I Have A Real Estate Deal To Die For!

by admin on August 8, 2011

When my brother died 10 years ago, many of his childhood friends came for the pre-funeral visitation. Friend One married a real estate agent, who immediately upon meeting me asked whether I owned or rented, then proceeded to deliver a sales pitch. Friend Two, who had long had a crush on my sister, started hitting on her. When he met her boyfriend he tried to start a fight with him over her. Friend Three and his mother were there hoping to lure my sister into marriage and motherhood.  When that didn’t work, they turned to me and asked, “What about you? How old are you?”, and speculated on my childbearing capacity. By then Friend One and Friend Two were fighting and had been kicked out of the funeral home. Friend Four approached us later with a request for a recently-purchased and expensive belonging of my brother’s “to remember him by.” He also asked for the receipt.

P.S. – My brother was a good, decent person, in spite of his friends. He was simply too accepting of people with questionable behavior.

When I told my boss I needed time off for my brother’s funeral, he asked if I had “made the whole thing up” so I could get time off from work. Then a friend asked: “Well, how do you think I feel? One day my brother is going to die.” This is all true, I swear! 0729-11

{ 59 comments… read them below or add one }

Pixie August 8, 2011 at 9:09 am

I am sorry for your loss and having to be put through such events when trying to mourn your brother.

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ferretrick August 8, 2011 at 9:16 am

You can’t do much about your brother’s friends, but I recommend getting a new friend and a new boss of your own. :) Good grief, what horrible people. So sorry you had to go through that.

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The Elf August 8, 2011 at 9:56 am

People are often clunky and awkward around death, not knowing what to say to the deceased person’s family. But, wow, this isn’t even close to that. With awkwardness, at least the person’s heart is in the right place even as they put their foot in their mouth. Not so here! I can’t think of a single way to give any of them the benefit of the doubt that they just didn’t know what to say. Maybe the last, but that is particularly awkward. And the boss? Maybe I’m just lucky, but I can’t think of a single boss of mine that I have had that would have cast doubt on my need to take leave for a funeral. To remind me that I’ll need a death certificate for HR timekeeping paperwork, sure. But not like that. Wow.

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Wink-n-Smile August 8, 2011 at 10:15 am

I’m so sorry for your loss.

I think people like your boss are the reason we have obituaries. After all, “if it’s in the paper, it must be true!”

These unfeeling characters aren’t worth your time. Unfortunately, when it comes to your boss, the money is worth your time, so you have to put up with him. Good luck with that.

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josie August 8, 2011 at 10:20 am

Wow, its hard to work thru your grief and deal with ding dongs at the same time. I wish you well.

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nannerdoman August 8, 2011 at 10:27 am

When my aunt was dying and I asked for permission to leave work to be present for her last rites, my boss said, “You may as well go. You’re no good to me or anyone else if you can’t do your work properly.”

Some people seem to have been born with a major compassion deficit.

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gramma dishes August 8, 2011 at 10:32 am

What an astonishing bunch of duds! So many offenses in so little time in such an inappropriate setting.
Good grief!
Each one seems to be trying to top the others for the Disgusting Behavior Award.
But even your own friend’s comment and the incredibly inappropriate response from your boss adds them to the contender list for that same award!
I’m so sorry for your loss and even more sorry that you had to deal with this kind of idiocy while you were mourning your brother’s death. I don’t know about your personal ‘afterlife’ beliefs, but I’d love to think that your brother was observing this and getting a laugh from the absurdity of it.

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GoTwins August 8, 2011 at 10:46 am

Where’s that jaw-dropping smiley when I need it? Good grief!

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--E August 8, 2011 at 10:49 am

Yikes.

I hope you have moved away from that part of the world. The only explanation that makes any sense is something in the water. Did anyone NOT behave abominably?

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Elea August 8, 2011 at 10:56 am

This is heartbreaking to read. Funerals are such a painful and vulnerable time for the friends and family of the departed. I simply cannot fathom how anyone could have the nerve to express any intentions other than comforting those in mourning. I am curious as to the age of these questionable personalities who attended the funeral.

