Thursday, September 16, 2004

Look at all these rumors, surroundin' me every day...

A couple of quick things before I get rolling today....

...I get a lot of hits from a site called, and I am not sure where the link to me is. There is a message board there, but I'll be damned if I can find where I am linked. If anyone can help solve the mystery on this, please drop a comment. I'm just curious...

...A couple of you have told me you like the t-shirt design, but for some reason I can't begin to comprehend, you don't want to walk around with the word "Sexwhacko" on your backs. So, I've added another design with a blank reverse. You now have two to choose from! For those of you who have received your shirts, please send me some pix so I can post them.

...I hit two blog milestones this week: my 100th post and my 25,000th hit. Thanks to everyone out there in blogland for coming back again and again. And coming, and coming, and coming.....



I was never big on spreading rumors in high school, but I heard and remembered almost all of them.

For as long as I can remember, I've been an excellent eavesdropper. I was the fat kid across from you at study hall, fastidiously extracting the last few precious crumbs of Dorito dust from the bottom of the bag, who you didn't think heard a word you were saying. But I heard everything: Who's fucking who, who is going to be waiting for who after school to kick his ass, who is failing chemistry, whose sister is pregnant.

For some reason, I have a knack for looking like I am so wrapped up in what I am doing that I'm not noticing what's going on around me, when in reality I am taking it all in. And it never did me much good, until now.

Eavesdropping is a great skill to have in my office. The employees are information whores, eagerly opening their ears to whatever morsel of gossip they can, regardless of the source, and then sluttily, indiscriminately, passing it on to five other people, who in turn do the same.

I collect snippets of conversation as I walk through the cubicles:

"These PO's take so long to get to me now. Ever since Steve took over...."

"I hear Steve is gonna write Barbara up for interrupting his speech...."

"He's changing all the procedures...."

"He's doing layoffs in the fall....."

The general vibe I feel is one of unease. People feel I am interrupting their routines, and they are nervous and angry about it.

Like I always say: "If you're pissing people off, you're probably doing something right." If every single person is happy, you're either lying or promising too much.

Yeah, I AM shaking things up around here. And it's not just because I want us to make more money. It's because I don't tolerate inefficiency.

I have been studying budgets for days now, and I am shocked at the amount of waste. We are blowing $50,000 per year unnecessarily on temporary employees alone, according to my calculations. And that's conservative. But I'll blog about that another time.

An old boss of mine once told me that being a manager is like being a parent. You can't go ballistic every time your child acts up; you have to pick your battles. Reacting to the right offense, and reacting properly, is very effective.

I don't like people saying things like what I heard. The majority of it is totally false, and the rest is misleading. It's probably hurting morale. But the answer is not to find every whisperer in the place and sever their vocal chords; the answer is to make sure that the COMPANY'S position is clearly communicated.

It's Wedneday the 8th. An IM window pops up on my PC. It's Bob, from IT. We talk from time to time.

BOB: Did you hear about Dom and Lila?

Oh, shit.

STEVE: No what about them

BOB: Dom bagged her the other night. My man is smooth...

STEVE: Proof?

BOB: She told Theresa [from IT], theresa told me

My breathing gets shallow. My stomach burns like I just swallowed a cup of battery acid. Is she cheating on me? IS SHE FUCKING CHEATING?

She is. She must be. That's why she was late the other night. That's why she came over to my house, because she felt guilty. She's sucking his cock, she's fucking him, she's riding him cowgirl style and ripping off one screaming orgasm after another. And she's laughing at me the whole time, because she's finally getting her revenge.

Shit. I GOTTA pull myself together. For the second time in a few days, I am freaking out over Lila and Dom. This jealousy is getting out of control. And yet, somehow, the idea that I have a rival, the idea that some other guy is poking her, gets me off.

I trust Lila, I do. I just have to grow up a little. My stomach burned the exact same way when I overheard mom and dad fighting, and I heard her say she was moving out. I was being abandoned. That naive little kid still lives in me, and he is way too simple to understand how rumors start. He hears something, and believes it.

STEVE: believe it when i see it

BOB: I believe it, dom's got game man

STEVE: for his sake he better hope its not true. i plan on enforcing company policy

BOB: O yeah, i forgot you're a big shot now

3:15. I walk into Dom's office. He's finishing up on the phone.

"......Bacardi..." I hear in his whispery voice. "........Bacardi.....", ".........Bacardi...." The word is woven into otherwise unintelligible sentences; it wafts over to me, then away, then back again, like a pesky fly.

My stomach drops.

Lila loves Bacardi.

I can hardly work the rest of the day. Is she fucking Dom?

5:15. I am still at my desk; Lila is on her way home. I call her cell.

"Hello?" She says, sweetly.


"What's wrong?" She can hear it in my voice.

"I thought you said they didn't serve to you the other night."

"They didn't!"

"Dom didn't give you any booze?"

"Yeah. He bought a drink, and he didn't finish it, so he gave me the rest."


"Steve, when the HELL are you gonna start trusting me?!"

"Why didn't you TELL me, Lila?" I feel betrayed. I just want to cry like the tutu-wearing candyass that I am.

"Why didn't I tell you I drank half of his fucking drink? Gimme a break Steve!" Her teeth are gritted; I can hear it.

"What did you say to Theresa?"

"Errrr," she growls. "I told her I drank half of his drink. I told her I loved Bacardi. She asked me if I thought Dom was cute. I said yes. Okay?"

"So you think your boss is cute."

"Oh, come on, Steve, like you don't drool over Marie in payroll."

Well, that's different. She wears "fuck me" pumps to work! AND she's got a big rack!

I sigh. She is right, of course.

"I'm sorry baby. I just get jealous now."

"I LIKE that you're jealous."


"Because it shows that you care," she says.

"Are you tired of me yet," I say.


I take a deep breath and feel better. This is so hard for me.

"Say it," she says softly, in her little-girl voice.

"Baby, I love you," I say.

She sniffles. "I love you soo much. I would never hurt you, Steve!" Her voice is shaking with the tears. "Please trust me. I would never do anything to hurt you."

"I know, honey."


"What are you doing tonight," I say.

"Fucking Dom," she says.

"Smart ass!"

"I'm waiting for you to come visit me," she says. Lila is moving into her new place today.

"Red wine or champagne?" I say.