Thursday, September 17, 2009

To Alfred: Silence is Golden

You know how there is that one guy, that used to work with you that moved on but always seems to come back like a bad dream (or a cockroach)? The one that is annoying in any number of ways?

That guy is here today.

I never actually even worked with him. Let's call him Alfred. I never worked with Alfred, he had moved on before I had even started working here. My first taste of Alfred came around the holidays my first year (oh God, I have to distinguish between which year!) when there were a bunch of people out of the office and we were desperately behind so he was called in to help us out.

Worst Christmas present ever.

He was loud, obnoxious, had a lame handshake (a firm handshake is important no?), smelled like really nasty strong cigarettes and only had 2 topics to discuss: video games and his new job. Those 2 weeks were unbearable.

He came back for another extended stay. People visibly recoil from his presence. I don't know how anyone can stomach him, let alone encourage him to share your breathing space.

I think he is here for training today. He showed up early so that he could chat. Ew. I guess I should be glad that for most of the day he will be kept in a room with a door (a room that I will not be in) that closes, but right now I'm just annoyed that I have to listen to his inane chatter. Where are the ever present managers to tell him to take a hike? If I was standing at Anna or Lily's desks chatting like he does, I'd probably get written up. They don't even have to be nice about it. I will condone any and all ill treatment of Alfred. I suspect that he's the kind of guy that can't take a hint anyway.

Why does he offend me so much? Well aside from the fairly long list of grievances already listed, he offends me because when he talks the entire office has no choice but to listen. And for the past 20 minutes I have had to listen to him rattle off all the excellent reasons for getting the new PSP (I think that's what he was talking about but not being particularly game savvy, or really caring at all I can't totally be sure): he was getting a good deal, something about it flipping open, quality. No idea. Just the sound of his voice makes me want go Incredible Hulk on his a**.

There are also the stories of what it was like to work with him. And although I'm not fond of everyone here, there are those that I feel protective of and one of them was constantly harassed by Alfred. And of course there was the truly creepy story that he put video cameras around his place to spy on his girlfriend. I don't totally believe that he has a girlfriend either, this must have been referring to some webcam on some kind of softcore site, but you get the idea. Either way, its creepy and we definitely do not need to discuss this at work.

This is all compounded today by the fact that I no longer have Dan Brown to comfort me or look forward to having finished that beast of a novel already (for those that want to know, it was pretty good, although I think that I might have been kind of disappointed with the end? Still not sure, still processing) and Anna is off today. So no workstation battleship (that was an excellent idea Anna), no constant dialogue of random thoughts running the gamut from puppies to coworkers, weekend plans to boyfriend trials-- just silence.

Well, silence punctured by the truly horrific sounds of Alfred.


  1. at least he's only there could be worse!!!

  2. It’s hard for me to be sympathetic towards you since I am now going through what you went through yesterday…
    except that Alfred AND Veronica aren’t I guess I have a bit of a plus…not much…just a bit.

  3. Get an elastic band. Wait until nobody is watching. Stand up, shoot it into the back of his head, sit down really quickly and look like you're totally engrossed in writing something super important. If you're accused, start crying and then complain to HR that he is bullying you.

  4. Optimistic Pessimist: I don't know if I can relate to your bright side looking. I'm going to try, but no promises.
    Anna: let's not do this separation thing again for a while.
    Hopeful: I like where you are going with this HR complaint. I mean we all know I'm excellent at complaining!