Bad Bosses, Ebay And When Weekend Guests Come Early

I love my family and my friends.  I also love having a guest post available for those weekends when family and friends come to visit.

When I married Randy he brought along a crowd of rowdy, insane, funny and accepting people with him. The crowd is growing as the younger ones have been breeding, so it keeps getting better and louder.

I come from people who don’t do well in crowds. I love people, I just don’t want to be around them most of the time. When my side of the family plans an event, everyone knows about it months in advance and that gives me time to prepare for being in a group. Randy’s family…they can get together at a moment’s notice and call it a goddamn party.

We have 7 people staying with us this weekend. Including one of the grandkids and the newest member, our 5 month old grandnephew. Five of the seven people came a day early. 

I’m not complaining too much about it, other than I spent my Friday evening scrubbing out a toilet that is exclusively used by a teenage boy. My plans of cleaning Saturday morning were changed to cleaning while drinking tequila.

Actually, it was totally worth the laughs we had last night. Like I said, I love my friends and family.

The rest of the weekend is going to go by in a blur, so I am going to leave you in the hands of Linda Sabourin who talks about bad bosses and ebay.


Irony is one of my favorite things in the world. Silly little things like shipping an old keyboard in a laptop box – or selling sea shells to someone who lives on an island – those things make me giggle.  It’s a slightly demented, almost evil kinda sound, but it’s still a giggle.

I sell stuff on Ebay, by the way.  Just in case you wonder why I am sending out old keyboards and sea shells.

Anyway, being an Ebay seller means I am my own boss.  Ironically, I am my own boss at a time in my life when I am best suited to deal with a boss.  I gotta tell ya – I have known some real winners!

When I was in my twenties I worked for this woman who really struggled with her hormones every month.  I got emotional when I had PMS – this lady grew horns and fangs.  She was scary – especially when she was standing in the middle of the warehouse screaming “HOW COULD YOU BE SO FUCKING STUPID?!”  Holy crap she scared the shit out of me!  I cringed, I shook, sometimes I cried – and that was just when I looked at the calendar!  I have no idea why I stayed at that job, why I went through that every month. I don’t think it ever even occurred to me to quit – I just hunkered down and waited for it to be over.

Fast forward a few years and I worked for a guy who literally chased me around the conference table – while telling me in great detail WHY I would be so happy if I let him catch me.  Thanks but no thanks.  I got out of that job pretty quick but again, for some reason back then I thought those were my only two options – take it or leave it.  I guess I was starting to grow, since at least I had added “leave” to my options, but what I really wanted was to keep the job without the fringe benefits.

Moving along to Door Number Three . . . Have you ever noticed the real prize is usually behind Door Number Three?  She was a prize, all right.  She took credit for my work, she was condescending to those she called the “lesser employees”, and she picked her nose.

Nope – I am not making that up.  I even walked in on her once and caught her eating it.  Aren’t we supposed to stop that at about age five?

I handled that situation by being rude, combative, and so stressed out that my stomach turned into a concrete block every morning when I pulled into the parking lot.  I also drank a lot of wine when I went home at night.

I went over her head every time I disagreed with her.  I had lost all respect for her – and my attitude toward her reflected that. It was like something you see in a B movie that makes you shake your head because nobody would ever act like that in real life.  Wanna bet?

The day I gave my notice, I am pretty sure I heard her dancing on her desk as I walked down the hallway.  Later that day I think I heard her crying, just before she called me into her office and offered me more money to stay.  I politely declined.  I know for certain I heard her cheering as I walked away that time.  But that’s OK – I was cheering too.

From there I moved halfway across the country and eventually ended up selling vintage items (aka old junk) on Ebay. Working for myself, by myself, in my living room,  Usually I have clothes on but I don’t always comb my hair.  And I talk to people online a LOT more than I do in person.  That makes life easier for everyone.  While it’s true that people will say things online they would never say face to face, I think people also tend to overlook a lot more.  If nothing else, it’s easier to pretend you didn’t see it!  Or that the cat accidentally deleted it.

But back to the irony . . . I am now at an age where I am more tolerant of other people’s shortcomings and more respectful of our differences.  I certainly have a lot more self-respect,  I have finally learned a little tact, and I have made enough mistakes to be a bit more forgiving (my skeletons are probably bigger than yours).  I think if I were to go back in time to any of those situations, I would handle it much better.  Employee-employer relationships have a lot in common with other relationships; you make unacceptable behavior acceptable by accepting it.  I think I would probably be a much better employee now, both in my own actions and in what I would accept.  Also, we have the internet now so I could tweet and facebook about it.  That helps every situation, right?

So yeah, I find it ironic that I finally get to a point where I am a kickass employee . . . and the only one who gets to benefit from it is ME.

And I’m a great boss too.  I seldom scream at myself, I never chase myself, and I have never once caught myself picking my nose!  I like to think that if I ever did, I would calmly suggest that there might be a 12-step program for that.

Or maybe I would just tweet about it.

Linda Sabourin lives in Arkansas with her brother and their cats.  After many years in accounting, she now makes her lindanot-exactly-a-fortune by selling vintage stuff on Ebay. She is the author of several stories for Chicken Soup and hopes to be the author of more.  She has given up on the idea of ever writing an entire book  although she has started a few. You can find her on Twitter as @ChancesFavor, where she annoys her followers with Ebay listings, cat pics, opinions, random thoughts, and the occasional insane rant. Her motto is “Keep going. Life gets better.”

