Like A Confused Boss

Like A Confused Boss

1:32pm May 14, 2015

In this game, we give a sentence with an overly literal misuse of a common business cliché, and you give us the cliché. For example, "I really need you to force the flat rectangular paper container to move forward!" is "push the envelope."

Heard in A Mad Men Endgame

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

Our next game is called Like A Confused Boss. And here to play it are Nick Duggan and Sara Paden.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Nick, what is one of the most annoying things a boss has said to you or asked you to do?

NICK DUGGAN: One time, I had a boss who told me to get the equipment for an event out of the shed without telling me that the shed was full of spiders.

EISENBERG: Oh, nice.

DUGGAN: Yeah, so that was really nice of them.

EISENBERG: What kind of equipment was this?

DUGGAN: It was something stupid like trash cans or something.

EISENBERG: Sara, how about you?

SARA PADEN: I had an internship at the university here, so my boss was a professor. And he made me redo my CV about 16 times before he allowed me to then send it out into the working world.

EISENBERG: And was it minor things?

PADEN: Oh, yeah. It was, you know, you didn't have a comma or something, and it was...

JONATHAN COULTON: What a monster. He made you proofread your resume. Are you kidding me?

PADEN: I know.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: To fix commas and spelling errors and stuff?

WILL HINES, BYLINE: Throw that guy in the spider shed.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: So in this game, we're going to take business jargon that gets thrown around in meetings on a literal level. We'll give you a sentence with an overly-literal misuse of a common business cliche, and you're going to give us the cliche. For an example, let's go to puzzle guru Will Hines.

HINES: Sure. So contestants, if you hear I really need you to force the flat, rectangular paper container to move forward, you'd say push the envelope.

(LAUGHTER)

DUGGAN: What's an envelope?

HINES: Get in the spider shed, mister. We don't need your attitude.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: I'm starting to agree with your bosses.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Here we go. I don't need an exact amount, just give me a number that fits in a tract of land where a popular American sport is played.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Sara.

PADEN: Just give me a ballpark number.

EISENBERG: Yeah, ballpark figure. Exactly.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: We can't blame everything on Jenkins. It will look like we're propelling him beneath a large motor vehicle carrying many passengers on a fixed route.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Nick.

DUGGAN: We're throwing him under the bus.

EISENBERG: That's right.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: I think we exhausted this marketing discussion. We don't want to assault a deceased herbivores, ungulate mammal.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Nick.

DUGGAN: We certainly don't want to beat a dead horse.

EISENBERG: No, we don't.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Carol in accounting says we did really well last quarter. Our product is being purchased like flat crepes made from a starch-based batter and fried on a griddle.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Sara.

PADEN: They're selling like hotcakes.

EISENBERG: Hotcakes, exactly. You got it.

(APPLAUSE)

HINES: I like the idea of a mass of people just screaming for hotcakes, though, you know, like the demand is so intense. More hotcakes.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: I know. It would be, like, both frightening and sweet. All right, this is your last clue. If you want the corner office someday, you need to be more organized. You need to get your broad-build, web-footed, waterfowl lined up beside each other.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Nick.

DUGGAN: You need to get your ducks in a row.

EISENBERG: You sure do. That's right.

(APPLAUSE)

HINES: That was a very close one, Ophira, but the winner for that round was Nick. So, Nick, we'll see you in the final round. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Support your
public radio station