Ok, sure, everyone makes mistakes. That’s an inherent part of being human. We’re prone to failures, slip ups, missteps, gaffs, poor decisions and the like. But, the hope is that we learn from our mistakes and go forward as wiser creatures in the world because of them and that does hold true for many of us. However, there is a distinct segment of the population teeming with serial mistake makers who seem to neither gain knowledge from their errant ways nor make any conscious effort to avoid them in the future.
While we are constantly juggling like crazed circus performers, they can't seem to keep even one ball in the air. So, we’ll call them the Balldroppers.
They can wreak havoc in a professional setting, leaving a trail of missed deadlines, fouled up assignments and wild eyed co-workers panicking to pick up the pieces. Balldroppers can be counted on to screw up the simplest request, will order lunch for two instead of ten and have it delivered at 1PM instead of Noon. They can annihilate a project before it ever gets off the ground despite their apparent excitement at being chosen to assist. They always seem to have the best intentions that eventually tank, sometimes slowly, sometimes all in one fell, messed up swoop.
The best Balldroppers are the ones who tug at our heartstrings, the ones who, despite every possible effort, just can’t seem to get it right. They nudge at your sympathies and draw you into their chaotic world as you attempt to lend assistance in righting their sinking ship. Of course, do this and it will be you who ends up on the phone at 2AM tracking down FedEx packages accidentally labeled Michigan instead of Minnesota.
Beyond the actual work related melee caused, Balldroppers can and will weigh heavily on the nerves, especially when they ask you to cover for them while they go grab a quick bite and then come sauntering back in three hours later. Or, when they RSVP to your swanky afterhours girls get-together and then no show. And you can forget about divvying up the ingredients list for that ice cream social! Balldroppers will either forget whipped cream altogether or drag in with some obscure brand and not have the sense to get the fat free.
These people must be avoided at any cost. They have the intrinsic ability to zap every ounce of one’s enthusiasm and creativity and will to live. They will spark numerous bathroom whispering sessions and planning meeting eye rolling. You will start to hear the voice of Charlie Brown’s teacher whenever they open their mouths.
Yet, for all their failings, Balldroppers sometimes have amazing longevity and can occupy that middle cubicle for years before any higher-up gets wind. So, it’s up to you to keep your wits about you and to not completely lose it before the day they bring your lactose intolerant boss a grilled cheese sandwich. And believe me, it will happen!