Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Familiarity Is Contempt(ible)

Today was the first day at the “new” (now approaching six weeks old!) job when I felt like I was doing a lot of work, keeping all the balls in the air, and not spending all my time learning my way around.  Getting oriented is still an ongoing job, but it’s not my full time job anymore, and that feels good.  I still feel dissatisfied with how far I’ve come, but maybe that’s the way I always feel, or people always feel; it’s hard for me to gauge objectively, of course.

The fly in the ointment is finding someone who reminds me most unfortunately of someone I got to know early at my previous gig.  There is no harrassment, but the personality is so dreadfully similar I’m having to control my responses when I run across the guy.  In honor of this, please forgive me for sharing the hideously obvious advice which began composing itself in my head this morning.


If you find out someone you work with is an author:  DO NOT ASK THEM IF THEY WRITE SMUT.  (This isn’t prudent strictly in the case of a woman, but does apply with particular vigor in such cases.)  If you happen to hear their computer beep:  DO NOT PEDANT AT ANYONE THAT THEY NEED TO ADJUST THEIR VOLUME CONTROL.  (if you are not even a cube farm neighbor, unwanted and self-superior feedback of this nature is especially irksome).  If you are looking at a collaborative website on a very large monitor:  DO NOT FEEL YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO CROSS ***BEHIND*** SOMEONE’S DESK AND ***LEAN OVER HER*** IN ORDER TO LOOK AT IT.  Period.  Ever.  On that one.  Good lord.  Physical proximity with anyone, like that, just is not necessary, not in an office. NEVER with a stranger, which fortunately I consider myself still to be to this person.  (Yeah, we all lean together to look at things, but if you are less than a foot away, YOU MAY BE TRIGGERING SOMEONE’S ANXIETIES.)  Just do not do this.  Ever.  Are we clear yet?  Just don’t.

Because even someone who hasn’t endured physical assault by someone like you may still have endured more than any administrivia is worth, to endure your utterly unnecessary closeness.  If I can SMELL YOUR COLOGNE (a) you are wearing way too much, and (b) you are far, far, far too close to my person.  Just saying.


If someone tells you they are doing work for the senior executive and you have housekeeping you can’t do for yourself, no amount of “this will take you only five seconds to take care of” will ever endear you to them as you presume to interrupt an SVP’s business.

If you then show up again and lurk at someone while they are clearly on the phone with an executive, and they WAVE YOU AWAY, and you do not leave, nothing at all is going to endear you to this person, AND you will be interfering with their getting work done.

And, finally:  If you find out someone you work with is a writer?  DO NOT ASK THEM IF THEY WRITE SMUT.  Because – seriously – what kind of a moron are you exactly???

All this said, it was actually a good day at the office.  Monday’s more trying bits of ignorance and a minor under-the-bus-being-thrown all done, today I kicked bootay and took names.  Keeping the balls in the air.

And, no:  that is not smut.  So NO TITTERING.  *Eyebrow rounding on everyone, slowly*

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