Work

Are You Thrown Under the Bus at Work Like Me?

I am always astounded by the number of co-workers that throw people under the bus either consciously or unconsciously. It takes a certain kind of unhappy asshole. One specific co-worker attempts to not only throw me under the bus, but in front of them as well as push me off a subway platform. Is that an expression? If not, it should be. It’s like our families have had an ancient feud and she’s been trained all her life by the greatest bitches that have walked the Earth, to make me look like a moron.

I knew things weren’t going to go well in the first 30 seconds of our introduction:

“It’s so nice to meet you,” I said extending a hand, relieved I was no longer the newest person.

“I was your runner up,” she said to me like I ditched her for a lunch and deserved an explanation.

Excuse me? 

Trying to remove the instant awkward she had placed on the conversation, I smiled and responded with, “well Runner Up, it’s very nice to meet you.” Right or wrong, that was my split second response.

Fast forward 2 months and the assaults are consistent. The most obvious are in e-mail communication. When I e-mail her about one of her mess ups, I e-mail her without our boss cc’ed on them…..because I’m not an asshole. Once she realizes I too have contributed to a mistake, she immediately cc’s my boss and explains how difficult my error has made her job and how much time this has cost her. Like an errant child who needs to learn, she then proceeds to explain the proper process, making sure to lay out each step and why it’s so important for the company. Occasionally she’ll sum up the e-mail (just one more time) of how detrimental my mistake was.

From a social perspective, all my co-workers love Runner Up. They can’t figure out why I have issues. Runner Up bends over backwards for other co-workers, joking with them or talking like an 80 year old Chinese man (I don’t know if this is a nervous thing but it’s odd and annoying) when responding to questions or dropping something off at their desk, engaging in friendly banter. On her way back to her desk, her eyes stay straight never glancing down at me to acknowledge my existence.

Once we had a project we were stuck together to complete. We had to put labels on various products in the warehouse as they were behind and needed help. We stood in silence most of the time at the large processing tables.

When I opened up my 67th box and pulled the items out to process, I noticed from the corner of my eye that she had looked up and was staring at the goods. She then mumbled something inaudible.

“I’m sorry I didn’t hear you,” I said as I cupped my ear.

She repeated herself but in little to no increased tone. She made no effort to walk closer either. By now I felt annoyed, but I still didn’t hear her. There were massive rotating fans above us making it very hard to hear. Regardless of the fans, I find I have a tough time hearing people even when there aren’t background noises.

Frustrated, she swiftly walked over to me like she was going to punch me and yelled “WHAT DO YOU HAVE THERE?” Obviously any sort of connection was immediately thrown out the window after this declaration of war. She even went so far as to roll her eyes and mumble “God” under her breath in the most exasperated tone.

That was the last straw for me. I was over her asshole-like tendencies and I was tired of being neutral in every confrontation. Normally I am of the speak softly and carry a big stick school of thought. At that moment, I threw that stick as far as I could throw it.

“Calm the fuck down,” I said slowly to her with a don’t fuck with me look, “I didn’t hear you,” I said in a very clipped tone. I wanted to drive home the point how pissed I was with her, not only for this but her overall coldness towards me. You don’t have to like me; just don’t be a jerk.

I resumed politeness and finished the conversation with, “These are horse totes.”

She was probably pissed at me but realized she had poked the bear one too many times. She nodded her head, turned around and went to her post.

I’d like to say after that confrontation we suddenly realized we had a lot more than we thought in common and began having lunch together. Nope. This hag continues to cc our boss whenever she has confirmed I did something wrong and is still the same ass hole she was when she introduced herself as the runner up.

You were the Runner Up for a reason.

 

 

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Ridiculousness · Work

Corporate Phrases Your Tired of Hearing-Part 3

Thank the baby Jesus this week is over and it’s the weekend. Not enough wine in the world to handle work in my opinion.

