Tuesday, 22 February 2011


It's lonely when you don't comment.

Just sayin', kids.

Here's a tidbit though: today, Teeth told the WalMart Girls that at her high school in Moose Jaw (how fucking perfect is THAT?), they had a CB Club. Yes, whereas other urban high schools in Canada have drama clubs or chess clubs or AV clubs, Teeth joined the CB Radio Club.

They had jackets made and everything. Hers apparently featured a little red devil in a diaper (?) on the back.

And her handle?

Hot Stuff.

I couldn't make this shit up, man. It's pure gold. This bitch is going in a book, I swear it.

Monday, 21 February 2011

Right In the Teeth

Today, Teeth was being a larger than usual douchebag. Wolf Woman's daughter is working part-time in the office doing some much needed filing. She is a few months short of her eighteenth birthday.

She seems like a nice enough girl and very, very young. Naive, even. At lunch she said, "Man, I feel old. My hips are, like, hurting like crazy."

She looked at Immediate Supervisor and I. "Is this what you guys feel like all day?"

Teeth has obviously enjoying this new opportunity to push someone new around. And of course, despite the girl's tender years, she is grist for the mill. And Teeth has no sense of propriety.

For example, the Cub was saying during the morning break that she helped herself to a piece of salt water taffy from the front desk.

"With your braces?" Teeth said (notice how she is immediately aware of dental issues, even if they're not her own).

"Yeah, I had to suck on it a little to make it soft," said the Cub, which led to the inevitable sniggering and guffawing that we've all come to expect from the most innocent of remarks.

"Well then you're doing it wrong!" said Teeth to her own resounding laughter.

Ah, the wit. Is it not breath-taking?

Anyway, tomorrow is a pay cut off, so all of us billers are under the gun to get our work done before tomorrow at 4:30. Today, I did 96 bills, which is possibly more than any other biller in the office and certainly more than Teeth did. I was working diligently and my mind was on my work.

During afternoon break with Teeth, Wolf Woman and the Cub, I got up to leave the staff room and inadvertantly left behind a small ball of foil, the kind one finds wrapped around chocolate eggs. (Jesus God, I love those eggs, and these had been a gift from Princess Anne, the receptionist, with whom I talk horses all the time. She has a mare who is expecting to foal any day now. SQUEE!)

"Ah-ah-ah!" Teeth said, in a singsong tone. "You didn't clean up your garbage!"

I turned around, picked up the tiny ball and threw it into the garbage can, imagining to myself with immense satisfaction how much I wanted to flick it into Teeth's goofy face so that it lodged in her cornea.

"What's the matter? Aren't you doing well today?" she asked.

At this point, my back was turned to her, so I turned to face her and said, "Are you addressing me?"

"No," she said, snottily, "I'm talking to the other person who isn't doing well!"

I looked at her and said evenly, "First of all, I don't respond to sarcasm."

"Oh!" she said, but before she could slide in another passive aggressive remark, I said, "Secondly,I'm tired today."

"You must have had a good weekend then," she said, trying hard to be pleasant.

"I did."

And then I turned and walked away from her while she was still talking to me.

Fuck her.

Later on, I went to Wolf Woman's desk and apologized for having the scene in front of her. "I am tired, but there's no excuse for bad manners."

"Don't apologize," she said. "I get really tired of all the stupid shit, too. I'm glad you did it."

I was surprised, since Wolf Woman is Teeth's BFF at work. The more I scratch the surface, the more anti-Teeth sentiment I find. If all of these women had a chat with Immediate Supervisor, Teeth would be either unemployed or severely curtailed. So I do not understand why all the silence.

I find it especially appalling and mystifying because, of everyone there, Teeth behaves with the least self-awareness. Say what you will about Sylvester and her public pyjama wearing ways, she is conscious of what she is and she's comfortable in her skin. And (as we will see in a moment), Mrs. Orange might be a rat, but she knows exactly what she's doing. But Teeth: I don't believe she stops for one minute to contemplate how she behaves or why. She can't beat other women up anymore, so now she belittles and mocks them, but the behaviour and the motivation remain the same as it did twenty to twenty-five years ago. And she's mean. She's small and petty and mean and stupid.

