aka "Getting Their Panties In A Bunch".
No disclaimer on this one. Content will be relatively clean.
I work for the wonderful state of Connecticut, where they have rules in regards to ethical behavior, specifically selling stuff for personal gain on state time. So I got this book out for public consumption called, "Shades of Love", and I have copies of it for sale at work. I sold a few due to word of mouth and the like, and things were going pretty decent.
Until this morning. This morning, while I was talking to a co-worker prior to starting my day, my supervisor came up to me and said, "We need to talk". I immediately thought I'm in deep shit for something. So the first thing I asked was, "What I do wrong?", to which she replied, "This has a happy ending to it."
Long story short. A few assholes in the department next to me and elsewhere complained about me selling my book, and complained about some free advertising that I had in the cafeteria. So my boss, being the decent person that she is, and wanting to prevent me from doing something stupid, told her supervisor about the complaints she was getting about me, and wanted to know what she should do. Advice was given and off she went to talk to the head of Human Resources and the head of Labor.
After all was said and done, their blessing was given because they could see I wasn't doing anything wrong. Matter of fact, they were impressed with the fact that I was able to self publish my novel. But basically, I didn't pester people to buy book (potential violation #1), I didn't use any state equipment to solicit sales (potential violation #2), and I didn't hang my display outside of my cube (potential violation #3). Plus, someone else put a postcard and business card up in the cafeteria, which wasn't an issue either, because what someone else wants to do in a private business is fine with them.
The only thing that was suggested to me, which I did, was remove the price list. Now you would think that people would have something better to do than to bitch about me selling a book, which isn't being pushed on anyone, and that I'm only telling people about it who are genuinely interested about it. Most everyone knows I've been trying to get my book published for quite a while, so it's not like I'm trying to shove something down peoples throats.
In any event, you would think that this would be the end of the matter, right? That me taking my sign down (and the cafeteria lady taking hers down independently of me) would stop the tongues from wagging and things would get back to normal, right?
A couple of hours after this all this crap goes down, I send an e-mail to a friend saying "an average Thursday morning to you". She says thanks, then proceeds to tersely tell me to watch my back and that she'll e-mail me tonight. Puzzled I say "got it." and think nothing more about it. Next thing I know, she responds in part, "From a friend to friend.....stick to your state paying job."
I respond with this little symbol :\
I'm not sure what the hell happened on her end, but whatever it was made her mad enough to say what she said to me. Now, I love her like a sister, so when she said what she said, it really hurt me a lot. I'm not sure how I will handle this, if and when she contacts me.
In any event, it seems to me that these assholes should be worrying about themselves and their jobs, instead of bitching about someone selling a book out of their cube. Considering the amount of stupid fundraising that goes on at my agency (and elsewhere), for both personal and professional reasons, to bitch about me smells just a little bit fishy. And to get someone else into trouble over it, is doubly stupid and infantile.
This book, for what it's worth, has gotten me into a wee bit of trouble in the past couple of years, and I thought that the last time this happened, I was able to mitigate the damage and repair the friendships with the other people involved.
Now I'm not so sure. I may just go simply underground (much like a few other people in my life do) and not communicate with a few of my friends until this blows over. I'm just tired of getting hammered for stuff that isn't quite my fault.
But all I can say is this, and this is directed to the pricks who beefed about me in the first place: Get a fuckin' life. Worry about yourself, instead of worrying about what other people are doing. Enough with the office politics, because this ain't worth the aggravation for no one. What happened here, only reinforces my opinion that people at my job are petty little individuals who are hell bent on making things miserable for the world around them.
I congratulate the people who were too chickenshit to confront me face to face. By doing what you did, you just proved to me once again, that a good chunk of my co-workers are mean, petty, and shallow individuals.
I really do love my job.
Honest I do.