A year after high school graduation a good friend died. Having come from a small town it was natural that nearly everyone from the graduating class and then some arrived for the funeral in order to pay their respects. We were all still in our teens for the most part. While I do not think that youth is an excuse for poor etiquette, I find myself very relieved to report that everyone was on their best behavior. Everyone from bullies to former high school paramours where there to mourn the passing of a classmate. There were no fights, no outlandish displays of emotion, no attention seeking, no unseemly behavior at all. If we could pull together, put differences aside, and show respect, then anyone should be capable of this.

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D August 8, 2011 at 11:45 am

I remember when my grandmother died. It was hard, as she was pretty much the glue that kept the family together. My uncle (by marriage) came up to my husband, who was a computer technician at the time, and started asking him to repair his computer! At my grandmother’s funeral and right in front of me too! My husband was gracious to him but in private we’ve fumed over that for years, and whenever they offer to “trade” something (never money of course) for computer work, it just brings it all back. That’s all they can see when they look at us – free computer repairs. It makes me sick.

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Lizajane August 8, 2011 at 11:57 am

Well, how do you think I feel? Someday my brother’s uncle’s cousin’s grandma’s son-in-law is going to die. And maybe his dog. How do you think I’ll feel then? Huh? Huh?

Unbelievable.

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V August 8, 2011 at 11:57 am

Oh, OP, I’m so sorry you had to deal with buffons during your brother’s funeral. I never know exactly what to say at funerals, so I stick with the trite but polite “I’m so sorry for your loss. He/She will be missed and you and your family will be in my thoughts.”

My grandmother’s services were in her EXTREMELY small home town. During visitation, a gentleman wondered up to my dad and I who were outside smoking, taking a moment to collect ourselves. An old man with very kind blue eyes shuffled up to us, introduced himself and then asked who the service was for. We responded with my grandmother’s name, and the old guy exclaimed “Miss XXXX! Why I’ve not heard from her in years, I wonder how that boy of hers turned out! I’d better get home and outta these overalls so I can come pay my respects to the family.” He made a few very funny observations about the little town we were in along with a little history. With that, he turned and shuffled off to an old beat up pick up on the other side of the tiny town square. About 45 minutes later, the old man re appeared in slacks and a button down shirt at the funeral home with a home made pie with a “sorry for your loss” little card from his wife. He barely remembered my grandmother who’d not lived in the town since she was 20. When he realized he’d been speaking to “that boy of hers” outside earlier, he did apologize, saying if he’d known we were the family, he’d never of bothered us at such a time.

Small towns are funny like that. Sometimes the funeral home is as much a part of social life as church on Sunday. I thought it was very nice of the man and his wife to feel obligated to pay their respects to one of the town’s children, even if my direct family did not know him. I was 15 when that happened, and I have not gone to a funeral of a non immediate relative without a pie or basket full of home made bread since then. I never met that old man’s wife, but her very kind, short, and sweet card and delicious pie made a big impression on me and what kind of “Southern Lady” I wanted to be.

While it is wonderful your brother was loving enough to care for everyone, I hope you were able to gain some closure from the service despite his friends ill manners.

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Debbi August 8, 2011 at 12:00 pm

When my father passed away very unexpectedly, I was a mess. My mother had been in the cardiac unit of the hospital when he passed away in his sleep. The day after the funeral, my then-boss called me up to find out why I was not at work. Wasn’t I “done grieving” yet??? Really? Really now?

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Mjaye August 8, 2011 at 12:01 pm

When my father died, the morons came out in force. My Uncle wehn through his closet and took all his suits, another relative tried to take his watch as a rememberance ( I stopped that one and 21 years later she is still mad at me) and my work place wanted the obit to make sure I was not taken the generous three days off for a lie.
The best was my Aunt, however. We are Jewish and were sitting shiva. For those who do not know, people bring over tons of food and feed the people who visit. You are not suppose to take any food out of the house until the mourning period is over. My Aunt, however, decided to ignore that custom and actually stuck food under her sweater to sneak it out. My friend from HS, who happens to be g*y saw her and told us. When she found out we were laughing at her, she began screaming at that little f word. No wonder we do not talk to this day.
Oh, forgot to mention the extra food goes to charity at the end of Shiva.

