March 12, 2010

Make Another Choice. A Less Dumb One.

From an unnamed production office for an undisclosed television show in an address-withheld building in LA where the elevators are shockingly slow...

S mentioned in her post about ridiculous coffee-mongering college students that "make another choice" is a phrase that I introduced to her.  I started saying that at my last job because- before I joined the respectable and noble ranks of television production whores- I was throwing my life away, frivolously shaping the future of America working as a preschool teacher.  And in that kind of setting, saying, "Stop licking that ketchup from someone else's lunch off the ground!  You are grossing me out so bad- What is wrong with you?!" or telling a child something like, "But if you hit the other children they will like you less than they already do, and being an outcast at four years old is not a good look, so shape up or wear cooler shirts or something," wasn't totally within our positive language guidelines as educators.  Instead we employed "Make another choice," and it's very close cousin, "That is not a choice."  And these expressions have served me well outside of the world of toddlers.  They can even be used with the kids' inferiors: People working in the entertainment industry.

For example:  "I would like half regular mustard, and half the red mustard that comes on the other turkey sandwich, but not on this one because they're out of it, but you should just ask, and then I would like to send you to walk three blocks with a 20 dollar bill for a lunch that will cost 20 dollars and 19 cents, and have you say sorry and that you will walk back with two dimes right away."  And that gets a big old "make another choice".

Or:  "I would like to have you do the job that I am supposed to all afternoon, and then have you tell me exactly all the things I would know if I had done it so that I can present them to the boss and the staff at our meeting as if I actually did do them, OK?"  A "that is not a choice" classic.

Such great expressions!  So easy!  So useful!  So something I would never ever say and fear that even writing this notion down in a totally kidding way (haha, right, coworkers from whom I work very hard to hide this blog but can't imagine I am totally successful because secretly maybe I don't even really care?) will get me fired!

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