The Company I Write for Blocked My Writing

I have a bone to pick with Mr. Envoy Mortgage. On a trip to our corporate office yesterday to meet more of our new team, I met a very kind loan officer assistant (just like I used to be! Except for he actually proves useful to his boss and is a lot more important) named Daniel. Daniel had a hazy familiarity with my blog, much in the way you’d remember the Christmas from when you were three. Like, “I remember a tree, and I think my dad got drunk that night, but that’s about it.” So I tried to tell Daniel about my work. “So I write this blog? And I write about the people who work here? And I try to make it funny?”

Daniel then asked me the web address (okay so he had a slightly less than hazy familiarity) and typed it into his computer.

And this popped up:

Blocked by My Own Company

 

“What!” I exclaimed. “You must have typed it in wrong, Daniel. What kind of assistant are you? Try again.”

But still, the same results.

I’m blocked. Y’all, the company for whom I write a blog has blocked my blog from their corporate employees. I can’t decide if I’m exasperated or flattered. I think both. So listen, Mr. Envoy, I know you have some IT people working for you because I’ve called them when my computer acts wonky. I suggest you get this issue taken care of before I take down this company with all my power.

I’ll do it. I swear I’ll do it.

After I gasped at the atrocity, I asked Daniel for his best office gossip, and he was totally rude and wouldn’t say anything bad about anybody. At that point, I had to go interview Daniel’s boss, so it was time to say goodbye to my new friend.

Me: Okay, Daniel, I’ll be back to talk to you some more later!

Daniel (shifting in his chair): Um, you don’t need to do that.

Me: I’ll be right back. You think of some dirt!

Daniel (turning away from me): Eh…no.

Daniel Wants Me to Go AwayAfter my non-interview with Daniel, I snooped around corporate for a while. Here’s the thing, people. I’m kind of in this trial period. So I’ve told y’all that we’re part of this big branch now, right? And the leader of the big branch is named Ty, right? Well, I don’t think Ty is totally sure about me (which, okay, is kind of understandable as I’ve written on three different occasions that I suspect he has ties to the mafia).

So I’m trying to convince everyone on our new team to love me so that if Ty tries to oust me, everyone will revolt and there will be this huge mutiny. To begin accomplishing my goal, yesterday after interviewing Daniel I spent six minutes of my life that I’m never getting back watching grungy music festival videos with Daniel’s hippie boss, Shaun, who happens to produce and distribute all sorts of granola-lyrical-peace type stuff after work.

Not gettin' this time back, people.

Not gettin’ this time back, people.

Totally joking, I was like, “Do you have a festival to produce tonight?” and he was like, “Not tonight, but I had one last week,” and then made me asked me if I wanted to watch the video.

Dude was so kooky interesting that I’m saving my interview with him for a whole other blog post, so stay tuned for that.

Okay, sweet readers, you all have a happy Wednesday. (Oh – and feel free to leave comments for Ty below!) Now, off to start a revolution.

Live Blog From the Apple Store, Part II

I’m back in the Apple Store Core today. My Boss James is hosting a lunch ‘n’ learn and I tagged along for the peanut butter cookies, and because the Apple store is next to Anthropologie and I have some business to take care of at Anthro involving me and new clothes. But for now I have to look like I’m here to blog. So bear with me folks; I need to type for a while to justify my presence and cookie-eating.

James and I pulled up at the same time so the Apple handlers herded us into the elevator together and into the upstairs Core. Pastor Christi showed up a few minutes later. This is her, get ready, THIRD Apple Core presentation. So I’m thinking if this whole seminary/front desk thing doesn’t work out, she should consider giving iPhone lessons. She could probably tie scripture verses to it. She could, like, show people how to use the Bible App.

Apple Lesson - Bible App

Unfortunately I didn’t pay attention in the last class, nor am I paying attention in this one, so I’m out of career options if being an office slouch doesn’t work out. I’m pretty sure most folks know how to take vain pictures already.

Apple Lesson - Vanity

But I keep going, “Yeah,” whenever the lady asks “Does that make sense?” Sometimes I nod, too, for good measure.

Oh crap. The instructor just goes, “And y’all could probably use this for your blog, too.” And everybody started going, “Oh yeah, you could!” while staring at me. The problem was, my attention was, shall we say, elsewhere. So I just nodded dramatically going, “Oh yeah I could!”

If you find out what I could use for the blog, let me know.

While you do that, I’m off to, yet again, do nothing cool with my iPhone.

Still Not Viral (But We Found Our Missing Person!)

I am still officially non-viral. The video I made is resting quietly on YouTube, waiting to be discovered by the masses. Good Morning America hasn’t called. Queen Latifa hasn’t offered me a new job, and I haven’t seen my picture splashed across BuzzFeed. Hey, TMZ? Are you out there?

