I've long become accustomed to working with macho jackasses who try to talk down to me. Sometimes I want to slap them upside the head, but I have learned over the years that sometimes the less that I say, the more they will get out their own rope and hang themselves. So I just zip my lip and keep quiet.
Today was one of those delightful days.
There is this guy at my work institution who has been talking down to me for years. There is always a constant power struggle with any decision that I make and he always feels the need to try to criticize many of the things that I do at work. Many years ago it used to bother me, but now I just love to sit back and let him underestimate me.
And oh yes, he always underestimates me.
Today this guy organized a business lunch with someone "important" and throughout the entire meeting he talked nonstop about himself and all of his qualifications. He actually started talking on my behalf, answering questions for me, explaining what I do for my job, and on and on and on. I was getting so irritated and it almost occurred to me that I should shut him up, but I just decided that I really didn't care to put in any effort.
I sat there for almost two hours barely saying anything. Every once in a while, I asked the person who we were having lunch with a couple of questions about his business and services, but other than that I just pretty much sat there. Quiet, patient and calculated.
At the end of the lunch meeting, the "important" (for lack of a better term) person reached for the check and I grabbed it first. I said, "I'll get both of your lunches".
The important person said, "Well, I'm not accustomed to that. Usually I pay for the lunch. I have an expense account, and you know that I'm a pretty macho guy". Yes, I swear, he really said that.
I just wanted to subtly throw in a little something different into the mix.
Nonetheless I strutted over to the register and paid for both of the meals. We shook hands and parted goodbyes. After the important person left, the macho guy from work talked down to me the whole way back to the office about how I should have talked more to impress this man, blablabla. I literally had to listen to this macho idiot talk my ear of about his wonderful self and all of the great advice that I should learn from him all afternoon long.
Tonight I came home from work and the telephone rang and lo and behold it was the important person asking me if I wanted to do some consulting on the side for his business. I mentioned that I wasn't really that familiar with his area of specialization and he told me that he needed a fresh way of looking at things from an outside perspective. He didn't need to see my resume, he said, because the few questions that I had asked him at lunch were exactly what he was looking for.
What's the motto of the story? Just turn the cheek and laugh inside sometimes when they are are talking down to you, ladies, because with hard work, patience, and strategic thinking we will still come out on top. And always remember that a kick ass woman can still get her way even when she is quiet as a mouse.
Other than that there is no motto. Just gloating=)
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