Anatomy of a Panic

“Happy is the man with a wife to tell him what to do, and a secretary to do it.”
-Lord Mancroft

Shades of this flash through my mind!
Shades of this flash through my mind!

8:45 – Susie comes to my desk and says, “Chief would like to meet with you and Hennessy at 10, is that ok?”  C. blanches in panic and promptly dives deep into a pit of the horrors (I’m getting sacked, Hennessy’s getting sacked, We’re both getting sacked, NO!!!!, They can’t do this, Don’t they know what I’ve done for them, I’m too important, right…No, I’m expendable…AH!, Angst Angst Angst, etc.)  Susie assures her that nothing is wrong, but as you may imagine, this does little to help matters.

9:00 – Hennessy comes into work and receives the same message.  Panic escalates.  Circumstances are dissected during morning walk to turn in checks and cash to the accounting office.

9:30 – C. alternately tries cajoling and blackmailing anyone in the office for information.

9:45 – Bleak.  All is bleak.

10:00 – Chief is nowhere to be found.  C. is “defibbed” as her heart succumbs to the stress and anxiety of worrying.

10:15 – Chief, Lt. Figaro, and Susie convene with Hennessy and C. in conference room.  Hennessy and C. sit at the far end of the table to give them more reaction time to the blow that is coming.  They are sternly asked to move closer.  They grudgingly comply.

10:20 – Chief reveals that the department has new needs, and needs to go in a new direction, so they need to shake up the ranks a little.

10:21 – C. and Hennessy clutch their chairs as the vortex of doom swirls around them.

10:22 – “So,” continues Chief, “we’re going to take you out from Figaro’s supervision and make you both subordinate to Susie instead.  Fun, huh?”

10:23 – “Vortex of doom” evaporates instantly leaving C. stuck with the amassed fear and anxiety that has plagued her for hours.  She feel oddly cheated.

Not exactly my boss.  I'd like to think *I* could be this secretary (minus the dirty mistress part) but alas...
Not exactly my boss. I'd like to think I could be this secretary (minus the dirty mistress part) but alas...

Anyway, this so-called shake up just means that Hennessy and I are now reporting…to the person I, at least, have been reporting to for months now.  Susie is pretty much queen of the secretaries: Joan without being social-climbing, manipulative, or sexually adventurous, just an all around decent person.    She’s also the administrative brains of the office and actually managed to pound it through our supervisors’ heads that we’d be much more effective as a secretarial pool rather than as scattered puddles.  Within ten minutes of us being under her command, I’d been given a list of both long and short term projects and assignments.

Unfortunately, since I’m a fast worker (or just possibly have nothing else to do) I’ve already crossed about half of them off.  No change there, I suppose.

3 thoughts on “Anatomy of a Panic”

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