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icekat August 8, 2011 at 12:07 pm

An earlier poster said it was hard to think of a way to give these folks the benefit of the doubt. I agree that their behavior was awful, but let me give it a shot.

Depending on the age group involved, it’s possible that your brother’s friends had not yet come to grips with their own mortality. And when your brother’s death forced them to stare their mortality right in the face, they reacted with deep, deep denial. “La-la-la-I’m-not-listening” type of denial.

So they talk about real estate deals and they hit on people and they angle for marriages because, hey, we’re never ever ever ever gonna die and don’t you tell us otherwise!

Now, the fellow who wanted your brother’s valuable item and your insensitive boss are another kettle of fish altogether. But I think it’s just barely possible that some of the people you had to put up with were just in denial and reacting very badly.

Or maybe they’re just boors. Heck, what do I know?

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Harley Granny August 8, 2011 at 12:12 pm

I’m so sorry for the loss of your brother….made even worse than the bozos at the funeral.

Sadly I work with a few people that are the reason that bosses no longer take your word for family funerals. One ladies grandmother has dies three times.

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Lucy August 8, 2011 at 12:23 pm

I’ve had some doozies of bosses but none like this! Holy cow!

(I’ve also been to some doozies of weddings, funerals, and memorials, but, again, nothing, thankfully, that merits an Etiquette Hell submission.)

Sometimes I’d just like to shake people and ask them what the #@$! they were thinking. Except that would be pretty rude of me.

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Erica August 8, 2011 at 1:01 pm

Friend Four approached us later with a request for a recently-purchased and expensive belonging of my brother’s “to remember him by.” He also asked for the receipt.

I can’t stop laughing at this one — the receipt is the icing on the clueless cake!!!

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lkb August 8, 2011 at 1:04 pm

My condolences on your loss, even these many years afterwards. Sorry you and your loved ones had to deal with such clods at such a difficult time.

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Riri August 8, 2011 at 1:15 pm

Totally inappropriate of all of them! I suppose you had to put up with the inconsiderate boss purely for income reasons, but I hope your brother’s rude friends are permanently out of your life now! Ugh, I think the lecherous Friend 2 that hit on your sister is the worst… what a creeper! My condolences to you and your family. As if you didn’t have enough on your mind already without having to deal with inappropriate guests!

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Rug Pilot August 8, 2011 at 1:24 pm

Fortunately these obnoxious people were your brother’s “friends”. They need not be even your acquaintances. I can’t say as much for the boss. May your brother’s memory be for a blessing.

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Hemi Halliwell August 8, 2011 at 1:50 pm

OP- I understand your plight. My stepfather passed away on 7-31-11 from a sudden illness. His 4 brothers had very rarely visited in the 25 years he was with my mother- maybe 5 times total. Once to ask my stepfather & mother if they wanted to go see a brother’s new lake house (this was right after they had both lost their jobs due to the place they had worked for 20+ years shutting down), once to see stepdad in the hospital, once to introduce a new girlfriend and once to tell stepdad his father had passed. The last visit was shortly before stepdad passed to ask if they could go through stepdad’s storage building to “look for stuff that had belonged to their dad”.
The last two times stepdad was admitted to ICU for problems related to his diabetes, the brothers did not visit or even call to check on him. Stepdad passed on Sunday; brother 1 and brother 2 showed up at the funeral home on Monday when Mom was making arrangements and wanted to know if stepdad had any money in the bank and if he had left any for them in the will!! And at the visitation on Tuesday, brother 3 asked if he could get a gun stepdad had promised him. Mom said she was not ready to start giving things away/out. TWO DAYS LATER, brother 3 called back and asked about the gun again and another shotgun of stepdad’s he wanted. My mother told him not to call again, she would call him when she decided to start the process of going through things.
The 3 brothers did not even care enough to come see his brother when he was in a diabetic coma in the ICU but he wanted to go through his things and bank account as soon as he was pronounced dead. Brother 4 never called, did not attend the visitation or funeral.
I know alot of people are unsure of what to say at funerals but I think “Do NOT ask for things of the deceased” should be at the top of the list. Has everyone in the world lost their sympathy and common sense?

