I’m going to beat Oprah with a used ink cartridge.

(This is an article that I originally wrote and posted on ZUG.com. I was a little angsty at the time, but I felt it was worth re-sharing here.)

The office I work in could be its own version of the sitcom “The Office”. We have so much ridiculousness that runs rampant that it’s just…well, ridiculous.

Just yesterday, I was provided with the perfect example of just how over-the-top it can get.

If you didn’t already know, I’m the Network Admin/Desktop Support Tech/IT Guru/Internet Ninja for our company.

In my office, it’s just me. I have one IT Manager in each of our other larger offices and I get to support two people who work out in California (though without the perk of flying to Newport Beach).

So yesterday, I received an email with the subject line “Fonts” from one of the ding-iest (not din-jee, straight up ding-ee) girls in our office. This was the body of the message;

“Was reading one of the Oprah magazines out on the porch at lunch and it had a really helpful tip about fonts: Century Gothic is the cheapest font to use; taking 30% less ink than Arial. I’m sure our legal documents have to be in a certain font (Times New Roman) to pass muster but we could probably use the Century Gothic where font style isn’t an issue. I thought I should pass this information on to anybody interested in saving us (or yourself on your personal computer) money in ink. Thanks Guys!”

Oprah, really? Because Oprah knows EVERYTHING, right? Right??

This would have been acceptable had it been addressed to me, or maybe me and her supervisor. Hell, I wouldn’t have batted an eyelash if she’d included MY boss on the TO: list. But no, that wasn’t good enough.

She sent it to the ENTIRE COMPANY.


Which includes upper management.


Our CEO is a gadget-freak and has a habit of getting interested in projects that are usually a huge waste of time in my opinion, so I was immediately worried, with good reason.

Within a few minutes, this email popped in from the CEO, also addressed to THE ENTIRE COMPANY.

“Very interesting [soon-to-be-murdered-employee name]. Let’s have Christy in IT check into it and maybe she can make some adjustments to people’s computers, as we do use a lot of ink around here.”

Determined to KILL this project before it got out of hand, I pulled together a few resources, got on teh Google and sent out this response.

“There actually have been a few independent tests on this subject in recent years.


Century Gothic is the front-running winner of the ink-savings tests as far as font choice. However, for people with dyslexia or with reading disabilities, it’s difficult to distinguish between Century Gothic’s lowercase “L” and uppercase “I”.

[Example of L’s and the word “Illinois” in CG.]

For this reason, the next lowest cost font is Times New Roman, which also has the added benefit of dissimilar-looking lowercase “L” and uppercase “I” characters.

[Example of L’s and the word “Illinois” in TNR.]

I believe the majority of our documents are composed in either Times New Roman or Arial. [One of the other IT Managers] and I will take a look at any changes that need to be made.”

The ding-y chick sent me this response almost immediately.

“Woah, technical! I’m sorry Christy, I didn’t mean to create extra work for you; I just thought that was a really interesting tidbit.

“Illinois” -Ha! I don’t see how anybody could tell the difference; dyslexic or not.”



The icing on the cake came this morning though. My boss has been out of town for the past week and apparently just checked his email last night. He responded;

“Screw this. I’m not coming back.”

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8 Responses to I’m going to beat Oprah with a used ink cartridge.

  1. Acadia says:

    You don’t care how many squids you kill.

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    • tgnp says:

      I think they just use the squids until they can’t “ink” anymore, and then retire them to farms. Or something.

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  2. Oh, man, this could be something out of the dog rescue I used to work for. Nothing like a nice, long, fruitless sidetrack to make you hate humanity.

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  3. Jesse says:

    Very funny post, I deal with these sorts of people all the time who believe anything they read about technology from non-technological sources –IE celebrities.

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  4. Matt says:

    Boss response WIN

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  5. montuos says:

    “Screw this. I’m not coming back.”

    *falls out of chair laughing*

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  6. Sean says:

    I nearly spit coffee on my keyboard with the last quote. Love it, rofl!

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