Thursday, 23 January 2014

She's no' Here (Mamma Mia)

A few years ago, the IT department in which I worked underwent a series of restructures, some of which resulted in phases of voluntary redundancies. I began to write alternative lyrics to famous songs, featuring the people who were leaving the organisation. Amongst these were new versions of "Imagine", "Yesterday" and "Eleanor Rigby".

On one occasion, the department restructure resulted in one senior member of staff being unhappy enough to suddenly leave the organisation, much to the surprise of the remaining staff that morning.

The following are alternative lyrics to the ABBA song "Mamma Mia", documenting that event. My thanks to Gill Slack for agreeing for this more public revival.

She's no' Here


We had meetings arranged at times throughout the day
To discuss how our work matched the new AEGON way.
Then, on the floor, an announcement was
made. To our awe, we were told that we’d lost Gill Slack;
That she’d gone and she won’t be back.
Take one look across the department’s face
Hear a pin drop as our thoughts mount apace
And we go-o:

“She’s no’ here (here we go again)
My my, how could they conceive it?
‘Need a beer (and it’s only 10).
[Deep sigh:] How can we believe it?”
With the years since she started
’Can’t believe she has parted
Why, why would she feel she had to go?
Now we hear, it’s a change of role
Still – why? How could they let her go?

Now some time has gone by and we’re not so bereft
But there’s still disbelief that such a stalwart has left
We wish her well, in her future life
But who can tell what our Gill will do now she’s gone?
You know that her head’s screwed on.
We could guess but we may not get it right
We confess we don’t have perfect insight
So we go-o:

“She’s no’ here (where’s she gone again?)
My my, what could she be doing?
New career, seeking work again;
High fly-ing firms will come a-wooing
Will she revert to coding
Or something less foreboding
Then – why? Why should IT be her goal?
Be of cheer, lots of things to choose
Tie dye, make a fancy T-shirt
Or next year, with her ballroom shoes
Fly by, as a dancing expert”

“She’s no’ here. What could follow then?
Stir fry – master chef a-cursing,
Be a peer, sat beneath Big Ben
Laugh, cry – psychiatric nursing
Yes, these things are permitted
We know Gill’s not dimwitted
Sky dives? There’s no way that she can fall
We’re still here, one more thing we call
Bye bye, all the best from one and all.”