Solid as a Rock

Certain phrases amuse me on account of their absurdity. Other terms – particularly in the corporate world – annoy me simply because they’re so meaningless. So, as I was engrossed in a hard morning’s chairpounding (well, the mortgage doesn’t pay itself), my attention was – as is often the case – cut through with random snippets of conversation from those around me, with occasional phrases standing out from the general babble.

‘So can I use this phone or not?’

‘But why can’t I log into it?’

‘It’s a soft phone.’

We’re all on soft phones now.

Now, I understand – but abhor – the ‘soft’ prefix, but generally understand the concept. Software isn’t hardware, it isn’t physical. Hence ‘soft skills’ aren’t physical, don’t have form, aren’t concrete.

The telephone on my desk, however, didn’t look very abstract to me. Extending my hand toward the object before me, I was able to affirm what I had known before: it had a physical form. I poked the large lump of moulded grey plastic, with buttons and an LCD screen, that sat before me on my desk. It too is supposed to be a soft phone. But it isn’t remotely soft. In fact, it’s as hard as any other hefty chunk of moulded plastic stuffed with wires and circuitry and a speaker.

I hoisted it from the desk top, and hefted it in my hand. It’s not only hard, but heavy. But I needed proof.

The dumb corporate-babbling bimbo was still prattling on about systems and extensions and logging in. I’d heard enough. I’d had enough, and launched the thing in my hand toward her head.

The object met with her cranium with a sickening thud. There was a high-pitched shriek of agony as she fell to the floor, followed second later by a loud clatter as the telephony device crashed to the ground, its LCD cracked but otherwise largely intact.

A trickle of blood ran from the dent in the bint’s head, an ultra-livid bruise forming around it before my eyes. The phone was, as I had believed all along, quite unsoft: in fact, it was particularly hard, and without doubt harder than her skull.

‘Fucking corporate bollocks,’ I grumbled as I swung my chair back around and resumed my work.

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