Off betimes


Leaving work tomorrow, I find myself alone in the office on my penultimate day. 

What to do?

Should I write ‘Knickers!’ on every third bit of paper in the photocopier tray? Or a story comprised of individual words or phrases on successive sheets, proving both intriguing and annoying at the same time. "I know the report needs to be sent out today, Maxine but dammit, I need to find out whether Abigail marries Dirk in the end or if Jenny can lure her away to that retreat in Corfu, saving her from a loveless marriage!"

Maybe I could very slightly bend all the staples in the stationery cupboard so they don’t work or take the lids off the dry wipe pens. Paper clips are easy prey so they will be spared. I could put glue on the start buttons on everyone’s computer. Or blu-tack under the desks so it feels like chewing gum.

I’ve decided against the traditional poo in the kettle as I love a good cup of tea as much as the next person – assuming, that is, that they are not an annoying metrosexual with a badly worn scarf, a leather bag which is just trying too hard and a wickedly overpriced cup of over-produced nothing from an American chain – the kind of naff drink that alco-pops dreamt of becoming when they grew up.  (I can’t wait for the day when everyone admits that they never really liked coffee but they drank it because they thought they should.)

I could swap all the desk chairs around so that everyone coming in next week is ever so slightly uncomfortable and not really sure why, since everything looks the same.

Glitter on the Venetian blinds could be fun.  When someone absent-mindedly adjusts them, they will be gently dusted with the Satanic silver so hated by parents of small children across the country. “What is it, darling?  A steam engine?  And do steam engines EVER have glitter on them in real life? No, that’s right, yet we have to endure it for some reason. What? Oh, Miss said it would look pretty?  Well, maybe Miss can come round and clean the walls, the doors, the table, the floor and indeed anything in the house, even the things at the back of the cupboard that haven’t been taken out in a decade yet somehow will have glitter on them…”

Given that this is a workplace, a strategically placed cheese at the back of the top shelf of the small fridge could work – a slowly developing dairy-based riposte to management incompetence and drift.  It would have to be French, since that fine people are so well-schooled in producing beautiful cheeses as well as some of the most disgusting, oozing, monstrosities the world has known outside of Katie Hopkins’ diseased opinions.  Then again, an Epoisses de Bourgogne left in the fridge for six months could kill, such is its power.  Worse, it could evolve. 

Golden Syrup in the filing cabinet?  Not all of it, you understand – I’m not a monster.  Plus, that would be too obvious. No, just one folder in one wallet in one drawer filled with the golden ooze - a slow burner, most likely to be discovered when someone is on the phone and desperately searching for that report. Makes for a fascinating picture, doesn’t it?

It goes without saying that I would not dream of doing anything like this.  It has been a reasonably pleasant experience, after all.

Maybe just some lard in the toaster to set the fire alarms off.  Yes, that’ll do it.


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