Sunday, May 22, 2005

Crazy Co-workers

I think we all have worked alongside the certifiable. Here are some of mine.

Ted: During my fast food career I worked with a guy named Ted. He was pretty damned cute--until you got to know him. He had really blue eyes and was a natural blond, although he had a tendency to dye it black, but even that looked good on him.

In his first week of working there -- there being the home of the Whopper -- several of us were hanging out in the parking lot when he blew cigarette smoke in my face. Well, everyone knows that's a sign the person wants to "do you." (You all knew that, right? Anyone?) Anyhow, I was somewhat amenable to that possibility...until I got to know him.

He was fond of taking off his shows and playing with his feet in between orders. Although we convinced him to wash his hands before preparation. He also liked eating food out of the trash. He eventually hooked up with a pretty blonde named Kim who found all of his repulsiveness hot.

(Note to people who know me well...Kim was one of the girls in the pool party story.)

Beth: Beth was a compulsive liar. Yeah, she was fond of claiming things like she'd had an appendectomy over the weekend.

One of her best stories was an imaginary boyfriend named John. Sometimes she would claim to be talking to him on the phone, but nobody ever heard his voice. Sometimes she would claim, when someone came into work, that they had just missed meeting John. Sometimes she would run out of the store and around the corner, only to claim John had just walked by but was too shy to come in the store.

Towards the end she claimed to be pregnant. The store closed down and we all parted ways. Eventually I did see her with a baby in a stroller, but I wouldn't put it past her to have borrowed the kid!

Deanna: The name is pronounced Dean-ah...not Dee-anna. If someone said it wrong all hell would break loose. Anyhow, Deanna was crazy in too many ways to even go into.

One of her quirks was always having to have a sadder or more dramatic story than the person next to her. We worked together at a music box store and she once told someone buying a box to go into a coffin of a teen nephew, "Oh, you think you have problems?" She then proceeded to tell a really horrible story while the grieving woman just stared at her.

Another time she was at a beauty salon and a woman was crying because she's just lost her husband and didn't know how she was going to pay her bills. Deanna said her patented, "You think you have problems?" and then said she'd just dound a lump in her breast. Whenever sharing this story I end it by saying that Deanna is the only woman who would be happy to have cancer because it trumps everything.

One time around the holidays she invited my husband and myself over to her house. She said we would have some refreshments and some snacks. For a reason lost in the mists of time, I accepted.

We got there and she told us she didn't have time to shop, but we could have a glass of water. (Let's allow that to sink in for a moment.) We sit on her couch with our water and she has us promise not to spill. The doorbell rings and two men in suits enter.

It soom becomes abundantly clear they are from Amway. They would like us to join their pyramid scheme, I mean cult...oops, organization. They have slides and graphs. They keep asking us questions...they are having a more formal brain washing session, I mean meeting, and would like us to attend.

My husband points out he's working that evening at the store. (He had a full time job but was doing stock at the music box store for extra holiday cash...I was his boss, and had to yell at him one time for rolling his eyes at me like we were at home!)

Deanna excused herself and went in the next room. She came back a few minutes later to tell my guy that she called the store and asked for him to have that night off!! Um, he was a little pissed. Anyhow, he did not attend and the store manager was appalled Deanna had asked behind his back. (I never could understand why she thought CrazyWoman would be calling on his behalf to begin with.)

She also told everyone that the district manager was pussy whipped and it got back to him. Oh, and she also acted like an ass in front of the vice president of the company. And yet, there was no firing. I always maintained she would survive us all at that store...and she did. She was there until the day it went out of business.

Addam and Aaron: The first time I met Addam was at the shelter along with his cousin, Aaron. Addam was crazy and Aaron was psycho.

Now I'm very hard to offend...and more likely to be the offender, but Aaron was a pig! He took to calling me (decision on whether to type the word or hint at it)the "C" word and grabbing at me.

One day I'd had it and told him one more time I would report him. 5 minutes later was the one more time. He was instantly fired which was impressive. (The joke was they would always get a full day's work out of you so you only had to worry if they called you in the office at 4:30.) Be was on parole so I had to put in writing that I did not want to press charges.

Of course I also had to prove I wasn't a Miss Priss looking to get people fired. It was my absurd penance.

Well, Addam remained and held a grudge. Back then we used to work in teams to clean our section of the shelter in the morning and Addam and I were a team. He took to having conversations with the radio and responding to voices that were not there.

One day he asked me what I was reading and I said a novel by Donald Goines that someone had insisted I read. Goins wrote gritty gangsta novels set in Detroit. Addam began yelling at me about thinking all black men were pimps and criminals.

Then came the day that he told me Aaron was out of jail (he had been there for another parole violation) and was marrying a girl who ran a daycare. I asked Addam why in the hell he thought I cared. Addam then muttered something about, "If certain people hadn't led on other people and gotten them fired..." I then told Addam he was out of his mind and that Aaron was one of the ugliest people in the history of the planet and the prevailing feelings toward him were disgust and revulsion.

After a while we got un-partnered and my interactions with him, while still strange, were short. He had a habit of walking into the lunchroom, punching the table, and walking out...with no explanation. One time he interrupted a staff meeting to ask could he go get a piece of bread or something 'cause he was hungry. Hours later he walked into the lunchroom with all sorts of food, someone told him jokingly they didn't see any bread. He then stood up and told them if they were "Feeling Froggy -- all they had to do was say jump." (Meaning did they want to fight.)

When I first met him he told me he was planning on being celibate because a college professor (Addam wanted to be a undertaker) told him that a man only had so much semen in him and Addam didn't want to run low. He figured anything more than once a year was pushing it. By the end he was chasing after everything with a skirt and one time told me I had a nice ass. (Gah! It must run in the family!)

Anyone else have stories of insanity in the workplace?
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