You know it’s time to switch jobs when you find yourself gaslighting your boss.
I’d like to think I’m generally a good person. A little too spunky sometimes, but otherwise good, or at least not evil. In recent months though, especially after The Great Exodus at work when several key people dropped the mic and left, things changed. I changed. I started acting rude towards my new boss who, in my very biased opinion, is a complete capital-I idiot.
My boss is an old white man who got the job because he’s the CEO’s former boss’ brother. Like most white men, he likes talking about things he doesn’t know anything about. He also asks the same questions over and over, and he always butts in during meetings. He likes hearing his own voice, I guess?
I feel bad disliking him though, I really do. I have stopped attending standups in person because seeing him and the CEO triggers me. I have also stopped putting in my 100% at work because even though they gave me a raise, I feel like they also expect me to teach the person who’s supposed to train me.
I can go on and on about the million reasons why I hate my job but that is no longer the point. The point is I do not like the person I’ve become. It’s time to look for a new job.
I spoke to my office crush yesterday. My friend K orchestrated the whole thing a la Taylor Swift’s “Mastermind.”
It started when Office Crush reported a bug, which according to K was not really a bug. K texted me: “I will tag you in the report and you should go up to his desk to help him in person.”
I was hesitant at first because I generally do not walk up to people’s desks to chat, but K convinced me. “Just do it, it’s not weird,” he said. So I messaged my crush and asked if he still needed help. Turned out he already found a workaround, haha. He did have another question for me though, so I walked up to his desk and got him the calculation he was looking for.
After sorting out the calcs, I walked up to MM’s desk who was just two shimmies away from Office Crush’s spot. A few minutes later, Office Crush stood up and joined me and MM. We started talking about the bars and clubs we’ve been to, and my crush recommended this underground bar close to our office.
“They play old songs which is really cool,” my crush said.
“Wait,” I said. “How old is old?”
“Like our age.”
“Early 2000s? I’m 24.”
Boom! He’s a kid! Yeah…no. Not gonna happen, bro.
I stayed in the office until 6ish pm that night, and on my way out, I saw another officemate Duke.
“Hey Duke, what’s up? You’re heading out?” I asked.
“Yea!” he said. “I’m going out with friends to see some lights in Blah Blah Park, wanna come?”
“Woah, you serious? Hell yeah I’m down!”
So Duke and I waited in the lobby for his friends, which turned out to be his brother, his church friend, and his church friend’s father. I asked Duke if he’s sure that it’s okay for me to ride with them because I could also drive, and Duke was like, yeah it’s good.
“And you’re sure they’re fine with me joining?” I asked.
“Yeah. These guys barely talk to anyone new, so you’ll be doing them a favor by joining us.”
And it was cool, yes, but also surreal. Riding in the backseat of a car with three male strangers and a coworker whom I barely spoke to before that night was its own tier of Weird. I was texting K and C the entire time so it wasn’t like nobody knew where I was, but I 100% did not expect to find myself in that situation on a random Wednesday evening.
The lights in the park were pretty though.
Duke’s friend got hungry so we went to a Tim Hortons, a coffeehouse chain that is as ubiquitous in Canada as basketball courts are in the Philippines. It was the first time in a long time that I visited a Timmies. I don’t even remember the last time I went inside one, but I do remember going through a drive-thru a couple months ago when I was still seeing The Guy. Anywaaaay…
While we were at Timmies, I learned that Duke’s friend is “obsessed with kava.” They were adamant that kava was not addictive, so they insisted on using the word “obsessed” instead of “addicted.”
“Wait, what’s kava?” I asked.
“It’s this root that has natural anti-anxiety properties,” the friend’s father said.
Apparently kava is a drug that is not really a drug, and it is not sold in Canada because — something about it being not fully cleared by the health ministry? I don’t know. Don’t take my word for it. All I know is that kava can get you high but it’s not weed.
After the quick munch at Timmies, we explored the pedway network downtown. Winters are rough around here, so the buildings in downtown are connected through aboveground walkways. This way, the corporate folks and other downtowners do not have to suffer through the minus 40 chill during their daily commute.
Not gonna lie — there were several moments during the pedway tour when I low-key feared that maybe these guys were going to pull a Midsommar on me. Am I being brainwashed? Am I about to get kidnapped? Am I being recruited to a cult? I mean, they knew a lot about this kava thing, and at some point they pointed out that the moon was full that night. Also, they all met “at church.” I knew what the church was because other people have told me what it was (“Duke is [blank]”), but I will not tell you what it is. I will say though that this church does sort of have a cult-ish vibe.
But obviously I’m still alive so no, they didn’t pull a Midsommar on me that night. They’re just nice guys and, in many ways, also awkward. The pedway stroll eventually led us to this big fancy building that I was already familiar with because of my other lakwatsa nights. Instead of walking back with the guys to their car, I told them I would split from there and just walk to where I parked.
“Thanks guys, this was fun! It was nice meeting you all!” I told them.
“Thanks, Jolina!” Duke said. “This was really fun!”
And it was! Surreal and random, yes, but also fun.
I got home and immediately texted K and C what happened. I wanted to blog about it yesterday, but I ended up doing nothing. I just doom-scrolled on Twitter and stalked The Guy, as per usual.
I thought about texting him again. I guess there’s nothing wrong with texting one last time? Give it one last shot? I’m okay. I’m good. I know it won’t destroy me if he never replies again. I’ll survive. I caved and sent a quick text just before I dozed off.
It’s been a full day now and he hasn’t replied. Of course he hasn’t replied. But I’m okay. I gave it one last shot. I’m good. This is officially the curtain call, and I am officially taking a bow. My life is fine. I have a job interview tomorrow. I’m good.
Featured photo by dylan nolte.