Cast Blog: #FLIPPINGOUT

Workplace Etiquette

Episode 3: Bravotv.com's Associate Editor examines the HR nightmare that is Jeff Lewis Design.

Jeff Lewis Design is a difficult place to work for a number of reasons, one of the most notable being the inappropriate office conversation. Basically it's an HR nightmare, and I don't think anyone envies Jenni in her new role as HR director. The levels of workplace lunacy seemed to reach an all-time high this week, so let's take a look at some of the most egregious offenses.

Coming to a Mushroom Head

Is it just me, or has Jeff been cracking a lot of dick jokes this season (Exhibit A)? Perhaps it's a result of his synergy with Andrew, who seems to make it way too easy. Who can say? In any event, this week was no exception as we learned when Jeff tried to pick out some new cabinet pulls. It all starts innocently enough, with Andrew saying one of the pulls is only 1.222 inches thick. But he manages to inject the sheer suggestion of naughtiness into his tone, which Jeff of course picks up on, and after that the floodgates open wide.

Suddenly it became a penis joke free-for-all and we're talking about bigger tips, mushrooming out, and that everyone can agree that they prefer black ones. Poor, quiet Vanina (more on her shortly) is just there chuckling in the background while Gage looks on in horror as Jeff and Andrew one up each other. These two have clearly mastered the art of maintaining a double entendre conversation for an obscenely long amount of time.

Side Note: Part of me thinks Jeff does this just to bother Gage.

ICUP

Vanina seems so sweet and innocent, yet somehow she's ended up working for Jeff. And working for Jeff means your bathroom habits are scrutinized and publicly voiced to the entire staff.

This time around Jeff gets on Vanina's case about allegedly peeing on the seat in such a way that he has to wipe it down. Of course in front of everyone as if he had merely asked her to not CC him on an email or something. At least Vanina was able to muster a quiet, "You're such an ass," after her shaming. (Speaking of shaming, what happened to the smock of shame? Let's bring that one back.)

Luckily for Vanina, she can report to the new HR director, Ms. Jenni Pulos, to lodge a complaint. Somehow we then switch into a very Office-esque mode where Jenni very seriously writes up Jeff for his inappropriate work behavior. Jenni then calls in Jeff whose response is, "Well then you can clean her pee off the toilet seat." Oh the never-ending potty talk at JLD...
Fingered

Of course, OF COURSE Zoila injures her hand, and it happens to be her middle finger. Sometimes it's just too easy.

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Fishing for Trouble

Is there a line at JLD? Evidently the answer is yes. What was so foul that it actually made Jeff cringe? Behold: "Other times I’d rather slurp rancid tuna fish salad out of Nancy's ass."



Bleh! Just bleh! What an awful string of words. And not to mention poor Nancy! That was when things got truly awkward. Nancy seems like such a kind, no-nonsense sort of lady, so why bring her into this deeply disturbing visual? I guess when there is such a tragic casualty, it's just too much. Next week Jeff learns that Andrew may not have been completely honest with him about his past...
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Jenni Battles Lewd Snowmen

Jenni dishes on her HR struggles during the office's attempt at a "new day."

IT'S A NEW DAY OR IS IT?

Jeff's therapist Doctor Donna explains it all to me and Jeff.
We need to be professional.
Jeff explains it to the office at Gramercy.
Following the doctor's instruction, I ask everyone to do a little homework.
When they are at home, they write down what respect means.
Adding how they feel they have been disrespected at the office.
Jeff is not happy with the business time waste.
I am visibly unhappy with the behavior that causes it.
Zoila weighs in on respect, which she thinks is at zero all round.
Design Dad AKA Jeff wants a "new day'" starting tomorrow.
Andy clearly still wants to play "old day."
Jeff finds something obscene to stir the pot before the "new day."
Human Resources not amused.

New clients George and Monica Eads are down to the studs.
The budget has gone way up for their renovation in the Hollywood Hills.
Monica has to tell her husband George.
Never a fun moment to tell your significant other about shipping purchases or a renovation budget increase.

In Playa Del Rey client Judy's beach house is for sale.
She is moving to Palm Desert.
Jeff makes it clear he wants to buy her incredible beach house.

