Company Vendetta

Two hours after I settled in at my workbench Miss Auschwitz arrived in Button Up with a delivery from the In-house repair department. She was dropping off another broken signal generator for us to fix and retest. As I anticipated, she glared at me and started babbling about those damned instrument racks. I told her to go have a talk with the Bossman, then to come back and see me. I said, “You and I are going to step outside. We’re going to have a serious chat.” Miss Auschwitz seemed a little confused about what was going on. Like an obedient robot she made a fast trip over to my boss’ desk. I guess she was talking with him for about twenty minutes or so, then she reappeared next to my bench. Her face was suddenly pale white. She was nervous.

I stood up and walked her through our department outside behind Building 2. Pointing to a vacant picnic table I told her to have a seat. It was a beautiful late afternoon with clear skies and no wind at all. Sunset was still hours away. I chose to sit facing a mostly empty parking lot so I could take in a better view of trees and the skyline at the edge of our site’s property line. The view was almost perfect, except for being polluted by Miss Auschwitz annoying presence.

Much to my shock Miss Auschwitz actually apologized for arguing with me the other day. Then she started running her mouth at length giving me reasons why she decided to steal those Button Up instrument racks. I didn’t care or want to hear it. Miss Auschwitz rambled on about her experience investigating a female employee’s injury using those racks, assuming I was unaware anyone had been hurt in the area. I let Miss Auschwitz wear herself out talking and then I began the beat down.

I said, “You know what is interesting here? The person who supposedly was hurt happened to be a scrawny, short Asian girl. She hasn’t worked here for over two years. All of a sudden you come down here and start squeaking about equipment that nobody has a problem with. Didn’t it cross your mind that I’m not a four foot tall Asian girl? I’m six foot two and I weigh over 200 pounds. I don’t have any physical problems sliding instruments on and off those racks in their trays. I can do it with little effort. That’s part of your job as an Ergonomics Assessor, to keep in mind every person is different. What works for one person might not work for somebody else and vice versa. Right? I find it very strange you’re trying to remove useful equipment based on someone else’s on the job injury that has nothing to do with me. It’s a totally different situation.”

She didn’t say anything.

“Okay. Now that you’ve talked to the Bossman I’m certain he told you before removing those instrument racks you’re going to re-measure them first. That’s fine with me. If they do prove to be unsafe and you pull them for good I want to make one thing very clear. You will find a replacement solution for me and you will make it happen quickly. I am the only person left working MI/EI now and I can’t wait for you guys in the ergonomics department to come up with some expensive overkill solution seven or eight months from now. It has to be simple, effective, and low cost. I really hate it when Ergo engineers spend tens of thousands of dollars on elaborate solutions that don’t work properly and nobody ends up using them anyway. That’s a total waste of our company’s money and it pisses me off.”

Miss Auschwitz gave me the same old tired story I’ve heard year after year from various Ergo department employees about how important safe working practices are. It was like listening to a bad television re-run. She told me that our division still has some of the highest on the job injury rates in the entire company and she even threw in some statistics to try and prove her point. It went in one ear and right out the other. After making a series of angry comments that demonstrated to me how much contempt Miss Auschwitz has for Bill and Dave’s company, she fell silent. Then she held up both her arms to show me her wrists and she said with a vengeful tone in her voice, “I’m not getting hurt for THIS company AGAIN.”

Something unexpected hit me, it started to make sense. When she made that final comment it was like a piece of the puzzle fell into place. Miss Auschwitz had a private vendetta against Bill and Dave’s company. She blamed the company for her carpal tunnel and she was going out of her way to willingly help employees file dubious or outright false work injury claims. That was her revenge. The whole scam hit me like a ton of bricks. With little to no oversight in the Ergonomics department Miss Auschwitz could easily alter work injury details on a case by case basis however she wanted. Why I hadn’t thought of it before now was beyond me.

I didn’t say much more to her after that and we both went back inside the building. I had diabolical plotting to do.

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~ by factorypeasant on October 14, 2006.

One Response to “Company Vendetta”

  1. We made it fool-proof. Now it’s perfect for a fool.

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