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I have a coworker who recently showed me that she has no respect for the people she works with in the slightest.

The other day I was in search of my coffee mug. It was a gift from a friend, and a very large mug- I usually used it in lieu of a bowl for soup and oatmeal at work. I looked everywhere. I couldn’t find it. I asked around, no one had seen it.

However, I had an idea where it might have gone. One co-worker, Marie, at one point had put a sign up in the break room that any Tupperware or mugs left in the sink would be thrown away. Now, it should be noted that Marie is not a manager, or even anyone’s supervisor. She’s on the way low end of the totem pole, and had no authority or permission to do this. In fact, someone took down the sign, just a couple days later.

I asked my friend Jane if she’d seen my mug. “I think I saw it in the sink.. but you know, I saw Marie throwing away a few people’s mugs last week (not mine). I told her she couldn’t do that, and she just said,’Sure I can,’ and tossed them in the trash.”

Well I had certainly left my mug in the sink.. I’d forgotten about it, as I don’t go into the break room often. To be clear, these “dirty” mugs aren’t causing any one any issues (unless your insane), its not a huge epidemic, there aren’t 20 mugs/Tupperware bowls in the sink.. and they don’t smell. Usually people have their coffee, fill the mug with water and leave it in the sink and forget about it for a day or two. That’s what happened here. Usually if the mugs got left there for more than a day, someone would politely ask the owner to finish rinsing their mug, which would happen right away. No one is being a slob on purpose in this office, I’m happy to say.

So, to be sure, I asked the cleaning staff if she’d seen my mug in the trash.. she said yes, but figured it was there for a reason so she didn’t take it out. (Why would she? Digging through the trash isn’t her job, taking it out is. That’s totally understandable.)

So, Marie threw my mug away. I was livid. She felt that because a mug was sitting in the sink, presumably annoying her any time she walked into the room, she decided that she didn’t care if it was my property (and she KNEW it was mine, everyone did. I walked around with it all the time and it was very distinctive) and decided she had the right to toss it in the trash. What made me even more angry was that she’d lied to me when I’d asked her if she’d seen it.

So I thought I’d confront her about it. I walked up and, very politely, asked her if she’d thrown away my mug. She looked up at me with a smug expression and just said, “No.” then went back to not-working.

Now I was even more angry. If you’re going to do something like that, at least live up to it. But no, she has so little respect for me, that she sees no problem throwing away my possessions, and lying to my face about it. A mug is replaceable.. the real reason I was angry was the utter lack of respect she shows to everyone around her. I’ll admit, it was tempting to take her mug off her desk and throw it in the trash, but then I’d be just as bad as she is.

Despite the fact that I had no proof, I told my boss about it anyway. He was upset, but now it’s a moot point. That same day she told her supervisor she was quitting in two months. Also, a week later, I heard someone else lamenting their missing coffee mug.

It gets worse though. This week, since she’s leaving, she handed my co-worker Jane a stack of papers and told her their supervisor had said Jane had to do all of Marie’s work for the next two months, so she’d know how to do it once Marie was gone. But Marie would not be taking any of Jane’s job duties, like answering the phones, while Jane did this.

Jane checked with the supervisor, who confirmed her suspicions that Marie was exaggerating (Marie was only supposed to teach her the things she didn’t already know, which wasn’t much, and watch her as she did them..) and when Jane and the supervisor confronted Marie (politely and calmly) she launched into a huge fit that required getting our Director involved. He sided with Jane, and now Marie does nothing but sulk and say hateful things to Jane all day long, or at least in a hateful tone.

I feel bad that Jane has to sit right next to her, and I can’t wait for her to leave. She makes the whole office environment terrible to be in! 0609-11

Something causes me to wonder if there is a completely different side of this story.   It’s normal office culture to leave dirty coffee mugs in the break room kitchen sink?  The initial mental image I had was of a prime invitation to every insect and rodent pest and a bunch of lazy coffee/tea drinkers who couldn’t be bothered to take a few seconds to wash their mugs after using them thus leaving the chore to one of their co-workers with a slightly more refined sense of cleanliness.  (Here on Ehell, we typically to refer to behavior that expects others to do your job as “entitled”.)

Second, it is no one else’s responsibility to care for our precious possessions.   Valuable belongings, whether the value be monetary or sentimental, should be cared for by their owner with no expectation that others will perceive it as being something other than the common household item it is.    If it’s important to you, you take measures to make sure it is securely cared for.  In this case, the mug cleaned, dried and put away in a cabinet or taken back to your own office/desk for safekeeping.   My husband and I drilled into our kids from a young age that if something of theirs was particularly precious, it was their duty to care for it.   Toys thrown on the floor, left outside to get rained on and left in common areas to eventually succumb to being damaged, lost or used by other kids was solely their responsibility.  Did you really love that Tonka truck if you left it to rust for days on end by the wood pile?  Can you really say your dolls or model horses were irreplaceable if you left them on the stairway to be kicked around?  (Addendum:  And sometimes in the process of housecleaning, Mom or Dad threw away apparently discarded, abandoned items left for someone to trip over and ignored the whines of how allegedly dear it was to its owner.  End result are adult children who treat their possessions well.)

