lately, there’s no mistake about that. Honestly, I can’t remember the last time somebody stopped by and inquired about my bobbleheads. I’m actually considering putting dust covers on the two guest chairs in my cubicle. Sadly, I’m beginning to accept the fact that hanging out in my cubicle doesn’t have the same allure that it once did.

However, I intend to do something about it. Here are my ideas for making my cubicle an office destination once more…

A Nerf Mini Basketball Hoop: Technically, I already have such an item in my cubicle. But, if I had a second hoop, then I could get a full-court game going.

A Magic 8-Ball: How hilarious would this be? I could pretend to consult this item whenever a coworker asks me a ‘yes or no’ question. I know, in the real world, this shtick wouldn’t be funny at all. However, in the bland and sanitized world of office comedy, this would kill.

Velvet ropes: I want my cubicle to have an air of exclusivity. In conjunction with this, I’m going to designate the area by my filing cabinet as the VIP corner.

An Ashtray: I don’t smoke, but I consider this item to have great potential as a conversation piece. When people stop by and ask why I have an ashtray on my desk, I can respond thusly: “In the ’50’s it was commonplace for people in an office to sit and smoke at their desks all day long. In the event that fad ever makes a comeback, I’m ready.”

A Shrunken Head: The novelty items above are nice, but I think it would be fun to take it a step further and transform my cubicle into a curiosity shop/freak show. Perhaps, I could supplement my income by charging admission. And while they don’t have full beards, there are numerous old ladies in the office with some degree of facial hair. I’m sure if posted an ad on the company message board I could find lots of other freaks to round out the show.

A Giant Playland with a Ball Crawl: Admittedly, I’m stealing this idea from McDonalds. If any coworkers wander through my area with their small children, the ensuing tantrum will force them to stop by and hang out for a while.

A Bread Maker: I’m going on the record here, the bread maker is my favorite kitchen appliance. It does the full damn job. Start to finish. It mixes, kneads, cooks… My involvement is minimal. Just put the ingredients in and eat the output six hours later. When people stop by, we could share a slice of bread and I could impart wisdom about how great it would be our other coworkers were as thorough and diligent as the bread maker. Or, conversely, I could say our office functions like a bread maker in that it is very costly and produces unreliable results. I like appliances that lend themselves to multiple office metaphors.

Obviously, procuring these items will be difficult. If anyone has something from the list, I’m willing to offer a trade. My tape dispenser is of absolutely no use to me. I don’t even know why I have one. Seriously, who needs tape? Not once have I ever had an office situation that required taping two things together. It’s not like we’re doing arts and crafts in the afternoons. I’m not gift-wrapping any financial reports. Let me know if you’re interested.

In the meantime, I need to get to the mail room. With his shirt off, there’s a guy that works there that could pass for an ape-man.

Potential XBox Outrage

Gather ’round boys and girls, I wish to tell you about a great injustice that befell me years ago… (cue harp music and waving-fade camera effect to signify a flashback is beginning…)

It was the summer of 1999. It was a simpler time then. Our days were spent stocking our fallout shelters for the inevitable Y2K disaster. Nobody thought Arnold Schwarzengger would ever take the oath of office (click for audio). And everyone was convinced that in five years nobody would go to the store for anything. Hence, pouring your life savings into an Internet company that sold cat food online was considered a shrewd investment.

Also, cell phones were not yet mainstream, meaning people had to deal with the hassles of long distance plans with numerous hidden fees and restrictions.

The phone company MCI had just sent me a huge bill for some long distance calls. Naturally, since this predated sending anthrax through the mail, I decided to call and complain. After being on hold for about nine hours, I finally got to begin explaining the problems with my bill. Unable to adjust the billing herself, the operator attempted to rectify the situation…

Operator: “Sir, you can mail a letter to our customer service complaint department to further assist you… I’ll give you their address…”
Me (stunned): “Write a letter? Don’t they have a 1-800 number?”
Operator: “No, I’m sorry, they can’t be reached by phone. You need to write them a letter.”
Me (outraged): “What? This is MCI! You guys are a (expletive) phone company! What do you mean they don’t have a phone number? That’s your whole (expletive) business!”

