"Alcohol is the oil  in the engine of evil." – BLM Fire refresher/employee sensitivity training video, 'Do the Right Thing'

Some of our annual training, especially the relatively common sense Human Resources modules, have a very distinctive Reefer Madness feel to them.  I wish we could watch these mandatory films in groups of our sniggering peers, but such is not the case. We assemble in groups of last – minute compliance with a Prig to Fun ratio of 23/2.  Usually one of the fun people in the room is fun because he/she drinks at lunch or is criminally insane.  Sometimes I mistake misanthropic for hilarious. 

The training is usually a video presented in segments that each illustrate an over the top, badly acted example in Equal Employment Opportunaty Errors. Sometimes several at once.  Those are my favs – the Where's Waldo of Office Depravity. 

Don't drink at lunch – it might lead to saying something you will regret in a meeting turns into One sip of the Demon Alcohol and you'll run naked, except your NEW agency logo tattoo, and your fire shelter, (safety first!) into a room full of people who can fire you, plus an old woman no one seems to know, and an asian or pacific islander (Because we're DIVERSE), where you'll start slinging racial slurs and grabbing at women's breasts.  The next day will find you in Your Bosses Office (or cubicle) facing your Stern Final Reprimand.

"We just can't have that kind of thing in the (insert agency here), Stephen….and I was just going to recommend you for a HUGE PROMOTION….but now, we're letting you go…" sad shaking of head.

What kind of name is 'Stephen' for a hard-drinking, biggoted boob grabber?  I say make it Sean or Scott…Brandon for sure.  It's the little things.  Stephen is a sensitive name for perhaps a gay man who enjoys quiet music and a sip or two of wine. He's not out there swilling PBR at PIzza Hut waiting for an opportunity to call the pacific islander by the wrong pacific island. AND THEN LAUGH ABOUT IT.  Stephen is not a boob man, either. I know these things because I'm somewhat of an Animal Communicator, only with human buffoons.  I can sense a boob grabber when I see one and his name is probably Guy or Jeff.  He wears grey Dockers with stains, belted below his big hairy party ball of a belly….and cheap brown shoes.  He took the mandatory training the first time it was offered in May because Maggie with the epic jumblies attended that session.  He sat behind her and nodded enthusiastically through the whole 2 hours, while he fantasized that Maggie has never known anyone quite like him,

"You like online role playing games with unicorns and having your mom buy your shirts from Estate sales, TOO?! OMG OMG! I would love you to take me out to Dennys and pay with coupons! Other men are so …over stimulating and self-reliant!"

Hardly ever are my skills utilized for the Taxpayers benefit, sadly. 

Most of our mandatory training, even the computer security stuff, tells a pretty drastic sordid tale.  One shared password and its disease, despair, ruin.  Your family will leave you, your friends forsake you….you'll turn into an Ebay junkie and pretty soon all you'll have is a PO Box and a room full of overstock factory seconds…boxes of googly eyes, slip on canvas shoes, crates of books about some fad diet that killed its author.  And a weight machine. 

This time of the year, because I put all of my training off until I get Serious Threats from management, I find myself neck deep in Do the Right ThingLog in, Log On and Log OUT….Don't Delete Anything if it has the word 'Indian' in it…Cultural Sensitivity and THEM….

My sensitivity gland bloats from all the artificial colorings and flavorings. 

Why lie, says my hyperactive screen saver, I need a beer. Cracker.