The Element of Surprise

Jaded an cynical as I am, even I can be surprised sometimes.

Today I had a verbal altercation with a colleague at the office.  They over-reacted to something that I had said to someone else, took it personally (which it most certainly wasn’t) and took issue with it.  Wrong move.  I really cannot be arsed with all this political correctness shite being bandied about nowadays.  That’s not to say that being deliberately offensive is OK, but simply that having to moderate everything that comes out of your mouth because someone may overhear and get offended just really pisses me off.  And I’m getting less tolerant to it as I get older.

Anyone who knows me is aware that I’m brash, loud and I swear.  A lot.  They also know that I am not a deliberately offensive person, unless there really is no other possible way to get my point across: I prefer to use humour or a quiet word in the corner.

So – in this instance – I told the person concerned that the comment was not meant personally as, if it was, I would have addressed them directly.  I also told them that the fact that they had taken my remark personally was not my concern.  They responded with a comment along the lines of bringing it up with HR.  At that point I mentally rubbed my hands together with glee.  Nothing I’d like more than to air these concerns in front of our HR department (as some of you who have read previous blog entries may be aware).

Everyone in the office had put their heads down while this altercation was going on.  Not that it was loud: I nearly always lower my voice as low as possible when something like this happens, but it’s a small open-plan office so damage limitation is difficult.

A little while later and a trip into the manager’s office and the door subsequently being closed meant that I felt myself girding up inwardly.  It’s got to the point where I refuse to worry about these things any more – what will be, will be and I’m not going to try and make excuses for who I am any more.  If that means that I end up getting fired, so be it.  Life is too damned short and I’m no longer willing to constrict my personality to accommodate others.

Well bugger me if the person concerned didn’t catch me outside the office building a little while later to have a chat.   We’ve both been grown up, talked about it, put our points across (in adult fashion), discussed it and it’s now sorted out.  No HR involvement.

So – I’m surprised.  Note this date in your diaries people!

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