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New Year, New Life

10 Feb

I’m back.  Is anyone there?   Allow me to re-introduce myself….I am the new and improved Living Dilbert.   It’s been a rough few years, blah, blah…I know we all experience them.   Let’s just say I went from near emotional death, to near physical death, to disability and HELL, I fought my ass back into the world of the living.   If I am anything, it is determined.

Try to stop me.

I’m back at my amazing law firm where I began my career when I was a tiny, Living Dilbert baby.   Didn’t know anything, but I faked it and learned as I went.  Although I’m snarky, I do think I was put back here (thank GOD) for a reason.  The reason has yet to be determined, but I’m honestly coming back to life.   I’m walking, talking, cursing, snarking and working hard doing the job I love.   Will I still have plenty of corporate America, law firm stories and observations?   Honey, there is NO end to them!   I work with great people, but I’ve saved a lot of material in the last few years.

I’ll eventually change my cast of characters a bit….let’s just say there’s been some changes.  We’ll get to that.  I promise.   It seemed best to stop in and say hello and get comfy in my new digs again….with myself and I’m doing that.  You know what saying helped me so much when I was curled into the fetal position seeing no way out of my huge mess?   “Fall down seven times, stand up eight (mother fucker)!”

Trust me, a troubled soul makes for some damn good writing.  God, I’ve missed this.  Please stick with me….you won’t regret it.

Next:  Top 10 Things I Learned from Daytime TV



Take a Vacation From Life!!!

3 Aug

We all deserve a vacation, even the ever stoic Living Dilbert!   All of us, people!  If you are working full-time, part-time, not working, seeking work, an incredible housewife, a mom, a dad, disabled, in college, etc. – please give yourself a fucking break!  It’s ok!  Let go of all the “I should be”, “I shouldn’t be”, “I can’t afford it” bullshit clutter in your mind and do it!  It doesn’t have to be far away or expensive.  Find your place that brings you peace.  

Living Dilbert wouldn’t be Living Dilbert without a work story, so here is one of a million.  Kick-Ass coworker texts me to say Collassul C a/k/a Twatwaffle is in rare form today, meaning as a team member in our group she’s found even more ways to be a worthless sack of shit when it comes to helping with the workload of the team.   I created an entire email scenario that I sent to Kick- Ass to cheer her…but, I kind of enjoyed it.  

I basically know Sack’s arrival time and where she parks in work garage.  I drive to work and do some recon.  I lay low, far enough away so she doesn’t see me or car.  I learn her exact car and routine.  She arrives between 9:30 and 9:45 every day.  Her car and arrival times become ingrained in my memory and I proceed home to perfect my plan, which will take a few days.

I will return a week later (big garage and busy) in a rental car wearing a very believable disguise.  Hair shape and color will be altered, I will have a prosthetic nose and will have learned techniques to look 20 years older and I will lay in wait. She’ll arrive late (as always) and I’ll give it 11 minutes while she races upstairs to log in.  I’ll work fast to be certain she didn’t forget anything in her car, first checking for her security badge.  I know she’s desperate to log in because she fears she’ll be discovered as the Sack she is.  

I’ll get out of my rental car (in which I’ve removed the plate prior to arrival) and calmly walk to her car after glancing to make sure no one around.  I’ll pull out my long knife and quietly insert it once, like butter, into each tire until all four are done.  I’ll go back to car and calmly leave the scene.  Yes, dear readers, of course I’ll wear gloves!

She’ll come out promptly at 6:00, after feigning work all day as she has done for 13 years and knows it and proceed to shit in her pants.  I’ll crawl into bed that night and between uncontrollable giggles, fall into the best slumber in years and have beautiful dreams.   I’ll have to tell K-A after deed is done….wait….I won’t because I want her to have no knowledge.  If she mentions it during one of our delightful lunches, I’ll simply reply, “Karma, baby!”  and smile on the inside.  Don’t think me awful readers…the above scenario is a coping mechanism.  I looked for the slightest glimmer of good in Sack for 5 years…I swallowed many an urge to knock her flat.  Never saw a hint of good.  
Back to the first part of this blog.  Please plan a vacation of some sort.  Remember to see the beauty in the world, wherever that is….for you.  

