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The Co-Worker Compatibility Test

We have an amazing printer at work.  It does anything and everything a printer-scanner-fax machine can do and it can even do several of those things at once.  Today I was scanning documents for the machine to make into a pdf file and send back to my computer.  Rye, a new employee, printed a sales document.  He retrieved it and we exchanged “excuse me’s” and “pardon me’s”.

Moments later I started “building” my second pdf scan and the document feeder jammed.  I cleared the jam easily and quickly, and the machine asked if I wanted to abort my job in progress or continue.  I asked it to continue.  The screen went blank.  None of the moving parts on the machine moved.  It remained ominously quiet.

I pushed the start key. Nothing happened.  I pushed the status key.  Nothing happened.  I pushed the stop key. Nothing happened. I pushed the abort key.  Nothing happened. Well, something happened — one of the phone reps came in and said, “Did my order print?” (But I don’t think that had anything to do with the buttons I was pushing.)  I told the phone rep that the machine was acting up and I was going to the Office Manager to tattle.  The phone rep said that sounded like an excellent idea, then she tip-toed backward out of the room.  Odd don’t you think?

I told the OM that the copy machine was being mean to me.  She wanted me to be a bit more specific about its behavior.  I told her all the key pushing stuff.  She went to the machine and pushed all the same keys.  It behaved the same for her as it had for me.  She mumbled, “Fine then, be that way,”  and she flipped the power switch.  Nothing happened.  The LCD panel remained lit and all the buttons glowed.

The OM looked quite surprised.  She put her hands on her hips and shook her head.  “If this doesn’t work,” she said, “We pull the power cord.”  And just then the machine lights went out and the LCD screen went dark.  The OM nodded her head, “That threat works every time,” she said.

Rye entered the work room.  He said, “I just tried to print something from my desk and a note came up on my computer screen that said the machine was down.”

“I broke it.”  I told him.

Rye nodded.  “Yeah, that’s what the note said.”

“The note mentioned me by name?”  I queried.

“Yes,” Rye answered.  “The note said, ‘Be careful of that Charlene person because she is wild and dangerous and she just broke me‘.”

— *** —

Ha! I like him.  Rye can stay.


  1. I’ll have to give him the Advanced Office Pranks course…..

    Um, you might want to read an old post of mine called “Name, Prank and Serial Memory” (I think that’s what it was called, Quilly!!)

  2. That is hilarious and he can stay for sure! I love him from afar already. 🙂

    When we bought the new printer/fax/copy/you name it machine I was very wary since OC had said the one ya’ll bought was sort of hinkey when it came to actually printing anything from your laptop or as I remember it printing much of anything the way you wanted it to. We got so caught up in the whole deal that we didn’t realize we had bought one that wasn’t wireless, but it had so many other cool buttons and whiz bang stuff on it that we kept it. We wondered why it was some cheaper, but the kid who sold it to us was wheeling and dealing that day on everything.

    I almost had a moment while reading your post about missing my old job…but I recovered almost instantly after looking at the clock and knowing I don’t have to get up early tomorrow or any day I don’t choose to get up early. Yes, that is a factor for this nocturnal gal.

    I’ll probably have a number of rabbit trails coming up..esp after we take my mil and fil with us on a 6 hour drive to Galveston. Oh my.

  3. Mar — Rye whiskey?

    Melli — well, OC might grouse a bit if I actually decided to keep Rye … so might Rye come to think of it.

    Cath — now I can’t help but smile whenever I see him.

    Carletta — it gets better. Just wait.

    Juliana — the machine was mean today, too!

    David — I’ll check it out. I do love a good prank.

    IG — uhm, I sort of fed the copy machine a paper clip.

    Dr. John — if that machine continues to act up, I just may well quit my job!

    Shelly — it was fun.

    Amber — does it do dishes? If it does dishes, I want one.

  4. Rye sounds like a real keeper! We had one like him a while back- he could be a bit over the top, especially on the radio, but he sure was a lot of fun to work with. Sadly, he passed away a couple of months ago.

  5. I love hese stories of life in the real world, plus you are very funny.
    I might try to write something about my day [they all the same] then you would understand why I only seem to write about my past. Still, having such uneventful days gives me bags of time to read so many posts.
    Congrats for POTD…well deserved.

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