I work in a fairly large department here at Widget Co. There are about 90 attorneys and maybe another 90 to 100 non-attorneys who are staff at varying levels, from my super-awesome assistant down to the guy who orders pens (who thinks he is a critical asset to the department and works harder than we could ever imagine, and, oh, yeah, he reports to the Big Cheese, but actually he just orders us pens -- more about him in a future post).
I have two attorney colleagues who have a habit that is so unprofessional and annoying that I feel I must vent about it or my head will explode and coat my wall with a new Jackson Pollack-esque painting (and I hate Jackson Pollack's work, so I can't let that happen). I'll give one of these individuals a free pass because he is part of a much earlier generation ... and he could fire me if he wanted to. The other, though, must be called out. Yes, BDub, I'm talking about you.
What does BDub do that's so repulsive? While he's sitting there talking to you, just holding a regular old conversation -- either work-related or snarking on coworkers -- and when you're completely unprepared, he "adjusts" himself. WTF? Seriously? Yes. Seriously. He grabs hold of the crotch of his pants and moves his anatomy over to what is, presumably, a more comfortable position. In front of people. In front of women. In meetings. At lunch. In the hallway. Multiple times. Who thinks this is ok???
We already live in a society that is so biased that it permits men to scratch themselves openly like they're trying to remove a tick from matted fur and still be "manly." As women, we cannot even sneak a scratch without losing our "lady"-ness (assuming we had it to begin with). We must hide in the ladies' room, or an office, or a dark corner, to relieve an itch, no matter how innocent. Very, very unfair. But now we must put up with men re-racking in public??
Women are supposed to have equal rights in our society, and Widget Co. tries very hard to make sure there is parity in the workplace. So does that mean when my bra is cutting into my ribs I can lift up my boobs and move everything around to a more comfortable position? Can I pull a nipple that got off-center back to where it should be? Or can I separate the girls if they start smooshing together? No. It doesn't. Why? Because I'm a lady. And because society says I can't.
But BDub can. Or he thinks he can. I say ENOUGH. If you know BDub, or have your own BDub where you work, start calling him on it. From this day forward, every time BDub touches himself in front of me, I'm going to return the favor. Every. Single. Time.
The Tuscan Child by Rhys Bowen
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