Sunday, June 11, 2006

Thanks for The Thoughts....

First of all, thank you all for your counsel. I had to laugh, though. I don’t think one person who read my entry  about the "fragile manager" (with the exception of Jackie, who knows me personally) has any concept of the hellish trials through which I have passed in my work life because of my "blunt" personality. I think it just goes to prove that I really am from another planet…

"Tell her directly but with humor that you’re blunt and straight-spoken." Has anybody ever actually done this? Has it worked? Because, in my life, when I’ve tried to give people an "honest" assessment of who I am, it has fallen on totally deaf ears. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that people have a tendency to hear much more of what they want to hear than what you are actually saying. …

"I…pretended I was in high school auditioning for the lead in Mary Poppins" Great advice, Maryanne. Really. But I am a total introvert. As such, do you think I ever in my life auditioned for anything? One of the biggest hurdles I have faced in my interaction with other human beings is that I can’t act worth a tinker’s damn.

"I find it hard to believe you are as brutal a personality as you seem to believe…" Thank you, Gigi. I wish I could say you had a point. For years, I didn’t want to believe I was a "brutal" personality. But the statistics tell quite another story…

"Bite your tongue, kiss her ass and wave sweetly to her as she walks out of your life forever when the two weeks is up." I understand that ass-kissing is a valuable skill in the world of modern human interaction. But it is something of which I am utterly incapable. On a very elemental, unconscious level, I don’t believe in it, which is probably why I suck at it. As time has passed, I have truly regretted my deficiency in this area. But it is what it is. And, "bite my tongue?" Apparently I have absolutely no talent for that, either…

"Xanax. For you, and for her." Love that advice, Wil. And, though I am a somewhat of a noncomformist when it comes to psycho-active drugs, I am almost desperate enough to take this advice quite seriously.

"…stay calm, cool and collected during this two-week period, listen well and take in silently what's going on in the business currently…" Excellent counsel. The part about listening well and taking in what’s going on in the business is definitely included in my plan. Staying calm, cool, and collected, however, may be much more than I could ever hope for …

"Sit down with her and tell her a little about yourself. Tell her that if you come off a bit forceful, it's not's just who you are." See my previous reaction to the idea of telling someone that I am blunt and plain-spoken.

"Oh, and the ever popular count to 10 before you said something you'll regret." The problem is, I never know I’m saying something I’m going to regret until it has already been said, and I’m wallowing through the aftermath…

"Most people would be worrying about the money, or the utilities, or the fixtures, or the leaky basement walls, and you are worried about someone being NICE." It’s not that I worry about her being nice. It’s that I know what happens when "nice" runs into…me. It has never been pretty.

Probably the most practical and practicable advice I got from someone who doesn’t know me personally came from Karen: "My personal experience is that you can't make people be who they are just be yourself and suck it up for 2 weeks and know that you can do anything for 2 weeks and still live." How true.

Whatever happens, I know there is no "dead baby in a box," like there was after my sister gave birth to her still-born daughter in 1991. And no nine-week, roller-coaster death-bed vigil, like there was with my oldest sister in 1995. And I won't be stumbling through attending a beloved parent during a short, losing battle with cancer, as I did with my dad six years ag0. Having survived all of these, I know that the world will not come to an end if I don’t find a way to send this fragile young manager out the door after two weeks with no hard feelings.

I’ll give it my best shot. And whatever happens, we’ll go forward from that point.


  1. Maybe you should go on Hell's Kitchen and give Gordon Ramsey a run for his money!! :)

  2. Are you taking over my restaurant?? Did you start a month ago? lol We have a new assistant manager who doesn't think before she speaks, she has brought some of the thickest skinned servers to tears (myself included). Last night ended with another server calling her a bitch. Thank goodness she doesn't have the ability to fire anyone lol.
    Michelle :)

  3. When I first read that entry I thought that I would give it some thought then some back. Wrong! I love the Mary Poppins advice. Wonderful and reative. I'll have to remember it when I deal with creepy customers. But Ithink what I would have advised you is what I generally always try to do, treat them as I would want to be treated.

    Sorry if I am misspelling things, but the type I am using is so small it is anyones guess (at library)


  4. Keep us posted.  You rock.

  5. I'm a bit late in here, but would still like to add my two cents worth ( hopefully, it's worth more than that ! ):  It seems to me that most people's real complaints about those they work for is more about the issue of fairness than about whether or not someone is outspoken about something or other.  I can tell from following your journal, that you are a person of honesty and integrity.  That's what will come through in this situation.  Yes, it's possible that you might say something that this gal could take offense to.  However, it's more likely that if she really is all that she's been touted as being, she is going to watch you, with an eye for how you plan to do business.  In that department, I think you are going to ace this.  Tina