Intolerant

It’s ice cold in the office and yet she sweats profusely. She leaves a little bit of herself behind every time she puts the phone’s receiver to her ear.

There are post-its and print-outs everywhere on and around her desk. Phone numbers and contact names are scrawled hurriedly on notes when the data is actually neatly typed on the rolodex hidden by a picture of her grandchildren taped to the shelf above it. The information that was sent to her from Outlook contacts is deleted from her inbox because she doesn’t know how to save it to her own contact file.

The desk surface has a light dusting of crumbs from the unlimited assortment of crackers she snacks on for nine hours a day. A basket of oyster crackers is hidden behind the monitor. Pretzel sticks are in a jar. A sleeve of butter crackers sits on top of a jar of peanut butter and Potato Stix; and those are squeezed in next to a cup of plastic dinnerware and some paper plates.

There are stacks of paperwork that need to be filed sitting on the corner of the desk and on the shelves, including one that is 8” high. They are not filed because she doesn’t know where they go and she hopes that when she gets back from vacation, they will have been taken care of. She will have to hope in vain.

The drawer that once held a set of back up pens, an eraser, a letter opener and some highlighters has been littered with random paper clips, discharged and removed staples, and a tangle of rubber bands.

She takes numerous personal phone calls on the main incoming line a dozen times a day, including a handful from her mother alone. She is 60. Not the mother, but the employee.

SHE TYPES OUT HER EMAILS IN ALL CAPS AND USES NO PUNCUATION HER TYPING IS ELEMENTARY AT BEST AND INHIBITED BY HER FRIGHTENINGLY LONG NAILS SHE ONLY USES THE SHIFT KEY ON THE LEFT AND ONLY BY HOLDING IT DOWN WITH HER LEFT INDEX FINGER AND THEN ONE FINGER TYPING WITH HER RIGHT INDEX FINGER

She uses her mouse to go from one field to another in a spreadsheet instead of the TAB key. Actually she uses the mouse to click all default menu options.

She was given list of supplies to keep stocked two weeks ago. They still have not been ordered. Included on the list was a special request item. When the employee followed up with her, she said it wasn’t written down. The list was found on her desk. On it was the item in question. She’s to compare prices of supplies with at least two on-line companies. She has no idea how to open two web servers and “toggle” between them so she goes to one site, writes down the prices and then goes to the other site and writes down THOSE prices and then goes back to the original site to order the lesser expensive items. However, she has since grown frustrated with that process and has confided that she’s only ordering supplies from the one site “because it takes too long to compare pricing”.

She has no idea how to create a label on her computer so all documents and packages go out in the mail with handwritten addresses on them. A sheet of return address labels that was prepared for her remains untouched in the tray.

For all these shortcomings and so many more, it is not her that is without a job with benefits and a regular paycheck. It is not her complaining about her fellow employees. And it is most certainly not her dedicating an overly-long and belittling post on her private blog. Who really is the better person? The one lacking skills or the one lacking tolerance?