Double Standards on the Job(s)

I started thinking about this after spending three hours total in the kitchen cooking, eating and cleaning up from dinner.  I first thought of the last job I had, because it gives me anxiety to think about working until 5:30, then coming home to spend three hours on my feet (save for the time I spend eating), plus a little more time to prep lunch for the next day.

Thinking about that reminded me of a double standard situation at that last job and then that reminded me a weird double standard at another job years ago when I was pretty young.

The last job I had was at an executive suite. I worked in a dry windowless room answering phones. There were three other women who did what I did and one would cover the front desk.

One woman worked until 4:30, another worked until 5:00 and I worked until 5:30. The three of us were all full time. And there was a part timer.

Whenever any of these women’s quitting times rolled around, none of them could get to their coats and bags fast enough. When it was quitting time, they were not asked to stay longer and no one said anything about them being too eager to get outta dodge.

But after I’d been there a couple weeks, that is exactly what happened to me. My manager approached me after I’d gotten up to get my stuff and set out to the elevator to get out of the stuffy building.  She said to me, “We need someone who isn’t in such a hurry to leave at the end of the day. Someone who is more dedicated and thinks more about the job than just coming in, doing the minimum and leaving.” (Or something along those lines).  It’s been a decade since I was let go from that hell and I don’t remember her exact words. But that was the message for sure.)

How is it the boss didn’t have a problem with the employees making a run for it the moment the minute hand struck the end of their work day, but I’m supposed to worship the fucking place and hang out longer.

Being there until 5:30 already made it so I was lucky to make it home by 6. By 5:30 I hadn’t eaten since noon and I was ready for dinner. But I still had to get home and cook it. Then since I had to relive the torture, I’d also need to prep my lunch for the next day.

I had the double standard imposed on me at another job years before that too.

I was working for a company that printed out multi-page litigation reports and sent them out to a number of subscribers. This was long before the internet and email. There was a master report printed out and usually there would be smudges on the pages, so we’d have to go through the papers manually and white out the smudges, let them dry and then make multi-copies of each report.

We used a gigantic copy machine that would make many copies at once. Then we’d have to gather all the pages to each report and staple each report together.  It was a long, tedious process. But it wasn’t that bad of a job. We worked in a huge room…it had to be to fit that monster copy machine. It was on the first floor and it had windows!

When we were finished with the first master copy of the report, we’d send it upstairs for one of the lawyers to proof-read. A handful of attorneys worked there and did the proofing. Most of them were pretty quick and had the report back to us within an hour.  But there was this one lawyer who would take a really long time. We’d be held up sometimes because he was taking so long and we had no choice but to wait for him.

I asked once, “What takes him so long.”

The woman who I worked directly with, the person in charge of all that copying and getting the reports off in the mail, answered me with, “He’s just really thorough.”

It wasn’t like I could say much anyway, so I was just like, “Um, okay.”

Well, I wan’t there for much longer than a month when I was let go.

Reason: I was too slow.

One person’s slowness is thoroughness, the other person’s slowness is seen as negative. Thing is, I was only there a short time and was still learning.

I was crushed. I didn’t have a car at that time so I called my mother and told her I’d been let go and asked if she could pick me up.

She did and when I got in the car I told her the whole story and the look of disappointment knocked the wind out of me. I had been crying. I was already disappointed in myself enough, besides being confused as to how I was seen as ‘slow’ while slow poke lawyer was called ‘thorough.’

I was maybe 21.

I needed my mother to say something comforting. What exactly I don’t know. But something along the lines of “I’m sorry that happened” would’ve worked pretty well.


I’m not proofing this. It was painful enough to write it out and work through it the first time.

In addition, I’m also grappling with some new found realization that my mother is likely a sociopath. Figuring out she’s a narcissist was painful enough. But to figure out I was raised by a sociopath, is a lot to process.

 

 


 

 

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B(lu’s) Youngest Sibling

I know, I know, this is not the season to be all bitchy, especially when it doesn’t effect me much at all, but I’m going to be anyway because I’m annoyed as hell. The annoyance is with B’s younger sister. I don’t want to trash her to him, so I’m gonna do it here and get it out of my system.

I’m going to give her and the other people I mention names here, make one up, so when you’re reading it doesn’t sound so clunky. I’ll call his younger sister, Lucy, his older sister, Sara. And his mother (who’s passed), Dottie.  But none of them are real names.

I’m also going to change B to Blu and no that isn’t his real name either.

Okay so:

Blu went to spend Christmas with his family at his sister Sara’s house.

He has a pretty big family.

Two sisters, two brothers, three of those siblings have spouses.

Two nieces and two nephews.

So instead of exchanging gifts with each and every one, they have a Pollyanna. They’ve been doing this for years, before I met him.

It’s the type of Pollyanna where you just buy a general gift, wrap it and put it in a pile with the rest. You pick a number from a hat ranging from one to however many people are participating. Then follow chronologically picking a wrapped gift from the pile and opening it. There is more to the rules but it’s unimportant to the story.

The amount of money spent is set to $50, which is reasonable for everyone in this particular situation.

Blu bought a really nice external hard drive as his Pollyanna gift, which, is a good gift for pretty much anyone and certainly everyone in his family could use it.  So it’s a thoughtful gift in my not so humble opinion.

Just to note, I didn’t go with him and he spent the night at his sister Sara’s house last night, He called to let me know what he was doing and we talked a little. I asked him who ended up with his gift, but he misunderstood my question and told me what he ended up with.

When he told me I didn’t really have a reaction and I went back to my original question. He answered and we talked some more about his day.

