Thursday, September 6, 2012

I'm an acquired taste...

So I got a job.  A real one.  I’m doing development for a small boarding and private school for children with learning disabilities.  For those not hip to the lingo, development is fundraising and grant writing.  Next time you see me I’ll have my hand out.  Don’t leave me hanging, OK? In describing this position to my brother the other day, de remarked, “Well that’s gotta be like fishing with dynamite.  Who wouldn’t want to give money to kids with learning disabilities?  So Ed, I’m looking for your generous check in the mail…..
Before I started the job I noticed a recurring theme of conversations I had with people.  I would explain how I was nervous and excited about going back to work the other person would say something like, “Anne, you’re ready to go back to work, but are they ready for you?”  Seriously, about 3 or 4 people said this to me.  So I got to thinking.  Are they ready for me?
I realized when I reached early adulthood that “Anne” is an acquired taste – a lot like beer, smoking, sushi, modern art, talk radio, thong underwear, British Comedies and anything on IFC.  I like to think (hope) that at least SOMEBODY likes me when they first meet me, but I’m realistic.  So before beginning my new job I formulated a strategy to sort of slowly assimilate them to all that is “Anne.”  An office environment in the GTSA could be a tough nut to crack.  I desperately want to avoid being run to the edge of town by co-workers carrying torches. 
It’s tough to navigate the mine field that is “women in offices.”  Ladies, am I right?  Female coworkers can be the most hateful, back-stabbing, insufferable bitches ever!  I’ve really been burned by women in an office situation in the past, so I knew to tread lightly.  I’m on week three and I think I’ve won over most of them.  I’ve asked for advice when I didn’t need it.  I’ve asked for opinions when I didn’t want them.  Most importantly I’ve complimented them on their shoes and they on mine.  In the world of women this is important.  Forgive the crudeness of the analogy, but this is to women is like dogs smelling each other’s behinds.  There’s one who still is leery of me.  Her shoes truly don’t merit a compliment, but I might anyway.  I believe I made headway today, when she vented to me – just a little though…  I’ll keep at it. 
I know that sometimes I’m just too much.  But I have always been a “more is more” type of gal.  My lipstick can be too red, my voice and be too loud. I know my heels are too high.  Campus is located on 200 acres of farmland.  We have actual crops, horses and an auto shop.  Me wearing  inappropriate footwear is putting it mildly.
My brain to mouth filter is always seems to malfunction.  Don’t ask my opinion if you don’t want it.  Usually you don’t have to ask, because of the aforementioned “brain to mouth filter.”  I cuss like a dock worker – but as this is a school, I really have worked on that one…  I have DAMMIT!  I park oddly everyday – the list is endless. 
But I will say this, the kids are great (most of them).  My coworkers are dedicated to each one of them which is inspiring.  I’m excited to share their stories with anyone who will listen.  One thing is certain, I will win them over.  They will acquire a taste for “Anne.”  I figure that will come when I begin to show them the money! 
But right now I’ll channel my inner Dr. McCoy from Star Trek, “DAMMIT JIM! I’m a grant writer, not Santa Claus!”


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