gerbils versus hamsters

this is somewhat of a continuing rant about my manager, which started with, though not alone, from when she forced me to edit her manuscript.

yes, i'm still editing it. but i warned her not to expect it done fast. in fact, i warned her that because she's making me edit a genre that i simply can't stand and because i'm in no way a professional editor, it would be a slow process.

one day this week… ONE DAY ONLY… i brought my current read to work – 'after the banquet' (which i'm loving with every word i read). i've been battling a cold since tuesday so had planned to do very light cardio on the bike, while reading. for the morning, i left it at the corner of my desk, which prompted her to ask me what it was about. after telling her, as best as i could (she tunes out if i get overly descriptive which doesn't take much), she half-joking said that that's not the book i should be reading. then motions to her manuscript as a hint that i should get on with it.

i reminded her what i first warned her, above. and i emphasized my distaste for the romance genre.

but something else she's been doing has been irking me lately. she has this obsessive need to make people like what she likes. so, in the example of the romance books, she's been trying to make me like them for years now. i don't understand why she needs me to like them so much. you don't see me trying to convince her to like one of my favourite authors – haruki murakami. why would i bother? the way i see it, if some one else does not like something i like, what is it to me? who cares? so long as i can continue enjoying it, it's no skin off my back.

it becomes so ridiculous, that one time, i made a HUGE mistake (though, how anyone would have been able to predict the mistake is beyond me) of stating that i prefer hamsters over other rodents. especially gerbils.

well, she happens to love gerbils. and oh dear lord… she recently purchased one for her daughter. so now, as i'm trying to design web ads and code online forms, my dear manager has her chair pulled up right next to me, trying to convince me why gerbils are so much better then hamsters.

her: "they don't pee as much. or poo that much either. they're dessert animals. not like hamster."

me: "hamsters come from dessert areas too."

she didn't retort to my last reply.

it didn't keep her from repeating to me, throughout the day, various facts about gerbils that make them so much better as pets. god… like i care. i have no plans to purchase any rodents of any kind any where in the near nor far future so really… i could care less whether gerbils are better then hamsters or vice versa.

i also could care less how cute her new gerbil is or what it did, minute to minute, since they brought it home.

this is what i'm now currently dealing with, by the way. it appears that it's ALL about gerbils these days. but this isn't half as bad as the time she tried to set me up with her brother. i, of course, showed no interest. i had seen photos of him and wasn't attracted to him at all. but she kept on pushing and pushing until one day, i finally said, "okay… set it up! i'll give it a try."

she fell silent and uncomfortable. for added effect, i waited a few days and prompted her, "hey… what about that blind date with your brother?"

again… i was met with silence and even more uneasiness.

weird. but not at all surprisingly. she will continue to badger you into agreeing with her just for the sake of 'winning' in her eyes. of course, my manager had no intentions of ever setting me up with her brother. truth be told, i honestly think she just wanted a reason to brag about her brother. and to gain the spotlight in her own, strange way.

but here's my real rant as all the other stuff was just leading up to what i'm about to write…

a couple of days ago, she asked me if i wanted to get lunch out with another manager (one whom i'm fond of – really nice person). i hesitated in going. true, i wanted sushi and if i were to go to the main place we all get sushi, i would run into them anyway. but i had to shop at the drug mart next door for vitamins first. so i explained to her that i didn't want to hold them up. to this, she said that it wouldn't be a problem.

so… i figured, why not. a free ride there and back.

we all met up, the three of us, and went to her car. while walking there, she turned to me and quietly said that i need to take a seat in the back (i always sit in the front with her). i was shocked. it's not like we were going with the president or anything. and this other manager, let me assure you, is not the type to care one way or another.

i was furious. if i had known that i was going to be treated so 'un-manager-like' i would have not accepted her invite. it wasn't as if i had asked her if i could tag along.

when we got there, usually, she and who ever else, would stick with me to make whatever errands we needed before picking up lunch. before she even parked the car, she looked back at her rear view mirror and said, "well, i guess we'll meet up with you later at the food court!"

what the hell? why even bother inviting me in the first place? was it just to make her feel more important? more superior amongst other managers?

fuck that.

when i found them at the food court, i monopolized the conversation with the other manager. whom i had a blast shopping with (we were in a chinese market so he had a lot of questions to ask me while he shopped).

no way i was going to let her ruin my lunch. so i decided to take charge.

as for her manuscript, it's now become a very low priority – she'll be lucky to get it back by the end of this year.

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4 thoughts on “gerbils versus hamsters

  1. that's why it's such a frustrating situation. because she is my manager, and while she's made absolutely no implication what-so-ever that if i DON'T read her manuscript, my job will be in jeopardy, it's been difficult trying to keep her focused on projects and general work tasks because of this manuscript, as well as other things like her gerbil, for example. but it's extremely difficult to deal with her when she keeps on asking me what part i'm at, or what i think so far, or which character do i like the best, or what did i think of the cleverness behind how she wrote this and that and there and here and argh! lol! i'm screwed!!! :pif it were a friend, i would have an easier time telling them, honestly, what i think. and even that is difficult but with some of my closer friends, we've reached a point of our relationships where we can take some serious, yet constructive, critique from one another. especially if we're asking each other to be honest.with her, i feel like it's a moot point in asking me for my honest opinion. because no matter how you slice it, she's my superior. and i just don't feel comfortable in telling her what i think (except if it is work-related because that's part of my job, of course). especially as i just don't like her manuscript so far. and i think i've figured out why… it's all about the character development. her characters are very 2-dimensional. any human suffering she tries to instill in them comes off more as fluff. like a soap opera drama described upon such characters' past, dark secrets. yet, it doesn't give the reader any sense of connection to her characters.having said that, i think that is the style of most romance novels. i could be wrong – i've only read one or two of such types of genres but like i've said… i could hardly tolerate for all i know, harlequin romance readers will love her manuscript.

  2. I hate romance novels too. I couldn't even finish the first one I picked up. I couldn't help emitting an evil laugh when I read that she won't get the manuscript back till the end of the year. Serves her right!Your manager is very odd, to say the least. I'm so sorry you have to deal with someone like that on a very frequent and regular basis. Is she like this with other people too, or just with you? Regardless, it seems like she has some major security issues.I wish I had some advice about the situation. There are certain types of people/personalities that I try to avoid (like the plague), but it's often impossible when I have to work with them.I hope things lighten up soon. **hugs**

  3. thanks. i think, to be honest, there's not much i can do at the moment. i just have to grin and bare it, you know? she's never going to change and she's obviously going through some issues which is making her do these annoying things. she's always been this way, of course, it's just that before the 'restructuring' of the company, there were two other people in my department that 'shared the load' so to speak, when dealing with her quirks. now, it's just me. so, i think anything that always annoyed me before, is just magnified. plus… with the added bonus of this manuscript. lol!

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