Mulhausen has a "Swear Jar" in his office. If you swear, you owe him a dollar. I swear all the time, so I am forced to contribute. This is not a company policy, but like Bible Study, it seems one must accept what one's boss dictates is appropriate for the workplace no matter how ridiculous it is. Well, I'm here to tell you, there's always a way around it.
Mulhausen walked into my office today to discuss something that sounded like actual work. I ignored him completely. As he was leaving, I stopped him.
"You owe me a dollar," I said.
He turned back, surprised.
"For what?" He asked with a sour expression. "I didn't swear."
"Exactly," I said.
He continued to stare with his hands perched on his matronly hips and his prudish lips curled.
"Exactly what?" he asked.
"You did not swear," I said as I pointed to my Swear Jar. "If you come into my office and don't swear at least once, you owe me a dollar."
Yes, I agreed. But it was my office and my rule and if he did not pay, he could not force me to contribute to his Swear Jar either. I told him that I had already discussed this with both HR and Legal and that they agreed this was the only fair and equitable way of handling the situation. And since he refused to either swear in my office or pay up, he could not force me to not swear in his office or pay up either. That was the deal.
The next meeting he held in his office included Blair and Kornfeld, who both spoke like sailors but knew not to say anything "inappropriate" in Mulhausen's office. So I opened with:
"Do you mind if we make this fucking meeting as fucking quick as possible? I've got to get a fuck load of shit done for fucking Accounting."
Both Blair and Kornfeld stared at me like I had just assassinated someone. They then turned to Mulhausen to watch what they knew would be his inevitable reaction as he sat on his throne behind the large Swear Jar on his desk. But it never happened. Mulhausen bit his lip, squirmed out a smile and said:
"Shouldn't take long at all."
Blair and Kornfeld both sat with mouths agape. And although neither could explain what just happened, admiration seeped from both of them.
"Fucking awesome," I said.