9 Jan 2004


“New Year. New start.” Brenda said as she tidied her desk area. She’s the office manager, my consiglieri, my self-appointed life coach, and she loves her laminated ‘affirmations’. Where the laminates don’t reach, she covers the space with desk novelties. “I’ve got a some great new toys.” She said as she carefully packed away her nodding Jack Osbourne and Kung Foo Hamster. They were carefully replaced with a Homer Simpson clock and Ozzy Osbourne in the shape of a rubber duck.

Brenda stands too close when she speaks, so you get the effect of a magnet meeting the same pole. She moved closer. I backed away. She moved closer. I backed away until I reached a point where I was limbo-leaning backwards.

“I want you to have this,” she insisted, her eyes were bulging with excitement, “It will help you reach your goals.”

Honk. Honk. Honk.

It was one of her slogan-laminates. I pinned it to the wall of my cubicle, it said: “I want to be more famous than Ariel Automatic. – Victoria Beckham.”

Barney, the Big Gay Bear, did jazz hands, as camp as Butlins, “I want to be more famous than Fairy liquid. Zigger, zig – gar!”

I didn’t take him on. I was thinking about Ozzy in the shape of a duck.

Can you imagine THAT floating past your navel?