This week was supposed to be another hum-drum week. I guess you never know when you're going to have the epiphany, that moment where you realize your priorities have been off and you can and will readjust them. You can't predict what you'll have that perfect instance of clarity as you look at the insufferable ass you're forced to work with and think, "I could be writing a romance novel and not dealing with YOU".
But I digress.
To back up a little, I should mention that the last few months have been extremely challenging for me. Aside from a boatload of stress at work (which I will get to in a moment), I've had to move twice, had some health issues in my family and generally just had a couple months where I was sure Murphy and his damn law were targeting me with a vengeance.
Now, I'm not really complaining (though, I guess it looks like I am) since I'm just about out the other side. Heck, I have a nice new place to live, I still have my job and all are healthy and well. But in the meantime, I have had to put my writing on hold. I literally have not sat down at the computer for more than 4 months. And as all of you fellow writers out there know, this has been, at times, extremely painful. Like I was trying to snuff out some part of my soul. But there just wasn't TIME to do it and my priorities were (rightly) elsewhere in the short term.
Then Monday happened.
I work with this guy. Let's call him ... Cozmo. To help you understand who this guy is, try to imagine the rowdiest frat boy you ever knew, only it's 20 years and 50 pounds later. He drives a Porsche he can barely fit into, he has a bulging vein in his forehead if you so much as look at him funny, and he hasn't seen his ... er ... belt buckle over the horizon of his own belly since 1992. Got an idea forming in your mind? Now add in that he once told me a story about how he gave his mother crabs (no, I'm really not kidding) and that he thinks he's God's gift to women - and that women are God's gift to him. Now do you have an image of the kind of man I'm talking about?
Needless to say, I just love working with this guy. And on Monday, all that "love" came to a head, with him deciding to take over my meeting and announce to all present that I wasn't "in a position to do what I was doing" and that it wasn't my "place to decide these things any longer".
Say WHAT!? Now, bear in mind, this guy isn't my boss. Got that? Not. My. Boss. In other words, without the authority to determine any of the above and, in fact, had no idea what he was talking about. Not that this made the moment any less humiliating.
And for that, I thank him.
No really, I THANK him. Maybe I won't actually tell him how grateful I am, as that might take away from the royal SPANKING he got from my boss, who flipped his lid at this a**hole's antics, but in the end, Cozmo did me a big favor. Because as I sat there, quietly fuming and wishing I could hurl myself over the table and wring his disgusting neck, it made me stop and really think about this crazy job and why I do it. Simple: The Paycheck. Then it made me think about what I might be doing instead.
And suddenly, I just didn't give a crap about Cozmo. I mean, sure, I went to my boss and stood up for myself, I went to the participants of the meeting and apologized for the intensely awkward moment (they all were very sympathetic and thought Cozmo a monster: bonus!), and sure I'm going to keep on the corporate climb for as long as I have to. But when the jerks, the sexist pigs, the looney-tunes and the totally incompetent HR department start to get me down, I always have my lunch break and an office with a door.
Sweet bliss. Writing.