Monday, December 12, 2005


Bartlett is the name of the VE staff pet
No, Bartlett is not fungus on a pear
He's a potato.

A potato might seem like an odd workplace pet but when the mission statement of your organization includes the phrase "expect the unexpected," you can expect odd things to occassionaly happen!

"How," you ask, "did Bartlett come into the job of office pet?"
I'm so glad you asked!
You may recall that last summer we released a CD titled, "Hymn to Potatoes, and Other Choral Masterworks."

Now if you were releasing and promoting a CD called, Hymn to Potatoes, what would you do as a fun, cheap, exciting, and memorable gimmick?

(If you said, "Buy a 10 lb. bag of potatoes," you win!)

We gave away a free potato with every CD purchase
We used potatoes as door prizes
We make a nice little potato arrangement to sit on our promo table
We starting giving potatoes to other staff members as appreciation gifts
We ate them for lunch (and snacks)
We gave them to visitors who came to the office for important budget meetings
And then things started to get silly . . .

You can play a really fun game with a potato.
It goes like this.

1. Wait for that special someone to leave for a meeting, or go out for lunch
2. Take a potato and hide it in her cubicle, preferably with the help of other office mates. (The best places are visible, but not immediately obvious).
3. Wait for potato to be found. Try not to laugh when she says, "I found another potato on my computer"
4. Repeat

Now, after randomly coming upon this poor potato seven million times, (and seeing that it was starting to sprout) my boss decided it was time to put the poor critter in water (and end the game).

But you can't stop a good thing just by putting it in water (oh no!)
Within three days, the potato had two eye balls (made from thumbtacks), ears (from a purple paper clip), and a nose (push pin).

He was also named, "Bartlett" by the Grand Master of the Hide the Potato Game (aka "Marketing Director").

And so, Bartlett sits on a file cabinet
With a nameplate
And a dire warning to any janitor that might try to clean him up
He has lots of fresh water (Culligan, not tap!)
And some indirect sunlight

He's a very lucky potato!