Thursday, September 1, 2011

Lacking motivation - and business speak that drives me barmy

I need to look at places to live (my lease runs out in ten weeks) and I need to get out and meet new people, but for whatever reason I can't get my butt into gear. And as for my motivation at work, the less said about that the better. It all seems gloriously pointless, and it could really get me down if I let it.

On Monday our replacement for the six-foot-five Samoan bloke arrived. I can't quite pick her age but I think it starts with a two. She's worked at half of the Big Four and doesn't lack self-confidence. The way she was talking today, you'd think it was her fourth year at the company, not her fourth day, but that's Gen Y for you.

Now for some words and phrases I hear all the time at work and wish I didn't:

Touch base: as soon as someone says this (which for some of my colleagues is every other sentence) I totally switch off from whatever else they might be talking about. I don't let anyone touch my base. Ever. Where does this phrase come from? Some say baseball. My knowledge of baseball is sketchy but I don't think the phrase "touch base" is actually used in the game, and when a player does touch a base, he does so alone, not with anybody. My theory is that the phrase comes from expeditions, where you would make contact with base camp.

Migrate: a good word describing something quite exciting. Birds, animals, and sometimes people do it. But computer data doesn't, goddammit! "At close of play on Friday all the TFI data will migrate from the ABC system to the XYZ system." No it won't. It'll move. Or shift.

Populate: this one's very similar to "migrate". The word comes from the same root as "people", although there's no reason why you shouldn't apply it to rats or even trees. But populating the cells in a spreadsheet?! Ugh.

It is what it is: what does this even mean? I'll hazard a guess that it means precisely bugger all, apart from maybe "who cares?". People use this phrase to sound deeply philosophical, but to me it just sounds bloody annoying.

Chillax: this isn't business speak, but I've heard it at work a few times so I'm including it. This "word" is real fingernails-on-a-blackboard stuff. And what's more, unlike "chill" or "relax", it doesn't sound particularly soothing. In fact it sounds like a weapon that could do serious damage.

K: in writing, K is a handy abbreviation for "thousand", but it's people talking about K that I don't like, and I can't quite put my finger on why.

FYI: again, a useful abbreviation, sometimes employed by Inuit who've had enough of the whole eskimo thing and proclaim: F*** Your Igloo. Most often you see FYI in an email, used in a similar fashion to "NB". Occasionally you see it used as a noun: "just as a quick FYI, stop touching my base." But yesterday I heard someone use it as a verb: "I was eff-why-eyed into that email." Eww.

Birmingham have Chris Wood - a Kiwi - playing for them. He's now scored in two consecutive matches. Take a look at this goal, the third in Blues' win over Nacional last week. It's just like watching Brazil.

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