Wednesday, January 31, 2007
About yesterday...
Yesterday was just plain awful.

And, forgive me for not spelling out the details, but as it happened at work, I am loathe to be more forthcoming. First, the backstory:

In my job I talk to a lot of people all over the country. Last April, I began working with this person who, let's just say, has difficulty communicating with the rest of the world. For an indepth look at my first encounters with this guy, check out this post in the archives.

My initial take on him was "buffoon," but in the year that I've had the distinct displeasure of knowing him I've consistently downgraded him. From "buffoon" he slipped to featherbrain, simpleton, and then half-wit. About midway through the past year however, he made a huge break through and became a boor, then a cad, then a beast. Now, I am proud to proclaim him an insufferable asshole, an unprofessional sunuvabitch, and completely lacking in any sense of personal responsibility.

Perhaps you know his type. He is one of those that claim to NEVER BE WRONG. Infallible. Error-free.

Of course, one might counter this obvious unliklihood with the argument that if that were true, he'd be doing better financially, but alas, he is not.

Not that that is any of my business, of course. I only mention it to point out the fallacy in his premise.

The way that our relationship was supposed to work was for him to give me explicit instructions which I would follow to the letter. Of course, his idea of explicit left enough holes for me to drive a sprawling Chicago suburb through, but don't forget, he's never wrong.

I would attempt to get clarification on my questions, but he wasn't only never wrong, he was also never available. So, I'd have to determine what he intended from my not so powerful powers of mindreading. As it would turn out, this would become the most important of my powers. Too bad that power is not one of my strengths.

Without going into details, I can tell you that yesterday, his antics came to a head. I called him to ask a simple, run of the mill, standard question. To put it politely, he came unglued. He threw a temper tantrum - adult style - and directed it, in explicit language, at me. His behavior went beyond impolite and right into a crude personal attack. He put all of the blame on me. You know, because he's NEVER WRONG. I did it. Me. I lost the money. Sure I did.

I want you to know that I kept my cool through his entire tirade. I did not retaliate or match him word for word on his nastiness. I did, however, keep asking him for an answer on the original question, and he refused to give me one. Like a 3-year-old with his hands over his ears, sticking his tongue out and going "nah, nah, nah, I can't hear you", he would not answer my question. More nastiness ensued until I couldn't take it anymore and I ended the conversation as politely as possible given the circumstances.

Ten minutes later, as I am leaving my boss a message about my encounter with Mr. Mean McNasty, we take another phone call from a third party. She was treated to a similarly ugly encounter with Mr. Mean McNasty, taking the rest of the attack that I refused to parry.

The encounter and the dealing with the issues Mr. Mean McNasty wouldn't resolve left me frazzled, uptight, and sick to my stomach the rest of the day. The upside of all of this is, however, we no longer do business with McNasty. Sayonara, Sucker. What do we have as a parting gift, Chuck?

I realize that not everyone likes me. I am too opinionated. People don't like me because I am too capable (or so I've been told) and I make them feel inadequate. People don't like me because I am an overachiever with a can-do attitude. People don't like me because of my ability to skewer others with my barbed wit and prose. Whatever.

I was nothing but professional in my dealings with McNasty. He has no reason to dislike me. I have taken all of his bullshit, refined it into fertilizer, and spread it. Unfortunately for him, the quality of the inputs sort of limit the potential of the end product. Even had I put chocolate syrup on top, it still would have been bullshit. But, of course, this too is my fault. I failed to read his mind. I failed to know what emails he had/hadn't received from a third party. I failed to know what he intended, even if his words indicated something contrary.

I won't miss McNasty. I won't miss being the fall guy so that he can maintain his NEVER WRONG, perfect record. I won't miss his profanity, his personal attacks, or his insinuations.



posted by Phoenix | 9:46 AM


At 2:48 PM, Anonymous Regina said...

Good for you. I know too well what is is to deal with just such a person and i am proud of you for not loosing your composer and standing out as the true professional.

And for the record the personal attributes you described as why people don't like you are exactly the reasons why i enjoy reading your blog. I also think they are good characteristics to have period.


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