Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Irked in office

I am in the office floor washroom, washing my hands after using the loo. A girl, aka smiley wali acquaintance (i.e. we don't know the names of one another but exchange smiles when we run into each other on the office floor) comes in, uses the loo, come out and then shows me the mehendi on her hand and tells me to smell it! Al rite the mehendi is beautiful, and yes it always smells heavenly, but ma'am NO, I cannot smell your hands if you have not washed them first! Well guess what? I obliged :-( . Because really, I felt awkward to tell her to wash her hands first, only after which I could bury my nose into them. That would hurt and it would be really awkward. For the record; Later on, I did clean my face and my hands rigorously and dried them clean. But this lead to the loss of 2 more paper towels, whereas, if she had directly washed her hands, we would have saved one tissue and we both would have enjoyed the mehendi aroma treat! Sigh!

So why am I blabbering about this washroom exchange over here. Reason being; I have some major pet peeves, and when people go ahead and do those, I find it terribly hard to go ahead and point that to them! How do you tell people (politely/without annoying/without sounding offensive) that they have got to stop doing certain actions or have to start doing certain things in the office?

Seriously tell me, how do you tell people:

To stop scratching your back, armpits while talking to your peers in the meeting room. While the man is going on and on about the value adds, I am all "How does the hand even reach that place on your back!!??"

To tell the girl who looks ultra chic in the trousers, to wear some perfume. Because really girl, I don't want to know which loo you had used 10 minutes back.

To tell the smiley girl to wash her hands ALWAYS after using the loo, because its only you and not the germs who have to rush to that call or meeting. She never washes her hands!

To the boy in the next cubicle, to hold a hanky/tissue/hands to your face while you sneeze. Because I like to take my shower in the mornings only, thank you.

To the manager who talks horribly wrong grammatical English, so much that he address the woman on the phone as 'He'. Surely I ensure I say something in the call, you know, just to clear the air about my English.

To the colleague who finishes up all of my all tiffins, instead of sharing it. Sir, I show that I care, but really its not all that much.

To the guy on the floor, who removes his shoes and parades around in the socks. Well if someone is unconscious we know where to go, but until then, can you keep your shoes on please?

To the newly married girl who almost yells on the phone. We know you have to have the mush talks, but how about just for your man, and not for the other 10 men surrounding your cubicle.

And to the colleague who sweats profusely even in the AC, not to ask us, to share our apples. With the 'NO' nod of the head, I always want to add that you must visit the doc for that much sweating. Seriously.

Well, as I re read all the above lines, I somewhere felt, I had turned bitchy and insulting. So really, even after reading the points HERE I feel that, so how am I ever going to say these things (of course not with the sarcasm) and expect that they would take it positively. I know there are columns in magazines who address these kind of queries, but really being an almost stranger to one another in the office, I cannot go ahead and ask them to do stop this and request them to start doing that. I feel, something like this, can best be addressed by friends very close or by family. But surely they have not, else there would not be such a post. So does that mean, I have to go on shaking germs laded hands or get showered by sneezes in the office, just because there is no good way to say this?

And yes, there is actually no good way to say this.
A personal incident; I have really frizzy hair and it tends to cover up my face at times. With longer hair the frizz also increased in proportion. I really never bothered about it, until a girl came up to and told me that I should tie my hair properly, because it looked very untidy(let me add very politely). I will be honest here, how much ever her intentions were good, that sentence really really hurt me. Eventually I began to use a lot of conditioner for the frizz and tied it better. The hair started to look a lot neater over the years but somehow I still housed that tiny grudge somewhere against that 'stranger'. Maybe I would have taken it a lot better, if it as someone from my family. But what if my family never told me?

So the only way to do this, is to be prepared that the person may not like it, but really someone has to tell him/her. HaHa I get that, but pray tell me "Whose going to bell the manager??"