I appreciate you – LD

There is a Serious Crack in My Foundation

24 Jul

and I don’t like it one fucking bit.  I’m feeling something I almost can’t even talk about.  It’s so awful I literally found myself completely at a loss for what the hell to do.  I’m a fucking little, innocent baby deer in headlights.  What (I asked myself since I’m the only one here…) in the SAM HELL is going on????   What’s wrong with me?  The synapses in my brain (due to fight or flight primal reaction) are firing and it hits me like a Mack truck..a Mack truck straight out of Mad Max, people – I’m feeling..accckkk….vulnerable.  Really vulnerable.  

Living Dilbert is rarely vulnerable and sure as hell doesn’t discuss it (except with Life-Saving Therapist who helped me figure this out – again), yet here I am filled with angst.  I fight deep feelings more often than I care to admit. Good news (I guess) is that apparently I am actually human and not always the superhero I project.  First, Main Squeeze is out of town for 8 days and being home alone all day AND night is new.  We haven’t been apart that long, but God knows MS needed a break and so deserves this vacation.  Today my sandal got caught on a rug while I was watering some plants and I almost seriously busted my ass.  Based on my knowledge of geometry and physics, it would have been REALLY BAD.  I most likely would have broken several ribs and I doubt my still healing neck would have had a party either.  It was so damn close, but I managed to save my ass.  Fine, it shook me up.  There, I said it again.   Please keep reading…

Ok, the real reason for this unsettling crack in my foundation?   I got some rather unsettling news the other day that dropped my jaw to the floor because I let myself get all comfortable with life and it’s been a few months since I’ve had a bone-jarring crisis.  I need another spinal surgery…my 4th, if anyone other than me is keeping count and my 3rd in a year.  I went through the five alleged stages of grief in 24 hours.  I cried all the way home (which kind of sucked because I was by myself and driving), I bargained with God, I denied it, then I was furious and the next day came acceptance.  I even wondered if God is testing me, but then thought that was selfish of me.  In plain English, it is what it is.  It is life, which can be so messy, yet wonderful too. My surgeon apologized and said she REALLY does not want to operate on me again and told me it’ll hurt like “last time.”  At least she’s honest and she’s compassionate and I do love and trust her.  She’s a damn rock star to me, yet so humble – a rare combination in a surgeon. I’ll admit the last one (posterior cervical disc fusion) hurt like a mother fucker. I cried, I nearly puked, gritting my teeth and the morphine pump didn’t cut it.  I had to really work to get through the days without losing my shit (figuratively, not literally).  Living Dilbert does not poo in hospitals.  I’ve learned that when they dissect through really important muscles, it really hurts to relearn to do stuff like, uh, USE YOUR ARMS.  I guess they’ll take part of my right pelvis out this time since they used left last time.  My back/neck are starting to look like a 3 year old on an Etch-A-Sketch. Frankly, I’m weary.  I am just healing from the last two and I’ll have to start all over and it’s scary.  There…I’m having feelings.  I lost my career. Life is very different now (but great in some new ways, like making a special new friend in all this). Stuff I never imagined.  I know there are others out there too.  Talk to me.  Tell me your story.  I’m actually considering a group therapy thing, but for this…I think I’d need to start it myself because there isn’t a “scoliosis survivors group” – I’ll have to come up with a better name than that.  I wonder if they’d mind if I said Mother Fucker a lot?