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Tara August 8, 2011 at 1:59 pm

Were you putting on a brave face, OP? Not that anything you did could excuse their behavior, but perhaps they assumed that you weren’t close to your brother, and so they could behave as if nothing was wrong. I mean, I would LIKE to think that no one could be so heartless, and that it was an honest mistake.

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Mojo August 8, 2011 at 2:01 pm

When my father died, my brother claimed I’d been mean to him at the funeral. So he cut off contact and hasn’t talked to me since. Mother told me I had to back off, be nice to him and show him more patience and understanding. After all, as she put it, “he’s going through a rough patch, his father just died.” Like mine didn’t!

Well done for holding your head high, and showing more dignity than I did!

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Pam B August 8, 2011 at 2:30 pm

We had some interesting distant relatives at a family funeral….. their comments made for some welcome laughs at the absolute absurdity of it all! Some people are just so clueless, it’s pitiable.

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Leslie Holman-Anderson August 8, 2011 at 2:40 pm

This is simply appalling! I’m so sorry you had to put up with this crap — and crap it was, so that’s what I’m calling it.

I, too, have a story of a time when things went far better than expected: my nephew committed suicide in a fit of depression that nobody knew he was suffering from (depression sufferers are often good at hiding it.) His family was LDS (Mormon) but most of his extensive group of friends belonged to a Goth RPG group called the Camarillo. The funeral was held in the local LDS ward, and everyone showed up dressed in what they considered a formal and respectful manner — the family & ward members in typical going-to-church clothes, and his friends in their Goth best. And there they sat, not in a bloc of black and silver among the ultra-conservatively dressed rest, but mingled, hugging each other in memory of a truly nice boy.

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DocCAC August 8, 2011 at 2:41 pm

Through the years, dealing with families of patient who died, I’ve seen more than one variation on this, although it was always family members behaving badly in one way or another. I can recall at least two instances where the police had to be at the viewing to escort family by first wife out so second wife and her kids could come in and have their time, and were present at the funeral itself to prevent any problems from starting (small town, everyone knows everyone else and not a ton of crime). As for your boss, I will have to assume he is an idiot unless you are like my bro-in-law who kept taking off work because his mom (my MIL) had to be taken to the doctors; he had to bring her home from the hospital or he had to go see her in the hopital. This would have been ok, except he actually did none of these things–that all fell to my hubby and his sis. When his half-sister’s mother died recently, he told the boss he was going to the funeral (he, hubby and one sis all have the same parents, this half sis had a different mother). We made sure he actually went to the funeral as we arranged to all ride together. I really think if he had not gone with us, he would have had “car trouble” and stayed home in bed. As for your co-worker, yes, some day her brother will die. If it happens when you are still co-workers, I hope you refrain from treating her like she treated you, or reminding her of what she said. Perhaps she will apologize to you then, but don’t hold your breath. In my hometown church, two sisters had sons. Sis 1’s son was diagnosed with leukemia right after high school graduation and died two years later, right after Christmas, so of course Christmas was never the same, and she mourned her loss. After 3-4 years, sis 2 asked her at church, “Aren’t you over that YET?”. Not long after, sis 2’s son was diagnosed with leukemia (strong family history of leukemias of one type or another–there are 10 types), and died after a couple of years at Easter. Of course, his mother mourned him every year, and my mother wondered if sis 2 remembered her words to sis 1, but of course never asked her. (no, I’m not suggesting her son died as some sort of punishment for her thoughtless, heartless remark, only that it turned out very ironic). I have found people say stupid, thoughtless, selfish even cruel things when their brain doen’t engage before their mouth does, and although they may live to regret their remark, often do not apologize for them later.

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Cat August 8, 2011 at 3:01 pm

Funerals tell you what people are at their core. Whem Mom passed and my father, brother, and I went to the funeral home to see her for the first time, my brother (her only son) walked over to the casket, grabbed her corpse by the arm, waved it in the air, and chortled, “Hey, look, she’s soft!”That was when I realized he was probably not just selfish and spoiled as I had always believed. He was 3 days from his 24th birthday. I, after other charming episodes, realized he is a sociopath.

