A Matter of Extremes

I've been suffering an internal battle, lately...and not the kind that can be resolved with some fiber or pepto bismol, unfortunately.

The conflict is with, well, conflict. I'm not given to confrontation. It's not fear that has me shy away - after all, if defending myself would ever be a problem, all these martial arts have been a waste of time.

As an example, there's a guy a work, we'll call him Buzzkill, who MUST have his hands in everything: conversation, questions, issues, etc. And it's, frankly, very annoying. He not only puts himself in the middle of everything, he has backhanded comments & insults aplenty for everyone there who is obviously incompetent compared to him. Not to mention his CONSTANT complaining...

Now, I've spoken to my boss about this because talking to this looney toon is beyond pointless. However, the real issue is that it's becoming all about him. The office centers around this emotional terrorist & there's a palpable sense of gloom when he walks in at night. If I'm going to continue working there, this must stop.

Now, the conflict issue: I'm given to extremes in these cases. I've never been able to do anything but give up some ground or blast through in full-blown confrontation. A middle ground, where I don't wind up getting reprimanded by my boss but still let asshat buzzkill know his commentary needs to get lost, would be ideal.

I'm just not very good at the middle ground.

Honestly, I just want to tell him to STFU, stay out of my way & when I need his help, I will ask directly for it. (OK, I really want to go upside his head...which is one of those extremes) The problem is that I want him to get confrontational. I want him to get in my face & ask to take it outside. I'd love nothing more than to translate his emotional torture on us into a physical manifestation of my frustration.

That is plain wrong & to be a decent human being, it must be avoided.

How, then, do I confront this in a dignified manner, even if the antagonist is anything but dignified?


Mrs. Who said...

Go up to him, and tell him you need advice about handling another co-worker (appeal to his vanity). Then describe his behaviors, and ask him how he would handle it (w/o telling him it's about him). Then apply whatever he suggests to him.

patti said...

Whoa Mrs Who, that is brilliant. I was thinking Hap should get advice from BR as I was reading - I think BR has handled similar situations with amazing creativity in the past? But what you said was just plain brilliant.

I can't help you Hap, it would seem you and I have similar inability to be "diplomatic". I tend to say what I honestly think and that tends to get me into all sorts of hot water. People don't like to hear the truth. Especially if it is about themselves.

pamibe said...

I'd do as Mrs Who suggested - what could be better?

Anything else will not work - if you're trying to be dignified, since the a$$ is seemingly incapable of such behavior.

Let us know what happens!

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patti said...

Hey Hap! looks like annoynymous has all the answers for you!

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RonnyEngrish said...


RonnyEngrish said...

first off.... It isn't me is it? Wait. I am never on line like I used to be anymore. Safe to say it isn't me. Whew.

Mrs. Who. Slick! remind me never to get into a battle of wits w/ you. I think I would find myself unarmed. Patti. I too find that the direct path to a solution is favorable.... Until I found myself in the praises of everyone but the people in charge and on the receiving end of an official reprimand. For some reason they don't take kindly to anyone showing authority but themselves.

what would Ronny do other than screw it up for sure?

Along Mrs. Who's line of thinking ... there is a Proverb that says to pour hot ashes of kindness on your enemies head. Nothing hurts worse. But in the case of an ignoramous as you find yourself confronted with... he might not notice. If the environment is right ... around the water cooler for instance... stop everything and turn everyone's attention to him and then pour on the false platitudes seeking his "ever-so-important-wisdom-and-insights-what-were-we-thinking-not-coming-to-you-first". pile it on thick and deep. The more you make it uncomfortable for him to continue the behavior (the possibility) that the more likely he will change to something that is less uncomfortable.

then again, myself included, somepeople just need a two-by-four aka Clue-by-four to the cranium.

RonnyEngrish said...

Oh and the investment advice. go ahead and hunt that anonymous punk down and kick his butt.

What is it with the freaking Anony punks?!?

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patti said...

Wave - just letting you know I stop by every now and then :)

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patti said...

*Waving again* Hope things are going well....

SilverWings said...

*pokes Crunch Time with a stick* Hmmm...I think it's dead...

In all seriousness, I hope ya'll are ok! It's been too quiet 'round these here parts lately...


pamibe said...

Just thinking about you; thought I'd say HI! Hope you're well and the problem was ironed out with little help from 'anon'. ;)

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