Until then, dear readers, you are stuck with regular ole me, writing from my cube in the middle of this mortgage office in the middle of Houston. (But hey, if any of y’all know Ellen or any of the folks at HGTV or TLC or Discovery (or what the hay, the WB) could you, you know, pass along my info?)

Now, onto my big news:

We found her! Remember when I wrote a post about Jason’s long lost love (my words, not his)? Read here to get caught up. Well, we found her! Seriously! I received a comment today from someone who ran the conference Jason attended, and in the comment was the hook up info for this girl Jason met! Woop woop! I immediately messaged her and sent her the link to my Missing Person post. As of now, she hasn’t replied. Jason, fearful of seeming like a stalkish creeper, said he’s going to wait and see if she replies to me before reaching out himself. Smart one, that Jason. Later on I’m going to stop by Anthropologie to select a maid-of-honor dress.

Ohmygosh I hope he says yes to this one:

Bridesmaid

Note to self: Ask Jason what color theme he’s thinking.

Other note to self: Try to remember that people I make fun of sometimes read this blog, like the people who ran that conference. (“Hi Conference People! I’m sure you’re all fab! Really! Yelling is so hip – I swear!”)

One more note to self: Keep in mind that the people I’m making fun of are more powerful than me and likely have attorneys on retainer.

Final note to self: Visit legal websites and beef up on my knowledge of the law.

One more fun thing: The office is getting together with people we hope will send us business our closest friends to play bingo next week and the Bosses said I could invite you. Now I realize what you’re thinking: “Is this chick serious? Play bingo on a Thursday night with a mortgage company? Pfsh.” And I get it, people. But just think, YOU could meet the non-viral YouTube stars who work here! Who knows – I may make another non-viral video during bingo and YOU could be the STAR! What!? Really though, it’s always fun, and they buy you booze, so…

Invite to Bingo

Official Bingo Scoop:

Thursday October 17th

Bingo starts at 6 pm

SPJST Lodge No. 88 – 1435 Beall St.

Okay folks, you brush up on your bingo skills and I’m off to get this dress altered and leave another message with Bravo.

Fiddler on the (Mortgage Office) Roof

I was just checking my teeth in my camera phone and all of a sudden I spied a booger and panicked. Turns out, it was a piece of trash on my phone screen. That’s a bullet I hope not to have to dodge again. (The teeth were clean, too, for those of you hanging on the edge of you seats.) Now then…

Sometimes I write about stuff here and my Bosses are like, “Really?” and I start twisting my necklace and am like, “Um, ah…yes?” and they’re like, “Are you trying to get us fired?” and I’m like, “No, but that would be really awesome for our stats.”

I have a lot of freedom on this blog. My Bosses are way cooler than any of your bosses and if you stopped by our office you’d be totally jealous of what we have going here. However, every single day of my life occasionally I just want to talk about myself, and Jesus, and my pets, and hanky-panky. That’s why I started a personal blog in addition to this one. I called it Stuff I Talk About and you should totally read it. I know that’s not an amazing name, but all the cool website names were taken and I had to choose between that and DrunkGoats.info, so please just work with me. And by all means keep reading here, because I’m not going to write about these loons with whom I work on the other blog, and it’d be way depressing if you missed out on stuff like this:

Some guy came to our office and played the fiddle for us. I think he was a friend of Hipster Andie (she would have a fiddler for a friend). Seriously, we were all just sitting here working (well, you know) and all of a sudden Andie starts laughing while looking at her phone. She’d invited her fiddler friend up to the office and apparently the fiddler was on his way. The next thing we know, this guy with a black case comes through the front door, and he has another big guy with him, like a body guard or something.

Fiddler 1So the fiddler saunters in, carefully lifts his instrument out of its case, and totally starts playing the office fiddle tunes!

Fiddler Music

I think somebody was on the phone with a client and was like, “Uh, can you hold on a sec?” because the fiddler got louder and more passionate, bending over and closing his eyes.

Fiddler Music 2

(Please note my advanced clip art skills.)

So then the fiddler wraps up his song, takes a bow, and just totally walks out the door! We all kind of looked at each other the way people looked at each other at Super Bowl parties across America that year Janet Jackson showed her boob. Like, Did that just happen? Was that her boob? What was that thing on the nipple?

So what I’m saying is, I’ve got super cool Bosses (and co-workers!). (I just reread that sentence and am starting to feel a bit of conviction about the phrase “co-workers” since I don’t technically do any work. Maybe I’ll just start calling them workers, or the gang. Or chain gang. I’ll stop now.)