And yet, everyone dances to her tune. We don't sit in "her" chair or park in "her" spot, so she essentially has the run of the place. She gets away with saying the most vulgar and insulting and demeaning things. She has entirely too much power and influence in that office despite the fact that she is, in my humble opinion, the person least deserving of it. It drives me crazy. It makes me want to start parking in her spot in the mornings, but then I'm stuck with a conundrum: if we don't park in her spot, she gets her way. If we do (god forbid) park in her spot, we still end up playing her power games and engaging in a power struggle that is frankly incredibly juvenile.

Either way for her, it's a win-win situation and I absolutely fucking hate it when the behaviour of bullies and douchebags is validated by success.

Yet all it would take to at least modify her behaviour is for each and every person who has been insulted and/or bullied and/or harrassed by her to say something. Just say it. Even in an email. Christ, if even half the billers said something to Immediate Supervisor, I'm sure they'd consider firing her vulgar little ass out the door.

So why don't they? I just don't get it. Can anyone explain?

In other WalMart Girl News, I got a ride home with Sylvester on Friday, because Immediate Supervisor let us go early and the Little Hunneydoo was picking the dids (kids+dogs=dids) up from the groomers. During the trip, Sylvester told me a story that only amplifies just how huge a fucking rat Mrs. Orange is.

Apparently, Sylvester's significant other is an adult baby. That is to say he derives sexual stimulation from wearing diapers, children's clothes (in adult sizes), being mothered, corrected, taught, etc. I don't know if in his case, it goes as far as shitting the diapers. There are things I simply do not wish to know. As far as I'm concerned, I already know too much.

Anyway, early on in her career at the office, Sylvester made the mistake of telling Mrs. Orange about the adult baby thing during a smoke break. Not five minutes had elapsed before Mrs. Orange was back inside the building, passing this juicy tidbit onto her podmate. Sylvester knows this because she caught Mrs. Orange doing it.

And Mrs. Orange didn't even have the gall to be embarrassed. No apology. Nothing. Obviously Mrs, Orange trades in the commodity of information as power. She has no alliances and yet she is friends with everyone, because everyone is a potential source. And she is as honest as she can afford to be about it, too.

On the other hand, I can't imagine telling something so private to someone at work, especially in THAT office.

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Not Clear On the Concept

We turn now to an update on Flake, who as you may recall, spent six weeks in our guest room being generally disrespectful and disruptive before we kicked her out. She then had the nerve to leave in our mailbox a letter that criticized my relationship with my wife, suggesting that I am verbally disrespectful of her.

Late last week, about three weeks after we threw her ass out, we received some mail for her from her lawyer. As a courtesy, we called her cell phone and left a message saying that we had it and would leave it in the mailbox for her to pick up. Naturally, it stands to reason that she would have to come that evening, otherwise the mail carrier would return it to the sender the next day. And given that Flake obviously keeps late hours, we didn't think this would be a problem. More to the point, neither one of us cared particularly which occured.

The next day, the letter was gone from the mailbox.

Earlier this week, the Little Hunneydoo got a call from Flake at work, saying that the letter was gone and did we still have it. Little Hunneydoo, still steaming mad at Flake's implication that she is my victim, declined to return the call.

Flake nevertheless kept calling, leaving messages on our machine at home, messages that we refused to return, hoping against all hope that she would get the hint that we didn't have it and were no longer interested in any kind of dialogue with her about anything.

This morning, a Sunday, she called at 8:30 a.m., saying that she wants the letter and she doesn't understand why we aren't returning her calls.

This blew me away. Seriously, you don't understand why we aren't returning your calls? After that letter? Seriously? Wow--are we talking cognitive impairment, or have I not made myself explicitly clear? Ambiguous communication is not something of which I am ever accused, Flake--I tend to make myself very clearly understood. So it must be YOU, which isn't difficult to imagine, given how you apparently think that passing judgement on a relationship you know nothing about, involving two people nice enough to give you shelter twice in three years (and who also helped you move out of the Rapist Rancher's house on a bitterly cold winter's day then stored all your crap in our basement until you went back to him, surpassing all human understanding) is somehow appropriate and reasonable behaviour.

This leads me to the inescapable conclusion that you are therefore bugfuck crazy. Because only someone who is bugfuck crazy would call and and wake me up at 8:30 on a Sunday morning after we threw you out for waking us up constantly and disrupting our lives. Or is it just me???

Now, I understand that mail from your lawyer is important--or at least, it has since become important to you, because while you were squatting here, you let an entire week expire before you opened the first piece of mail he sent you. Good thing things like Court Orders aren't time sensitive.

