Below are the few scattered ramblings of BossLady notes that I took in the last couple of months of my time there, followed by a few modern-day reflections on the whole saga.
I threw out a whole trashbag full of manila folders yesterday afternoon. AWESOME. I am SO FREAKING HAPPY I could’ve kissed someone, that I could finally, finally, finally just get rid of all that crap with BossLady’s blessing. Yay!
In spite of the fact that BossLady has recently admitted that I am more technical than she is, she still feels the need to name-drop all the techie stuff she did in her past. “When I was working for Hewlett-Packard….I became an Oracle database administrator….Yeah, I know, it’s like when I was working with Unix…writing, uh, Perl? Perl scripts? Yeah, Perl….Writing programs in C…” Sheesh. If this woman knew anything about any of this stuff, why isn’t she writing programs for the business instead of leaving all the database creation crap to me?
Anyway, I need to go in early today because I cut out a little early yesterday, pleading headache and exhaustion. Which was true, yesterday was completely exhausting. Stupid BossLady. I swear to God. Her and her damn money-saving schemes. Instead of renewing her subscription to Norton on my machine, she went out and bought a whole new package of Norton Antivirus and told me to install it, because you get a twenty-dollar mail in rebate or something, meanwhile, I now no longer have Norton Internet Security on there, which featured Norton Antivirus AND a firewall and Norton AntiSpam, and other features. What a moron.
WOOHOO! I am awesome. I wrote a PHP script today so that BossMan and BossLady can do netsheets online from anywhere. I used the formulas that BossLady calculated for the spreadsheet and translated them to PHP. Woohoo! And they LOVED it! I rock!
Have I mentioned yet that BossMan and BossLady are engaged? No? Yeah, maybe on some unconscious level that’s why I got so trashed Thursday night. I don’t know.
BossLady came in and flicked out her left hand at me, saying, “Have you seen this?” Got a big old ring on her pinky finger. Obviously she wanted me to coo over it, so I did: “Oooooh, pretty!” Then she started yammering about how BossMan likes to watch some shopping channel or other and he saw this ring and asked her if she liked it, and she was kind of “Whatever” about it, and when he gave it to her, she asked him if it was for her left hand or for her right hand. And he said, “Right hand,” and she gave it back to him. And then, apparently, he caved and said okay, left hand, but it doesn’t fit her ring finger and they have to get it resized so she’s wearing it on her pinky for now. She said she didn’t want it if it’s not for her left hand.
Boy, what a romantic story. Sheesh.
Later on, I was in BossMan’s office when his ex-wife called him on his cellphone and she started squealing, “CONGRATULATIONS!” and he was quite pissy and “Yeah, right, whatever, bye,” so I said, “Oh yeah, by the way, congratulations,” and he was still pissy, with the yeah right thanks can we get back to work now.
Dayum. I don’t like the way this feels, nope.
BossLady shared with me yesterday that she joined Weight Watchers. Then she shared a few stories about how much weight she and BossMan have both gained (she’s apparently up to an eighteen, oy). And poor BossMan couldn’t fit into a booth at Denny’s, oh my God, how horribly embarrassing.
AGAIN with the damned filenames! BOSSLADY! SHUT UP! About the DAMNED FILENAMES! I am NOT! CHANGING! The FILENAMES! No matter HOW MANY TIMES! You FLAP your FREAKING YAP! About the FILENAMES! SHUT! THE! HELL! UP!
BossLady went and bought a very shifty-sounding pirated copy of Adobe Creative Suite on some site, and I think it sounds dangerous, but whatever. She bought it because she thought I would be tempted to steal it, supposedly. She thinks using cracked software is “stealing,” but what does she think this stuff she just ordered is? Sheesh.
BossLady presented me with the Adobe Creative Suite yesterday, so I went ahead and installed it, and then I snuck it home with me and installed it here, too. She’ll probably notice, but I don’t give a crap, I really and truly don’t. If you don’t want to give me a raise, I will damn well borrow your pirated software that cost you about a third of what you would have paid for a legal copy, woman! Heh.
I took the bull by the horns and asked BossLady for a raise yesterday. We’ll see what happens.
Remember how I asked for a raise on Monday? Well a couple of days later there was an email for BossMan from Cheri in Human Resources containing an employment application. So I said to BossMan, “Cheri sent you an employment application, want me to print it out?” and he grunted yeah, so I did and left it on my desk without comment. Then on Friday I hear him take a call on his cellphone and he’s saying, “Well, do you have a resume? Sure, just drop it off at the office.” So I check the classifieds right then and there and here’s the ad:
PERSONAL ASSISTANT for fast paced real estate team. General office duties including Excel, email, answer phones, fax documents, search internet data base. Call [BossMan] @ [phone number] for private interview.
And there you have it. Funny, a few days after I ask for a raise. So I called Cheri and told her the whole thing, and she thought I shouldn’t worry, they’re just looking for extra help, not looking to replace me, and she said she thought they would be up the creek without me. She suggested I jokingly ask BossMan about it, which I did, although I failed to mention the raise part. BossMan admitted they’re just looking for some extra help, yadda yadda, although I’m not entirely certain what sort of stuff they’ll have a new person do that would actually take any load off of me.
