Dear Everyone Who Ever Walks Into My Office:
Hello, and welcome to the President's Office at our university. I hope you enjoy your time in our office; the view is fantastic, and that antique clock in the corner may be of dubious origin, but it is very old, yes. Whatever business you may have in our office, I sincerely hope to resolve it quickly and efficiently, thus making your day a little easier and brighter. As the president's friendly receptionist, I am here to serve you.
There is one small note, however. Many of you - perhaps as much as 70% of you - come into this office to drop off letters for various people. Now, it is completely understandable to me that you would ask where you can do this. And, although the phrase "You can put it in that box on the desk" does not seem terribly confusing to me - there is, after all, a box on the desk, and it is the only box on the desk, and there is a large sign on the box on the desk that reads INCOMING MAIL - I bear you no ill will when you do not understand what I am telling you at first. I cannot necessarily explain this, but I cannot necessarily explain many of the things that happen in my own head, so I will not presume to judge you for the momentary lapses your own brains may suffer.
However, the following is an example of the sort of conversation I do *not* wish to have with you.
DELIVERYPERSON: Hi, am I supposed to be here?
KYLIE: I... well, are you dropping those letters off?
DELIVERYPERSON: Yes. Do they go here?
DELIVERYPERSON: ::makes no move to show me the envelope::
KYLIE: I'm not sure, can you show me who they're addressed to?
ENVELOPES: ::are addressed to our office::
KYLIE: Oh, yes, that's fine. You can leave them here.
KYLIE: In ::points:: that box on the desk.
DELIVERYPERSON: ::turns around::
KYLIE: In ::still pointing:: that box on my desk.
DELIVERYPERSON: ::looks up at ceiling::
KYLIE: In that box on my desk right there.
DELIVERYPERSON: ::looks at the ground::
KYLIE: Sir? Over here, on my desk.
DELIVERYPERSON: ::starts to walk out of the room::
KYLIE: Sir. In the box. On my desk. The box on my desk. Right there. The box.
DELIVERYPERSON: The box?
KYLIE: Yes! The box!
DELIVERYPERSON: ::looks at the ground again::
KYLIE: ::gets up, walks around desk, places hand in the box:: This box. Right here.
DELIVERYPERSON: ::bursts out laughing:: Oh! The box! On your desk!
KYLIE: Yes! The box on my desk!
DELIVERYPERSON: I was walking out of the office!
KYLIE: Yeah, you were!
DELIVERYPERSON: There's a box on your desk!
KYLIE: Yes! There is!
DELIVERYPERSON: ::exits, still laughing::
Just for future reference, when I say "You can put that in the box on my desk", it means that you can put that in the box on my desk. I am sure this will clear up any misunderstandings that might arise in the future and that we can have many long and happy years of incident-free letter droppage.
The Humble Receptionist in the President's Office
...because seriously, WTF?!?!?!?!?