Nu Shooz Redux

I’ve been particularly cautious over the past few months to not talk shit about people, former employers in particular. You know, the perpetual job search and all. But so far, being shit-free hasn’t helped me in the least, and who’s checking references/snooping on potential hires the week between Christmas and the new year anyway? As long as I have to work during the holidays I’m going talk about topics enjoyable to me. Joy to my world.

1packabs Earlier this week I went out with the only person I stay in touch with from my last job. It was uplifting to hear about how my LeVar Burton-loving supervisor had been asked to leave and how my full-time role and her extreme part-time position had been replaced by three full time employees. No longer doing the work of three people wasn’t what amused me, though. Apparently, this woman was given a going away lunch and decided that was an appropriate moment to tell everyone about all of the “work” she’d had done (I guess she embraces that four-letter word, after all). I knew about the Botox, but was oblivious to all of the sundry eye, nose, lipo surgeries, not to mention the two gastric bypasses. None of that surprised me but what did make me go, "ok, now that’s fucked up" was the admitting of a surgically created six-pack.

Why? Why on earth does an average (and that’s the thing, this person is wholly average looking—neither hideous nor hot, just 100% ordinary) human being need extremely defined abdominal muscles? Even nuttier, this woman stopped by my friend's cubicle later, pulled up her shirt and made her feel her stomach, which was described as firm like a "watermelon." Though not convex, I imagine.

This is even weirder because yesterday, completely unprompted, a guy at work started talking about his sister’s fiance’s male friends who’d had pectoral and calf implants. As body builders I can sort of see the point, not that I agree with it, but they strip down and show off as part of their shtick. Yet, everyone seemed more grossed out by men getting chest and leg enhancements than women craving fake six-packs and that’s just wrong. I don’t know if it’s a gender double standard and it’s more acceptable for a women to mess with nature or if wanting a rock hard stomach seems more reasonable than the need for bulging muscles.

Anyway, it looks like there’s a name for this creepy procedure: abdominal etching. “It’s becoming more and more accepted in the areas of modeling, body building, and acting,” says Wikipedia. Mommies and librarians are not mentioned.

I must just be puritanical (looks are a genetic crapshoot, “good” bodies take discipline and effort and vanity is distasteful) because no one seems to have problems with plastic surgery like I do. Extreme Makeover genuinely makes me feel depressed (but then, so does Borat and To Catch a Predator) yet audiences clearly view it as a how-to show. Cosmetic surgery is lazy and for the insecure, I can’t condone it (I know, talk to me in ten years). I’d better watch out or my pointless hard line stances will turn me into Angela from The Office. Fine, take your surgically enhanced abs.

Now I have a second-hand tale that can’t not disturb you. When I say that I’m leaving my self-imposed shit-free ban for the moment, I take it seriously. There was always a bafflingly troublesome problem with the ladies room at my former job. Beyond the resident bulimic issues, there was a peculiar passive-aggressive practice of not flushing toliets, peeing buckets on the seats and smearing feces around. But at least this was all confined to the stalls.

Well, I guess last week a pair of yellowed panties was left right out in the open, in front of the row of sinks. That would be inappropriate enough, but said skivvies were covered in blood and crusted with shit in a “meringue” fashion (I was pleased with the storyteller’s culinary description). Fake abs are one thing, but what breed of office lady indulges in this beastly behavior?! Accidents happen, I suppose, but they’re usually shame inducing and the evidence would be gotten rid of asap. Only a monster female exec would be so bold as to leave a sordid mess for everyone to see. An all too vivid case of shit not stinking, for sure.

No matter how middling your current situation might be, it’s good every now and then to be re-reminded as to why your former job is best left in the realm of former.

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