Not Climbing The Stairs Of Your Career

, , , , | Working | June 9, 2017

(We have lots of restrooms in the building; however, we only have one that you don’t have to take a short flight of stairs to get to. We usually keep it locked when there isn’t a performance to keep it clean and keep the supplies from being used up. I’m on crutches, so I ask for the key.)

Me: “Hey, boss, is it okay if I use the accessible bathroom?”

Boss: “Yeah, sure, here’s the key. Just give it back at the end of the day so you don’t have to keep asking for it. I’m not here tomorrow but [Manager who also has a key] will be and she’ll get it for you until we get you a copy made.”

Me: “Cool, thanks. I’ll get a doctor’s note with an estimate of when I’ll be off the crutches, but they’re saying about three weeks.”

Coworker: “Wait, what? Why does she get a key? I hate going up those stairs. I’m older than her and I’ve been here longer. I should be allowed to get a key, too!”

Boss: “She’s on crutches. You don’t have a physical reason, and after her ankle is better she’ll be using the upstairs bathroom like the rest of us — after her doctor okays it.”

(I leave and come back. My coworker is standing in front of the office door, fiddling with something and obviously waiting on me.)

Coworker: “Oh, hey! I’ll give the key back to [Boss]. Go on in. I’ll be there in a sec.”

Me: “Um, actually I’m keeping the key all day so I don’t have to keep asking for it.”

Coworker: “Then I’ll hold onto it for you and you can just tell me when you need it.”

Me: “That’s… not going to happen.”

Coworker: “Look, you’re young. I’m getting on up there and I don’t want to climb those stairs. Just give me the key.”

Me: “Tell you what. You tear several ligaments and tendons in your ankle and come to work anyway and then I’ll hand it over. Until then, you use the stairs like [Boss] said.”

(My coworker tried to get me written up for “insubordination” despite him being the same level of employee as me, but our boss gave him a stern talking to instead. He got fired when we caught him going through my desk, looking for my copy of the bathroom key. Of all the things to be fired over!)

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