As a result, I have mad -- and random -- working knowledge of key competencies you (that's right, YOU) need to be an effective manager. From the complex, like how to roll out a new vision and strategy across your global organization, to the more everyday variety, like how to conduct a really good interview.
And I feel confident that as part of this exercise, I will put those skills to use in no way.
* * * *
I don't know where it started and I think it would be crazy to try and find it out, but this is sort of a meme to end all memes.
My understanding of it, based SOLELY on Stacy's entry, is that you get asked FIVE QUESTIONS by a blogger. Then you write those answers on your blog. THEN, in turn, you ask five UNIQUE questions of each of your commenters who volunteer. And so on.
Or at least, that's how we'll do it here.
So! Below are Stacy's questions and my responses. And the first 10 commenters who request to be interviewed will get five of their own, very personalized, potentially management-consultantese-ridden, questions to answer in kind.
I will also ask at least one doozy of a question for anyone else (after the first 10) who requests one. :)
And here we go...
* * *
H’okay, Keeks. Your questions.
1. Hooray! You win a prize from the nearby Trucker Hat Emporium, owned by MTV. You have won the punkings of up to 10 friends. Think of the 10 people you would have punk’d and tell us in exhaustive detail the best punking you would give and why. Don’t say who, however, because if it’s that good, I’ll be over in 20 minutes to help you punk that person.Wow. This is a hard one because I am not really a fan of practical jokes because I worry that someone's feelings will get too hurt. And I think if you spend the whole time worrying, it pretty much defeats the purpose. But off the top of my head...
*I'd take one of the myriad emails my friend sends me about how much she hates her job, company, boss, etc. and send it back to her, making it look as though she accidentally cc'd The Entire Company.
*I could also create a fake email that LOOKS like it's from someone my friend *hates* and then start up a very uncomfortable email exchange with her.
*Does poking holes in your friends' condoms count?
*I think there are a lot of punks that would be easy to pull off that would fall under the category of e-stalking. Too creepy to ever do, but probably effective. Like:
- Creating a false MySpace page dedicated to my friend, from a secret admirer, complete with pictures.
- Writing an increasingly intense series of "missed connections" on Craigslist, including personal details that only someone close to that person would know.
*There are a bunch of stand-up comedians I know who pretty much make my skin crawl. So much bluster and bravado and unsubstantiated pomposity. Plus, they're rude. I really don't like people who are rude to me. Anyway, I'd love to like, fabricate some complete bullshit comedy contest in some podunk town waaaaaaay outside of the Bay Area. I would make it seem completely legit -- I'd create a website, include a working phone number, plug in celebrity names -- and personally select the comedians who would be invited to attend. I would then relish reading all about how they'll be kicking ass (because they will write about their feats even before they compete on the local comedy board), and how special a gig it is and how others should envy them. And then they'll drive on out and discover it doesn't exist.
I will end this question here, because I feel kind of dirty now.
Satisfied, but dirty.
2. Everyone has, thanks to that infernal television show ‘Friends’, a Top 5 List O’ Boffing. Think of your own list. Sigh with pleasure. Fuck that list; I want to know your Top 5 List of Unconventionally Handsome (read: Decidedly UNHANDSOME) Men. Not Brad Pitt, Steve Buscemi. Not Clive Owen (Sweet Mother of Jesus, I think I just…you know), Philip Seymour Hoffman. Tell us your Top 5 list of unhandsome, yet strangely sexy men you’d hump if no one found out about it.Funny, Ish has a joke about this. ("My girlfriend thought it'd be fun to have an exempt list...is it weird that one of her celebrities is a local traffic reporter who lives in her building? She says I shouldn't worry, though, because he's hardly ever home.")
So in no real order (though you can TOTALLY see how my mind worked through this list):
- Eddie Izzard
- Ricky Gervais
- Steve Carell
- Kelsey Grammer
- Alan Rickman
And those are just off the top of my head. My apologies if any of these men are decidedly handsome. Apparently I have a thing for Brits, too. Funny ones.
Also, I feel like I should note that I have ALWAYS had a thing for Stanley Tucci, but I don't think he's unattractive. I also think Ish looks a little like him, and Ish is definitely handsome, so whatevs.
3. What was your worst date?Oof. The problem here is that there were a couple dates that were bad because they were humiliating. One took advantage of me when I was young and stupid. Several were bad because they were awkward because of my weight. And one whole entire relationship of mine was wretched because I had zero self-esteem and it took me several weeks to realize I was dating a complete and total loser.
But those are no fun to talk about.
Two summers ago I was (as some of you may recall) on something of an online dating rampage. One of those dates was horrid. Just. Horrid.
We hadn't exchanged very much information, so I didn't know much about him other than his profile. Which seemed great. But when we met at a local bar for some low-key drinks, it was obvious: there was NO chemistry. In fact, there may have been anti-chemistry. Whatever it was, the conversation was downright painful.
People, I may have many issues. Conversation is not one of them.
