Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Silence of the EOs

So, thanks to the inclement weather today (The high winds mean that a person of short stature such as myself runs a risk of being blown into the Atlantic if they put a foot wrong), I found myself remaining on in the Department during lunchtime and, rather than break my teeth on a concrete-like Departmental Scone in the canteen, I remained at my desk with a large coffee.

It was quiet. Bloody quiet.

Morticia hasn’t been seen for days. One of the last times I spoke to her, she was wittering on about it being her birthday and “oooh, I don’t want to tell you how old I am, but it’s between 58 and 60,” she prattled. She seemed to have been angling for the rest of us to get her a present seeing as she plans to retire/ take a career break/ die soon and it’s likely to be her last one in the Department. When I looked around there was no-one else within earshot who I could – ahem – “volunteer” for the project, I felt it fell to me to do something for the good lady.

Actually, I tell a lie. There was someone else within earshot. The Trappist EO. Not exactly a good person to fob the whole project onto. Apart from the protracted silences, the said EO is widely known to be the only civil servant who can claim an input into the production of metamorphic rock – i.e. if you shoved a lump of coal up this EO’s arse, it would come out as a miniature, sparkly Hope(less) Diamond.

Anyway, I hadn’t got a lot of cash to spare myself. What little I had at the time was earmarked for essential stuff, like beer and books. And I was fucked if I was going to spend it on someone I didn’t particularly like. A small unit like ours would yield fuck all cash anyway if I had a collection. I felt, however, that it would be a small outlay considering that we’ll be shot of Morticia for good in the next year or so, and, with this in mind, I set about contemplating what would be nice to get for her, that wouldn’t make any sort of a dent in the personal finances.

Having sifted through all the options open to me, and thinking that the giftwrapped dog poo was taking things a little too far, I opted instead for a nice flower from my garden in a pot. Morticia was ecstatic when I brought it in the next day. She placed it on her desk, right beside the picture of the Taj Mahal and Princess Diana with a cutout of Morticia glued crudely to one side. She watered the plant, stroked it and sang songs to it for the whole day. That evening, she picked it up carefully and took it home.

She has not been seen since. And it’s a pity, because I'm interested to know how my cutting of Deadly Nightshade (atropa belladonna) is getting on.

I still think it was a better gift than the poo.