On Leaving School

Part of an occasional series of guidance lectures.

     The young man has the distinct advantage in the world of work, as he is necessarily, more mature due to the fact that his brain is significantly larger than his female counterpart. He has plenty of room for remembering important facts, and imperial measurements, which will ,of necessity, require 86% of his impressive cranium. In the real world he faces the challenges of a day occupied with a succession of relatively tedious and uninteresting duties. To the dull boy this will be more grist to the mill, and thus life in the office will be less dangerous for the dullard. An intelligent boy, contra wise, has the burden of curiosity on his back. The intelligent boy can become a danger to himself, and the wise Manager will frequently ensure that he moves from department to department on a regular basis, to guard against this Achilles’ heel. In the final analysis, the best route to success depends on the mental ability of the individual.

     In order, young master, that you can have the most capital adventure in the world of work. First you must determine which of the mental modes best suits your position. There are those so dull as not to know that their work is dull, and they are content with their lot. The dull boy is best suited to life as a Civil Servant, Bank Manager, Bomb Disposal Expert or Minister of Disease. Then there are those of keener understanding, who see that they are engaged upon work that of itself is hopeless and dull, but have not quite enough strength of mind to look beyond, and so they lose hope. This is the sure route to middle management. They know, but see “as in a glass darkly.” The lad of true intelligence, the blight upon any capitalist enterprise, drifts through life in a hopeless haze of pessimism. Often to found pottering around the office muttering “Oh, what is the point” under his breath. On no account young man should you associate such anarchists. Such individuals are easy to spot. They will often start conversations about subjects clearly unassociated with the task in hand. Common examples are the works of Plato; the merits of Spartan society; what your particular philosophy of shoes may be; and more tellingly if you know how to make a bomb. These are clear distraction techniques. They are the type that will sit in instructional lectures, doodling women in bizarre positions, and curiously, hedgehogs on stilts. Only sparingly approach these denizens of the workplace, and even then only to find the solution to a problem.

It's a short, but a merry life at the workhouse

It's a short, but a merry life at the workhouse

     On your first day at work, always ensure that your apparel is immaculate. I strongly suggest Arkwright, double reinforced Geronimo Trousers, a quadruple breasted straight-jacket, Tom Thumb Patent Cork boots, an ultra-marine tortoiseshell shirt and a stovepipe hat. I leave the fine details to your own taste. Do not forget that first impressions count. No one will bother two whits if you turn up for the rest of the year wearing a clown’s outfit, and an extravagant codpiece, from which you dangle a parsnip. You will then be subjected to a tour of your workplace. This is completely ordinary and nothing to worry about, unless of course the tour ends at the fire exit. You will be introduced to almost everyone you meet. Ensure that you shake their hand politely, but not too firmly (this will be remembered and could be the cause of interdepartmental bollock-baiting in the months to come.) On no account attempt to remember anyone’s name. You will never, ever see any of these people again, apart from social occasions (which you will avoid, for fear of extreme jetsam and the dangers of underhanded flotsam- be advised.) The next step in your voyage extraordinaire will be a huge tower of paperwork. This is to ensure that you make no attempt to extract a single penny from your employer. They see you as a way of earning money, and care not a two-penny for you. You will receive training on how to correctly file balloons, blow up elephants without busting a hernia, and holding a pen in the correct, ergonomic fashion, thus reducing any back strain. Again, this is perfectly normal. Following this you will be instructed to endure a six-hour portrait painting, for company files. There is no reason for this, as it will never be referred to. It keeps many a portrait painter in work, so don’t knock it.

Next week: The pros and cons of a Photo reproduction device in the workplace.



2 Responses to “On Leaving School”

  1. August 6, 2009 at 6:49 pm

    Dandy Mills Esquire

    I enjoyed your illuminating advice, guiding young gentlemen through their first journey into the world of work.

    The immaculate apparel a is point that cannot be overstated. If I may offer some further recommendations of my own with regards to dressing for the voyage extraordinaire…

    I submit my recommendations of the apparel worn on my first entrée into the workplace. Incidentally, most of these items are readily available from any of the notable tailors in Saville Row:

    The trousers should ideally be made entirely from empire quality gabardine, double twilled and pleated front panels. The fly buttons (or zip) should run a colossal length down the front of the trouser. Even if the little chap behind the façade does not warrant such a spectacular gateway, the appearance of such vast portal will instil immediate respect from your piers.

    The obvious alternative trouser of choice, if you have the courage and tenacity to wear such, would be the Grand Lord Nelson Pantaloons. These ostentatious tweed trousers are the ultimate in buttressed tweed apparel. The robustness of the cloth, coupled with the bulk puckering around the crotch, make these strides a giant amongst trousers.

    The shirt should be of either Chinese silk or Egyptian cotton – starched white, of course.

    The shoes should be of a manly type, no spats or loafers here. I strongly recommend no less than the Robbie Burns Grampian brogue.

    Of course, the stovepipe hat is a given.

  2. August 12, 2009 at 4:07 am

    I want to drink Bovril out of my wellington boots. Wrong blog sorry. This sentence is intentionally pointless.

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