Happy new years guys. For long I had no clue what to write and then it was winter, so I just hibernated.
A lot of people have ventured their thoughts about the Delhi gang rape on the blogosphere. This is really commendable and indeed I got to read a varied amount of opinions (never a hibernation on reading). We need more like that. It is a revolution and we all have to do our bit. But how sad, that it had come to something like this, for a revolution to start. As far as I am concerned, I really had and still have only one line to say. Castration and definitely not chemical.

 

58 comments:

  1. Welcome back Jenny..nicely written..yes some habits of people we just have to ignore because thats the only thing we can do

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    1. Thanks Ashvini. Yeah we always end up ignoring. I wish there was a better way to do this!

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  2. Easiest way would be to ask them to read ur blog!!!
    Hw abt that??

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    1. Welcome to the blog, and yes I guess so :-)

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  3. I agree with Satya. Even I find it pretty difficult but now I think we should. I used to feel bad when people told me my problems but now with age I have learnt to let go the grudge. She helped you have lovely hair. Now, I admire the honesty and courage because we don't have it.

    And yes, castration which any way...

    It's good to have to back, I am motivated now and as they say Charity begins at home, my first victim would be my husband :P

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    1. I realised that now, that what she said helped me. Yes age plays a big factor. And oh yes, she never bothered about what I thought, and she was honest. I dont think I can ever say something like that to a stranger.

      haha charity begins at home :-) you know, its kind of good to tell these things to people who are close to you, infact there you should tell, because that would benifit them in the long run.

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    2. First, I wanted to say 'in which way' Typo!

      It's hard to tell your folks that they are wrong, criticism is not taken well in the family. It's good to have you back.

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    3. Damn, 'any which way' I am becoming a legend in typos :P

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    4. :-) no worries Saru, I had got the point :-)

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  4. Wow! I am surprised! You seem to be very nice!! Is it that hurtful? I always tell with a preface ... "I think you forgot to ...". Once a 40+yr old lady was dating after her divorce. She came for a hike with her new friend. She tied two ponies out of her busy hair and asked me how did she look. I told her ... she would look her best if she had tied only one pony in the back. Now, I wonder she felt bad about what I said?! But, I knew she liked that guy very much, I wanted her to took age appropriate and normal. Otherwise, she would look as if she is trying hard. I wanted to help her!

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    1. But Kusum, you know what, in your case she came to you for an opinion and by telling her to tie her hair in a single plait, you did the right thing. But what do you do when people dont come asking for advice and thier little nuances still annoy you. well there, it can be hurtful.

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  5. That happens a lot in the offices. It is supposed to be common sense. But some how some people don't have that, I guess.

    I too agree with Satya, but the aftermath is that they would probably think you wrote about them(may not be directly indicating) on an online forum/blog, which would be kind of more awkward. #MyOpinion.

    I think its' better to tell despite them getting hurt and keeping a grudge on you. Someday or the other, someone else might experience the same thing & if not you someone else would probably tell.

    And have a great year ahead. Happy New Year. :)

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    1. Welcome to the blog. I know, I always thought it was common sense :-)
      You know what, I would want them to come and read this here. There are no names, but if they are sensible enough they would link the points to themselves and improve on thier own!

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  6. So nice to read you in the New Year on such an adorable post having your stamp all over, Jenny:)Also, you have a clear solution for the way forward and wish more people support the radical measures to stop the shame!!

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    1. My stamp :-) Thank you Rahul sir. Its nice that I decide to return after months and still people like to read what I write :-)

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  7. Hello Jen, hahhaha :D looks like our dear one is totally pissed off here! hahaha very humorous post!!! Why did I continously kept getting image of Red faced cute jen :) all thorough out the post :D

    But really no matter how sophisticated and neat we think we are others do find such loopholes in all of us :) but as you told if there is a polite and harmless way of hinting others of how best they can improve then that,s the best thing one can do...

    Finally learning from each other and making the world around beautiful and healthy makes ones life even more beautiful! But for that all of us on receiving end :)should really be open minded to accept comments and improve upon :D

    Finally Superb post it has sarcasm, humor, and a very good message....Loved it
    Please dont go on hibernation I love having you around up and active all the time dear :D keep writing :D

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    1. Omigod, I actually turn all red faced when people do that!! haha Ramya, you have caught that right on!

