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Monday, January 7, 2013

Wherein the Angst is Palpable


Ashley cannot get over how unfair her job is. Yesterday was the second time in a month that she’d been asked to pick up a lunch for the VP she supports.

“Do you believe this?” she asks me, waving a bagged lunch toward my desk.

I nod in my most commiserating fashion. I was an executive assistant for over a dozen years. Not only do I believe this, but I find it hilarious.

“He can just get his own lunch. I mean, seriously. Really? Seriously. I mean, why am I picking up his lunch? I went out for lunch an hour ago and no one offered to pick it up for me.”

“You should get an assistant.”

“This is not why I went to college.”

I smile. “Why did you go to college, anyway?”

She frowns at me. “Everyone goes to college.”

I shake my head. “Not everyone.”

“Well you’d have to be stupid,” she declares haughtily. “All the best jobs go to college graduates.”

“Yes,” I murmur, “clearly.”

She looks at me. Was that a cut? I smile at her, and she decides that the middle-aged lady still wearing pantyhose with skirts – pantyhose! Did you ever?! – did not just make fun of her.

Silly girl.

“Look,” I say. “You work yourself up too much over this stuff. Picking up his lunch is not that big a deal. There are some bosses who ask that you pick up their dry cleaning, their dogs, make arrangements for their kid’s graduation parties.”

She appears shocked. “Well I wouldn’t do it.”

“You would if you wanted to get paid.”

Now it’s her turn to shake her head. “If everyone refused to do it, they’d get used to it and just do it themselves. Their sense of entitlement is oppressive.”

Oh, she’s so young.

I want to poke her with a stick.

“I’ve gotta run,” she breathes. “I’m meeting a friend at Starbucks.”

“I thought you already took your lunch.”

She tosses her hair. “I deserve a break.”

“Of course,” I say.

44 comments:

Shelly said...

She's like a tricycle on the track next to a pantyhose wearing, sleek race car. Maybe she'll learn, but probably not too soon.

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

Ah the sense of entitlement young folks have these days. I'm going to take a nap. I deserve one.

Pearl said...

Shelly, sorry to say that the girl is a twit. But I like how you put it better. :-)

Delores, yes. It's a real thing. Sorry to say that I've met a number of them who seem to think that working full time is like what they've seen on TV.

Says the woman accessing her blog while at work... :-)

Pat Tillett said...

Such unbridled enthusiasm and idealism. Poor thing, she hasn't a clue...
Long time no see Pearl. Hope all is well with you.

fmcgmccllc said...

First Marie Osmond and now Kate Middleton.

I have worked with many like her at every level in the company. And they never understand why they don't get the best raises, perks and responsibility.

Jess said...

These types of people provide me so much entertainment! I work with one of these, except she is middle aged and has apparently just never learned. Still...ENDLESS entertainment for me!

Silliyak said...

And I think the tricycle has at least one bent wobbly wheel.

Leenie said...

She is a new college grad with a JOB! With a paycheck. And probably very nice benefits. And now the boss has asked her to leave her cubicle to go to the store and she is getting paid to do it. And now she is whining?

And she doesn't catch the Pearl Humor. Most certainly a twit.

Eva Gallant said...

Isn't great when the comment goes right over her head? Love that!

joeh said...

As a College Graduate dosn't she deserve an office in the corner with windows and a Secretary outside to answer her phone and schedule her busy day...and maybe get her lunch?

TexWisGirl said...

i want to smack her...

Simply Suthern said...

Our company Prez would call our shop and we had to go to his house to fix the latches on the front doors of his house or what ever else was broke.

Pay was the same,it was a road trip and the Prez was happy. We thought it was a Win Win.

Dawn @Lighten Up! said...

Yes, Ashley/Taylor/Brittany. The sense of entitlement IS oppressive.
Have fun at Starbucks. Pearl - and I - will be at our desks .

Dawn @Lighten Up! said...

Yes, Ashley/Taylor/Brittany. The sense of entitlement IS oppressive.
Have fun at Starbucks. Pearl - and I - will be at our desks .

jabblog said...

She should think herself lucky. Once she gets to be a PA she may well be organising her boss's honeymoon - I kid you not!

savannah said...

i see the beginning of a pool. pearl! how long will she HAVE a job! i'm placing a dollar on she's out by the end of the first quarter! xoxoxo

Daisy said...

:-D I can't stop laughting!

Douglas said...

Bosses used to order, not ask, assistants and various other underlings to pick up whatever. And to get coffee for them and/or a client or another boss. It's this "asking" that's confusing the poor dear. If there will be repercussions if whatever is "asked" for does not appear (and promptly) then it is not actually asking.

I miss the Good Ol' Days... even if I wasn't the boss.

