Tuesday, 29 January 2008

The Kingmaker

World Exclusive!

For most office workers, paper clips and other stationery items are just anonymous unexciting objects piled up in an equally anonymous cupboard. They have no idea of the research and dedication that goes into planning the shape of tomorrow's staples. I met Wayne Roolaflicka II, Managing Director of the Office Requisitions Research Group, to find out more...

BOV: They say you put "it" into Requsitions. What's "it"?

WR: Sex, of course! A visit to the office cupboard beats going to a sex shop any day. More people have sex in the office than any other workplace. And 67% of those office lovers use stationery to spice things up.

BOV: I'm sorry, I'm having a difficult time imagining this. Could you elaborate?

WR: Well, just think of the different "non work" ways people use their photocopiers. And then there's string, scissors (blades), tape...

BOV: (interrupting) Okay, I think my imagination's had enough, thankyou. But presumably you're not actually trying to find, er, marital uses for your products. What are you researching?

WR: We're trying to make sure that these items are not only fit for purpose, but that they exceed that purpose. We want people to stop buying "stationery" and instead invest in Office Solutions.

BOV: That's great, but stationery requisitions are always the first thing that companies try to cut back on. How can you get them to buy more and better?

WR: Office Solutions are the tools of your trade. Without them nothing else is possible. Like any craftsman, the office worker chooses tools that will serve him well, won't let him down, will be his trusty companions through thick and thin. I think slowly the corporate world is getting the message.

BOV: But I already have a stapler. How can you make it better?

WR: The Stapler is a perfect example of a product that needs Office Solution Engineering. If it jams too often then it's useless. But if it works too well, or is too safe, then that also causes problems.

BOV: I'm sure most people would prefer something safer and more efficient...

WR: Look, we need to think holistically. Offices can be boring dull places. Those places can kill you, or at least they kill your drive, your thrust, your passion...

BOV: (Interrupting) We've already covered the sex angle...

WR: We all need an element of danger to keep us alert. If they ever invent a "safe" hammer, you might as well send all the carpenters home. They'll not be paying any attention to what they're doing. Same with the stapler. We also need success and triumphs along the route of our office lives, and successfully defurring your mouse, or unjamming your stapler puts something positive into what might otherwise have been a negative failure-ridden day. You go home feeling you've done something right.

BOV: Weren't you responsible for the Microsoft Paper Clip, when you were in charge at the Paper Clip Marketing Board? The one people really hate?

WR: Yeah, well, that didn't quite work out. I think that our willingness to engage with a Corporate Giant like Microsoft in pursuit of Paper Clip Marketing shows how fired up and synergetic we are.

BOV: I'm resisting the urge to get fired up and punch you right now! (takes a moment to calm down). What gives you all this energy? What keeps you going?

WR: The knowledge that tomorrow's world leaders, Captains of industry, future billionaires are starting out in their careers in a little cubicle, wearing a cheap suit, and with a drawer full of staplers, rulers, pens and highlighters. That those humble tools are making future kings. And yeah. That's better than sex. Except when your secretary puts a hole punch...

BOV: (hastily) I think we'll leave it there, thankyou.

24 comments:

Bee said...

BOV!! You forgot to ask the important question about the liquid paper!
When are they going to stop making it so that we only have the choice of Dry Line therefore not making the under paid worker go out and buy her (or his) own! Wait was that a question? Then ?

Brian o Vretanos said...

I already explained about the Liquid Paper sniffers...

Jean Knee said...

I'll be back to comment after I rummage through my desk supplies..............................................................
think what gems my craft hoarde must contain....................

Brian o Vretanos said...

Jean Knee:

I almost dread to think ;-)

Brian o Vretanos said...

Jean Knee:

I think you might have a sticky "." key. The same thing happened to the "q" on my keyboard at work last week after I poured coffee on it. I managed to unstick it with a paper clip and it's been fine since. Useful things, paper clips...

Brian o Vretanos said...

Stapler Poetry Link

Bee said...

Yes you did I'd forgotten because my attention span is that of a Scarecrow (a non flatulent one) today.
I'm also having difficulty seeing straight because of my crosseyes. But that's another story for another day. I'm off to sniff LP.

Bee said...

Holy vanilla waffers!! That's allot of stapler love!

Brian o Vretanos said...

Stapler Nutters:

If you go to the "home" page, they have three virtual staplers that you can try out.

I suspect it takes practice to simulate the proper stapler action - you have to move the mouse over the stapler and click at the right time...

I'm not planning to try and perfect this...

Jean Knee said...

I liked the poem by Donna quite a lot...................................................................going back to try the staple game now

Dan said...

why were you interviewing this guy?
Dan

Jean Knee said...

Hi, Brian.

Bee said...

Dan, BOV obviously wants to know about the major issues in life. Who doesn't want to know what new improvements will be made to the paper clip?

Brian o Vretanos said...

Dan:

Paperclips matter

The office supplies industry is worth hundreds of billions of dollars a year in the US alone...

The Norwegians wore them on their lapels during WW2 to show their resistance to Nazi occupation.

According to wiki the Norwegians claimed to have invented it, but they patented something that didn't work years after the British had invented and produced the design we know and love.

I'm not sure if the Norwegians have invented anything else - Anyone know any famous Norwegians?

Brian o Vretanos said...

Jean Knee:

Phew! I was afraid that once you started on the Stapler website we might have lost you for good...

Tracy said...

I will never look at a staple the same way again. Thank you for that Brian!

Tracy said...

Also, it's a shame you didn't do this post before I became a stay at home mom.

Brian o Vretanos said...

Tracy:

Bad Timing: I'm sorry, that was thoughtless of me ;-)

Jean Knee said...

Norweigians have delicious cookies, although they didn't invent them.



now, back to that stapler site

Brian o Vretanos said...

Jean Knee:

So is it worth going there for these wondous cookies?

Jean Knee?

Oh, no, I think the staplers have got her...

Quick, anyone have a virtual staple remover?

Dan said...

good for the Norwegians, if I was a Nazi during those day and saw a bunch of them wearing paper clips on their lapels I surly would have been intimidated.
" Look Adolf, they brought out the big guns !!! there wearing paper clips !!! we must leave this country, runnnnnn"
Dan
Sorry if I offended any Norwegians.

Brian o Vretanos said...

Dan:

Ha Ha!

The Nazis banned them in the end, so they must have been a bit worried.

You can draw blood with paper clips ;-)

Brian o Vretanos said...

They say "The Pen is Mightier than the Sword", though admittedly no-one who's tried to fight a duel with a pen would agree.

Maybe there's an old Norwegian proverb about the paperclip being mightier than, em, the Swiss Army Knife, perhaps?

Jean Knee said...

sure, but the swiss army knife probably has a paper clip attachment by now