So, there it is. A touchy feely, yet painfully honest post from me to you. I just had to get it out, but damn if I didn’t fight this realization like an animal caught in a trap – kicking and screaming, but the more you fight it, the worse the pain. LST has worked hard to teach me my feelings won’t kill me and she is right, but sometimes it feels they will. Thanks for reading this one…it’s a bit long. I don’t want to lose more readers. I want to awe and delight, but be honest too.

I do feel I’m being led in a direction I don’t quite understand yet and I don’t like not knowing.  All this is causing a shift in me…I can feel it.  I think with great loss, comes the opportunity for great growth.  So, even though I seem to get shorter with each damn surgery, I’ll grow on the inside. 

Love – LD

Change Bugs Me

8 Jul

Its finally sinking in that I’ve really experienced a LOT of change in my life in the last few months.  I don’t like change – it actually usually results in me becoming a raving bitch.  The biggest change lately for anyone that has kept up is my new neck – resulting from not 1, but 2 fusions in a 9 week period.  Guess what?  My body didn’t like it either! 

So, I now have 17 discs in my spine fused and I can still kick ass (but, in new ways).  Let’s just say I’m on sabbatical from my delightful life as a big firm legal secretary.  Big change – what the fuck do I do??? Well, my job now is mainly to keep healing!  Huh?  I’ve put others before myself for..uh, since age 4!  

I’m learning to LET GO of control of everything.  It’s a daily battle.  I couldn’t drive for 5 months, so I feel I’m just getting my wings.  Listen people, don’t take shit like driving and your everyday independence for granted!   If I had to paint a picture…it’d be me as a butterfly, but I’m still just about three-fourths out of my cocoon.  I met a friend for coffee yesterday and ran 2 errands blasting my music in the car and I must say, I thought, “Holy shit, this is cool! I’m out and about and listening to music on a beautiful day at 10:30 in the morning! “. I’ve never experienced such freedom  – being free in the day ?  A BIG CHANGE.  At first, I felt lost, but I’m coming around.

Ok, other changes that throw Living Dilbert into a tizz?

  • Main Squeeze doing any type of furniture moving or even bringing it up..at all;
  • A show I love ends;
  • A restaurant or shop I love closes;
  • The trend in Atlanta currently to mow everything familiar down and build a mixed-use development (stop it!!!);
  • Law firm I love being acquired and turned into a whole new something corporate;
  • When friends move away; 
  • Rosie Perez’s bittersweet goodbye on The View (stop it, The View!!!); and
  • If Life-Saving Therapist EVER tells me she’s retiring!

So, it’s a whole new world out there – did you know that? Life has really changed from 5 years ago and in a way I never expected or planned. Remember, life CAN and WILL sometimes change on a dime.  Put on your damn seatbelt.  Care to join me on my new adventures?  I’ll still have my rants that I hope you can not only identify with, but get a good chuckle as well.  I still promise snark, yet sometimes a glimpse of heart-felt feelings like today.  I’m not totally made of ice!  

Ok, now a nap.  Who AM I??  I guess we’ll find out together.  

Please let me introduce you to my new neck – ain’t it swell?


Living Dilbert Owns Herself

3 Jun

The Real LD

The new me.  Damn right, I’m going to use it with pride too.  I’m tired of being “so nice” or “too nice” (no eye rolls from you, Main Squeeze).  I was most guilty of this at work when I wasn’t sending Kick-Ass Coworker private texts about how effed up our new system of management (born 1/1/14) was NOT working.  I called it the New Regime and basically the New Regime sucked ass as a successful business model.  However, any big firm has to copy what the biggest firm in town does.  Fricking lemmings that they are. They all do it eventually, but guess what…you can’t cram square pegs into round holes no matter how hard you insist.  The New Regime in most big law firms is the “team” approach (regarding secretaries), which basically all big firms going back to the good ole secretarial pool.  It won’t last.  These “brilliant ideas” are cyclical.  They try, they fail, they do something else, 10 years later, they come up with the same idea.  Rinse and repeat.   Firms say they are doing it for “improved client service,” which is simply business-speak for saving money at the expense of client service which makes it all a hypocritical clusterfuck.