Two days later, at the official viewing, a woman I did not know came over to me as I was crying, and told me off, saying that I was a Christian so I should rejoice that she was in Heaven with Jesus; I was just being selfish and unChristian by being saddened at her death. I wish that I had thought to remind her that Jesus wept at the tomb of Lazarus even though He knew Lazarus was to rise in another minute. I love Christians who decide they are more Christian than Christ.

And then there was the assistant principal who called our registrar a day after the registrar’s son was murdered in cold blood to remind her that she would need to bring back the school keys if she intended to be out any longer.

Every funeral should have at least one large person who is authorized to chuck out anyone acting like an idiot.

I am sorry for your loss. Chuck those horrible people into Etiquette Hell to roast!

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Lily G August 8, 2011 at 3:25 pm

@ Mjaye: “My friend from HS, who happens to be g*y saw her and told us”. M, did you mean he was a goy or he was gay?

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babs August 8, 2011 at 3:26 pm

OP, it’s hard enough when you lose a loved one without having to deal with these insensitive morons!

“Friend Four approached us later with a request for a recently-purchased and expensive belonging of my brother’s “to remember him by.” He also asked for the receipt.”

I was reminded of when we were moving my in-laws to live in a guest house we had built for them. My mother-in-law was a wonderful artist and had her paintings all over her house. We all live in Florida (they lived 3 hours north of us) and one of the “seasonal” residents stopped by and told me that my MIL had always told him he could have a painting, and he specified which one. Since my MIL was in early stages of Alzheimer’s, I asked my father-in-law and his response was “I think I’ll hold onto it.” I didn’t want to make my FIL seems uncaring, so I said to the man, “Mom often promises something without realizing what she is saying, so we’re not going to let anything go right now.” His response: “Would they even know?” I was so frosted at that selfish remark, I’m so glad I didn’t give anything to that CLOD! BTW, once we got them moved in, she tried to give a porcelain doll that her other daughter-in-law made her to the cable installer! Further proof that she was prone to do some wacky stuff!

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Angie August 8, 2011 at 3:41 pm

@ Harley Granny: Nowadays with blended families, there are people who have lots of grandparents, but I agree some people do use it as an excuse.

A friend of mine was devastated when her grandmother passed away. They had been quite close; she even lived with her grandma for a while when she was a teenager and going through a rough patch with her parents. When she asked her boss for time off to go to the funeral, which was in a town an hour away, he told her she could have exactly an hour off. This guy was barely on speaking terms with his own family, and didn’t grieve for his father or even go to his funeral, so he figured everyone else should be the same.

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Elizabeth August 8, 2011 at 4:00 pm

My husband is a funeral director and has been told for years that he must write a book about his experiences with mourning families. Many, many mourn their loved ones with sincerity; others (and these tend to be the less direct relations) can be the difficult ones. A most sad situation involved a fist fight in the chapel; my husband called the police, loudly announced that the visiting time was now OVER and for the building to clear, and dove into a melee to break up the brawl before the brawl destroyed his building. Another time a fight broke out in the foyer between two distant relatives of the deceased; he threw them both out the front door and locked it; the immediate family of the deceased thanked him profusely.

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travestine August 8, 2011 at 4:05 pm

My deepest sympathies for your loss. I’ve lost both my younger brothers, both before I was 41. People who haven’t lost a sibling sometimes don’t realize what a significant loss it is in a person’s life, as deeply felt as the loss of a parent, spouse or child. Your brother’s “friends” really were boors.

When my youngest brother lay dying in the ICU, the sister of another patient, who was in a chronic vegatative state from an accident, suggested to my brother’s girlfriend that, since he was going to die anyway, maybe she could arrange a date for her brother and my brother’s gf when her brother “woke up”!

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June August 8, 2011 at 4:59 pm

I’m glad I’m not the only one who questioned Mjaye’s post…

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Jamesy August 8, 2011 at 5:57 pm

@Travestine: Every time I log on to EHell, the stories told never cease to shock or amaze me. Your comment gets a special asterisk for being especially disturbing.

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vanessaga August 8, 2011 at 6:12 pm

Mjaye states that his friend is gay and his aunt, when outed for stealing food by said gay friend, calls him “the f-word”, or a homosexual slur

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Lynne August 8, 2011 at 7:09 pm

@Vanessaga — well… except that Mjaye *doesn’t* state that the friend is gay. Mjaye said, “g*y” and it is confusing to me (and apparently others) why that vowel would have been “starred” out.