All that aside, I do understand that you want the mail. Believe me, we don't want to receive your correspondence either. I am (perhaps erroneously) going to assume that you are in regular contact with your lawyer and that in three weeks, you have had ample time to give him an address that isn't ours. Therefore, I'm not sure what to conclude from the fact that the mail came here: do you have your own place? Did you go back to the Rapist Rancher? Or are you still couch surfing/squatting?

I cannot know what is in your addled mind, nor am I particularly interested. Frankly, the letter you left us was a deal-breaker. I don't want "Friend of the Year" Awards or any special accolades because we gave you a place to stay. Seriously. It's what friends do for each other. But I certainly did not expect or appreciate criticisms as a result of you wearing out your welcome.

What I do know is that, from my perspective, if the letter wasn't in the mailbox when I went to get it and all of my subsequent phone calls on the matter over the course of a week-and-a-half went unanswered, I would be forced to the conclusion that those people were not going to speak to me. I would stop wasting my time chasing them and I would call my lawyer.

But then I am not bugfuck crazy either.

But apparently, Flake needed it spelled out to her. So the Little Hunneydoo called her this afternoon and said, "Hi, Flake? It's Little Hunneydoo. We don't have your letter, it's already gone back to your lawyer, so you no longer have any reason to call here again."

And then she hung up. Because the wrath of the Hunneydoo? Is significantly hotter and more daunting than mine.

And now for a dental checkup....

I am reasonably certain that "the Chat" was had with Teeth on Friday morning. I cannot be certain, of course, but what I do know is that Teeth disappeared into Immediate Supervisor's office, the door was closed and a brief time after that, Teeth emerged giving me a look that ought to have incinerated me spontaneously.

And she was certainly subdued all the rest of the day, except at lunch, when she started talking about how she and her huntin', shootin', quad-drivin' husband and she were talking about moving back to Eastern Canada. And this she said in the presence of Immediate Supervisor, who remained unphased, for the most part. But it was clear that Teeth was sulking about something and the fact that she could not or would not make eye contact with me all day suggests that I might have had something to do with it.

But Teeth made herself feel better at the end of the work day by showing the rest of the WalMart Girls the bikini she bought for Brandi's sixth birthday. This was accompanied by a bunch of photographs that Teeth has on her computer of Brandi in her frilly pink bed, langourously lounging against sumptuous pillows in a creepy imitation of Cosmo and runway models.

"She looks like a model," Mulan said, not entirely approvingly.

"Yeah, doesn't she?" Teeth said proudly.

I have more stories, but they'll wait for tomorrow.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Loose Tooth?

Sorry about the protracted absence, gang; I've had a busy week. On Monday we hosted a lovely fondue dindin with friends, on Tuesday I had tai chi and last night there was general errand running to be done.

But I am here now to catch all of you up on the latest goings-on with the WalMart Girls and especially Teeth.

It's been a busy week there, too.

This afternoon during break, Mrs. Orange, Sylvester, Mulan and I were sitting in the staff room flipping through the Avon and Regal catalogues. (I am looking for a metal popcorn popper for the Little Hunneydoo and the last time I saw one was in Regal. Alas, it is no longer available there. At least I am spared the embarrassment of having to order from there).

Sylvester pointed to a pair of rubber-soled bedroom slippers and remarked with enthusiasm that they would be perfect for those times she wanted to go shopping. Mulan laughed, thinking that Sylvester was joking. Alas, she was not. Sylvester went on to explain, without a trace of self-consciousness or shame, that she regularly goes to the grocery store (or, of course, WalMart) in her pyjama pants, a t-shirt and slippers. She likes to be comfy, dontcha know.

Mulan was horrified and I happened to glance up at Mrs. Orange, who wore an expression of absolute disgust. As a result of something that happened earlier this week (which I will get to in a second), I have been adopted by Mrs. Orange, and when we made eye contact, we both had to dive back into our respective catalogues to keep from laughing out loud.

Not that Sylvester would apparently be at all unsettled by our mockery. She's one of "those": Poor White Trash is a badge of honour, not a criticism. She's red-necked and proud of it.

She don't got no cultcha, and don't want none, neither.

