We're taking a bit of a breather while the world rearranges its underpants. Meanwhile, the other blog is here.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

The end of another perfect week

Sure as eggs, on the stroke of locking-up time along trots T. Aldous to start talking to me about the problems he's having because someone or other wants Library Impact Measure statistics off of him. The impact measures were announced in March and, save emailing me a copy of the link to the press release announcing the measures three months later I'm not aware of any preparations to collect the necessary to report as required. Luckily, I had the sense to make sure that our computer system collected the stats for health-related stock (a treat and a half as the definition is based on a pick and mix of Dewey class numbers).

"I've sent you an email about impact measures," he says.

"I know, I've sent you a reply."

I put my coat on.

"When I went to the workshop they didn't say anything about requiring statistics six months later," he says.

Four times.

Never trust anything called a workshop that doesn't involve sheet metal working. Especially when it involves woolly-minded idiots like T. Aldous Huxtable who imagine that waffling around the edges of why something can't be done at the moment is the same thing as doing a job of work. I would have thought that calling something a Library Impact Measure suggests that something needs measuring.

"Can you get the figures I've asked for?"

"Yes, if I have a week to do it in and have nothing else to do."

I close down my PC.

"I tried looking at the report submission form but it doesn't work on my PC."

Given half a chance he'll tell me this two or three dozen times. His PC is five years old. He refuses to buy a new one but tells all and sundry that his email, and anything else that involves his being accountable for his inactions, doesn't work ("Someone keeps archiving my emails." "Don't click on the button that says 'Yes' when the auto-archive prompt pops up." "I thought if I say yes then it won't do it." "No, if you say yes then it will do it." "So how will I keep my emails then?" repeat ad nauseam). Having spent most of the week fighting a violent urge to slap the man I have no patience for this sort of nonsense. I get up and leave the office. The fool follows me.

"I'll ask you for the figures on Monday, then."

I clock out and take my leave. I'm reminded of the old song:

One evening in October when I was far from sober,
To keep my feet from wandering I tried.
My poor legs were all aflutter so I lay down in the gutter,
And a pig came up and lay down by my side.
We sang, "Never mind the weather just as long as we're together,"
Till a lady passing by was heard to say,
"All his self-respect he looses when such company he chooses,"
And the pig got up and slowly walked away.

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