Unclear Instructions Comic Strips
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Dilbert sits at his desk. Bob and Dawn the Dinosaurs enter holding hands. Bob asks, "Can we talk?" Bob, Dawn and Dilbert sit at the table. Bob says, "Dawn and I want to have an egg." Dilbert asks, "And you want my blessing?" Bob says, "We want instructions." Dilbert says, "My 'National Geographics' stop just short . . ."
Dilbert says, "Come help me hook up my new VCR, Dogbert." Dilbert kneels next to the television and says, "You read the instructions and I'll connect the cables." Dogbert reads, "'Connect the 300 Ohm twin-lead flat cable to the 75 Ohm RF2 jack.'" Dilbert looks confused. Dogbert continues to read, "'Or use the optional 75 Ohm co-axial cable with the F type connector.'" Dilbert thinks, "Good Lord, I'm an electrical engineer and I don't understand any of this." Dilbert thinks, "I'll have to lie to the other engineers and say I don't WANT to record tv shows." Dogbert reads, "'Now, strip naked, cover your body with motor oil and run through town yelling walla-walla-walla.'" Dilbert says, "Let me see that." Dogbert reads, "'Step six: Do not doubt the nice dog.'"
Dilbert carries a load of dirty clothes to the washing machine. Dilbert looks at the label on a shirt collar. He reads, "Special washing instructions." Dilbert reads, "Fold the garment in a five-point star and wrap in cotton swathes . . ." Dilbert reads, "Launder only in pure glacier water heated to 98 degrees . . ." Dilbert reads, "For detergent, use only the glandular secretion of the Australian nik-nik bug . . ." Dilbert reads, "In fact, I'm so delicate that you're hurting me right now. Ouch! Ouch! Let me go! Help!" Dilbert stuffs the shirt into the machine." Dilbert says, "The best I can do is to make it quick." A scream comes from the machine.
Dilbert sits on the couch and Dogbert stands on the armrest. Dogbert hands Dilbert a list and says, "Here's a list of my Christmas demands." Dogbert says, "Follow the instructions and nobody gets hurt." Dilbert says, "You're bluffing. You wouldn't hurt my plastic window Santa." Dogbert holds the electric cord to the decoration and says, "One yank and he's off life support!"
"Dogbert's Body Language Update" "Are you hampered by the limits of conventional body language?" "I can help." - How can you politely tell somebody he's babbling? "Babble, Babble." - Remove the offender's watch while he babbles.- "Babble." - Smash the watch with your daily planner. - "Babble." "Whack!" - This won't stop the babble, but it will feel real good for a minute.- "Babble." "Mmm." - Use this position to signal your surrender to the babble.- "Babble." -Next week - the self-Heimlich manuever and the Kervorkian dodge.- "Babble."
Dilbert sits at his computer at home, dressed in a bathrobe and looking unshaven. He types, "Day two of telecommuting is going smoothly. I have eliminated all optional habits of hygiene." Dilbert continues typing, "My co-workers are a fading memory. I am losing language skills. I talk to my computer and expect answers." Dilbert types, "For reasons that are unclear, my dog wears a gas mask and shouts tarzan-like phrases." Dogbert stands behind Dilbert wearing a gas mask and yelling, "Kreegah! Bundalo!"
The Boss says to Tina who is seated at her computer, "Tina, you'll have to have all the documentation written by next week so we can ship it when the software is done." Tina says angrily, "How can I write instructions for something that doesn't exist yet?" The Boss answers, "You'll have to make logical guesses." Tina types on her computer, "If you press any key your computer will lock up. If you call our tech support we'll blame 'Microsoft.'"
The Boss, Alice, Wally and Dilbert sit at a conference table. Wally says, "Our objectives are unclear and our mission statement is gibberish . . ." Wally continues, "But thanks to an artificial sense of urgency, I'm working harder than ever!" The Boss asks, "What's the good news you said you have?" Wally answers, "Apparently I'm insane. But I'm one of the happy kinds!"
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."
Alice, Dilbert and Wally sit at a conference table with man who has a beard and is wearing suspenders. The man says, "I put together some guiding principles for our network architecture." Alice says, "I sure hope this isn't a bunch of obvious ideas disguised with techno-jargon and unclear writing." Dilbert whispers, "Let the games begin." Alice says to the man, "So tell me, do suspenders cause muddled thinking or is it the other way around?"