Question For My Readers

July 14, 2009

Have you ever dealt with an individual who views the entire universe as existing only to serve her own purposes, lacks even the faintest clue how her statements and actions are perceived by others, and is completely unaware that other people have their own goals and purposes? Gimme some fucking stories.


19 Responses to “Question For My Readers”

  1. It is impolite to write about me without providing the proper trackbacks.

  2. Geeka Says:

    @drisis: lol

    Anyhow, I had a tech like this once. She was out for maternity leave and thought that we just weren’t going to order anything for 2 months. If she didn’t use it, it wasn’t going to be ordered.
    She also had this bad habit of flirting with everything that walked and thought that this habit was going to keep her from having to do anything. To this day, if I hear someone laugh like her in response to a question, my neck tenses.
    I once told her that science didn’t take a vacation, and how I wasn’t going to work my cell culture around her ability to come in at 10, leave at 3 and have a lunch.
    It took me 45 minutes to explain to her that antibiotics wouldn’t help the flu.
    She was also really confused why I even bothered to finish my PhD after I got married, because, and I quote, “You don’t have to work now! Squee!”.
    She doesn’t know how anything in the lab works, as she is not a ‘computer person’, and shouldn’t have to know how it works.
    Blatantly ignores lab safety. All the lab doors are always unlocked: even after someone walked into her office and stole her wallet!
    She has the local regional accent, and doesn’t understand why people don’t understand the word ‘yinz’.
    Refuses to go to lunch with the lactose intolerant chinese members of the lab for lab outings to any other restaurant except the cheese heavy italian place.
    I have not met a more selfish, more idiotic, more lazy lab manager in all my life.

  3. Isn’t that called ‘autism’?

  4. Thelma Says:


    Narcissism would be a better fit. Antisocial personality disorder would, too.

  5. CCPhysicist Says:

    In my experience, that sort of behavior has been exhibited by men more often than women. I knew one case where some of us were astounded to learn he had died because the universe was still in existence when we got the phone call.

  6. bikemonkey Says:

    wtf, I thought you followed politics…?

  7. Nope. I have no idea what you are talking about. Never met anyone like that. Pretty much everyone I’ve met farts rainbows and shits roses.

  8. Let me direct you back to my “cell-phone” post. I was treated like a dimwitted lunatic for complaining about that, because really, doesn’t everyone enjoy having loud unstoppable cell phones ring in lab?

    But I suppose it’s rare to meet someone who behaves like that under all circumstances. Usually people have good sides. Somewhere.

  9. JaneB Says:

    I don’t want to start! DrN’s activities in my blog combine storeis about two very very solipsist people I work with and a couple of others who act that way sometimes.

    Classic example: We are team-teaching (obligatory) a basic first year science course. DrN says “I hate teaching lab classes, so we’ll cut them to the minimum”. I say “I quite enjoy labs, and they’re essential for encouraging students into our major. Tell you what, why don’t we change things around so that I do most of the labs and you do more of the lectures?” DrN: “everyone hates doing labs, therefore we will have as few as possible” Me: “I don’t mind doing labs, honestly” DrN: “you don’t have to pretend, no one likes labs”

    And so it goes.

    And I keep losing these discussions because she’s so convinced that she’s right that somehow its often easier to go along…

    Both my main DrN’s are female, by the way

  10. Well, I can’t tell a full story right now, but I am one colleague when I first joined the lab who was (is?) an absolutely awful, self-centered prick. Just one funny story involves the time I sat down with him to discuss one of our lab’s big impact papers on which he was 3rd or 4th author. I asked him what portion of the paper he was responsible for, and he replied, “All of it.” ?!?!?!?!?!!! And let’s just say that this was not a case of a lower author getting the big shaft. What a fucking delight.

  11. Catharine Says:

    One night we had a patient who needed emergent intubation. The anesthesia attending arrived and instead of extending his reach two inches or simply moving to the other side of the bed (alternatives which I did humbly suggest) in order to push the paralytic, he DEMANDED that we (nurses) find some extension tubing — which, at any given time, one has about a 50% chance of finding in the clean utility room. The patient, meanwhile, is turning all shades of purple and blue and his heart rate is dropping. So a nurse quickly found some extension tubing, primed it, reconnected the patient, etc. so Dr. Master of the Universe wouldn’t need to inconvenience himself. The patient came very close to arresting.

    It was bad, but not as bad as the surgeon who threw a used scalpel at a nurse.

    I have hundreds of them.

  12. Physiogroupie IV Says:

    CPP, I thought I emailed you about this ad nauseam.

  13. Superla Says:

    I once had a boss who would always eat during meetings. On one occasion, a piece of food came flying out of his mouth and landed on my shirt. He then, I shit you not, reached over, picked it off my chest, and ate it. No awkwardness about it at all. Why *wouldn’t* you spit on your support staff and then eat off them?

  14. I had a dean who would show up late to seminars, sit in the front, clip their fingernails, and even take a cell phone call. I mean can you say brazen motherfucker. She was a bitch to deal with to say the least. We got money to specifically renovate space and replace furniture for students in our department and she fucked us over by using the money to buy new furniture for herself and her lackey’s and then giving us the old shit. When she took a job somewhere else, she literally gave the university a two week notice that she would be gone and she even had the stones to leave with a university desktop and laptop.

  15. rehctaw Says:

    Consider yourself lucky that they let you live in their universe. Given their druthers, you’d be voted off with extreme prejudice.

    Stuck here, between the arrogant know-it-alls and their equally arrogant legions of know-nothing supporters is simply for the best in this best of all possible worlds eh?

  16. I’ve had to deal with a few. A couple situations were resolved with by saying, in a matter-of-fact tone: “If I ever have to deal with you again, it will involve a shovel and a deserted patch of woods.”

  17. Sili Says:

    This is scary. I can’t pinpoint anyone like that (with the exception of a few student coucellors) in my past.

    Which means that I’m it.

  18. Damian Grammaticus Says:

    Yes. You.

  19. Zachary Says:

    Yes. Me.

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