Wednesday, February 09, 2005

The Gander

I'm worried about the Gander. He's destroying himself. Mostly over stuff not worth destroying oneself over.

We have our differences at work, but by and large, we are pretty good friends (friends, perverts). Having largely repaired what was recently a very damaged friendship (who says you can't solve your problems by drinking?), I'm once again privy to information about non-work related sources of stress, and his various physical manifestations of both work and non-work related stress. I have always been privy to work related sources of stress, as is anyone who works here.

To be fair, the Gander has an absolutely ridiculous and unreasonable work load. He eats, sleeps and breathes this place and still doesn't have enough hours in the day. He has several demanding and/or energy draining clients, all of whom believe they are entitled to a monopoly on his time. He's also extremely good at creating his own stress. He's not real adept at prioritizing; every project needs to be completed yesterday and every issue is a full blown crisis. Textbook type A. He can be very Chicken Little sometimes - to listen to him you'd believe that every single client we have is right on the verge of firing us tomorrow.

Every day is a battle for him, and it takes it's toll in the form of sinus infections, chest pains, stomach ailments, et cetera. He can never get out from under one illness before another one becomes symptomatic.

His greatest stress reliever, or so it seems to this writer, is popping off at me from time to time. I have no idea why this is. He can sometimes fly off the handle at other people too, but I seem to be a favored target. Several theories exist: 1) currently being his closest friend in the office, he blows up at me because I'm the first person he thinks of 2) he thinks I'm really smart, and therefore holds me to a higher standard than everyone else and is disappointed when I don't live up to it 3) he knows from prior arguments that I can take it 4) he's secretly attracted to me and is doing a grown up version of pulling my pigtails (I like to think it's 2).

It's really ok. I get really angry when it happens, but then I blog my anger away, realize that he's not attacking me deliberately, he's just acting on his first instinct, remember all the nice things he's done for me and get over it. So even though it gets my dander up from time to time, in general it's a workable arrangement.

I'm worried about what's going to happen to him when I leave. When his last favorite co-worker left, Big C, he was utterly depressed for weeks. When I leave, he not only loses his new office favorite, but also his resident sparring partner. He's either going to take to blowing up at someone else much less likely to be able to handle it than I, or keep a lid on it until the whole thing boils over and his pink little head pops off. Neither of these is a good option. I wish he would go work somewhere else less stressful, but he doesn't feel like he can.

Oh, the drama. What will I do when my life stops resembling a soap opera?


VI said...

Reading through the last few posts, (missed yesterday) I noticed you mentioned "lurkers" in a negative way. Am I to believe that you prefer only "real life friends" reading your blog? 'Cause, I think I happen to be a lurker (reading often but not commenting...)

H said...

Oh I don't think Amber hates all lurkers, just the friggin' whacko ones who go nuts in her comments section. Kind, gentle, and slightly-off lurkers are more than welcome to her, I'm sure.

amberance said...

Exactly. I lurk around a number of blogs and comment infrequently, mostly beacuse I have nothing to add. I like to think that I have many happy normal lurkers I'm not aware of because it makes me feel popular. But the nutjobs that suggest I should have sex with my brother I could do without.

VI said...

I have no comments for you.
I just read the blog while I sit at work.
You are *actually* bookmarked (((oooohhhh... aaaaahhhhh... very special! :) )))

That is all

Sexicious said...

I would feel popular with that flow of comments that you’re getting, girlfriend.
I got a little catching up to do on your blog, but I am definitely bookmaking your page. :)
You got creepy lurkers out there, I tell ya! LOOSERS!!!

tony93637 said...

from an objective, impartial point of view, if you like this guy well enough to worry about what happens to him after you leave, and so as to ensure he doesn't go postal or "his pink little head pops off," you may want to just sit and have an honest talk with him about how you view his tyraids and how other people might not be so quick to adjust to the situation. and if you think this'll put him off you could preface the conversation with how much you care about him and how you don't want him to put himself in a position to get hurt by his rants after you leave. for whatever it's worth.

amberance said...

Thanks for the advice, Tony. However, we've actually had that very conversation on a number of occasions. He says he knows he shouldn't do that and that it's something he has to "work on". I don't think he'll ever change no matter what I or anyone else says. *sigh*

Sexicious said...

It seams to me that he is a workaholic, and he will never change. I know a couple of them. They have no life other than their work. They think that getting their job done it’s more important than anything, and they put it ahead of anything else, including their own health, love life, friends…. Pretty sad. Don’t try to change him, it’s useless.

tony93637 said...

well that's all you can do... one thing i've learned (the hard way) is that you can't change other people, they have to want that for themselves... but more importantly you've tried to help a friend the best you can, feel good about that.