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Wally reads a contract and asks, "You want me to sign an agreement that I won't work for a competitor for five years if I leave here?" The Boss hands him a pen. Wally says, "No problem. Here you go." The Boss thinks, "This is too easy." Wally sits at his desk and thinks, "I haven't done any work HERE for five years, so how hard could it be?" A computer prompt asks, "New game?"
Dilbert carries a stack of documents. He tells the Boss, "Per your instructions, my request for a million dollars has been broken into one hundred business cases." Dilbert continues, "Each one is for ten thousand dollars, which is your exact level of approval authority." The Boss says, "I meant I can approve anything UNDER ten thousand dollars . . . So if you wouldn't mind . . ." Dilbert replies, "Killing you? No, I wouldn't mind a bit."
Dilbert stands in front of the Boss's desk. The Boss says, "You need a million dollars but I only have authority to sign for up to ten thousand." The Boss says, "Break it into a hundred separate business cases." Dilbert says, "Thank you for your value-added management support." The Boss replies, "It was nothing."
Dogbert and Ratbert stand on a desk chair in front of a computer. Dogbert says, "Ratbert, your job is to review eighty million lines of computer code in the company's systems." Dogbert explains, "You're looking for any reference to the current year. Those pieces of code will be a problem when the year is 2000." Six months later, Ratbert and Dogbert sit at a conference table. Ratbert says, "I'm happy to report that the date did not show up once. In fact, it was all just zeros and ones!" Dogbert thinks, "Oops."
The Boss and Dogbert sit at a conference table. Dogbert says, "When the year 2000 comes, your computers will think it's the year '00' and cause major problems." Dogbert continues, "The Dogbert Consulting Company can fix the problem for only ten million dollars. Our work is guaranteed for one full year, starting today." The Boss says, "But why would I care? The year '00' is before I'm born." Dogbert says, "Amazing . . . You'd actually have to be SMARTER to do something STUPID."
The caption says, "The Budget Trap." The Boss says, "I need a quick estimate for how much your next project will cost, Wally." Wally replies, "How should I know? You haven't even told me what my next project is." The Boss says, "That's okay. I only need a rough estimate for planning purposes." Wally says, "I see where this is going. You're going to turn my wild guess into a budget. Later I'll be blamed when it's wrong." The Boss replies, "No, no. I won't hold you to these numbers." Wally says, "Well . . . Okay, let's say two million dollars." The Boss says as he walks away, "Ooh . . . Can't afford that. I'll put you down for twenty thousand dollars." The caption says, "One year later . . ." The Boss sits at his desk and says to Wally, "You're way over budget. Can you show me the cause?" Wally replies, "It depends. Can mirrors reflect your image?"
Dogbert sits on a chair watching television. A voice from the tv says, "This is Phil, Ruler of Heck, with a special offer for my patented 'Exerspoon.'" In the commercial, Phil holds his spoon between his thighs and says, "You can do over seven million exercises with the 'Exerspoon.'" It even trims problem areas!" Phil continues, "And thanks to the innovative spoon shape, storage is a breeze!" The commercial shows a man and women in a bed, sleeping in the spoon position with the Exerspoon.
The Boss tells Dilbert, "I need to move you one cubicle down." Dilbert asks, "Why?" The Boss replies, "That way my people will still be in a square pattern." The Boss explains, "You're in a random pattern now. The symmetry is bad." Dilbert says, "You want me to waste two days of work to move . . ." Dilbert continues, "I'll have no phone and no network connection for a week . . ." Dilbert continues, "I'll have to order new business cards and update my cubicle address on dozens of records." Dilbert continues, "And you still won't have a SQUARE because there are FIVE of us." A man stands in the door of Dilbert's cubicle holding a box. He tells Dilbert, "I got downsized. Apparently somebody complained that I formed a pentagon." Dilbert replies, "That can happen."
Dilbert and Dogbert sit at a table reading documents. Dilbert says, "I have to turn this fifty-page proposal into a one-paragraph executive summary for our CEO. It's impossible." Dogbert responds, "Simple." Dogbert says, "How about 'give us three million dollars so we can buy cool technology, pump up our resumes and escape this festering boil you call a company?'" Dilbert says, "I feel obligated to say something about our customers." Dogbert says, "How about 'I'm glad I'm not one of them.'"
Dilbert points to a diagram on an overhead projector. Dilbert says to the Boss, "You saved one million dollars by having programmers in Elbonia write software for us." Dilbert continues, "But we wasted four million dollars trying to debug the software." Dilbert continues, "And the entire staff of our quality assurance group quit to become mimes." The Boss responds, "Let's blame the mimes; they won't talk."