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JennJenn68 August 8, 2011 at 7:40 pm

Unfortunately, death really does bring out the worst in people. I’ve noticed it time and again. (I’m a church organist, and sadly, these days I’m playing a lot more funerals than weddings.) I hold tightly onto those times when death occasionally brings out the best. In my sad experience, it hasn’t happened too often.

I suppose, as an earlier commenter said, some of the appalling, boorish behaviour can be traced back to complete denial. (I believe the quote was, “La, la, la, I’m not listening…”) I think, on some level, nobody really believes that he/she is really going to die until it’s actually staring him/her in the face. I watched my brother spend the last six months of my mother’s life pretending that she was going to get better from aggressive liver cancer. His version of coping was to simply refuse to go and visit her; that way he could make believe that there was nothing really wrong with her. This behaviour still haunts him today, almost six years later, although he refuses to admit to any kind of feelings of guilt–he copes by catting around with girls in their late teens in order to pretend that he is still a teenager, Mom’s still alive, and therefore death can’t possibly happen to him. (He’s in his late forties. Married, if that’s relevant at all. Evidently, it’s irrelevant to him.)

I was very sad when a formerly close friend of mine sent me an email a short time after my mother had passed inquiring after her health; since she doesn’t live in the area she missed the news of her death and during those final days I was a little preoccupied with other things. I wrote back apologizing for my oversight and telling her the sad news. She never wrote to me again. Apparently, the fact that my crushing grief made me incapable of keeping up with my email was an unacceptable excuse. You live and you learn, but the longer you live the more seldom you learn anything that you like.

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Purslane August 8, 2011 at 7:51 pm

I’m sorry for you loss.

When my grandmother died, I went to the school secretary the next day and requested a staff absence form. I told her that I would likely need a day off later on in the week. I have over 100 sick days built up. I never take off, never. Many of my colleagues will take off at the drop of a hat and never seem to have any problems in doing so.

The afternoon before I was to take my one day off to go to my grandma’s funeral, the secretary came up to me and said “we are still trying to find someone to cover for you tomorrow. We’re trying to do this “in house” (other teachers would cover for me during their planning times–I’ve done it several times) but we still haven’t worked it out.

For the first time, in fifteen years, I told the secretary that I was sorry but I was simply going to have to take off, no matter what.

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KitKat August 8, 2011 at 7:56 pm

I’m very sorry for your loss.

I’m glad that family, family friends, and friends aren’t like that here. I lost my grandpap a year ago to a very sudden stroke (he was 87, looked in his 70s, and acted like he was in his 60s). My Nanna called my dad (her son) nightly to find out if there was anything she could do. As soon as family friends got the call that Pap had passed, they started inundating people with food (I rearranged the fridge twice it was so full, my uncle’s fridge was full, and we started putting food in my grandma’s fridge because there was no room left; we ate leftovers for the next two weeks and still had to freeze food. I think we finally finished it sometime in October). Everyone behaved themselves at the funeral home, most everyone behaved at the funeral (our new pastor said things he shouldn’t have), and the funeral procession went off without a hitch (30 some cars with at least 3 people in each; at least 90 people). There was a police escort because it was such a large procession.

I went right back to grad school after this and had professors tell me I should get over it. Um, he was my Pappy and the first grandparent I’ve lost. One even said she knew what it was like to have a close extended family. I was sorely tempted to tell her, “Yes, your family may be close but this is the first big loss I’ve ever experienced and I’m taking 13 credits on top of still grieving for my loss.” (BTW, I pulled two A’s, two B’s, and one C that semester).

And last week, we had a neighbor pass away. I think the entire street turned out for the visitation I went to. People offered to make food and make sure that there was no one suspicious lurking around the neighborhood.

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David August 8, 2011 at 8:53 pm

My condolences on your loss. The people you wrote about were horrible.

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maxie August 8, 2011 at 9:41 pm

I agree that your brother’s “friends” were horrible, and your boss / friends weren’t any better.