Speaking of my, uh, people who I know who work here, Pastor Christi has a new project she’s working on for seminary. Whenever a thought comes to Christi’s mind, she’s supposed to put it on her “mind map.” So now if any of us need advice, we can ask Christi and then just read her mind map. Unfortunately, there’s not a whole lot going on in the old noodle today though…

Mind Map Christi

“I got nothin’.”

That’s going to be one doozy of a sermon, Pastor Christi.

Okay peeps. You all have a fine day, keep reading here, and check out my other stuff that may or may not get me kicked out of select social circles. Now, off to sanitize my phone screen.

 

Things that have Gone Viral Before Me that Aren’t Even Porn

I have compiled a list of non-porn blogs and videos that have managed to go viral while I have not managed to go viral:

  • A 30-second video of a boat turning. Turning over? you ask? No, dear readers. Turning. If you must, you can watch it here. I have never successfully finished the video, growing so incredibly bored by second 15 that I have to close it. So to be fair, maybe it has gone viral because at the end there really is porn, but I doubt it. (But if that is the case and I’ve just accidentally posted porn to this blog, it’s been nice knowing you all.)
  • Videos of people role-playing with soft voices and pretending to be makeup artists doing your makeup in order to relax you. You can search for these videos on YouTube by typing in “soft spoken relaxation.” I’m not even going to put the link here in efforts to discourage them from going viraler, but it’s just these girls looking into the camera and whispering that “your skin is so moisturized,” and then they search their makeup bags and pull out a brush and start brushing the camera like it’s your face. I thought it was really creepy until I fell asleep while making fun of it to my husband. He was getting ready for bed and I was all, “Oh my gosh look at this video. This girl is all – zzzzzz…”
  • Pictures of two famous people wearing the same dress on different nights to different events, probably in different cities. I’m not even going to say anything about this. It’s ridiculous. I’ve changed my mind; I am going to say something about this. What the poop? And sometimes the famous people aren’t even that famous. It’ll be like, this lady who’s an extra on “The Walking Dead” and the other lady is the co-author of a vegan diet cookbook. Oh, but let’s put it on the front page of Yahoo! News why don’t we?

I’ve got it. Hey Internet, look at this. My cousin and I wore the same shirt. She’s in Georgia and I’m in Texas. Now make me viral.

Same Shirt

  • Stories about waitresses who pay for patrons’ dinners. Like this one. Okay, yes, it’s kind. Oh my gosh it’s not front-page newsworthy though. Hey Internet, I just gave my cleaning lady some throw pillows we didn’t want any more – want to make me viral?
  • Articles telling people to refinance or buy houses. Oh no they didn’t. I will slap their face. I’ve been saying this crap for three years and I even add funny pictures! Oh, but their articles get splashed right alongside the stupid “Stars Wear Same Dress” pictures and next thing you know, viral. I swear I’m going to backhand somebody in the mouth.
  • Another mortgage blog that my Bosses read. It’s these two nerds out of California and they make videos that are never as good as my videos but for some reason my Bosses like it better.
  • Like thirteen thousand blogs about changing diapers and going on play dates.

If you would like for me to go viral like the fine folks above, please send my blog to thirteen million of your closest friends. While you do that, I’m off to see if I can round up any small boys who play the ukulele, that dog who dances to Grease, or Jennifer Aniston.

Save the Blog!

Three years ago I came to my Bosses with an idea. I wanted to start a blog, and I wanted to grow their business with it. I wrote out all the reasons why it’d make them rich and famous (that didn’t work out so much) and I even turned in some sample blog posts. I wanted to write about the funny stuff that happens in our office, and I wanted to teach people about mortgages in a way anyone could understand. I also wanted to make fun of my bosses.

They agreed.

And so, I wrote.

I wrote about my Boss Chad’s heart attack, I wrote about my Boss James and his flowcharts, I wrote about how they worked so hard to grow their business, how they held on during the downturn. I wrote about how now they’re doing really well and have hired more mortgage bankers. And I’ve written about all of those new people. When Hottest Mortgage Banker in Texas Hayley got engaged, I wrote about it. When Online Dater Jason caught the flu, I wrote about it. When Richard spoke Spanish, I wrote about it. I wrote about V-Shaped Mortgage Banker Will and his gambling tricks, how Nikki might join PETA, Just So John and his bathroom dilemmas, Straight Shooter Shane and how he may try to take over the branch, Hipster Andie and her bad day, Rachelle and her germaphopia, Front Desk Wonder Lady Christi and how she protects us, Hollywood Insider Gobe and her VA loan wizardry, and I wrote about everything in between.

And it all might come to an end if my silly ole Bosses get their way.

