May 15, 2006

Revenge, A Dish Best Served at a Lunch Meeting

Posted in Office Hijinks at 3:43 pm by devilwearsbrooksbrothers

When I was younger, we all took turns washing the dinner dishes.  Besides keeping our rooms clean, setting the dinner table and washing the dishes after were our only household chores.  Yes, we Klem kids got off pretty easy; however, the Klem Kid that got off the easiest was my younger brother David. 

Early on in David’s short-lived dishwashing career, he broke one of my mother’s plates.  Fine, accidents happen.  But the next time we had guests over and David managed to break a plate from my mother’s good china, well, that caused some alarm.  When David managed to shatter a crystal wine glass a few weeks later, my mother had had it; David was pulled from all washing duties. 

I was convinced that my brother had broken the dishes on purpose.  Yes, accidents happen, but dear readers, dropping three dishes, each more valuable to my mother than its predecessor – well, it raised both my eyebrows, as I am incapable of raising just one.  Further, we didn’t even have to wash these dishes by hand, we had a dishwasher, and so all the chore really entailed was rinsing the plates in the sink and putting them in the machine located right next to it.  Finally, this wasn’t a responsibility we took on at a ridiculously young age; I believe we were all over the age of ten when we were first asked to handle this task.

I approached my mother about this revelation concerning her baby boy and to my surprise she had surmised the same thing.  However she wasn’t going to risk any more of her dishes.  So, as a result, my sister and I would just have to pick up the slack.  My sister left for college a year later, thus remained the lone dishwasher, yours truly.

I wonder if when they separate girls and boys to teach us the birds and the bees, included in the boys’ lesson is how to best shirk responsibility. 

Every other week our group holds a lunch meeting.  For years it was my responsibility to order lunch for the group. However, all that changed the day I wore a tie to the office.  Since then the responsibility has rotated to the paralegals and assistants in our group.  This past week, it was given to one of our male paralegals – a first for the firm. 

Not only was the order wrong, but there were no paper plates or paper towels provided at the meeting.  The food arrived late and there were no sides.  The partner expressed displeasure and the paralegal just shrugged his shoulders. 

When the partner suggested that he would repeatedly be given the responsibility until he got it right, the paralegal said (dear readers I kid you not) “well if you want it wrong again,” and shrugged his shoulders once again.

My mouth dropped open, my eyes grew wide and I shook my head.  My brother at least pretended to be sorry for breaking my mother’s dishes, this guy had no remorse about his screw up.  Now, you may argue that it wasn’t his fault.  Sure the restaurant could have screwed up the order, forgotten the sides and arrived late; but no paper towels or plates – come on.  We have a fully stocked lunch room 25 feet from where we were having our meeting. 

Later when I suggested to my boss that this paralegal was lazy, my boss suggested he was just having a bad day.  I gave my boss a look and I am pretty sure he knew what it meant.  This kid doesn’t know what it is like to have a bad day.  How does the old saying go?  Hell hath no fury like this legal assistant to the administrative partner. 



  1. Cash said,


    Nice Blog. 🙂

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