My coworker and I share a cubicle. She listens to her iPod all day, and I’m sick of it. I’ll ask her a question or if she’ll pass the stapler or something and she doesn’t answer because she can’t hear me. What can I do about this?
Dilettante has noticed the unwelcome trend of people wearing headphones at work, and she agrees with you that it’s completely inappropriate. The accuracy of one’s spreadsheet is inversely related to how loudly one is listening to Rapper’s Delight. Still, it’s a trend that isn’t going anywhere. For the sake of keeping it all even, may I suggest that you pretend you can’t hear your coworker? For instance, she pulls out one of her earbuds to ask you to cover her while she goes to lunch. You don’t respond. She pulls out the other earbud and repeats the request, this time a bit louder. Still no response from you. Finally, in a fit of frustration, she gets up from her desk to stand in front of you and repeat the question a third time.
At this point, reach into your pocket as if you are turning something off, then apologize, saying you didn’t hear her because you were listening to music. She’ll be confused momentarily since she doesn’t see anything in your ears. Then she’ll think about how quickly technology advances and will make a point to ask her boyfriend for a set of the new, invisible earphones. Maybe this little charade will take some of the sting out of being the only person in the office who has to listen to the never-ending clickity-clack of fingers on keyboards and the ticking of the clock as time moves ever slower toward five o’clock. Maybe.
I hate my job. Can you give me any tips on how to call in sick in a new way? I’ve already called in with: a throat fungus, pica, athlete’s foot, severe incompetence and alien hand syndrome. I think my boss might be starting to realize something’s afoot. I mean, other than my athlete’s foot.
Well, if getting a new job isn’t part of your plan, check out this service. With an annual fee of $75 and services running from $10 to $50 and up, depending upon “complexity,” the Alibi Network can provide you with a get-out-of-work-free card. But that’s not all.
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My boss keeps stopping by my desk to give me a shoulder rub. I think he looks down my shirt while he’s doing it. Should I tell someone?
It depends. Is your boss hot?[This column originally appeared in its entirety on Houstonist.]