Later, Mrs. Orange and I made ourselves giggle like schoolkids by suggesting that from now on, everything Sylvester says should be followed by "in my pyjamas". Kinda like that game people play with fortune cookies, where they add "between the sheets" after their fortune:

"You will travel much and meet many influential people...between the sheets".

"The poor seek food, the rich seek an appetite...between the sheets."

Sylvester could be a source of comedic gold for things like, "I'm gonna ask about that driver's unit...in my pyjamas", or "I just finished that bill...in my pyjamas."

Look, the work is repetitive and dull, okay? Don't judge me.

Instead, judge Teeth. Teeth isn't having her best week. It started on Monday morning during the first coffee break, when we were joined by one of the managers that the company is moving out from Ontario. He was interesting and pleasant and made an effort to learn our names and talk to us individually on a personal level. He was a charming and very handsome man.

When he left the room, a couple of the WalMart Girls gave vent to their (largely frustrated) libidos and said something like "Yowza!" or "Whoa, he's hot."

Teeth, in a remarkable display of putting the "ass" back in "class", said, "He's got big feet."

And then she guffawed, showing off her gigantic incisors like she was the guest of honour at a beaver convention.

Now, I am not a prude and I don't think I can honestly be accused of not having a sense of humour. But I am just so sick and tired of her vulgarity, and how every single fucking conversation that involves her has to descend to the lowest common denominator. So I got up and left the room without another word.

And as I left, I heard her say, "Oh, God, she's leaving."

I went back to my desk and began to work, but shortly thereafter was joined by Mrs. Orange, who gave me to understand that she, too, is tired of the coarseness.

"It would be so easy to nail this place with a sexual harrassment case," she said, without apparent irony.

Now, I did not confide in Mrs. Orange (I mean, she is a fucking rat), but I did indicate that I am tired of a lot of the comments made during break, especially those directed at me. She commiserated with me, and said she had endured similar situations at other places based on the fact that she is aboriginal.

And I thought that that would be the end of it. But when I got back to my desk after lunch, there was an email from my supervisor asking me to come see her. And when I answered her summons, she asked me to close the door.

Well, this is the moment every temp dreads: it's either going to be "We'd like to keep you on," or "Thanks for coming; get the fuck out."

Once I was seated, she told me that Head Office Lady had called, wanting to follow up on what I had said about Teeth's harrassing comments, and had I had a chance yet to speak to Teeth.

"Not really," I said. "The difficulty is that Teeth always plays to an audience, and I am reluctant to embarrass her in front of the WalMart Girls. And I don't think that email is the most appropriate approach. Although I did make my feelings known indirectly this morning during break."

She asked me to explain what happened, and I mentioned that Teeth noticed my abrupt departure, as did the rest of them. This seemed to satisfy Immediate Supervisor on some level, because then she said, "Would you like us to have a talk with her? Because we are ready to move forward on this."

I was, I confess, a little nonplussed; I had expected the company to sit on this potentially inflammatory situation until I forced the issue by bringing it up again the next time Teeth opened her yap (which is, I'm sure you know, inevitable).

I replied that if they felt that was suitable I would appreciate someone talking to Teeth because I wasn't the only one to find her offensive, and I simply couldn't imagine the trouble resulting if someone like the new manager overheard her remarks about his "feet". She nodded and mentioned that a word would be had.

"And I want you to know," she said, "that this isn't normal. And we want you to be comfortable."
I thanked her genuinely for her time and concern and mentioned that if I managed to have a private chat with Teeth, I would let her know.

Now you gotta understand, people--Teeth has been with this company for ten years. She's quick to remind anyone who even remotely wonders that she is the senior biller. And she was apparently being groomed to take Immediate Supervisor's position (Office Manager/Human Resources), but Immediate Supervisor has been there for twenty-five years and they weren't going to let her go (and I can see why--she rocks). And frankly, my skull threatens to shatter into a billion pieces when I imagine Teeth, with her lack of social skills, in that job.

I mean, Christ on a cracker, think that one through. The mind boggles.

Yet despite her tenure, I'm beginning to wonder if perhaps the Powers That Be aren't contriving to collect enough evidence against Teeth to permanently extract her. As I said, this just hasn't been her best week. I don't think "the chat" has been had yet, because a) she hasn't let on, and I can't imagine that she is sophisticated enough to hide her resentment for me, and b) she still makes off-colour remarks (why, just yesterday she actually made the tired old double entendre about the Big Mac's "special sauce" when Wolf Woman walked in with a cheeseburger).