Now, a pox on those who have given employers reason to feel suspicious of employees when they ask for time off related to the death of a loved one. Working in HR, I know of way too many employees who have used the death of a loved one to get out of work. My favorite called in to me and said she would not be in because her Gramma died “again,” and I know of three employees in about the last year who we have caught creating presenting fake funeral notices in order to get extra paid time off from work. Yes, we do have paid vacation, sick time, holidays, paid disability for any illness lasting more than a week, and other paid and unpaid leaves for our employees – this is not a case where they were overworked and saw no other way to have time off. No, they simply found a “cool” website that would create fake excuses to get out of work and so they thought they wouldn’t get caught. No so cool after all.

Point being, even normally compassionate managers can get jaded. I just always pray that I never forget to be human first and worry about any “issues” later – there are always more honest people than scammers even though the scammers get more attention.

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PrincessSimmi August 8, 2011 at 9:46 pm

Losing someone you love is the hardest thing you’ll ever go through.

I’m sorry for your loss, OP.

I lost my Grandmother at 8 years old. I’m 23 now, and I know it doesn’t get any easier. I don’t go to the cemetary any more – for me, forgetting is easier than remembering. I feel awful about it but I can’t take another year of sitting and thinking about what might have been. My family don’t understand why, and berate me for not going, but I just can’t go.

All I can do is pray for peace and patience for all of us who are left behind, and that the boorons get a clue…

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MidoriBird August 8, 2011 at 10:10 pm

My uncle died at the end of June in a terrible car accident. This uncle was like another parent to me and I was devastated.

Why, why, WHY do so many people assume that because he was not a parent, sibling, or grandparent, that it can’t POSSIBLY mean as much to me as the death of a more “immediate” family member? I swear that if another person says that to me I’ll forget etiquette entirely and do something I should not do!

An aunt of mine died last year and I heard this then as well. Dear god, people, stop being so insensetive….nobody but me is in my mind, feeling my feelings!

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Timothy August 9, 2011 at 1:15 am

@Lynne: For some odd reason, “gay” is considered offensive to some. Therefore, to avoid offense, the vowel was asterisked out. It’s a common form of censorship.

@Mjaye: As someone who likes to refer to himself when asked as being “50% straight”, my jaw dropped at the aunt’s reaction to being called out. I do not blame you for turning incommunicado where the aunt is concerned, and I’m afraid that my reaction would have landed me in Etiquette Hell myself.

@OP: My condolences on the loss of your brother. I hope there were enough nice people giving their condolences to eclipse those that were boorish. Especially Friend 2. There are two places to not ask for a girl’s number: a funeral, or a wedding.

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Nicola August 9, 2011 at 6:55 am

What a bunch of morons!

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Mjaye August 9, 2011 at 7:12 am

Hi, sorry fohr the confusion and the typos. I was not sure if I could write gay but that is what I meant. Funny enough, he is also a goy but since he grew up in a very Jewish neighborhood and worked in a Jewish Community Center he knows more Yuddish and Jewish Customs than i do.
As for my Aunt, when she was shoveling food up her sweater to sneak out, my friend saw her and she said it would be just their secret. Yeah, he never agreed and told me and my siblings, ‘To say we were amused would be an understatement. That is when Evil Aunt went on her tirade calling him the f word woth other f words thrown in for sport. Nothing makes a Shiva like curse words.
On a footnote, when my Mom died last year, she came up from FL where she was living to PA for the funeral. She only came up for the day and after the funeral, we went to our house for food and the beginning of Shiva. She ate and then asked for some foil and a plastic bag to make up sandwiches for the flight home. They took two big plastic bags worth of food, all the Corned Beef for the long 2 hour flight home. I asked them if they were going by covered wagon and that is the last time I talked to her.

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Enna August 9, 2011 at 9:07 am

@ OP so sorry for your loss.

@ Elf – provide a death certificate? Has the employer has had problems with naught employers before or fraud? I never herad of that before.

@ Hemi Halliwell – sorry to hear about your loss and expirence too.

I think death can bring out the worst in people the odd heated disagreement fine but this is just too far!

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The Elf August 9, 2011 at 1:59 pm

Enna – death certificate, copy of the obituary, something official to give to HR to qualify for bereavement leave. It is not an uncommon policy! However, it’s always after the fact, not before you can take the leave.

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