So after our painful drinks and what I THOUGHT was our "let's just get it over with" congeniality, I said something like, "Well, I think I'm going to head out." And he replied with, "Oh? Where are you going?" With the implication that he'd like to go to.
I had no idea what to do with this. I am not direct and confrontational, especially not with people I don't even know. And he seemed completely bored. And I was bored. I didn't understand.
"I'm going to go..." I didn't want to go home. And I didn't want to lie about going home in case he saw me later. And I REALLY didn't want to go home because we were close enough to my apartment that he'd see where I live and I just didn't think that was a good idea.
"Around the corner, to another bar."
"Well, let's go!" He said.
After we were there for, I dunno, 20 minutes? 3,000 years? I hatched a plan. I called "Bemily" to see what they were doing, and to effectively beg them to come join me, since they lived in the neighborhood and PLEASE SAVE ME FROM THIS DATE.
I told the guy that I was having friends join us. He seemed unfazed.
When Bemily arrived, they quickly understood my plight. They suggested we go somewhere else. He insisted on coming along. Somewhere along the way between bar #2 and bar #3, he offered me his business card with ALL of his contact information.
I was confounded. I was watching as his eyes glazed over while I spoke, and yet...?
Did he think I'd be easy? Hmph!
FINALLY, at bar #4, after I'd had too many cocktails and was too fed up, I didn't know what to do. I wanted to go home, but every time I mentioned going somewhere or doing something, he wanted to follow. I should have had the balls to say, "YOU ARE NOT INVITED" but I didn't. (Especially not after four bars' worth of cocktails.)
So Bemily came up with the bright idea that we should just leave. And while I have never done something like that in my life, I (and my cocktails) figured, why not? So we did.
We ditched him.
But that is not the worst part.
I wrote him the next morning and sent an apology, saying my behavior was inexcusable. He replied saying, "no worries."
A couple weeks later, one of my invisible internet friends came across a post somewhere online that he had written. About me. And how I (and his experience with me) should serve as a warning to all who venture into Internet dating.
NOT because I ditched him. No, no. He left that part out.
Because, you see, I was REALLY FAT. And ugly. And BORING. And being in my company made him want to kill himself.
In this post, he made fun of me, of my blog (which I spoke about at length because I was grasping at straws), of my dating life. He joked about my weight. He didn't use my name, but he used enough personal information that someone I didn't even know knew he was talking about me.
It was mean and spiteful and pathetic. And it made me feel like shit despite my knowing it shouldn't.
I wrote him. I told him that no matter what he wrote, or how he'd re-written history in his head, we both know exactly what happened that night.
He never replied.
4. Bill O’Reilly called. What did he want?Did you see that episode of Arrested Development where Justine Bateman played a high-priced hooker? And every time she ended up having private time with one of the men, all they wanted to do was talk and cry?
See, Bill called me because he's heard that I'm All That And A Bag Of Chips. He's seen or read my stuff and thinks I'm a worthy adversary, smart and cute and sexy. He just HAS to meet me. HAS to know what I'm like in person.
I take pity and agree.
And I am so engaging, so witty, and so capable of seeing through him and getting to his heart that by the end of dinner, my uber-fantasticness has worked like a charm: he is a weeping, drooling puddle of regret on the floor.
His blubbering is embarrassing, and he's reverted to speaking like his four-year-old self, since that's the last time he remembers having a soul. He begs for forgiveness and just wants to be taken care of. He mutters something about Al Gore.
In a very dramatic, moment-of-reckoning I go to offer him forgiveness by way of a sincere hug. Except instead of returning the embrace, he is like the Wicked Witch of the West suddenly doused with water. With all his wretched, heaving sobs, he's forgotten that his entire body had long since been molecularly restructured (what with all those strange, foreign rays beaming into Fox News studios) and that he's actually impervious to truth, humility, forgiveness, or kindness.
In what would have been our first moment of contact, he spontaneously disintegrates.
The angels do not weep.
5. My mom once “helped herself” to a salt and pepper shaker at a restaurant, putting it in her purse because, “Stacy, they’re really nice.” (Sorry, Mom.) What is the cheapest thing you have ever done?This would probably be a tie.
A few times in my life, I have had zero dollars in my bank account. Like, no change, no cash, no viable options for getting cash in the remaining few hours before next month's direct deposit would be available.
At one such juncture, I may have stolen toilet paper out of a public bathroom. Maybe.
At another such juncture, ages ago, Dave and I were engaged and living in our tiny little apartment and were literally hours away from getting our respective paychecks. And while family lived nearby, it was too embarrassing to admit that we had barely a cent to our names.
But it was dinnertime, and we were hungry. And there was no food in the house (this is not a new phenomenon, IIFs). So we scrounged around, literally, looking for all the loose change we could find.
It was under $5.
We considered our options.
And after much deliberation, we concluded that a dozen donuts would give us the most bang for the buck. Plus, we were grown-ups and if we want to eat donuts for dinner, we damn well can. So we did.
Thus, I once ate six donuts for dinner.