But today, Immediate Supervisor was riding her ass like a stubborn donkey and quickly losing patience. And Teeth was not taking the correction particularly well. Tension was quite high on that side of the old pod this afternoon, I must say. And Teeth, in a fit of frustration, actually said something like, "I gotta find something better to do" (although not within Immediate Supervisor's earshot).

So I don't know. But I'll keep you posted...in my pyjamas.

Friday, 11 February 2011

Dental Dam(n)

Although I have a respectable vocabulary and command of the English language, I struggle sometimes to illustrate to you, dear reader, just how opposite to me on the spectrum of values the women I work with truly are.

I can talk about the evils of WalMart all I like, but when a struggling family needs clothes for their children, being able to buy three shirts for $5.00 is difficult to argue. Or a flat of Kraft Dinner. People like the WalMart Girls can't actually afford to give a shit about the Indonesian women and children working in sweat shops for Kathy Lee for pennies a day.

That being said, I can't understand how these women are so chronically impoverished either. They are all partnered to men who have good jobs, even if they themselves are at a full-time pink collar job that nevertheless pays infinitely better than Tim Hortons or McDonalds or most retail positions. They have a benefits package that is quite excellent.

But, alongside the constant bitching about money, what I also hear them talking about is purchases they make: quads, huge plasma tvs, brand new computers, phones, cameras...and it occurs to me that shopping at Walmart isn't a necessity because they are poor. They're not poor. They're just stupid with their money.

That's actually a bit of a judgement call. What they choose to do with their money is up to them, after all. I just don't understand why you would spend your money on two quads (or a quad and something called a side-by-side, which I think is a vehicle that requires not a license but a red neck to operate), dropping so much money on what are essentially toys that you panic when you have a car repair bill that comes to $300.00.

Still, these are the choices made by the average Albertan, I suppose. And god love 'em for supporting an American-based corporate giant that destroys local economies, ruthlessly exploits their employees with draconian labour standards and supports appalling sweatshops all over the world. The WalMart Girls are essentially wiping their asses with the Canadian flag, but you gotta love them for stubbornly making the most uninformed, back-assward and lazy choices they possibly can.

Don't ya? And you can't blame them really when Canadians themselves are willing to sell institutions like The Bay or Tim Hortons or the image rights of the RCMP and many other iconically Canadian products to American corporations. But that's for another rant.

Spending habits aside, there are plenty of other ways that the WalMart Girls stand opposite to me in our world view.

Take, for example, one of the WalMart Girls I haven't discussed yet. I'll call her Mrs. Orange, cuz she's a fucking rat. Her mother-in-law can't stand her. The feeling is mutual. Mrs. Orange was telling us at break a few weeks ago that she was going out after work to find a pay phone, in order to call Employment Canada and AISH (for long-term disability benefits). It was her intention rat out her mother-in-law for drawing both unemployment and AISH payments (a big no-no) while vacationing in the Dominican Republic (even bigger no-no). Mrs. Orange had to do it from a pay phone to guarantee her anonymity, since she had the wit to realize that her husband might take it amiss that she was diming out his mom to the feds. And Mrs. Orange had a reasonable expectation that this might--just might--have a negative impact on her marriage.

Clever girl. Morally bankrupt, but clever.

Still, I don't know the whole backstory and maybe the mother-in-law is a real cunt who has it coming. It's just that personally, I can't imagine doing anything quite so base and nasty to someone my wife/partner/husband cared for, nor jeopardizing my relationship with her/him, for the sake of petty vengeance. Call me crazy, but if the truth ever comes to light, exactly how do you explain your actions to your partner? Anything you say is going to sound really lame, and you will simply expose yourself as the small, cowardly and unimaginative shitheap that you are.

I don't understand the mentality that dictates if you have more, I must therefore have less, and the balance needs to be corrected. I believe in psychology, that is called an "insufficiency tape" and a lot of people seem to have it on a constant loop.

Another way in which the WalMart Girls stand opposite to me on things is with regard to how they view and talk about visible minorities. We have in our office one single woman of colour, a nice lady from Hong Kong who I will call Mulan. Just this week, and a couple of times in the past, a WalMart Girl I will call Sylvester (due to a lisp that causes all of her "s"s to be very sibilant) has talked openly in front of Mulan about "this Chinaman (I) used to date." The first time Sylvester used the word Chinaman in Mulan's presence--without apparent embarrassment or self-consciousness--I damn near fell over. I looked at Mulan to gauge her reaction, but she seemed to ignore it. I was appalled. Absolutely appalled. I mean, even if Sylvester is liberal enough to "date a Chinaman", she could choose her words better. She could, for example, use his name. I can't recall if his ethnicity was relevant to the story or not.

