Friday, June 11, 2010

A Snob, yes. An Adult, debatable.

I am twenty-three years old. I live on my own. I pay my own bills. I shop for my own groceries. I cook my own food. I can stay up past 10 on a weeknight (though to be honest, this is personally a challenge as I’m usually in bed by 9:30). By conventional standards, I am an adult. I’ll let you in on a secret though- I am most certainly not.

And to prove it…here is the latest reason I can not yet consider myself to be grown up:

My boss called my mom.

A few weeks ago I was out with my team toasting a coworker who was leaving the firm. My boss declined the invite, but was aware I was attending said event. Lunch wore on for several hours…and copious amounts of socializing was occurring amongst my coworkers. Being the new kid, I was enjoying finally getting a chance to get to know the team outside of the workplace, and while I likely should’ve been more concerned with the time, I was not. That was until my coworkers phone rang- her boss had been contacted by my boss regarding my whereabouts. It struck me as odd that no one had phoned me directly but I dismissed the thought and called my boss at his office to ensure him I was on my way back. Four hours after I’d left. My wisest decision- probably not.

I returned to find that he’d left an hour or so earlier, but had called and emailed me several times regarding a document that needed to be sent to St. Louis. I quickly took care of the task and spent the remaining 45 minutes of the work day in shame and apprehension for going AWOL on my boss. Still, I wondered why he hadn’t just called my cell phone first, I would’ve left immediately and handled the issue in a far more timely manner.

Well, I got my answer the next day when I met with him to discuss my progress on a few projects. After our standard conversation he paused for a noticeably long period of time before stating that he wished to ‘wrap up some loose ends regarding yesterday’. Matter of factly, he explained it was fine that I was out with the team but he would prefer if I were easily accessible and maintained contact with him should I be gone for any extended period of time. I assured him I would do this, and suggested I have his cell phone number in my phone for just such an occasion. I followed up that suggestion reminding him that I had provided him my cell phone number when I started here six months ago, to which he responded with another long pause- an air of awkwardness immediately pervaded the office air. “I called the number you gave me-it was your mother."

I was mortified. I pictured my boss placing the call, quizzically saying ‘Amy?’ as my mother answers, only to have her say ‘Oh no! This is her mom!’. The embarrassment I felt harkened back to my middle school days when the phone call from the cute boy was intercepted by the madre…only this time it’ not my seat at the cool kids table in the cafeteria in jeopardy, its my reputation with my boss.

In my defense, our numbers differ only slightly. Nonetheless…my boss called my mom. I am absolutely still recovering from the embarrassment and awkwardness of the entire episode…and working hard to make up for it.

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