I was home alone so there wasn’t much for me to say about that.

But today, I started thinking about what he told me he ended up with again and got really annoyed.

I think his sister, Lucy is pretty thoughtless…either that or something is wrong with her. And I don’t mean that facetiously.

The gift she gave as Pollyanna was gardening tools. Remember it’s a ‘general’ gift that could be conducive for anyone there to use, or whatever.  Well, no one, other than Lucy, gardens to my knowledge. Maybe Sara does, and she would be the only other one. But if she does, then it’s very little and she has so much money, I really doubt that she needs gardening tools. In fact, Sara has fricken’ landscaper because her property is so large.

Blu ended up with the gardening tools. And then said, “I don’t have a garden though.”
And Lucy said, “Oh, well I’ll take ’em back then.”

Who fucking does that????

So Blu participates, gives a nice gift and then gets no gift in return.

Now I know I sound like an utter ingrate here, and of course it sounds like it’s about what he got or didn’t get. It’s not. It doesn’t effect me whether he got presents or didn’t. And knowing him, he likely doesn’t care either.

But wtf Lucy??? Why would you get a gift that no one in the family would use other than yourself. I went through my mind and listed the family members to see…”Hm, who else would use them?  Um…NO ONE LUCY! NO ONE!”

The only one who may have appreciated them, is no longer mobile enough to be able to dig around in the dirt, so the fucking ‘gift’ is seriously thoughtless.

Today thinking about this, I’m thinking, “He could’ve held onto them and sold them on ebay.”  Even if it had occurred to me on the phone last night, it would’ve been too late, because I think Lucy had already left.

Oh well. I don’t care about that and I don’t care about the gift itself.

Lucy is a bit loud and obnoxious, making her very different than the rest of the family. I can’t be around her much because her boisterous personality does a number on my sensitive nervous system. But that’s just one thing.

When we lived in our house, we lived next to Blu’s mother. She was a pleasant and nice elderly woman (when I knew her) who didn’t want to impose on us, but we were there for her when she needed something. I would also go over during the day once in awhile and sit and talk with her. I loved to listen to stories about her childhood and when she was a young woman raising her children.

At one point, Lucy, who had been living out west, moved back to the area and moved in with their mother temporarily. She took over in some ways, which I’ll get to in a minute. But then she would also (when she wasn’t working) make food for herself and then hole up in the bedroom she was staying in. Dottie told me she would come home from work, go make herself some dinner and then go right up to the room to eat it, not saying a word to her mother.

When I say, “She (Lucy) took over” I mean that she planted all kinds of things out in the front yard, so that there wasn’t much of a yard anymore, it was a mini jungle. I’m not against plants and flowers and things, but she was there temporarily. And when she moved, it didn’t get attention because their mom wasn’t able to do much of that anymore and Blu and I never had any interest in doing any type of gardening. The only thing Blu did and enjoyed when it came to yard work, was cutting the grass. He cut his mother’s grass as well as ours, but all those plants next door actually made it more difficult to get around the yard with a mower.

And when you have a garden or yard full of plants that you want, you also get a bunch of shit growing that you don’t want.  And when Lucy moved out, no one was there to weed all the overgrowth. I hated it because it took over the space in that yard that Blu and I would used to toss the frisbee back and forth and practice disc golf putting.

 

 

Lucy also brought area rugs with her and took it upon herself to lay them where she wanted them.  One day Dottie tripped over one and fell!  I was pissed about this. I found this out one day when I went over to visit. Dottie had a black eye so I asked (obviously) what happened.

I never said anything to Lucy, but I let Dottie know I was angry at Lucy. And asked her to speak up to Lucy and tell her to remove that rug.  I also let Blu know what happened and told him that I was pissed off at Lucy. How dare she lay down an area rug in an elderly person’s house, where she’s not used to an area rug being.   Again, there’s that thoughtless theme.

I’m sorry but what an asshole.

Lucy brought her 4 or 5 cats with her too. And by the time Lucy left, the house stunk so bad of cat piss. At least one of the cats was using the dining room rug as a litter box. It was downright nasty.  Lucy would let the litter boxes get fuller than it should have been. I remember Blu going over to scoop them sometimes and I know that Dottie scooped it too.  One day Dottie and I were talking about it and I said, “You shouldn’t be scooping those boxes.” She replied, “Well if I don’t, it won’t get done.”

Lucy planted a few vegetables in a tiny little plot in the back of Dottie’s house, while staying there. I can only remember cherry tomatoes right now. They would ripen so much, they’d just fall to the ground and rot. If not that, the squirrels were munching and taking them.

So one day when I saw Lucy out front, I asked her if she’d mind if I used some of the tomatoes since so many of them were falling off the bushes and rolling down the driveway. I figured she was aware that she wasn’t eating many of them and that they were rotting, rolling away and feeding the animals. Not that I begrudge the animals, you understand.

She replied with a grating and penetrating voice, the whole neighborhood could’ve heard… “I’d rather you didn’t.”

And that was that. I seem to remember her grinding voice adding something to that, but I don’t remember the rest. I pretty much turned her off after that. I just remember thinking, how ridiculous this woman is.

F.E.A.R.

This seems like something many so called healers like to use… False Evidence Appearing Real, to ‘help’ people diminish their fear I guess. But to me, and it might just be my mood today, it seems like just another degrading, condescending way to wave away someone’s emotions and even a twisted way to blame the victim once again.

Sometimes there is REAL fear for real reasons. As in the evidence shows that you should be afraid. Ffs. You know what this actually pisses me off more than I thought it did when I opened this window to type this out.

 

What do you think?