28 January, 2010

Advertised starting times are approximate only

Ted always likes to maintain that he starts at 8am or earlier every day. It's part of his justification for leaving early on Fridays, and one of the excuses he uses for accumulating ludicrous amounts of flex time considering how much work he actually does during those hours of seat warming.

I know from when I was acting as team leader that he lies on his timesheets, because I could see the hours he was claiming and I was getting reliable reports from others as to what time he was actually turning up in the morning. And, of course, there were the surly glares I received anytime he arrived and found me already at my desk. That was probably the last time he had to at least be at his desk during the hours he claimed.

I arrived early this morning to beat the heat. No Ted. No surprise either, really.

Half an hour after his advertised starting time he finally wanders in, and then promptely disappears for another fifteen minutes to collect a coffee and exchange gossip. Then he calls up the traffic section to report another employee for putting rubbish in a garbage bin. "No, no. I asked them and they said they'd brought it in from home."

He stopped to ask someone where they got their rubbish from. Following a previous conversation where it emerged he stared into his neighbours' houses at night, this surprised me much less than it once might have done.

"Yes, I took their licence plate number down."

Presumably he'll claim the defense of our garbage bins on his timesheet. In fairness, though, it's probably the closest he's come in some time to legitimately doing something for the organisation.

"She brought it in from home, can you believe?" repeats the person who once tried to bring his old computer in from home to dispose of it here because it had a virus.

It would be comforting to dismiss him as a freak of nature, but these days I'm not so sure he is.

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