Anyway, as per the orthodontic nature of the title to this post, there is of course an anecedote regarding Teeth for today. (She's been pretty quiet on the old gay theme for the past couple of days: the only time it came up was when Mulan toasted a blueberry bagel during our break, and Sylvester remarked that the staff room smelled "fruity". Teeth looked at me and giggled like the asshole she is. I ignored her pointedly, but noted it down in my gay daytimer. Stupid bitch.)

Anyway, I differ from the WalMart Girls in some pretty significant ways, obviously. I spend my money differently, but they might also raise an eyebrow at me for buying rapiers, daggers and rubber band guns so I can chase my equally geeky friends around pretending to be Cavaliers and Indians. And who could blame them?

I find tattle-taling reprehensible, especially as adults when we have our own power and don't need other adults to make the world fair, especially when we have enough money to be comfortable. But as I said, I don't know the whole story there. There might be a lot more to it (though frankly, I doubt it, given the general moral timbre of the office).

And I cannot even conceive of using a perjorative racial slang in the presence of someone who represents that particular ethnicity. It reminds me of that scene in Grand Torino, when Clint Eastwood addresses the black gangbangers as "spooks". I damn near shit my pants with horror. I had a similar reaction to Sylvester. I mean, holy Jesus, can you not hear yourself talking??? On the other hand, she did date the guy. (Weak argument, I know.)

But today, Teeth demonstrated yet again how removed we are from one another in thought and opinion and philosophy. At afternoon break they were gabbing about their kids and what they want to be when they grow up. Wolf Woman's son (who is seven, I think) wants to be a judge and "I'm gonna buy a mansion and you can live in it with me, Mom". So cute. (I could make a snarky remark here about how so many of the WalMart Girls's husbands seem to have married a mommy and not a spouse, but I'll let that go for now.)

Teeth was looking through the new Regal catalogue during this conversation and braying with delight over the toilet coffee mug and the fanny bank that farts whenever a coin is deposited. Oh, and the magnetic bandaids that go on the rust spots of your car.

Her crotch fruit is named--not surprisingly--Brandi (yes, with an "i"; what were you thinking?). Brandi is six in a couple of weeks. Brandi wants to be a cop, which is hardly surprizing: her mother is a bully, so there's no reason she shouldn't want to be one also. I mean, you go where the power is, ostensibly, and even a six-year-old has enough sophisitication to know who wears the jockstrap in that family.

I wasn't impressed, but neither was I surprized. What blew me away was what Teeth said next: "I'm thinking she should become an actress. Or a model. I look at her sometimes and think, 'Toddlers and Tiaras'."

There was a pause. And then Teeth added, "And then she can marry a rich hockey player."

"Wow," I said, looking at my watch, "my break's over."

Now, to be fair, much of this was said in semi-jest. Most of what Teeth says, if you haven't guessed by now, is couched in semi-jesting tones. Yet there was enough conviction in her voice to indicate to me that turning her kid into JonBenet Ramsay wasn't entirely out of the question. And while I am no fan of (most) children, I find children's "beauty pageants" absolutely abhorrent.

Yet I doubt seriously that Teeth will ever get it together enough to inflict that form of abuse on Brandi. Not because she could ever conceive it as abuse, mind you.

It's just that you can't buy those outfits at WalMart.

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Lying Through Her Teeth

When I came out to Teeth a couple of weeks ago, I had a certain foreboding that this would not end well. I mean, she's not the sharpest knife in the drawer and she has the emotional maturity of a crowned head in the SCA. (OOOH! Burn! Look, I'm not saying that everyone in the SCA is developmentally arrested, but I think it says something about a certain group when a psychiatric nurse attends a local event and afterwards can only say, "Wow. The full spectrum of emotional illness was represented in that room!")

After her initial reassurances that the revelation of my sexual orientation wouldn't change anything, she has recently settled in to being a Real Fucking Pig. One cannot mention cats, as this sets off the inevitable pussy jokes (and given that we just adopted a cat from the Humane Society...well, you get the idea).