Here’s what happened in our case (and in all of them, I suspect), the hard workers get all the work on the team and the parasitic beings, such as Twatwaffle (see new members in Cast of Characters (thank you, Brea)), simply ride the wave and say every fucking time they are too busy to help, but yet they are the first to ask.  This theory was proven again and again on a daily basis.

I was once asked by HR how things were going and to please give them honest, without repercussion feedback.  I thought, “What the fuck do I have to lose?  I’m already planning Twatwaffle’s doom.”  I was painfully and professionally honest.  I’m damn good at what I do and I have something rare in a team environment.  It’s called a fucking conscience, people.  Heard of it?  Apparently, in our team of 4, only 2 of us had ever considered the concept. I’ve only met about 8 in my entire legal career that really have it to their core. One of the many things I love about Kick-Ass.  Attorneys at big firms are not stupid about getting their work done because work = money, so they brought us all their shit to do (with their OWN secretaries at their desks clipping their nails) sitting on their asses.  We waited for months in vain for HR to kick some ass.  That day never came and that’s when I began to lose hope.  Why are law firms SO afraid to cut loose of dead-ass weight?  Being sued?  Last time I checked, they have…uh, lawyers there!   WTF??? Have some BALLS, people.  It will do nothing but increase morale and productivity!  I would have proudly worked harder had it been the two of us rather than Twatwaffle and I Don’t Give a Shit Anymore and Need to Retire sitting on their asses and complaining they are simply too busy.

Ugh, I’ve had 3 spinal surgeries (I know, broken reacord.) and I’m currently on sabbatical, but I still do a fair bit of “advising” at the firm, so to speak.  The damage this one short, sweaty little piglet partner (name TBD – ideas?  I thought of Piglet, but it would be an insult to Winnie the Pooh’s friend, so I’ll use Pygmy for now) and his secretary, Twatwaffle, continue to do is astounding.  If only someone called them on their shit.  Will it ever happen?  How do you work there and live with that on a daily basis?  Some old LD ideas are bubbling up and I’m about to put them into play to assist with my therapy – junk mail catalogs.  Pygmy and Twatwaffle are about to get some catalogs at work – sex toys, penis extenders, etc.  Any good ideas from my brilliant friends out there?  I need good ole embarrassing stuff that gets their blood boiling.  Twatwaffle used to be very hefty (no offense meant to good people that have had this done and I do respect you, but she’s and asshole, so just looking for openings) until she went to Mexico to get a stomach staple and Pygmy is 5’1″ on a good day, sweaty and bald.  Discuss.

Living Dilbert Pontificates Whilst on (Legit) Narcotics

29 May

mindFine, 4 months out of my 2nd neck surgery, which hurt like a B-I-T-C-H for several weeks and now mystery symptoms combined with my fucking neck about to fall off, I’m still on my pain meds with the full blessing of my surgeon. Sometimes I just think stuff and it sticks (which is quite rare on meds). Here goes – no offense meant (usually):

* Why is it that when you mention the word “long term disability” or LTD to people, especially doctors, their face quickly looks as if it has smelled a putrid fart done by me. I’m asking valid questions and I’m a potentially valid case with 17 fused discs. I didn’t break my Goddamn toe – have some compassion. It’s not like I chose this.

* After having 13 discs fused in my back, I’ve had to learn a new way to wipe my ass and I don’t appreciate it one bit.

* I have a lot of time to think up ways to mentally torture people who have mentally tortured me at work. I have your names and I have plans, people. I get giddy when I think about it. Yes, this is a teaser. Let’s just say that at my last job, there was a woman thing that tried as I might to be patient and compassionate, she was still the complete “c” word. Through and through. She was the bane of my existence and I need to be hypnotized in an effort to erase her from my mind. I’m still working on just the right name for her. “Perpetual Gaping Pain in My Ass” – “Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde from the Depths of Hell” – “Fuckface” – I just can’t decide. Open to all suggestions.

