Monday, March 19, 2012

Another example of "Eavesdroppers never hear good"

It is no secret that writers are encouraged to eavesdrop on stranger's conversations in order to observe and write mannerisms, inflections, tone, and attitude. No, really. But once in a while we overhear things that have nothing to do with research. And sometimes what we hear is about ourselves. And it isn't good.

The other day, as I walked toward the accounting office off the front lobby, four of my co-workers (a tooling manager, an account manager, the document control specialist, and the procedures manager) were having a heated discussion at the front desk. Their backs were to me as I approached, heading past them to the accounting door. Just as I reached out to grasp the handle, I heard the procedure manager's charming voice rise above the others, "All I'm saying is that purchasing shouldn't be on there. Purchasing doesn't know anything."

I screeched to a halt, my open hand inches from the knob, turned my head toward the group, and cleared my throat, preparing to ask for an explanation. Four heads turned to me and jaws dropped. Time hung suspended for at least five seconds, everyone still like a freeze flash mob. Finally, I shook my head, said, "Yeah, I don't want to know," turned the knob and escaped into accounting.

It isn't easy being the only purchasing person in a company.

Later, the procedure manager slunk into the office, giggling, and tried to explain they were talking about the procedure for when it is okay to release a tool to a customer, in which, really, the purchasing department has no involvement. After trying in vain to stifle her chortles, she said she was trying to save me from having to do useless paperwork, and that I should thank her.

She's right. I should.

But it is hard to thank someone for saying the purchasing department (just me) doesn't know anything. I would have been a little bit more inclined to thank her if she had just added "about this particular thing" to the end of her sentence.

Would that have been too much to ask?


  1. Don't feel bad, Melanie.

    Purchasing doesn't know anything in any company!

  2. Perry,

    (sigh) Why didn't I pursue my desire to become a crossing guard?

  3. You are a sweetheart. They are tools. Please see the UrbanDictionary dot com under "tool."

    ...and besides, you have a secret life full of mystery and adventure--what do you care what the likes of them say under their breath?

    Luvs to you.

    1. LOL, Jewell, your are a sweetheart, too. It wasn't under their breath, it was loud and clear, but she is right when she says she was doing me a favor getting me off the procedure.

      But still...

  4. they don't know who they are messin' with...that's all i'm sayin....queen of the pranksters....too bad they don't sleep at work or you could short-sheet them all....but i'm sure ye have "other plans".....

    1. Aaarrrr, Max, I'm thinkin' the opportunity for retaliation will present itself in future. Mwaaahaahaa.


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