Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Memo to the people in the office who use the common printer


Thanks to our office renovation, I have been unfortunate enough to sit near the office printer for the past week. I have been told that the renovations are going to go for a few more weeks, which means that I’ll have to be at this seat for longer than expected. So to keep myself sane, and to prevent office violence, I have drawn up a few helpful guidelines:-

Here are few things which I don’t know:

  • The reason why the paper is jammed
  • The reason why the printer used blue ink instead of red
  • The person who cancelled your print job when it was halfway through
  • The person who took away your son’s class project
  • Your colleague’s phone extension
  • The phone extension for the IT team
  • Whether IT or ADMIN are responsible for the upkeep of the printer
  • What the score is or who won the match or any other variation thereof

Here are a few things which I will not do:

  • Vacate my workstation so that you can login to yours no matter how many successive hours you have been in the office and might miss your cab back home if you don’t hurry
  • Call your extension when your thousand page document has been printed
  • Give you a missed call when the IT guy “finally shows up” even if you haven’t had anything to eat since morning and all you want to do is grab a bite because you are feeling a little faint and/or suffer from hypoglycaemia

Here are a few things which do not fall under my job description:

  • To tell you that you need to use blue paper if you want to take your printed document out of the office premises
  • Send IT an email when the printer runs out of paper
  • Arbitrate between both the IT and ADMIN teams to determine who holds responsibility for the printer
  • Arbitrate between two people to determine who gets to use the printer first
  • To judge whether your wedding card looks better in black & white or colour
  • Lending you my seat in absentia while you wait for your print job. This transgression will force me to change my chair with yours.

Here are a few topics of conversation which do not interest me:

  • Any office gossip even if it so juicy that you cannot keep it a secret
  • To educate you about what I am “currently working on”
  • The fact that your previous employer had state-of-the-art laser printers and the management of your current employer is made up of “cheap bastards” 
  • Any complaint regarding other people using the printer to print frivolous documents hence monopolizing and wasting the company’s resources
  • The fact that you crashed the print server by continuously hitting the print button. Also, I do not find the said action amusing.

Please follow these guidelines to ensure a peaceful working environment, failing which I cannot be held responsible for missing sheets or the appearance of extra pages in your handout to the CEO containing pictures that suspiciously resemble buttocks or other non-business ends.

Thanks in advance. 




(Disclaimer: No printers were hurt during the writing of this memo.)

(with inputs from Daddy San)


Anonymous said...


Aquatic Static said...

*slow clap*

Rohan said...

You rule! This post rules! Nokia rules!

Rohan said...

My picture sucks!

Sosha said...

Ah ah ha ha! Brilliant.

The guys in my office near the printer are always complaining about this.

And I'm guilty of doing so many of the listed things! Especially, "Umm, do you know why this damned printer won't work? And to think we work at a publishing house. In my previous office..."

Well, I'm sure you know the dialogue better by now!

Anonymous said...

Brilliant!! Amazing Stuff. The positives are that you get to sees someones bank statement/Train Tickets/Marks memo when they forget...kidding

a traveller said...

My pet peeve is people who leave their paper jams for the next person to clean up, and then I have to wait for a 100-page document to print before my print finally comes out once I've fixed it.

How hard is it to just take out that cartridge and remove the paper jam?!

Popacalyptus said...

you are really naughty person

Anonymous said...

I had suffered enough intially with the issue. one point of time all new people were thought i was part of IT team(basically a software engineer). Because later i was the one who fixes the printer and scanner issues instead answering to their questions.. :)

Same Blood...

Achyutha Parlapally said...

My first impression is: letter sounds too rude and asocial! But then, on a second thought, it sounds quite reasonable, partly because I've not had such experiences earlier.

As a rule, we're not supposed to help others, but then, in the examples here, where one hasn't eaten anything for like 8hrs (or hasn't gone home in 2 days) because of work, you can always help. Unless, of course, you're in the same state of affairs. (Happens very often in i-banking)

When people try to strike a rubbish (and also artificial) conversation, I think it won't happen more than once. Because, in the first or second conversation itself they'd understand what level of respect/ what kind of behavior you command.

The intention is by no means to sound prescriptive, but I'd try and follow this approach until I find/ realize there is a better one.

An Iengar Chick .... said...

Dont know how many times I felt the same way but never actually said it :) awesome post. I'm sharing this link

gawker said...

to add to what mr parlapally suggested, i would also be careful about photocopying buttocks and only do it after checking the relevant rules regarding it in the employee handbook.

jkd said...

you are hilarious! i would just wear a sign that says "do not talk to me"

Anupama K. Mazumder said...

Woes of a guy next to the printer!!

In our office, you could add a few more:
1. Its so disturbing when people are walking behind/ around you.
2. While waiting for long prints, people try to make conversation with you, even if you are busy and absolutely not interested.
3. People would ask for a stapler/ pins/ pens/ erasers/ highlighters and often walk away with the item, albeit unintentionally
4. People would want to sort their prints on your desk, even if it is quite full/ cluttered.


Over Rated said...

@daddysan: YOU KNOW WHAT YOU DID! This post would never have seen the light of the day if it wasn't for you.

@Aquatic Static: Hahaha, I hope that means what I think that means!

@Rohan: Err... Sure! :D

@Sosha: Hahaha, thank you! The printer banter does get repetitive!

@Anon: Thanks! People who leave those things lying around also have "password" as their password.

Over Rated said...

@a traveller: I know! They are the worst!

@Popacalyptus: Thanks, I think.

@Anon2: Hahaha, you are a glutton for punishment!

@Achyutha: Your suggestions are valuable to us. Your suggestions are the next suggestions we will consider. Please continue to provide us with your suggestions.

@An lengar Chick: Hahaha, thank you!

Over Rated said...

@gawker: As per your kind suggestion I have procured a copy of the latest 'code of conduct' from the relevant authorities. I will do the relevant research and get back to you shortly. Thanks in advance.

@jkd: Thanks! Haha, I already wear that expression.

@Anupama: Seriously, office people are the worst!

nikhil said...

when will you write man?
i've read every post of yours... i keep checking your blog everyday for new ones.