Auntyji helps makes life a little easier
I have a problem at work and I need your help with it. My co workers have complained that I am discourteous and abrupt to them – to the point of being outright rude.
I was quite surprised by this – and was too shocked to even say anything. They have brought this up on three occasions, and each time, I get too surprised to defend myself. In fact, I don’t think I am rude at all. I have worked with these people for over three years and things are pretty busy at work and we all get stressed, but I don’t recall being outright rude to anyone. Can you please help me address this issue – as I would like to be a better colleague.
According to the Talmud, my dear Koyal, when a man calls you a donkey, do not heed his words, but if two men call you a donkey, it is time to buy a saddle. In other words, it’s quite likely that you are indeed rude and discourteous, and you don’t even know when you are doing it.
But the most important thing here is that you would like to address this issue – and here is how you can do it. I would recommend that you take one colleague at a time out to coffee, and sit and explain to them that you are quite upset about the fact that they think you are rude and discourteous to them, and would like to change this behaviour. Then ask for their help in helping you address this issue. Ask them to point it out to you the next time you are rude to them – and explain that you will deal with that issue on the spot. Then, the most important part, don’t forget to thank your colleagues for bringing this to your attention – in fact, they have done you a favour by telling you all this – so you owe it to them to make sure that this issue is addressed. So, then, the next time they point out that you are being rude or discourteous, take a deep breath and review your behaviour. Could it be remotely possible that you were being rude? For Kali Mata’s sake, don’t start arguing with your colleagues like a demented churail. But be calm, and apologise. Then, take another deep breath and say what you have to say in a calm, modulated tone. Oftentimes, it is our tone that makes people think we are being rude. Good luck, and please keep me posted. The last thing we need is for your colleagues running around saying people of the subcontinent are rude and discourteous. Nay, we want to be known as the gentle people of the East.
Damn it, I’m (not) lost
I have been married for one and a half years, and my husband who is an engineer is a wonderful man, and very bright, but he has an issue that grates on me. Now Auntyji, I know you can be harsh sometimes, but there is usually truth to what you say. I am a good wife and I love my husband, but every time we have to go somewhere, he gets lost and we drive around aimlessly trying to find where we are going. He won’t accept any help from me because he thinks there isn’t a problem. Auntyji, my otherwise brilliant husband cannot read a road map, and I love him less for it! There, I have said it. You will probably call me a wench of a wife, but if so, so be it. But Auntyji, can you at least try to help me out? How do I change my feelings for my husband when he drives me around the bend, literally, for the nth time because he cannot read a road map?
Oh dear, what to do, vindaloo, what to do? Well, I can understand your predicament, I too would look down upon Uncleji if he could not read a map. So here are your solutions. First, each time you go somewhere new, you can do the driving. If you think you know the way there and you are better than your husband at driving, then you be the driver. Second, if this does not work, then you be the navigator. You read the map and tell your husband which way to go. Third, if all these measures fail, then you need to get out the big guns. Get a couple of mutual friends and go somewhere new with your husband doing the driving. When he gets lost, your friends, especially if they have had their tongues loosened with Stella Artois, will waste no time in telling your husband he cannot navigate to save his life. Maybe he will pay attention to what his friends are saying. I find it hard to believe that your husband refuses to address this issue – unless of course, you have not told him that this is an issue. But don’t love him less for this lack – this is an issue which can be addressed. With your help, mind you! There, see, I did not call you a wench once.
13 or 30?
Yesterday we went shopping at Marrickville Metro and there my wife and I saw a girl who was probably only 13 years old. She looked like she had not undergone puberty yet, but she was wearing very short denim shorts, and a midriff teeshirt showing off the stomach, and her navel was pierced. She was wearing eye makeup and had a bandana on. Now, I took one look at this girl and wondered what had gone wrong in her life that made her dress like that at that age. And by that, I meant she was provocatively dressed. I looked at her and continued with my shopping in a state of zen-like bliss, until I realised with horror that my wife, who is the most liberal person I know, had marched up to the girl and had engaged her in conversation. My wife asked the girl how old she was – and the girl said 13. My wife did not say anything else after that to the girl – but I could just sense her disapproval. My wife then asked my opinion on why the girl dressed like that, and then spent the next 15 minutes talking about the girl. I am amazed that one girl had such an influence on my wife. I asked my wife why she was so interested in the girl, and she said that she was amazed that no one had told the girl that what she was wearing was inappropriate for her age. In any case, I don’t really have a problem, but I just wanted to share this with you Auntyji.
I am so pleased that you don’t consider all this an issue, and you simply wanted to share your experience with me. How kind you are. What can I say – I too am most flummoxed by what girls wear nowadays. It is very sad to think that society accepts this. But what to do? The girl was not your daughter, and even though she is someone else’s daughter, it is not our place to say anything – especially if she was a stranger. But what you can do is write to teenage magazines expressing your outrage at the liberalisation of society – someone needs to make a stand. Maybe you can convince your wife to do this. Please do let me know what stand you intend to take against this issue – or like the millions of other apathetic people, you too will say nothing on this important issue.