The Six-Fingered Monkey said...

My goodness... these young folks make for such great blog fodder, huh?

Geo. said...

Wonderful vignette, Pearl. I was feeling sorry for Ashley until she declared she deserved a break and took it. She'll be all right.

Macy said...

Could be worse... you could be her boss...

Belle said...

My daughter Sandy used to be an executive assistant. She thought it was good to do anything for her boss that would give him more time to work on his projects. She said his time was valuable and that is why she was there. I liked her attitude.

Kana said...

Oh gawds, I wonder what has fallen out of my fool mouth over the past few years...thanks for witholding the stick!

bill lisleman said...

Long ago they said women went to college for a MRS degree. Many today go for the beer. Not sure if it's any better.

Hey panty hose wearing cat lady here's fun clip I just found:
http://youtu.be/1-xS5flexx0

Roshni AaMom said...

ooh! She's going to start a whole revolution!!!! IF she lasts that long on this job!

wellfedfred said...

I dread being asked to supervise a project staffed by the young geniuses. I was telling my Nathan Hale story to a colleague and a sweet young thing, passing by, stopped in shock. Nathan Hale's dead? he asked. How did he die? Recognizing instantly that the kid had no idea who NH was, just wanted to impress, I asked if he knew who NY was. Yes, he told me, one of the senior partners in the Washington office, and I was speaking to him last week.

wellfedfred said...

and autocorrect strikes again, that was NH not NY. Sorry.

Gigi said...

*shaking head* She'll learn. The hard way, to be sure but she'll learn.

Lin said...

I dunno, I'm gonna have to disagree with a lot of you folks....

I don't think anyone should have to get another person's lunch...unless you are in the position of being a waitress. Times have changed and I find that extremely condescending to have someone get you things. Is she a personal assistant? I think personal assistants run errands for their bosses and that is part of the job...but as a regular employee for a boss? Nope. I think that power is abused.

We have 2 new college grads in my office and they are so ridiculous in their demands--quite the contrary to this. The one refuses to do a part of the job he was hired for and the other never works a full week. She comes in at 10:30 or 11:00 and sneaks out the back door by 5:00. That said, nobody is correcting their bad behaviors.....

The Elephant's Child said...

That poor possum...

Daisy said...

Ha! I've seen a few like that where I work too. A stick-poking might do her a bit of good! ;)

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

I was once told by my boss while discussing the plans for the company Christmas party, that is was all about what the "guys wanted. We three ladies planned, made arrangements, did the set-up, helped serve, fixed take-homes for "the guys" and after they all left early, we cleaned up. Next year we explained the facts of life to the boss. For some reason, he thought we liked being waitresses, hostesses, and clean-up crew. After that we just had pizza delivered. Of course, we still did the cleanup.

HermanTurnip said...

She gets a lunch break *and* she gets to step out of the office a second time to pick up food for a VP? I'd consider that a bonus. Gets to go outside. Enjoy the sun. Take her time coming back. That's another hour burned out of the working day. Heck, if she doesn't want the gig, look me up!

Rose L said...

You mean fetching their lunch and running their errands is not part of the job description?????

Jocelyn said...

Shelly's comment is awesome.

Every time I get annoyed with the Sillies that are the earmark of youth in action, I make myself sit and think back to when I was their age.

And then I feel doubly justified in my eye rolling, as I was never that kind of jackass.

Pat said...

Doesn't say much for her upbringing.

River said...

She's just had lunch, been away from her work station again to pick up the boss's lunch, now she thinks she "deserves" another break?
Ha Ha Ha.
She won't last long.

Linda O'Connell said...

I think she comes from the gen pool (not gene) of kids who think the world owes them. She'll be serving coffee at Starbuck's soon.

Jen said...

I'm surprised no one has mentioned the book and movie The Devil Wears Prada. The "devil," of course, is a cutthroat boss (head of a fashion mag) who not only has her employees running these kind of personal errands all day, but demands half a dozen of them at once, rapidly, verbally, and without explaining them, and expects the employees to remember, figure it out, and get it done. And once, when the lunch appears, she says, "What's that? I don't have time to eat that!"

I know I wouldn't last in that environment. However ... if you've ever seen the film or read the book ... maybe just being asked to get a lunch wouldn't seem so hard.

At least it's not something immoral or illegal she's being asked to do ... right?

sage said...

If my assistant had that kind of attitude, I would be worried about eating anything she brought back to the office...

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

A new toy for you at the office!

Jo-Anne Meadows said...

The young are just so........young and being young makes them so funny with their strange and funny thoughts about stuff......oh was I ever that young.........

darlin said...

There's too many wasted courses in university which teach entitlement and equality and not realism! lol

Congrats on your 3rd printing! Way to go Pearl!

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