      Actually you know, loopholes are there for everybody. A pessimist will always find those, and that you have to ignore. But these are not loop holes, these are behavior skills which you ought to have in public.

      And yes, if people are open minded things become a lot easier, but really its easier said than done actually. Telling this from personal experince.

      I know yaar, but seriously I didnot know what to write! Sorry for that!

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  8. Jenny, tricky situations all of them. For the mehndi situation, I would have just said that I hate the smell of mehndi and wiggled out of it. And you are absolutely right! No one takes it well when given unsolicited advice especially from strangers. So, I really don't have any answers. There was this colleague of mine at work who had the worst BO you can imagine. We could smell her from 3 rows away. I used to feel faint anywhere close to her. She used to stink! But, I could never tell her that she had BO. No one could :(. So, I had to bear with her for the 1 year that I worked there :(.

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    1. oh poor you .. 1 year is a long time how did you survive Rachna.. he he he he

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    2. It almost killed me Bikram :(. The stench I can still remember. Ouch!

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    3. I know that feeling and really you cant tell that to them. Its painful taking all that stench for a year. I really find it hard that none from her close friends and family never told that to her. I mean they should have told her. They are the only ones who can!

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  9. "Please wash your hands" .. thats how to tell people !!!!!!!! :)

    its because the way we think, if you were in uk someone would have said something for sure .. and it would have been fine too.. :)

    welcome back and a happy new year ..

    Castration and then putting them in a cell full of other rapists so they can do the same to each other tooo ..

    Bikram's

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    1. You know, in London, in the office, I was once filling my bottle. And I didnot realise that I had touched the mouth of the bottle to the tap. The lady behind me immediately came and told me 'If you dont mind, please dont touch the mouth to the tap'. She said that very sweetly, and although I was embarrased, I kind of agreed. I mean, if a guy is suffering from cough and does that, I would have to tell him right, dont want to catch those germs! But yeah I agree, its easier in UK than in India. Our people always take it personally! and I mean everything!

      Oh that jail thing sounds the THING to do!

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  10. I've come across most of the instances you've mentioned. You know what, people will only hold a grudge and never see the positive aspect of what you say, they might even invent something about you to throw back something at you. It's damn irritating, but we have to live with it. But if it interferes with your personal space, do let them know and dont worry about not being rude, they are going to take offense anyway, why bother!

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    1. Oh yes, you think you are doing a good deed, and there after few days, you start listening to rumors about yourself! Oh yes, if it really comes onto my nerves, I guess I may go about distributing print outs of this post!

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  11. It's good to see you Jenny. Wishing you & your family a very happy new year. God bless you all with all the happiness & good health...:)

    If you are a party to any of the incidents, like that smelling mehendi thing, then you can surely tell them. In any other case, it depends on the kind of relationship you share with them. Well about the manager, you just have to bear it, no other option. Btw, that list by you should be posted in every office...:)

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind wishes.

      Yes that's what, we have no relationship. Its just hi bye smiley type of friends. If it were closer, I would have gone ahead and told that person.

      And yes, manager stuff is real awkward thing. You tell that and you end up spoiling your appraisal :-(

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  12. Just one thing, in that pic why there is a guy in the washroom...? Just asking...:)

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    1. I think Jenny wanted to convey that this is not gender specific.. :D

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    2. haha, actually not the gender but the poster on the cartoon, that caught my attention!
      But good ques Prashanth:-)
      and equally good ans Binu :-)

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    3. Hahahah...good one Binu...:) Hey Jenny, would love to hear your comment on my iphone blog. It's kind of not ok to ask someone to comment on one's own blog, but feel like asking...don't mind ok....;)

      Here is the link, http://www.pkperception.blogspot.in/2012/12/my-iphone-story.html
      Let me know what you think..Cheers..:)

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    4. Hey, thanks for taking time and commenting on my iPhone blog. Your comment made my day and really appreciate for those nice words...Cheers...:)

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    5. Oh gosh you dont have to thank me yaar!!
      It was a great read and glad I didnot miss it :-)

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  13. Select all, increase the font , take a printout and pin it on your cubicle wall. It's possible that some of your intended victims might actually get it.