Below is my final installment of corporate phrases. Please check out Part 1:Corporate Phrases Your Tired of Hearing-Part 1 along with Part 2: Corporate Phrases Your Tired of Hearing- Part 2 at these links for a combined total of around 100 phrases to suck the last bit of life you have left from your cubicle. Please send me more phrases. There has to be new strains of this plague, somewhere we haven’t heard of.

corp term 4

So I’m finishing up an essay about one of my many “Mean Girls” co-workers. I hope to have it complete tonight; tomorrow at the latest. If I’m a hot mess…she’s well…ok, I don’t have anything, sorry…..I suck right now.

Pop Culture · Ridiculousness · Work

Corporate Phrases Your Tired of Hearing-Part 2

What a shitty day at work. I won’t go into why  but  I will be having wine later, lots of wine and intend to write and post about it. I’m at my wits end, I’ll tell you that much.

Tonight

The minute dinner was over, I announced the following to my 2 sons,

“Boys! We will be doing 2 activities this evening to help mommy unwind. We will be coloring, then we will be hitting the punching bag in the basement. P, grab my gloves!”

“Why are we hitting the punching bag mommy?” C asked.

I bent down and in the most serious tone while looking at him like a crazy person stated, “because mommy is a disgruntled employee and we might even give that punching bag a name tonight.”

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Do you like my pink boxing gloves?

As we continue in part 2 of this 3 part series of corporate phrases, it was clear to me that after the response and likes, that horrible corporate phrases is an epidemic affecting the entire population

So chart #2 contains corporate terms that cover areas such as communication and how shit is organized.

corp term deux 1.21.16corp term trois

My personal favorites?

Can you speak to _____. This is said when they are not asking you to get with a human but about a project. Why can’t they just say “Can you talk about the Houston Galleria project”. It’s as if a man named Thurston woke up one day and thought, ‘I will no longer speak like the peasants that work for me. From now on I will speak to a project, not talk about it’.

I don’t have the bandwidth. Bandwidth? You’re not a computer just because you wear a blue tooth.

Partner. This is used all the time yet bothers me the most and I don’t know why. This isn’t a hoedown. I won’t partner with you but I’ll work with you.

And lastly, I do want to call out an awesome phrase I have never heard of until today, posted by girlygeekgirl…….

Tool: I ask that you please appoint a delegate if your attendance is unlikely.

Translation: We both know some of y’all are too important for this meeting, but my boss made me invite you anyway, so send one of your lackeys, k?

Sheer brilliance.

 

Pop Culture · Ridiculousness · Work

Corporate Phrases You’re Tired of Hearing-Part 1

I don’t understand how the English language became so fucked up in the work place. In my early twenties I marveled on how well-spoken these high power Executives were.

I wish I could talk like that’ was a frequent thought I kept to myself.

As the years went on, I continued to hear more and more phrases and it only became worse. Occasionally, I would be at a conference table and I would hear “put a lasso around that.”

Come again? I didn’t copy. What does that even mean? Are we at a rodeo? Put a lasso around what, your neck for saying what you just said?

Phrases began to spiral out of control. Executives from entry level to the CEO were strewing nonsensical phrases together then looking at their direct reports expecting complete adoration. Phrases began to manifest in daily communication such as job descriptions and employee reviews. To this day, if my husband or I let a phrase slip we are given carte blanche to make fun of the other person until it’s out of our system.

I’m breaking up my blog posts into a few posts over the next few days and this is the topic I want to talk about first as it is the most soul sucking. I’m sure many people use these phrases and don’t even realize it. If you do and regret it, there is hope. Like Pax Prentiss of Passages Rehab, “I too was once addicted to these phrases, but now I’m not.”

If you are new to corporate I have developed an easy to use chart for translation. I compiled over 100 phrases after talking with friends and family. Below is about 30. If you read these, promise me you won’t use them. Ok?

corporate terminology

In the next post I will have another chart for you covering corporate terminology such as Teamwork, Communication and how shit is organized. So what have you heard? I want to hear that have made you do a double take. I have 70 more to go and I hope to add new, douchier ones with you help!

 

 

Family · Ridiculousness · Work

Left For a Business Trip, Came Home to a Pigsty

I knew leaving for four days on business would yield a hot mess house upon my return. If the below text wasn’t an omen, I don’t know what was. It cracks me up he wanted a table cloth. Has anyone seen anyone play poker on a formal table cloth?

