Tuesday, September 23, 2008

In Which There Is General Pettiness

There have been rumors flying around the office that an Important Personage would be visiting us to see how things are progressing. Today, while I was at the post office, I bumped into the boss and found that yes, there was indeed an Important Personage due to visit the office, and that said visit would be occurring this very day. I beetled my brows and considered heading home to change into something a bit more businesslike. No, said the boss, that wouldn't be necessary.
The appointed hour approached, and at three o'clock the office was abuzz with activity. A whole four people doing phonebanking, and yet another four doing the requisite geeky stuff required to keep things going, and... me... manning the front desk to get people registered and/or signed up to volunteer. If the IP had arrived when she was supposed to, she would have arrived during a peak period of activity. If she'd arrived when she'd been supposed to, it would have been a heartening sight. She arrived, however, three hours late, which meant there was no one doing phonebanking (the volunteers aren't chained to their oars, after all) and there were only three of us in the office, and those of us who remained were lurking around in various stages of relative relaxation while we waited for the IP to appear.
I was not impressed by her tardiness, but I said nothing. While I'm not accustomed to being the center of attention, neither am I being accustomed to being completely ignored; I appreciate slight acknowledgement of my presence as a human being, so it further irked me that she failed to appear as anything but rude. She may indeed be a nice person, but I require more evidence than what was given me this afternoon. After about five minutes of what sounded like utter twaddle, I ascended from the couch--ladies, even ladies wearing jeans and cardigans, ascend--and approached with what is my version of icy hauteur. This consists of an absolutely calm expression, a change from my usual slouch to my full height, and a change in tone of voice. I'm not tall, so it's rare that I get the feeling that I'm actually looming over people, especially when they're of a similar height; I definitely got the feeling that I loomed. :P No, I'm not being petty. Promise!
"I don't believe we've been introduced," I said.
"I'm blah-de-blah-de-blah," she answered. "I'm the (insert impressive title here)."
"I'm (insert my name here). How nice to meet you. I really must be heading out."
And so saying, I scooped up my things and swept out of the office. If I were capable of doing something eerily supernatural, I suspect there would have been swirls of dead post-it notes fluttering in my wake. Preferably post-it notes with mean little faces drawn on them.
Okay. Maybe it is petty to be irritated by a rude twelve-year-old with a briefcase. And maybe it is petty to have wished for a swirl of demented post-its. But I'm not the one who was three hours late and acted like a twerp. That's not the best way to make a good impression on the people who are working for the person who works under you while we're all working toward a common purpose.

On a different note, I dealt with my first veteran today. A Vietnam vet came in to sign-up for volunteering; he expressed outrage at how many people are buying into certain stories while the economy is faltering and so many are struggling to make ends meet. How, too, he wanted to know, could a veteran be so against giving other veterans access to things like education and other benefits that they earned? Y'know, I'd like to know those answers myself, but I don't think they'll be forthcoming. I was so moved by the man's concerns that I got a bit teary-eyed. For his sake, and for all our sakes, I hope his fears do not come to pass.


Rachael said...

For his sake, and for all our sakes, I hope his fears do not come to pass.

Amen, sweetie.

That's so awful that this person was three-hours late. I assume, she offered no explanation?

I was disgusted during the debate when McCain talked about everything he's done for veterans. *eyeroll* Such a poser...

La Duchesse said...

Not only that, but she didn't bother to call and let anyone know she was being held up or had gotten lost or whatever the reason was for her extreme tardiness.