My company has the safety bug stuck in its craw. Granted, we have many construction and other dangerous projects that require a high degree of safety precautions. I can agree with this aspect. However, my company is run like a quasi-military organization. Its managers are comp-case fearing spirit killers. All of these precautions have spilled over into the office. This fear of being sued has lead to a massive propaganda campaign to impose a whole safety culture over the office. Year after bloody year employees are expected to complete online safety seminars-on their own time mind you. Every meeting has to have time reserved for a safety moment. These safety moments are nothing more than commonsense statements. The following exchange is typical.

Nameless Drone: “When I was at work this weekend putting in some extra time on my 2253C project, I backed out of my parking space and hit a pylon. From now on I will always turn my head around and look behind me when I backup.”

All: “Good one. That’s really important.”

There are times when my group does not have its’ little weekly meeting. I envision us all in headgear and wrapped in bubble wrap continuously ramming into walls and falling down stairs because we missed the safety moment. We will occasionally get emails detailing some science geek having his roller chair slipping out from under him and being tossed. Ha! That was a funny one. Hence, all plastic computer chair mats have been banished. The Safety Gestapo conducted and audit in our old building one time. Computer cables were duct taped out of the way and chairs were replaced. Even though there is a state law banning smoking in public places, some horrible “This is a non-smoking building” clipart- laden signs now graced all doors to the office.

So thank you annoying multi-national corporation for trying to impose your anal safety practices on my already superb life. I’m off to wrestle an alligator. It must not be dangerous. It hasn't come up in a safety moment yet.

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