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    1. haha not bad and I guess, I should also go ahead and buy the devil hairband for myself :-)

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  14. Now this is creepy Jenny!

    I guess we all have experienced these incidents in our work-place.. People tend to behave as if they are do anything anywhere and no one will notice it.. I laugh in my head when I see someone scratching his back in the meetings.. :D

    By the way, where have you been? And hows life? :)

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    1. You too right! Its hilarious. Itchy people not tolerable. and they NEVER EVER realise they do that!

      I have been just here, but really lazy. Life;s been ok. New years was fun though. Had european food with close friends and had a greattt time. But yeah I regret getting away for so much time!

      Yours must be going on great with the baby and all. Its always such a special time , isn't it?

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    2. Yes, it is Jenny.. Time flies now-a-days! :)

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  15. I know it gets really tricky to let ppl know what they r not doing and it can sound rude at times. I think u can do what Purba has said...hope that works for u! ;)

    And abt your take on the rape, totally agree with that!

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    1. :-) yeah Purba suggestion works! and you know when they would read it, they would still wonder who am I really referring too :-)

      rape case -- yeah the whole of India feels very strongly about that!

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  16. either you ignore the habits or you be straight forward in telling them .. just tell it and say that you said so with a very good intention because you care without showing any disrespect ..

    or the other way is you close your eyes and let nuisance people do nonsense things :)

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    1. You know, I do feel I should tell it. I mean someone has to. But really I never seem to find a good way to do that :-(

      yeah have been ignoring and still am :-)

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  17. Yes, its common and really difficult to tell those guys directly.

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    1. Welcome to the blog. Totally awkward!

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  18. Sooo true ! And there is one guy in my office who walks over to my desk from behind and waits a while silently staring on my laptop screen and then begins with his 'Excuse me'. Until then I'd be oblivious of his spying from behind...how ridiculously ill mannered ! I hate people who look at my laptop screen ! Its not like I am watching porn or anything but I need my space. Honestly. Very very relevant post Jenny.
    Have a blessed New Year !

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    1. Oh What a creep! A lot of people spy, but god dont make it so obvious. And yes I hate this spying business! My client used to do that when I was in UK, and it really irked me so much! This had to be on that list.

      Thank you for the wishes :-)

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  19. haha .. Ignore , chick . Can't help it :-D

    ps - Btw ,I looooooove the background :*

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    1. Uhhhhh wow! So you are back from your hibernation too. have to leap on to your page for some updates :-) :-)

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  20. Happy new year. Nice post. U came with a bang.

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    1. :-) Glad you liked the post gopi :-)

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  21. Very nice Jenny...:) I can understand...
    I was suffering the same issue... So I abandon the same floor:-):-P

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    1. hehehe, you know what I am abandoning the floor too soon! and hey thanks for the follow :-) Hope to see more poems on your post :-)

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  22. Happy New Year. Thank God I wasn't the only one who couldn't write :P
    Weird people everywhere :) Good luck :D

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    1. I know! Thanks for liking the post, and welcome back from your hibernation too!

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  23. Rue...dressing smartly does not ensure acceptable hygiene standards.
    Enjoyed it. My pet peeves too.

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  24. Removing the shoes is the worst part. It makes one faint.

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  25. Oh , so good to be back to the blogosphere ! Lol ,what a crazy world do we live in ,Jenny .
    Sometimes , I wonder what happened to the good old days of manners and sophistication :-/

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  26. The phone ones...The ones who just take your phone rivht in front you and start going through the contents without even asking you. Serious issues!!
    First time here and loved it!

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