How to Follow Directions…or Why I Want to Recreate a Scene from Office Space

This week, I discovered I have an adverse relationship with copy machines.

I found my rarely-worn sneakers still clean, despite the flux of black powder that hit the air like a firework. And as I wiped the ink off the counter, and then the floor, I thought about my brief absence of thought, my lack of sense to read directions and remember a task I’d done so many times before:
Shake the toner like a maraca. Place awkwardly into machine. Pull tab.

What was actually done: Shake toner as you walk down hallway. Pull tab. Watch as ink covers everything. Clean mess. Place toner awkwardly into the machine. Let machine make funny noise. Worry. Turn toner bottle until machine stops making funny noise. Tell boss of your mistake because you think she’d find it funny.

When it isn’t the toner, it’s the staples or a paper jam or the pages print askew. And it doesn’t happen to everybody. Symbolic, maybe? Perhaps. My reality? Oh, most definitely.

Made up word of the week:
multitaskinate: to do various other things whilst avoiding chores or homework or getting up from the couch

2 thoughts on “How to Follow Directions…or Why I Want to Recreate a Scene from Office Space

  1. Alexa L. says:

    haha wow…I hope you didn't get burned. I used to be the coffee girl at this deli, and this one time I spilled the coffee all over the front of my shirt. ouch.

  2. mylifeonrepeat says:

    This post is hilarious. And I have to admit, I've never had to put the toner in myself – someone else always beats me to it, luckily – but I am a clutz. Every day is a new issue. This morning, for instance, I somehow spilled my whole mug of coffee all over the office kitchen. As in, it flew out of the travel mug that was in my hands. With the cover. Funny? Yes. But it did take me a while to clean the mess.


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