Where did we last leave this?
I sigh. There are some people that make full-time work a chore. This woman is one of them.
I stare at the e-mail. I have been copied on three separate correspondences circulating around this particular subject, all of them started by her, all of them saying the same things – and all of them addressed to different people.
This person is the reason I have taken up competitive sighing.
I take a deep breath and exhale slowly.
Hi, Florence, I write. If I understand you correctly, you are looking for resolution on this matter. I have attached the three conversations I am aware of. Please let me know where you’d like to go next as I can do nothing until I hear from you.
Are you sure? she writes. I don’t remember you needing my input in the past.
I close my eyes. We’ve been doing it this way for almost five years. I fight the urge to sigh again and settle for a slight moan that makes Female Intern turn around grinning.
“Florence?” she whispers.
I grin at her. “Was it the groaning?”
Dear Florence, I write. We’ve been doing it this way for a good amount of time now and I don’t understand why you…
And it is there that I stop, because anything I write after that will include phrases like “willful inattention”, “please refer to the last dozen e-mails we’ve had on this same subject”, and “suspected lead-paint-chip ingestion”.
I take a deep breath, highlight and delete everything but the salutation and continue anew.
I believe we’ve been doing it this way for a while, haven’t we? Perhaps I’ve been unclear in the past. Please keep me copied regarding the decision made and I’ll implement the changes.
Hugs and Kisses, Pearl.
Thinking better of it, I replace “hugs and kisses” with “best regards”.
We'll save that for the follow-up e-mail.