* I continue to like animals far more than most humans. I talk to my cats and they like it. I like it. Solved.

* People say I’m more “chatty” when on said pain drugs. Really, people? I was isolated and not allowed to drive for 5 solid months. I’ve hardly seen a GD soul. I’m happy to speak to humans. Let’s see you try it you bunch of judges. See point listed above. Suck my ass.

* I love cussing more than ever. It makes me laugh. It is an art form when used properly.

* I love Jane Fonda. Do NOT use the words “Hanoi Jane” in my presence or something very bad will mostly likely happen to your face. I’m sorry she did hurt people with her actions during the Vietnam War, but it was 40 years ago. She was a kid. Her good since that time has far outweighed the bad. Find something else to hate that is viable and DO something about it. Let this one go.

* Shockingly, I really do like to practice random acts of kindness whether towards humans (usually strangers), towards animals (even ants) or towards Mother Earth. No, I do not wear Birkenstock’s. Don’t go there.

* I’m sad. I’m frustrated. I’m dejected. I’m lonely sometimes, but yet like being alone. I’m hopeful. I’m furiously trying to control a situation in which I have NO control. I’m human. Who knew?

Go fucking hug someone you love or something. You know, for the good of the world.



Top Five Coping Mechanisms

5 Apr

Hi – I’m still here…working away.  Wanted to check in because you all are so damn great.   Each day seems to get a little harder with my dadgum back.  It just insists on feeling like I’ve been pumped full of shotgum pellets and I know rod surgery is in my future!  I’m still dieting and am down…13 pounds!   Lady Surgeon only wanted me to lose 15, so I’m nearly there with 26 days til Decision Day to go!   Yay!   It hasn’t been easy..work has been SO busy…life…pain…work…pain…and all the annoying, self-involved asses in this world.   How does Living Dilbert manage to cope?  

Top 5 Living Dilbert Coping Mechanisms

1)  Dreaming of all the things I will eat after my surgery and I’m all gaunt and pale.  No one will have the heart to scold me.  Kind of hoping people will even bring me yummy things to eat.  I have a bucket list of foods I think about on an hourly basis.  

I miss you.

2)  I’m thin.  To all of my allegedly helpful people that constantly gave me back advice and how I should exercise more and to lose a few pounds with their cute little wink and ESPECIALLY to Doris Doomsday who says I’m too obesessed with food – well, bite me.  I’m thinner than you now and you can suck it.

3)  Make myself giggle.  When someone is ugly to me, I go into my teenage boy mode – I snicker about putting poop in their office or actually pooping in their office, on their doorstep, Fedexed to them, etc.   Face it, poop is funny.  However, poop is not funny when someone else does it before I have to go pee pee in our ladies room and it is stinky.

4) Plants vs. Zombies/Words With Friends – hooked.  Such wonderful escape time when I finally get home to bed even when most people whip my butt because I get the worst letters of all time.    Zombies, like poop, are funny. 

Go ahead, eat my brainz.

 5) Positive Attitude – this is a tough one some days.  Thank God, I usually have one about myself when I’m not planning other’s doom and destruction.  I have to chalk the good attitude up to my sweet Mom (who passed away several years ago), I do not know how she did it with all the tough parts about her life and HER back pain which started in her 40s too.  Mom, I know you are with me and it’s helping. 

 Don’t think I’m going all soft now – I still got lots of game.   Peace out.


The Whatever Factor

27 Feb

The Whatever Factor

Hi!  Are you having a good week so far?  I simply must share something that will help – I mean it – will HELP your Monday!  I’m not a giant reblogger and it is nothing personal to anyone, but damn, I could not pass this up.  Izzy is an old blogging friend and she is on a hell of a roll.  Wanted to share.  She has total Living Dilbert sass or I have The Whatever Factor sass, not sure.. .but, please read and enjoy!  I’m still chuckling and LD needed a chuckle today!