Readers, here’s what I need:

My ole Bosses say they will throw me a party, a Save the Blog party.

If I can get FIFTY readers to show up, they will allow me to continue this blog. If not, it’s off with Just the Assistant’s head.

I'll cry if you don't

Who: All of you! Seriously, if you have ever read my blog and want to read it in the future, come! Pass this post along and beg your friends to join you! SAVE THE BLOG!

When: June 13th 5:30 – 8:30  – come for the whole time, part of the time, whatever you like.

Where: Cottonwood Restaurant and Bar – 3422 N Shepherd Drive,  Houston, TX 77018

What: A Save the Blog Party! We’ll serve food and drinks and a smashing good time!

Why: My Bosses are losing their minds.

Please!

IMPORTANT: The only way to RSVP for this party is to comment below or email me directly.

So help me out, dear readers. This blog is the highlight of my workday. Help me keep it alive.

And finally, I want to hang out with you all! And I want you to meet my crazy co-workers! Jason may ask you out! Will may break your arms! John may pose with you so you can get a picture of his mermaid shirts! James will draw you a flowchart. Andie will tell you she’s not having a bad day, and you can meet Sandra and Britt and Janean, my three new teammates whom I haven’t made fun of yet.

Save. The. Blog.

Comment below. I’m begging.

Save the Blog!

I Said a Sentence on the Radio

Street Talk Live Funny

I talked on the radio. I talked on AM radio on a finance show called Street Talk Live. (Read here to find out how this came about.)

I got there fifty-five minutes early because I was so panicked about being late. I do that a lot if I’m nervous about an event. Once, in college, I showed up so early for an exam that the building wasn’t even open and there were still homeless people asleep in the parking garage stairwells.

I passed the time by practicing what I’d say if they let me talk on the radio. I called my husband and was like, “Okay, how’s this? ‘I’m Christina Ledbetter and I write a blog called Just the Assistant dot com.’” That’s really all I had. My husband said it was great. For the rest of the time I tuned in to 700 AM to prepare for my big break. It was a different show than the one I’d be sitting in on. Mostly, I heard people call in and complain about the government, and then the host would make a joke and the caller would laugh and say he hates liberals.

Finally, it was time to go in. David Zugheri (the founder of Envoy Mortgage), sat waiting in the lobby. Dude was so intimidating. I’m kidding. I seriously thought he was going to hug me when we met. He kind of did a start toward one but I stuck out my hand to show that I’m super professional (and I didn’t want to mistakenly start to hug him back and realize he wasn’t going to hug me after all). Then we sat down and I grilled him with my Just the Assistant interview tactics. More on that later this week (I know, you’re dying; just hold your horses).

Ten minutes later one of the radio guys came out. His name is Lance and I think he does important stuff with other people’s money. He was really friendly. I thought it would be a huge deal that I was showing up for this radio show but David was all, “This is Christina and she’s going to sit in on the show today,” and everybody else was all, “Cool!” I thought they’d have to background check me or something.

The next thing I knew, they’re all, “Okay, we’ve got about four minutes until we’re on,” and we all rush into this fancy radio room with microphones and buttons and gadgets and screens and the radio producer has me sit down at a mic and asks, “So are you going to be talking? What are we doing here?”

I literally go, “I was invited to just sit in a chair.” Then I started to sweat. After that, this other man comes in and hands me a set of earphones and they’re all like, “We’re live!” and telling callers the number to call.

This is the hosts telling the callers that they have to pay taxes.

These are the hosts telling the callers that they have to pay taxes.

Oh my gosh, they’re live. I’m breathing on the radio. Can they hear me breathing? IPO price – something per share. Gold prices down. Tesla a good car? What the heck are we talking about? Oh no – my stomach just made a noise. Do I have to toot? Please say I don’t have to toot.

And then they introduced me. And I said a sentence! I said, “That’s right.” I was so excited I texted my husband.

Radio

This is it. This is when I go viral. While the host and David tried to calm a caller who wanted to know if he could stop paying taxes, I wondered about my blog stats. The host had said the name of my blog like three times. I’m telling you, this is how people go viral. I decided to do a quick check. It looked something like this:

Viral

The single hit was from the radio host clicking on my blog so he could read from it. I guess I’ll go viral later this week.

Alright folk(s), stay tuned Thursday to read my interview with the founder of Envoy Mortgage. I promise it won’t be lame (my first question was whether he’s going to let me go on our company’s Circle of Excellence trip next year).

Also, my ole Boss Chad Helmcamp is trying to hijack my blog again. You know what I need to do? I need to give him his own blog so he’ll leave mine alone. Until then, keep reading here (and subscribe on the right if you so fancy). Off to see if NPR needs any help.

Street Talk Live Guest