Monday, March 16, 2009

You'll need a Form ID10T...just ask someone in Accounting.

Don't be late coming back from lunch and you won't need to worry.

I wear a couple of different hats around the most type A personality workaholics. Often, I'm the 'go to' guy when there's a problem...which I like. I'm also the 'Jesus freak' of our group. I don't care for the 'freak' part too much because of the negative connotation associated with the word, but I definitely wear the title Christian or Jesus follower with humbled pride.

There's another hat though that I also enjoy immensely...I'm our company's practical joker. Most of the time, I limit my folly to the 'new guy' with initiations designed to break the ice...well okay...humiliate and punish. But keep in mind after being both an athlete and Marine, rites of passage are just inherently part of my social's who I am.

Now, I would never do anything malicious or harm someone...permanently. I limit my shenanigans to something as simple as giving a new nickname to more complex lampoons that require planning and accomplices...say, getting the new guy to go into the bathroom and sign off on a nonexistent eyewash station training sheet after one of our... shall we say... 'regular' warehouse workers has created a post-tuna salad sandwiches lunch atmosphere in there. Did I mention we lock them in for a few minutes to make sure they take in the full effect? Hey, nothing quite says 'welcome aboard' like being violated by the malodorous air of a new coworker.

I do have a talked about still despite the dozens of pranks pulled since. While working through a network issue one day, I discovered that our CEO's printer was both viewable and unlocked on the warehouse's network. Seeing opportunity, I proceeded to type and print the following note to his printer:

Dear Boss,
I just wanted you to know I appreciate my new job. Even though it's very hot today, we are working very hard. I'm sure you would be proud. I don't see you much in the warehouse, so I thought I'd say hey and thanks again. Let me know if you need ANYTHING.
The New Guy

It wasn't long before the company President emerged into the warehouse, where I posted up on a computer with a clear view of the proceedings. The puzzled look on New Guy's face was priceless as he stuttered for some reasonable explanation. After about an agonizing minute, the proverbial light bulb went off in the Prez's head, and his quick scan of those present found me diligently working at a computer terminal acting completely oblivious to the stunt. Busted...but well worth the lecture on network security soon to follow. Oh...the CEO got a big kick out of it when he found out what had happened. No harm, no foul.

When you work in an environment of nonbelievers like I do, as the lone Christian, I feel it's important to be genuine and transparent. Cutting up and having fun is part of who I am. I keep my jokes clean and my mischievousness in good nature. Just because I'm a Christian doesn't mean I can't have fun...anymore than it means I won't ever slip up. There are many ways to share your faith, and some require very reverent, solemn moments...I've had a number of those too.

Despite my initial fun, I always open up to new people and offer my assistance in making their transition easier. Not a single person has ever taken my practical jokes the wrong way. I'm not saying it couldn't happen...just that it hasn't happened. Unfortunately, I could see more easily offending someone new by initially approaching them about my faith and love for God. I save that for a little later...when they really get to know me...and God makes the opportunity.

Being a Christian shouldn't be synonymous with living a dull, boring life. We have fun...heck...we have lots of fun. There's a natural, jovial easiness that comes with the security of salvation. You may not be the joking type and shouldn't fake it if you're not...that's perfectly okay. Just don't act like Hell will open up and swallow you if you chuckle at a fart joke...after all, God desires our humility, and He made us flatulent beings.

Oh, sorry mom... for saying the 'f word'.


David said...

Thanks for the chuckle! I think I will try the letter to the boss...

I once changed the command prompt on one of the instructor's PC's to "C:\ Formatting C Drive" and she kept switching it off only to restart it with the same prompt. Or you could tape down whatever F key shows the start up prompts... and for that they pay me very well.

Laretha said...

I used to work in an office where we did practical jokes all the time!

Charcoal rubbed on the earpiece of the phone, or lotion. A 'short cord' placed on the handset hidden by the long one so when the handset was picked up the entire base of the phone came off the desk too! Classic fun!

I agree with ya brother. Be in the world but not of it. If the only Jesus they see in me is uptight and lonely why would anyone want to follow Him?

How much do you know about mormonism? I'm curious about your insight there because of some discussions I'm in right now. Email me at lh.beautyunveiled. That's a gmail account.

Beth in NC said...

I was always the joker when I worked outside of the home. I can totally relate. Ha!

I always enjoyed placing a silly sign on someone's back and let them walk out into the warehouse. NOW THOSE childish signs are still a hoot! lol

Bless you!

Matt @ The Church of No People said...

Good for you. If there's one thing people expect, it's for the sole Christian to be the fun police.

Lula! said...

You are SO mean. And hilarious.

We will laugh with Jesus in Heaven, of course...I have a feeling He will be the best practical joker of all, and will do it all in love. Of course!

Luke said...

"He made us flatulent beings."


And, yes, I love those ID10T errors.


Heather said...

Fun stuff, thanks for sharing!

joshua conti said...

great post- it sounds like my office in a few places!
thanks for linking to my blog- i appreciate it. and i will keep writing... i usually write a new post once a week due to the myriad of things i work on. stay tuned!


Anonymous said...

Thank you for the laugh. I am a follower of Christ and a successful Canadian political cartoonist and enjoy a good practical joke. My best was to drill a hole into several sugar cubes, fill them with a plug of red dye mixed with baking soda and a little water, and then seal the hole with another paste of just baking soda and water. Place the cubes back and wait for unsuspecting coworkers to plop, plop, fizz, fizz them into their coffee. The various reactions are worth the effort.

Eli and Fam said...

I just started following your blog. So today I am the New Guy.