Needless to say, the lines of communication deteriorated rapidly after that exchange. MCI banked (wisely) on laziness impeding any action on my part. It was a risky gamble, but one that seems to unwaveringly pay off when the American public is concerned. So, like everyone else, with clenched teeth I paid my bill in full, shook my fist in the air, and vowed revenge. Had the company not gone bankrupt four years ago, that revenge would have come today in the form of this angry manifesto. Seems kind of petty now, so I’ll just talk about my XBox 360.

Which brings me to my current problem: (cue wavy camera effects, signifying a return to the present day…)

Last night, my 360 froze up. I’m not feeling good about the situation one bit. My experience has taught me that companies that base their business in advanced technology usually don’t possess the most basic technology to actually deal with customer complaints. I have a feeling that when it comes time to helping a customer, all of a sudden, Microsoft has never heard of email.

So, I can’t wait to call Microsoft’s XBox support hotline tomorrow and have the “customer service” representative tell me she doesn’t have Internet or a computer and the only way to submit a complaint is via passenger pigeon. Wish me luck, I feel a potential outrage developing…


Editor’s note: Once in awhile, we at Internet Zillionaire like to open the doors of authorship to one of our frequent commenters. Sometimes they have a thought, gripe, or story they would like to share. Today, Miss Chantilly Stevens has something she’d like to get off her chest. I think you’ll find that her perspective brings a certain classiness not usually associated with boob humor (or this blog).

I used to snoop as a child. There was this drawer in my mother’s dresser where she would put all of her “extras”—the Tooth Fairy’s tooth collection, birthday cards, clip-on earrings and a large collection of cotton and poly-fiber shoulder pads. I can remember taking those shoulder pads, with the Velcro strips on one side, and stacking them inside my double A bra. I must, I must, I must increase my bust with one of the finest 80’s inventions, removable shoulder pads.

Why do I tell you this? Today at school I observed one of my favorite students, we’ll call her Chelsea, with a new look. I get the best parts of these students’ lives, in the middle of all the “What’s happening to me?” (Which, by the way, was how my parents told me about puberty, by putting that book on my bed.)

In class today my students were creating superheroes to be placed around the school. These paper cutouts would hopefully be a catalyst for change in the hallways. Today was the first day of the assignment and also the most raw. Most ideas at first are typical, “Hey Miss Stevens, what about Plunge-O?! And Poo is his nemesis!!” or “How about Homework Ninja?” But would Plunge-O really change their lives? Would they even be able to let Ninja into the building with all the security? There has to be something that will really change their lives. I suggested HormonE-Z, the superhero who could speed up puberty! As much as they laughed I knew it was all too painfully true, especially when I saw Chelsea.

Chelsea is a fun loving girl who was made over last summer and finally got rid of her a) unibrow (which I thought was cool) and b) the ribbons that matched each of her pink outfits. Someone had gotten to her and told her what was and was not O.K. As Chelsea was doing a ballet move across the floor, while holding and practicing her flute I noticed that Chelsea had some wrinkles of cloth underneath her shirt. I thought, “hmmm… Chelsea…gosh she’s always in such a rush she must have forgotten to pull her undershirt down.” So I thought I would help her out by enlightening her of the situation. How dumb am I? Of course she knew. I was made quickly aware of that fact when she put her head down and stumbled for her words saying, “umm, yeah, um…” Oh yes I remember this feeling—its the I’m-not-in-my-own-universe feeling, or the holy-shit-I-thought-this-was-the-perfect-plan feeling.

My discovery: Chelsea had rolled her tanktop under her t-shirt in order to simulate a larger chest, the chest she is hoping to achieve one day. After I told her she didn’t fix it. Oh no, that would be addressing the truth of the situation. The best part was that she subtly adjusted the arrangement. She must have thought, “This looked so good this morning!” I’ve been there…

Ahhh to be a witness to these moments, I may have the coolest job ever.