The other day, Wolf Woman asked me about my tattoo. I explained it, and when asked where I got it done, I told them the name of the shop and added, "It's run by two women who do really terrific work." This completely innocuous comment resulted in sniggering of the most juvenile variety.

Then today, I booked some aesthetic services for myself and the Little Hunneydoo at a local spa. I wrote the date and time down in my daytimer.

Seeing this, Teeth said to me, "Do you really keep a daytimer?"

"Yeah," I said.

"Wow. YOu really ARE gay."

This statement didn't/doesn't even make sense to me. And by this time, I was getting plenty pissed off at being the latest brunt of her unimaginative, sophomoric jokes.

So I said, "How does that apply to me?"

There was no ready response forthcoming (because really, what can you say?), but I made a mental note and filed it away.

Well, after break, I was called into the office to have an interview with my immediate supervisor (who rocks) and a visiting bigwig from Head Office. We had a lovely, relaxed chat about more training that I'll be getting in the near future and that they're planning to keep me around for a while, etc, etc.

And then Head Office Lady asked me if I had any questions or concerns.

Well, yes, ma'am. As a matter of fact, I do.

So I spilled the beans. I mentioned that Teeth is frequently inappropriate in her language, to the point where the male staff members blush and leave the room. Teeth takes this as a feather in her cap and hasn't the wit to figure out that these men are embarrassed for her, not by her.

Then there was the time she received a large pice of coal (to give to her husband for Christmas), and spent the rest of the day (which was the day of our staff Christmas luncheon), talking endlessly about her "big black box". And our supervisor was there for that one and was physically cringing as I described the incident.

I gave very specific examples of how she belittles and intimidates the other billers and did not neglect to share with them how she was stand-offish and suspicious of me until she learned some of my personal information. And then I described minutely how she was using this information to make tasteless and offensive jokes at my expense.

Naturally, the first thing Head Office Lady (who wore an expression of mild horror) asked me was, "And have you made your feelings known to her, when she talks like this?"

So I told her what had happened in the staff room mere minutes before being called into the office.

"And no apology?"

"I don't think she realizes what she's saying really," I said. "She's really a diamond in the rough, and maybe lacks some of the situational awareness that someone with a little more life experience would have."

(I dunno--was that diplomatic? Or passive aggressive? Or both? And is it passive aggressive if it's true? I dunno. I felt that I was in a delicate position because--as I told them very frankly--being a temp means you're not exactly coming from a position of power. They rushed to reassure me that this still does not entitle me to disrespect or harrassment. So there--the word was said: Harrassment.)

Anyway, they thanked me for my honesty and openness, and I went back to my desk. It happened to be lunch time at that point, so we all went to the staff room. Teeth and I were in there alone while the smokers did their thing outside.

She said, "So did they give you the bad news?"

"Yeah," I said, playing along. "I'm outta here next week."

"No doubt because of what I said about you."

"Probably," I replied.

"Cuz I'm the office snitch," she said.

"I imagine you are," I said pleasantly, but all the while I'm thinking, What the fuck is all this?

I can't, for the life of me, figure out if she was reminding me that she is the senior biller, bitch, and don't you forget it, or if she really did say something to them. Though what that could be I can't imagine, and was no big whoop evidently even if she did, because they're keeping me on and training me in new things and I even got my own nameplate for my desk this afternoon.

So fuck off, Mrs. Ed.

Anyway, she let it go, because going any further would have been too much of a genuine confrontation for the Passive Aggression Queen. But if she has more than two brain cells to bang together in that vast dome of hers (which I strongly doubt), she should instinctively know not to take me on, verbally or otherwise. Because unlike the other billers who giggle at her jokes and take her humiliation passively, I won't. I'm infinitely smarter, more insightful and a universe more confidant than she is, and will not give her power over me.

I don't think she cares for me, really, although she pretends to. I think I intimidate her, and that makes her already insecure little world seize right up. I can't tell you how many fucking times I have heard her tell the story about how she used to beat up other girls in high school because they went after her boyfriends. But I doubt very much that that was the real reason: it's just the one she used to lay a beating on any girl who threatened or intimidated her in anyway.

But we'll see what happens. I doubt that the information I shared with Head Office Lady and the Immediate Supervisor will go without someone having a serious talk with Bugs Bunny about her mouth.

And I don't mean her teeth.