Consultant Woman

A woman was brought through our department yesterday and we were told she was an outside “consultant” who was going to look for ways to restructure our department.

In case you’re just joining us, I work at an investment bank. We deal with bonds, debentures, foreign instruments, that kind of stuff. Not sure how restructuring our department is going to realize any efficiencies but whatever, if she wants to walk around and justify her salary by telling us to move the toaster closer to the bread, then more power to her.

Anyway, towards the end of the day, Janet came to my work station (Janet the consultant, not Janet the tattooed receptionist). She quizzed me about what I do all day long, what deals I’m working on, how long it takes to close a deal, etc. After a while, I started to get nervous. Like maybe restructuring means getting rid of people who write a blog all day long.

So I started to fudge my answers. Make myself seem more indispensable than I really am. I was going on and on about my recent Indian deal when she says, “Okay, great, that’s all I need, thanks.” She turns to leave, but then she stops and turns back, like Columbo.

“Oh, one more thing. What’s ‘Talk to Strangers’?”

I almost shit my pants.

I was like, “Excuse me?”

She says, “You know. Your blog?”

I was so caught off-guard, I just started fumbling like, “Oh, it’s just this thing I do in my spare time and I never do it at work it’s just a hobby a project really and how did you hear about it?”

She said, “I.T. has keylogger software installed on all workstations.”

I swear I immediately flashed back in one second to every inappropriate website and email I’ve ever viewed at work. Before I went into full cardiac arrest though, she said, “Don’t worry. It’s just for insider trading. Don’t do your blog on work time and you’ll be fine.”

And then she left.

Now I know how Winston Smith felt.