The important thing that I’m keeping in mind is that Cheri promised to speak to Rick, the Broker, on my behalf if things go south. Which they will, inevitably. I know it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy, but I just hate that crazy woman so very much. BossLady, I mean. But Cheri says I am just too talented and valuable and they wouldn’t want to lose me.
I am dreading going in today. I actually considered calling in sick as I lay in bed this morning. I won’t, of course, but I want to. There was this whole stupid drama yesterday about the flyers, and how I shouldn’t have changed it, even though I asked BossMan beforehand if I could change it, blah blah blah, what is wrong with these people?
I hate BossLady so much.
I asked BossMan if she mentioned my request to him, and he said yes, they’re still discussing it, and I quickly added, “Hopefully she won’t be upset that I mentioned it.” I hope he got the hint. I don’t want a repeat of the last time I dared to make a request. Anyway, it’s been ten days.
I should mention something about Friday afternoon, but I’m so tired. BossMan and BossLady sat me down in his office, and BossLady nattered on for a while about every negative thing she could think of about me, half of which were incidents that I remember very differently, the other half of which were things she pretty much made up. And then at the end, after basically putting me down in every possible way, she said they were gonna give me a raise after all, but by that time I was so incensed at all the crap she was spewing that I wasn’t going to just take the money and run, so I started to bring up all the things that I’ve been biting my tongue about for all these months. Like the offensive personal comments about my homelessness, my family, the made-up nonsense about my work, the bug problem. I just couldn’t take it anymore. I spoke as slowly and calmly as I could.
But BossLady suddenly took great offense, utterly shocked at my lack of gratitude, and interrupted with some weird comment about how she feels I don’t respect her, and I demurred, but insisted that the way she had been treating me was unacceptable. BossMan remained stone-faced during this exchange. BossLady insisted that I had no right to judge her, which I said I wasn’t doing but merely stating that comments like the ones she made were inappropriate, and she was all shrieking at this point saying that I was judging her, that as an employee I have no right to tell her she’s inappropriate (um, have you ever heard the phrase “hostile work environment,” you freak?) and long story short she stormed out of the office in an arm-flailing, hysterical tantrum. She’s probably going to have another accident, like that time she charged out of the house in a rage after a stupid conversation with another Realtor and she ran a red light and totaled her car. Anyway, BossMan chased after her (slowly, because he literally weighs at least 350 pounds). I’m supposed to get a call from him this weekend, but I’m not holding my breath.
Well, I finally got fired today. BossMan came in late this morning, alone, and after about an hour he came out and without looking at me told me that it was obvious that it wasn’t “working out” and I should hand over my keys. I’m celebrating with a nice glass of Crown Royal. I mean, obviously BossLady pulled an “it’s C or me” move. What a jerk.
Well, I’m not too worried. Everything will be all right.
When I started sharing the Tales of the BossLady on this site at the beginning of the year, I knew, of course, that things had ultimately ended badly at that job. Somehow, I remembered that fact but forgot the actual fact of it, if that makes sense.
Re-reading my old journals from that period of my life was fun at first. I had collected a lot of really amusing stories about BossLady and her goofy ways, and I remembered those incidents with a chuckle. BossLady thinks the sound card has a plug. BossLady doesn’t know basic HTML. BossLady tries Feng Shui. But as the months wore on and the journal entries began to be increasingly peppered with comments about how many beers I had to have that night when I got home, or how many glasses of merlot I chugged to make myself forget what a miserable day I’d had, or how much money I spent at the liquor store that week…Well, it reminded me of how very, very unhappy I had become, and how the stories became less and less funny and more depressing. What started out as a lighthearted stroll down memory lane turned into a series of disjointed, largely uninteresting rants.
I’m not sure how I managed to forget how utterly demoralized I became while working for BossLady. Absence makes the heart grow fonder? Distance lends enchantment to the view? Retrograde optimism? Who knows. But in trawling through the archives in order to share these little tales, I’ve had to think a lot about the kind of person I was at that time. I find myself very, very glad that the years have softened my edges since the days when I would drink myself to a stupor to keep from ranting in ALLCAPS about my loony boss’s eccentricities. It’s also a relief to realize that I’m actually stronger in many ways. I’m far less likely to submit uncomplainingly to personal abuse in the workplace, though it certainly took me several years to get to this point.
(I’ve also learned to never, ever, ever again work for a husband-and-wife team. Every single time I’ve gotten involved in a business run by a couple, it has turned into a battle of wills with me at the center.)
Ultimately, here’s what I take away from these reminiscences about the BossLady: Don’t let someone like this consume and control and dominate your life. No job is worth losing your self-respect and sanity to such an extent.
Moving right along, I might be taking next Sunday off, but I do have some tentative plans for a new feature to replace the now-concluded Tales of the BossLady. Thanks for reading and commiserating!