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Where's The Protocol? (part 1)
How to Get a Coffee
Bruce Campbell would get you a coffee.

If I was in charge of the world it would be amazing. There would be no war. There would be no corruption. Pollution would not exist. In their place would be an elaborate rulebook of the way things ought to be. Everyone would be forced to live under my insane anal retentive doctrine and the world would be a better place for it. When people got angry they would just ridicule and belittle people until they embarrassed them into conforming to my particular design of how the world should be.

Here is the first chapter of my manifesto--a "Nate World Order" if you will.

Here's What They Do ...

I work in a small office. There are 12 of us. The average age of the workers there is hovering somewhere between 72 and 85. Everyone's been working there for at least forty years and has, over that time, built up a seemingly unlimited amount of "comp time", "sick leave", "vacation time", "personal time", "bullshit excuse time" and "not feeling like coming in time". So on a given day there's usually between 6 to 8 people there. A pretty tight knit crew.

Or so I thought.

The other day at approximately 9:45 in the morning a coworker returned to work and walked in the front door with his jacket on and a Dunkin' Donuts coffee cup in one hand. Not fifteen minutes later a woman I work with walks right past my desk. Then ten minutes later she walks right back in past my desk, now carrying a tray housing two (2) Honeydew coffees! Myself and the girl in the cube next to me didn't get so much as a simple offer before either of these expeditions!

Where's the etiquette?

Where's the protocol? Is this a collection of civilized, well-thinking coworkers or some crude assemblage of savages?

I could see if were working in an office building so large that getting coffee for others was just impossible. But there are like six of us there! Every time I go out for coffee I make a point of asking everyone in the building if they'd like something from the donut shop. The most I've ever had to get is four or five coffees. I've even asked the people who now snub me on a daily basis. I've purchased (with my own money!) and transported their coffees back to them a dozen times!

Fast forward to a few days later:

This same woman leaves, unannounced, and then returns with two steaming cups of Honeydew coffee. Not so much as a peep before she left and not even eye contact upon returning.

I've started to get used to it but what happened next is what shook me to the very core of my being! Not five minutes later she walked right over to my desk and started talking to me. The total conversation was 3 or 4 minutes long. Nothing about coffee was mentioned.

"But Nate," you are undoubtedly thinking. "What's so bad about that?"

Let me explain:

Throughout our entire conversation she was holding not one, but two cups of freshly procured coffee. One she just sort of held (maybe it was a comfort thing). The other she periodically sipped from as we chatted. After our conversation she took both cups with her and moved on.

I am a pretty non-confrontational person. I simply suck something like that up and then complain about it to everyone I know. This is really pushing the limits of my non-confrontational nature. Soon I am going to erupt like Mt. Vesuvius and rain molten fury on her, the likes of which she has never seen.

I believe that I am justified in my anger and that history will remember me as a well-thinking hero when this is all over.

So when I am the King of the World (in a few years) everyone will be required by this first chapter in my rulebook, to ask everyone around them before leaving to obtain coffee, drinks, or fast food of any kind in an office environment. If you work in an office with multiple departments then you will be required to ask the people in your local department (or logical area) before leaving to get coffee or fast food. Productivity will increase tenfold and world business will return to a level previously only seen during the dot com boom.

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