Gramercy is dealing with Andrew's construction crushes.
Plus we are questioning his shirtless employee screen-savers.
Personal and professional boundaries have to be established ASAP.
Andy and the word or concept of boundary are in no way connected.
Cast as the enforcer by default causes my popularity to take a holiday.
Jeff needs to support me, and frankly he would rather be the leader of the bad boys.
Just call me Buzz Kill. "New Day" at Gramercy begins with an early office meeting and truth encounter.
Jeff is surprised at the amount of employee complaints.

Monica is taken to meet with Joseph the owner of Living Square.
Jeff hopes he can entertain her with some renovation details.
Megan cannot believe that every plumbing fixture can be provocatively described.

Andy and Megan visit the Eads' work site to supervise David the contractor and his crew. "Cracking the whip" is a term Andy prefers to use.
Andrew volunteers that "Megan will give you special favors" for speedy completion. Megan is embarrassed and asks contractor David to ignore Andy.
She is questioning the "New Day" concept when dealing with Andy's "old day" behavior.
At Gramercy Andrew's boundary free conduct is discussed with Jeff.
How are things ever going to change heading in the current direction?
Jeff keeps boundaries blurry with his own crossover fun.
Gramercy is the setting for Zoila and Gage's war zone.
When she calls him "a bitch" in "New Day" Jeff and I  have to step in: "Jenni we're stopping all this crap."Judy in Playa Del Rey has strong opinions and gives Jeff as good as she gets.
I love it.
Jeff wants her beach house, so he thinks he's on good behavior.
And he sweetly asks for a "special price."
Jeff thinks she is steps ahead of his games, because she's a therapist.
And he casually asks her to define his issues.
She without hesitation says he is "needy with low self-esteem."
I don't think these are the answers he was expecting.
She says we are both "passive aggressive."
I quickly admit to being needy with low self-esteem.
Are these the ties that bind us?

Jeff and Megan do another walk through at the Eads renovation with David. Measurements are not adding up, and Jeff is stressing.

Gage blows the whistle on Andy's office iPad photo saying, "He's a weird dude."
Snowmen with a lewd human close encounter...and carrots are involved.
Clients don't need that nasty revelation imbedded accidentally by Andy into a work file. Andy is told to remove it -- the snowmen three-way has to go.
He refuses and is clearly upset thinking we are all overreacting.
Jeff is having some very unpleasant employee realizations.

We found out Andrew has not been taking his medication.
Jeff thinks that could explain the recent behavior.
Desperate for change Jeff is on the phone with spiritual healer David Elliot.
He wants to book ailing Office Lewis for one of David's spiritual retreats in New Mexico. Six years ago Jeff first worked with David.
A three day group bonding, healing retreat is the plan.
Jeff says there is hope for so many stunned employee faces.

Monica Eads is given the revised budget by Jeff, and it's a smidgen over a million.
Her husband George is willing to look at the new numbers.

In Palm Desert and we are working on the design consultation with Judy.
What goes where is a Jeff versus Judy showdown.
Arguing over pottery placement is driving Judy to drink.
After a few she is easing up on the opposition.
This results in Jeff being given carte blanche to get on with the job.
Judy loves the end result and is talking future work.
Then she drops the bomb: she has sold the beach house.
Someone met her price and Jeff is bummed.
He thinks she played him to get good behavior and better prices.
Jeff said he played her to get the beach house.
I hope this was an educational experience.

George Eads gives a firm OK for the new budget.

Zoila does not want to participate in Jeff's planned office retreat.
"I am not going anywhere with this guy."
Zoila is not up for a Telenovela free zone that includes Gage.
Does David know what he's getting himself into?
Who heals the spiritual healer?
We might need that number. At Gramercy Gage is talking about howling at the moon.
The entire office is discussing finding your spirit animal.

Our plane lands in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Design dad drives us all to the mental medication location.
Andy gets scared when the long dirt road seems to lead nowhere.
Jeff's reference to chain saw massacre delights Jeff, and Jeff only.

NEXT WEEK ON FLIPPING OUT
Watch team building send Andy over the edge and...
What's next for Jeff Lewis Design?