L.B.D.N.

Today is one of those days. After weeks of toil, there emerges this one oasis of joblessness, this glorious little miracle of a day when I have nothing to do at work. The first half of the day was well spent catching up on a week’s worth of Google Readering, thereby creating much noise on Buzz through my two-pence worth of sharings, and chatting with fellow friends basking in the free bird zone. They missed me, they say. Well, I’m back. For now. But, all the emergencies of the online social networking world taken care of, all status messages commented upon, all blogposts read, my mind turned to creation. As my fingers itch to type something outside of proposed (and subsequently disposed) business models, I become increasingly aware of the hunger to write throbbing in my veins. It’s been a while.

But I digress. I was talking about the no-man’s-land day at work, where you don’t really have much to do or say about anything at all. You sit on your chair, in front of your laptop, as life happens around you. And wonder if this is what they are paying you for. Sometimes you also privately snigger to yourself at what you are getting away with. That the employing firm is usually the one laughing its way to the bank at the end of the day is another thing. Everybody wins. Or at least they think they do. Such is (corporate) life. On every such day, my mind can’t help but wander to this oh-so-perfect representation of the psyche of a person in my state by the genius that is Scott Adams:


I’m a consultant. At least that’s what I like to call myself for lack of a better word for what I do. Much has been said about The Consultant and his / her ways with the world. (Think: “If you can’t convince them, confuse them”) BS and consulting, as a result, go hand in hand in the minds of many. To be honest, these perceptions are not all misplaced. We tend to have a way with words. It is a useful tool to have in one’s kitty.

That takes me to the day a colleague, Prasad, and I were walking back to office after one of our (now) traditional dosa breaks in the evening. A man was walking his dog a little distance ahead of us. As we helplessly (and admittedly lazily) watched on, the dog dropped his blessings in front of our office – at safe enough a distance to escape the watchman’s wrath, but close enough to make his point. Instinctively, I turned to Prasad and said, “Did he have to be so literal about it?”

Why I am building all this background, apart from impressing the sheer awesomeness of my wit upon the readers, is to bring the post to the fact that even this blind spot of corporate life is not untouched by our jargonizing abilities:

The other day, in a moment of soporific ingenuity, Prasad came up with a beautiful term encompassing the job description of the greater majority of humanity. He called it LBDN. Stands for ‘Looking Busy Doing Nothing’. It took off in such a big way that not only is it now a part of our everyday conversation in the company, but also accepted vocabulary with my other close friends and family. Sentences like “Ankit, let me know when you are done LBDNing so we can go out for a dosa”, “Nothing happened at work, Mom… yawn… I just LBDNed”, or, when I am in the more contributive phases of life, “I miss those LBDN days” are commonplace and indeed, accepted without as much as a raised eyebrow now. Such is the brilliant simplicity of the term.

So here’s to all fellow LBDNers out there. And here’s to Prasad: We bow before thee, Oh LBDN Coiner. Its an honour working and LBDNing with you.

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4 thoughts on “L.B.D.N.

  1. Nice! LBDN is the theme of my life too. You write so awesomely well. It's a real shame that u r so lazy, even more so than me that you do the writing thing so infrequently!

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