In my past lives as a human resources manager and employment lawyer, I was asked a lot of questions as part of my job. The same holds true in my current stint as a trainer and investigator. Thanks to all these questions, I have learned something very important.
No, I was referring to something important about myself. I discovered that I have a great filter. The Evil Skippy side of my brain usually thinks of an instant response – something scathing, hysterical or both. My filter keeps me quiet until I can translate the Skippy-ese into Professional Lingo. For example, where Evil Skippy might say, “Shut up, you moronic excuse for a life form,” I take a deep breath and replace that thought with, “Drop dead you twit.” Wait. Bad example. O.K., perhaps the filter isn’t perfect.
Here are some comments that Evil Skippy thought and I sort of wish I’d had the guts to say out loud.
1. A woman who claimed that all of her co-workers harassed her asked, “Isn’t it illegal for everyone to tell me that I’m ugly?”
Evil Skippy: “No, not in this case. It seems more descriptive to me.”
2. My co-presenter was unsure about her outfit just before it was our turn to speak to a huge crowd. She asked, “Do these pants make me look fat?”
Evil Skippy: “No, I think it is the 25 extra pounds you’re carrying.”
The same woman asked me another time, “Does this dress make me look cheap?”
Evil Skippy: “No, I’d say mid-priced.”
3. A new attorney conducted his first deposition while I watched. Afterwards, he asked, “What can I do to improve?”
Evil Skippy: “You don’t need to do a thing. You’re bound to improve. There’s no way it could ever be this bad again.”
4. While teaching Harassment Prevention, a man said, “I want everyone to know that the ladies here can make a pass at me any time and I won’t complain.”
Evil Skippy: “Lose the comb-over and you might get an offer or two, but don’t hold your breath.”
5. During a short break from training, an attendee stopped me – at the door to the restroom – and said, “Do you mind if I stop you for a quick question?”
Evil Skippy: “Only if you don’t mind when I pee on your feet.”
6. During my interview of the most boring and most talkative applicant in the universe, he asked, “What else would you like to know about me?”
Evil Skippy: “Do you have an ‘OFF’ button?”
7. The morning after a bachelorette party, a co-worker moaned, “Do you think people can tell that I’m hungover?”
Evil Skippy: “No, I’m sure most people are thinking dysentery or Ebola.”
8. At training, an angry man said, “These rules are a bunch of politically correct bull sh**. How am I supposed to know what I can say or not say so I don’t get a complaint?”
Evil Skippy: “Sir, you obviously can’t tell. Apply this duct tape over your mouth as a preventative measure and you should be fine.”
9. During training, a participant went into labor and had to be rushed to the hospital.
Evil Skippy: “Don’t leave without completing your evaluation form – or I can complete it for you.”
10. A magazine reporter asked, “Do you ever get asked really stupid questions?”
Evil Skippy: “No, that was actually the first.”
Your turn. What are some things you sort of wish you’d said?