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Attempting cool wife while cringing..

After 4, 12 hour days the trip was over and I was making my way home from the airport. I arrived home around 11:30 to find my youngest had waited up for me but had fallen asleep on the sofa. I picked him up and carried him to bed.

I came back down and flipped on the light which was my first mistake. Just over yonder (what the hell is yonder? Sounds like an Amish last name if you ask me) and saw something on the floor. At first I thought it was just another fur tumbleweed courtesy of my chihuahua. As I got closer, I realized a chunk of the floor had been ripped out.

 

Here it is:

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WTF???

“What happened here?” I said attempting to keep my cool despite extreme exhaustion and completely enraged.

“Oh yeah, we don’t know,” my husband responded as if I had asked him what the weather will be like tomorrow.

I didn’t want to start a fight yet in my head I was screaming “Liar!” This crater was smack dab right in front of our table! It can be seen right when you open the front door. How the fuck could you not know how this happened? I would be getting to the bottom of this but for now I was stupid tired, had no wine to calm my nerves and Downton Abbey would be rerunning at 1 am.

I took the next day off and awoke to my son hugging me at 6:45 am. So precious. I came downstairs and like realizing your reality wasn’t a nightmare, stared down at the gash in our floor. I pursed my lips completely pissed off.

“Baby, how did this this boo-boo happen?” I asked sweetly as I pointed to the floor. I wanted to tell C that no matter how much dad was paying him for his silence, I would pay him exponentially more. Name your price. X Box game? Gum? Later bedtime? Name your price. He must have paid him off with a life long supply of Pokemon because he wouldn’t budge.

The final straw was the island. Our island had shit all over it- water bottles, a dart board, bills and just a plethora of things. God we are messy. In the middle of the island was a deck of cards, surely left over from Saturday night when I was still traveling. I picked up the cards and let out the largest gasp of my life. I don’t know if it was beer or a grape Capri Sun but the queen at the bottom of the deck had transferred over to my island because she had laid in a pool of liquid, thus staining it.

I tried to remain cool, imagining myself as a senior citizen telling my son’s girlfriend about the stain on the island and how I like it there because the house feels lived in. Fuck that, this was the last straw.

“What-the-hell?! What in the world? If this doesn’t come off, you need to go to Lowe’s and buy a new island stat!”

Again, acting as if he had amnesia, his only response from over on the sofa playing candy crush was, “what?”

I scrubbed that shit like Single White Female. I don’t care if my husband had to go out and get a magic sponge or whatever he wanted to call it but this stain was coming off. Even though it came off after the 3rd spray, I sprayed it a few more times scrubbing ferociously, acting as if it wasn’t quiet off just to get my point across that I wasn’t happy.

So how about you? What train wrecks have you come home to after travel? I can only imagine.

 

 

Pop Culture · Ridiculousness · Work

Travel Etiquette of the Oblivious

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De-icing my plane Thursday. Always a comforting site.

I’ve traveled a lot over the past 15 years for work and run into oblivious travelers every time. It’s not even a question of being an inexperienced traveler that makes them oblivious, it’s that they lack common sense and/or the rules of the game. Below is a lesson in travel idiocy.

Do not walk swiftly in the airport only to stop mid-stride. You can do this in the Augusta, Ga airport where it resembles a nursing home and probably sees 100 flyers a day. Don’t stop in La Guardia because you forgot to buy gum in the gift shop; you’ll be mowed over.

When in doubt, take it all off! I hate the security check point. Not only do you stand in a line that resembles a roller coaster line, but once you get up to the bins, you have to wait for the oblivious traveler to use a bin for every single article they packed. Next, they suddenly realize that you have to take your shoes off and sometimes even get pissy with the TSA. This isn’t a new rule ass hole. Wolf Blitzer didn’t just break into the Democratic debate announcing all airports will immediately request shoe removal at security checkpoints.