Diets Sadden Me

14 Feb

Back update and I know health stuff can be tiring, but you have my word that I’ll keep it funny (I hope you think so!)   – Found the perfect surgeon – a woman, and she’s amazing.  I was in awe my last appointment as she used all the words regarding adult idiopathic scoliosis that I know so well.  I have found the ONE.   However, it isn’t all romance and kisses.  She looked at me and matter of factly stated – “Blah, blah, blah, probable surgery, 46 degrees…blah, and then looked me right in the eye and told me that I must lose 15 lbs.  Pardon?  I even looked behind me…but, she was talking to me.  “It will be good for your back and even better if we go forward with surgery…”   I heard many things my last appointment, but this one is sticking out like a fricking neon sign in the desert.   Doesn’t she realize that when my back feels like I’ve been shot by a 12-guage that I need a chili dog with cheese?   I need those crispy perfect little tater tots?  I hung my head. 

Life can be tough, but I have to suck it up.  It is ironic that the ONE thing (besides Main Squeeze) that brings me so much joy is being removed from the picture for quite some time.  You don’t understand, I love to eat badly.  I eat like a guy to the delight of most of my friends.   I try to like healthy stuff, but after 46 years…that probably ain’t gonna change.  Sigh. 

This weekend I attended a 3 year old’s birthday party.  It was so precious, but all I could think was “For the love of God, can’t some kid bring in a Happy Meal?”  I envisioned knocking them aside and stealing all the contents.  Hey, I’d give them the toy.   I push the ugliness aside and smile sweetly as I have yet another slice of cucumber and want to puke in my mouth.

Being a responsible grown up is hard sometimes, isn’t it?   I want to stamp my feet and cry til I get a tater tot!

Doris Doomsday

17 Jan

We all know one – male or female.   These fine folks are the ones that no matter what you tell them – news item, random fact, day of the week….they sure as hell know a terrible story about it and want to share it.  

I’m afraid Living Dilbert has been having back problems resulting from a late dose of teenage idiopathic scoliosis that left me with a 40 degree curve.  I know, I know…you are already bored, so I’ll try to make this quick.  Basically, I’m 46 and now have the spine of an 80 year old and the mother fucker has been hurting – a lot, for 7 months.  I’ve tried it all – selective nerve root blocks, steriod injections, radio frequency lesioning…uh…acupuncture, cupping and the list goes on and on.   Unfortunately, it ain’t working.   There’s a very good chance Living Dilbert will be getting cut and fused in the near future.  Do I like it?  Hell, no.   Am I terrified?  Yes.  Am I wearing down from being in pain nearly 20 hours a day?   Oh, hell, yes.    Thank GOD, I like this job and the people so much and it has allowed me to continue to work, even though many days I drag my left leg down the hall, resemble Quasimodo with my grunts and drool (no humpback…but you get the facial implications of constant pain).   Hey, I can still walk -that’s a huge plus!

Now that you have the background…I can write many posts on this and try to keep it amusing!   Anyway, I told a lady here at work that I probably would be getting surgery…mistake.  The first thing she tells me is that of the two people that she knows of that had back surgery, they were both ultimately paralyzed and one died.   (Language disclaimer) Shut. The. Fuck. Up.   Why the fuck would she tell me that?  Oh, the same reason some other guy tells me that he had the surgery about 155 years ago and that his back is about to fall out.   Terrific, just the thing to cheer me!

Folks, I know none of you do this.   For any of you that may know someone who does, for the love of God PEOPLE, if someone shares with you…do not tell them how someone died from it, or pooped in their pants the rest of their lives or anything similar!   Put a GD gag in your mouth and fricking think before you speak!  

Living Dilbert is inches away from punching the next one who does this to me in the face.  I will simply blame my powerful pain meds.