- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: Andrews and McMeel; Original edition (September 1, 1996)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0836221192
- ISBN-13: 978-0836221190
- Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.5 x 11.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 16 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,423,554 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Fugitive from the Cubicle Police Paperback – September 1, 1996
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This book is freedom for those who feel imprisoned in a cubicle. Called "the cartoon hero of the workplace" by the San Francisco Examiner, Dilbert is revered by technology and computer workers, engineers, white-collar types, scientists and everyone who works these days (in cubicles or not). This collection captures it all, from clueless management decrees to near revolts among the cubicly confined.
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Dilbert: Impossible! We humans will never allow ourselves to be treated like that! Now, get out of my cubicle!
Dilbert, the mainstay of office-life critical witticisms, is the concept of Scott Adams, who quit his job to write the column, using it primarily to exorcise the demons that haunted him (and, indeed, seem to haunt all in small-to-large corporate America) during his tenure as a mid-level office worker.
In his introduction, he says: 'I was doing some thinking today. But I didn't enjoy it very much, so I decided to write this introduction instead....'
Who can argue with this? This, perhaps in a brief statement, summarises much of the underlying philosophy of the corporate culture Adams presents in his Dilbert column. It certainly epitomises the prevailing attitude of the boss and management structure. And of course, being in charge of his own column, Adams has graduated (or, perhaps sunk) to the level of management.
This book consists of a generous sampling of Sunday columns (complete with colour -- OOOH! AAAH!) -- colour of course being a Dilbert-ian device to disguise the lack of information. Yet, the information here is timely and timeless (insofar as anything about corporate culture can be timeless).
Dogbert's entry into and rising through the hierarchy is a good case in point, where LOUD equals results. After securing a corner office with a window by being LOUD, a task force ripe for empire-building within the company, the budgetary control of his boss, he is invited, at the end of his first week on the job, to meet with the president of the company.
President: You've made quite a name for yourself in the week you've worked here.
Dogbert: It was easy to grab power, once I realised that other executives were just imbeciles with good hair.
President: I hope you don't think that of me.
Dogbert: No, that looks like a toupee from here...
Onward and upward...
Finally Dogbert becomes president, exercises stock options after a disastrous but stock-market-friendly series of initiative plans (of course, they only have to be plans for the stock market to react), and retires to devote himself to philanthropy, which is 'mostly about watching people beg, and having buildings named after me.'
We are introduced to Dilbert's co-workers, who are variously competent and stuck in their jobs, rejoicing the occasional tiny victories, or, more frequently, plotting grand schemes to gain the minor advantage (a few more inches of cubicle space, for instance). We are introduced to incompetent co-workers who get promotions and jobs in other firms with real offices and perks. We discover what kinds of women will date (and dump) Dilbert. Of course, that might have become a bit of a different problem had Dilbert's boss not been corrected in time...
Boss: My boss says we need some eunuchs programmers.
Dilbert: I think he means Unix, not eunuchs. And I already know Unix.
Boss: If the company nurse drops by, tell her I said "Never mind."
Dilbert does sometimes win after all.
Sincerly, Ryan B. Cook.
(P.S. I bet half the people that read this never have even read this book. For all people like that, BOOOOOO! You don't know how to read a Dilbert book! You don't get the jokes! You probably have never even heard half the words in the book!)