Years (and years and years) ago, the director of my library was a loonie-toon we will call, simply Toonie. I think I may have posted about her on the website called "Bad Bosses."
One year a co-worker and I both applied for a position that would have been a raise AND a responsiblity upgrade (one of us would be in charge of a branch). It's also important to know that at this time a) my mother had been in and out of the hospital for heart trouble and b) had recently had multiple bypass surgery. By the time this story takes place, Mom was up and around and on vacation in Washington D.C.
It is also important to know that Toonie's parents were both elderly and frail, and so this may excuse what happened after my interview. But it still steams me.
When Toonie had made her decision about which of us should get the position, she called me to her office to explain WHY I didn't get the position. I didn't really need to know or care. The co-worker had been there three years longer and had a lot more experience running a department. But Toonie apparently felt it was necessary to embarrass both of us by--well, I can only describe what she did first.
Toonie: Now when I asked question X, YOU said.....(followed by comments), but Cow-worker said (followed by what co-worker said--a blatant invasion of her privacy as well as mine.) She did this for each and every question. What I found most amusing was that co-worker and I had said exactly the same things...we'd just coached them in different phrases.
THEN, in order to be buddy-buddy with me, Toonie asked me about my mother's health. I said "Oh, she's fine, Toonie. She came thru by-pass like a pro and she's in charge again and stronger than ever."
Toonie said "I know. Isn't it hard when they're just lying there and dying and you can't do anything for them?"
I said "Yes, it is, but Mom's really fine. She's on vacation with my Dad as we speak and..."
Toonie cut me off. "Oh, and you know, she's only get worse and soon she'll be at a point where all you can do is read to her."
I came back with "Well, I'm sure that's waaaaaay off in the future, Toonie, but right now--"
"So you'd better brace youself, it'll happen sooner than you think, you know. And you'll be cleaning her up after the bathroom and..."
I said "My mother is alive and well and healthy as a horse according to her doctor. Why are you trying to bury her now?"
"Oh, I didn't mean to upset you, but I think you should be prepared for the worst, you know."
I don't remember what else was said, nor do I remember how I got out of her office without killing her. Days later I learned that Toonie's parents were both falling ill and it was incumbent upon her and her siblings to take care of them. Toonie was upset about them being so sick. I suppose she had parents on the brain, but I don't understand why she felt compelled to transfer all that on to my Mom (who did die, about thirteen years later, after a pretty good run with a disease that would have toppled most people).
When Toonie finally left for a new job (in the midst of a huge layoff that SHE initiated and that didn't have to happen if she had cooperated with the city officials) she told me not to get too comfortable just because my job had been spared. "The ax can fall at any time," she said "and it was just luck it swung beneath your toes."
I'm pleased as punch to announce that, at her new job, Toonie was escorted out by police officers after being fired and refusing to leave. She went on to a new job from which she was also fired a few months later. The woman is a walking disaster. Occasionally I wonder what happened to her, but to be honest--I don't care a whole lot. I think a competent therapist could make lots of money hauling away her baggage, though.