Complaining About A Lack Of Reasons To Complain

| Working | January 15, 2016

(I am the treasurer of a volunteer organization. There is one board member who takes great delight in humiliating me, and tries to crucify me over the tiniest flaws in my reports. One night, he spends a half hour tearing me a new one over my font choice. I accept a new job overseas, and tender my resignation as treasurer. This one board member quickly jumps to the fore and is acclimated as the new treasurer. After the final meeting where it’s made official, he comes up to me with a very smug grin.)

Board Member: “Well, with me in charge, I’m glad there’ll finally be proper accounting in this organization. I’ll give you a week to get the books in order, and bring them by my store.”

(I reach under the board table and pull out a banker’s box.)

Me: “No need. Everything’s right here.”

Board Member: “Well, I’m certain you’ll need time to prepare [some highly specific financial reports].”

(I reach into the box and grab a ledger.)

Me: “You’ll find that report in here.”

(He glances through the ledger and finds the report he requested.)

Board Member: “Oh. Well, in one of your reports a few months ago, you provided an inventory of the office supplies we have. I’ll need all those, too, in order to get to work.”

(I reach under the board table and grab a second banker’s box.)

Me: “All the office supplies we have are in here. Inside, you’ll find a complete inventory list, and everything is accounted for.”

(His smug grin is turning into an angry scowl.)

Board Member: “I need the phone numbers of everyone in the head office so I confirm with them that everything’s in order.”

(I reach into the first box and pull out an address book.)

Me: “Every phone number you’ll need is right here.”

(He’s now grown quite angry at my level of preparedness.)

Board Member: “Well, you just thought of everything, didn’t you?”

Me: “I leave for my new job overseas in two months. If there’s something I didn’t think of, you’ll have until then to contact me.”

(When I came back from my job a year and a half later, I found a ton of mail and paperwork had been sent to me, because the new treasurer never bothered to inform anyone he was the new treasurer. When word that I was back in the country got around, the president called me up and begged me to come back!)

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