With a few exceptions, most TSA folks are good humored for having this job. There are 3 jobs I would never take: Telemarketer, School Bus Driver and TSA would be my third. From time to time you get the random TSA ass hole. I noticed they are usually the ones checking your ticket and looking at your license like “you weigh more than that”. Yesterday, I had a TSA ass hole. She looked as if she was at that point in her life of either choosing to remain Amish or live in “the English world”. Apparently I was 1/8″ too close to her for the facial screening. With her blue glove, she shewed me back. I was even mindful of this before I stepped forward as she had done the exact same thing to a girl in front of me.

Don’t be the tool that stands first in the boarding line because you have a Platinum-Gold-Infused with Baby Laughter-Frequent Flyer Card. I’m really surprised by these travelers as they travel the most yet spastically jump up when Linda “extends a special welcome” to them. If there is first class on your flight they will be sitting there and it’s 99% comprised of middle-aged white men in Dockers. I like to “accidentally” have my laptop bag slap them in the face on my way to steerage.

A steamer trunk is not carry-on luggage. I don’t know if the flight attendants are just dead inside and choose not to say anything but don’t be a jerk by taking all the overhead compartment space with what you know should have been checked. I gasp at some of the luggage people take on a flight. Fucking check that bag.

Just because you brought nothing with you to entertain yourself does not qualify me as your in flight entertainment. This bothers me more than anything else. I don’t want to talk to you. I probably have coffee breath, I usually can’t hear you and this is my “quiet time” to focus on reading or writing in lieu of worrying about a dirty house or errands. I once had an old man that just wouldn’t quit. After 45 minutes, I slammed my book shut in defeat (this was pre-tablet and earbud days) and just said “tell me everything Joseph, I want to hear all about your life”. Completely oblivious, he did just that….for the next hour.

Not tipping the travel industry! I hate when I see business travelers not tip the 40 lb, 70 year old that just off loaded your steamer trunk from the rental car shuttle. Jesus. It’s not even your money. I have a per diem, even if I don’t, I still fish out a few bucks to tip these guys. I also tip if I forget a toiletry and they bring it to my hotel room. Hell, I even tip for room service even when there is already a 20% delivery fee. The added benefit is you become known as a tipper and service magically gets better.

I know I probably missed a million other oblivious travel faux pas. So what do you see out there? Are there any that you can’t stand?

Ridiculousness · Work

Ridiculous Psycho Boss Advice

I am tired of reading articles put out by “experts” on how to deal with a difficult boss. The reality is, their tips are null and void if your boss’s mental state is less than stellar.

Many of these psycho bosses are hardwired with 1 or more of the below temperaments basically making your 8-10 hours suck beyond belief:

  • Lack of empathy
  • Narcissism
  • Lack of patience
  • Social awkwardness
  • General stupidity
  • Micromanaging
  • Gossiper/Nosy
  • Bullying

Because of this I decided to post some of the dumbest suggestions I’ve heard on how to deal with a difficult boss. I decided to put this advice in perspective for you:

Advice 1: You are told to go speak with your boss about your issue with them. If that doesn’t work you should go speak to your HR.

Reality: I would love to be a fly on the wall when you start out the conversation with:

You are such a bitch. I have never used the C word till I met you but trust me you earned that title. Were you raised by the devil?

You are just 1 Bluetooth earpiece, Ed Hardy shirt and a deep dive away from being the douschiest individual I have ever worked for.

 

Advice 2: Make sure you have a bad boss.

Reality: Well let’s see I’m up to a bottle of wine every other night, you are the first person I’ve ever used the C word for and you suck the life out of the room upon entry. Confirmed.

Advice 3: Stay 1 step ahead and don’t let it affect your work. I will combine these 2 since they go hand and hand.

Reality: Unless you’re psychic, you will never stay one step ahead. Trust me, I’ve tried it. Just when you think you’ve mastered what they expect, they say J/k! Cue crazy person laugh.

For the “don’t let it affect your work,” oh come on! How many times have you ever thrown your pencil across your desk in hopeless anger after a confrontation and either verbally or mentally said “well fuck it, gonna get fired anyway.” Not to mention, affect your work? Unless you work around the clock your work will never be up to a crazy person’s standards.

Advice: Identify your boss’s motivation.

Reality: Please see list from above. Your screwed.

Ok, I’m going to go win the lottery now……good night.