May 28, 2008

Size Always Counts


I’m ranting here on my blog because if I utter the words that I’m thinking at work right now then my reputation as the consistently happiest person in the office will be sullied.

Let me set the scene. Several people in my office share a access to a laser printer. I believe the official term to describe the situation would be network printing. The are two slots on the front of the printer: top to hold letter size and bottom to hold legal. (I don’t count the fancy features such as manual feeding and double-sided printing)

Why is it that every single time I go to print out a report for my supply plan meeting on Wednesday, I hear from a distance the most annoying sound in the world: Beep...Beep…Beep. It’s like a twisty stab through my heart that takes the life-force out of me. I liken the sound to fingernails dragging slowly down a sixth grade classroom’s chalkboard. It makes my left eye twitch and makes me want to rip my cuticles until they bleed.

This beep…beep…beep signifies that the wrong size paper has been loaded in tray number 2 and the oh so helpful laser printer is alerting me to an issue that needs my prompt attention. The sound implores me to “Hurry! Hurry! Come fix me now.”

As soon as I hear the sound after having selected the ‘print’ option, I find myself springing up from my office chair infused with Tigger-like bouncing capabilities and walk down the green mile of my work area to this very hateful laser printer.

Hate is a strong word, but sometimes I find my hating these anonymous co-workers. In particular, right now I am hating with a fierce passion the unknown person who changed the second tray from legal to 11x17 paper without switching it back to legal when they were done printing their report.

Believe me, I get it. I understand that sometimes big paper is needed to print lots of big numbers. Yes, Yes. Very important business going on here. But does it ever occur to this individual that 11x17 paper is not in hot demand on the printer? If I had to put a percentage down, it would be broken out as such: letter size 70%, Legal 25 % and 11x17 5%. See? The laser printer’s paper output is perfectly clear. NO ONE uses 11 x 17 paper so much so that it should remain in the lower tray.

If I could meet the person who had their 11x17 needs met and walked away from the printer without resetting the paper/tray configuration, I would ask them what they were thinking? Did it ever occur to them that when they need to change the tray to accommodate their specially-sized report that they always are removing the legal size paper tray. It must be there for a reason.

Thank you for reading this rant about my beloved communal laser printer. I feel immensely better having typed angry, gotten this poison out of my system and preserving my happy demeanor.

And if you enjoyed my little rant, feel free to print it out on your office printer. Just make sure you check the tray to see if 8-1/2 x 11 paper is loaded.

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