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  • Guests that show up a day early? That would throw me into a tailspin. I have been known to curse under my breath when guest show up at the exact appointed (by me) time, don’t they know I always need an extra 5, 10, let’s face it 30 minutes? In the end though no one really ever cares what the house looks like, they showed up for the fun. Loved your intro.

    As for the guess post, great stories, I bet if a group of 20 women gathered and traded notes about former bosses we could write a book.

  • ‘Keep going. Life gets better’
    I sure hope so
    Great guest blog. Sad that so many of us have similar experiences in the work place. As I’m at that age that renders me seemingly unemployable despite my vast wealth of experience, this has just inspired me to re-examine an old idea I had about doing some selling on E-bay.
    Hmm, time to put my thinking cap on.

    Have a fab weekend

  • What a classic: “Employee-employer relationships have a lot in common with other relationships; you make unacceptable behavior acceptable by accepting it.” LOVE it!

  • I have plenty of bad boss stories:
    *the call center manager who would come up behind her employees and braid their hair or try to put makeup on them when they were on the phone
    * the warehouse manager who got under his desk–where he kept a pillow and blanket—every afternoon to take a “call” from his (dead) mother
    * the Develop Team manager who brought her unfriendly AND unspayed German Shepherd because she said it was a theraputic comfort dog (that wore a diaper when in heat)

    The list goes on and on. The one thing I had going for me is that they weren’t my bosses. I was head of HR and when people finally told me about them, I fired them. End of story.

  • If your family has both kids and bathrooms, then they probably know what it looks like when you combine the two, so I wouldn’t trip too hard about it. I actually had some good bosses later in my working years, but when I was younger I did have some doozies.

  • My dad and his shitty attitude made things like “people showing up early” something that never happened. We’d be lucky if they showed up at all.

    I could add so many douchebag bosses to this list it isn’t even funny. It’s hysterical. That would also require that I admit to how many jobs I’ve had over the years.

  • Worst boss I ever had? Started off with rolling his eyes at me, or rather my ideas. Especially if there was an audience. By the end? He would sit beside me with his legs sprawled wide and either adjust or scratch himself.

  • lol. My husband is you, and I am the one with the noisy, rowdy, overwhelming extended family. He will never get used to it (it has been 38 years) and I think less so as he gets older.
    But I agree with a previous comment. Guests arriving a day early? There just isn’t enough tequila for that situation!

  • I’m not fond of long term company either, I feel you there.. Also, your work stories are so true.. I’ve been in a variety of positions in my career, some great and some horrid.. Your stories make me laugh and bring me back to my earlier years.. I’m now working to be a seller on Ebay, if only I could make a career out of that.

    • I love all the people with all my heart…I just get anxious when I”m around a bunch of people for an extended amount of time…I spent the whole day in bed yesterday recovering. It’s was nice.

    • Yes! Although…we actually HAVE met in person..but it was brief. I was at Fitbloggin in Baltimore a few years ago. Your presentation was by far and away my favorite. 🙂

      NEXT time..I will demand a few more minutes of your time.

  • Man, do I DREAM of being my own boss. Alas, I’ve yet to come up with a workable idea – snarky greeting cards? everything in my house that I don’t want for sale on eBay? finish writing that book and upload to createspace? be an escort (only) 5-30 times a year?

    I was off 3.5 days last week (1.5 for a family emergency that involved driving 8 hours round-trip to go pick up my mother and the other 2 were previously taken for my birthday). Today is my FIRST DAY BACK and I’m already plotting how to use various tools on my desk for a nice stretch of workers comp… ugh.

    I enjoyed this post… 🙂

    • Thank you!

      Hahahah…I have a fantasy where someone hits me with their car and I’m NOT permanently injured, but injured just enough to never have to work again.

      • OMG!! I’ve had that same fantasy! What’s funnier – all the bumpkins where I live have NO idea how I grew up crossing one of the top 20 most dangerous intersections in NYC and I scared the BeJEEZUZ out of 2 of them one evening while crossing the little 2-lane road in front of the job.

  • PS – Michelle, the most recent post of mine that shows is the one we were talking about recently with my cousin & the photo-booth pics. 🙂

      • Wow you’re FAST! LOL If you saw the actual strips you’d see how puffy my eyes were. (I love pixlr & ipiccy!).

        Thanks. I’m in SUCH a mood today it really helps to hear good (and funny!) things from someone OUTSIDE of my area of hell. 😉

        • We must be in the same mood. I’m so tired that I feel like I’m coming down with something. Holy hell…I hope I’m not coming down with something.

  • Not sure how I would have dealt with visitors arriving a day earlier except I probably would have thought it was my fault and I stuffed up the arrangements !! But, on the up side, I liked the thought of tackling the cleaning with tequila !!
    I agree – I think we do get more tolerant as we get older – I’m sure if I had worked in the company I’m in when I was younger, I wouldn’t have lasted very long – now I just laugh and think “Man, if you want to pay me to do that fine – but I think it’s a waste of money getting me to produce reports that don’t say anything” and do them and take my pay at the end of the month.
    Have the best day !
    Me xox

    • Hahaha…that is me exactly. I don’t care what they ask for. Ask me to write code that produces a report that no one looks at? Cool with me…as long as I’m paid.

By Michelle


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