So, let’s be real, OP.  You didn’t love your mug.  You treated it like a common mug like everyone else’s and left it dirty, apparently repeatedly, in the break room sink.   Your value of it did not extend to keeping it clean and secure in your possession.   For all I know, Maria got tired of the general filth and poor hygiene her co-workers seemed to think was normal and started trashing the cockroach bait lurking in the sink that her fellow co-workers were contributing on a daily basis.  And since Maria’s motivation regarding the disposal of the dirty mugs is in question, the other areas of her behavior raised come into doubt as well.


Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Enna June 15, 2011, 9:12 am

    Another thought too: throwing mugs away isn’t going to solve the problem in a diplomatic way: by trying to get/encourage people to change/improve their behaviour more willingly will. Sometimes people honeslty forget that they haven’t washed a mug up due to work pressure – I think throwing away te mug in that sense would be harse. If the workers improver their behaviour it will only be the odd cup someone has honestly forgetten due to a very hetic/busy day/

  • Lizajane June 15, 2011, 9:30 am


    Two things: Maria was not responsible for setting the schedule or standard for cleanliness in the kitchen, so why should her sign be taken as fact? If someone takes your…I don’t know…purse and then throws it away, is that not theft?

    Another Alice,

    Where does it say that Maria HAD to wash other people’s mugs?

  • Jillybean June 15, 2011, 9:43 am

    David – I had to laugh at this:

    “Office policies, including the policies of the break room have to come down from the company itself, because the break room isn’t owned by the employees, it is owned by the company.”

    I’ve never worked at a company where the “company” set the break room policy. I’ve never worked at one where management set it, either. They just don’t care about that kind of stuff. In all of the places I’ve worked it’s been set by someone on staff (usually someone on the admin staff, who got tired of being everyone’s mother) and usually by hanging a sign and then following through. Meaning, it’s effectively been set by the Maries of the world in every place I’ve worked. The difference is, in the places I’ve worked, no one has ripped down the sign in defiance because someone didn’t have the “authority” to post it. Most people actually were simply embarrassed that they even needed to be told that leaving their stuff behind was disrespectful to their coworkers.

  • Kovitlac June 15, 2011, 10:21 am

    I cannot agree with the admin on this one. Whether or not Marie was grossed out by a little oatmeal, it was not her place to throw away items that were not hers. She should have gone to a higher up, and if said higher up did not agree with her, she should have reconsidered how bad (or not bad) the situation really was and either stay or move on with another job.

    If anyone on this site had stated they ended a disagreement by throwing out someone else’s posession, you’d condemn them to EHell in a heartbeat. I’m sensing a double-standard, here.

  • AS June 15, 2011, 10:42 am

    I think it is rude to leave behind unclean stuffs in common areas. I just wanted to share one of my experience I had living with housemates. I am from a different country, and hence had to spend thanksgiving and spring breaks on campus. All my housemates are from neighbouring states left home, and left behind a pile of dishes behind that belonged to two of the three of them. None of the dirty dishes were mine, but I had to either wash them, or live with them for a whole week.
    During spring break, another room mate (D) stayed back (none of the dishes left behind during thanks giving were hers either). She was extremely appalled when she found the other girls didn’t clean any of their dishes. Both of us washed the dishes, and then she said that she is going to bring it up with them. I told her that I am not going to say anything, but she’ll have my support if she brings it up with them (I was doing my Ph.D. and worked long hours till around 10PM or so, and didn’t want any more at home). When everyone came back, one evening D brought up the topic with them. I was not home at that time. D is the kind of person who no one dares to say anything to because she has no problem in using choice words on them, or just plain shout. So, when I came back (after a long day of work), the two girls pounced on me immediately saying I am being unfair to expect them to wash my dishes!!! I politely replied that they were not my dishes but theirs. They said that they don’t complain when we leave breakfast dishes in the morning. I replied saying breakfast dishes can be washed in the evening, and don’t get left for a whole week for someone else to wash. They mumbled something else, and I ignored them and continued with making my own dinner. At least after that, there were no more dishes left in the kitchen, and I moved out in fall.

    For some reason, I find that people who leave dishes unwashed (because it doesn’t bother them) think they are doing the right thing, and don’t stop to think that it might bother someone else. If there are more people who like to be lazy, then the person who likes dishes washed becomes the villain. Why should someone have to keep telling other adults that they should wash their dishes? It is not their duty. One doesn’t have to be “insane” to want clean kitchen, especially if they see dirty dishes every time they try to use the kitchen. People are different from each other. I don’t think it is fair to subject your coworkers to your dirty dishes.

  • Molly June 15, 2011, 11:13 am

    Sorry miss Jeanne but I still think Marie is strongly in the wrong here. It’s not her right to set the rules for everyone in the office and apparently no one was breaking rules by leaving mugs to soak overnight. It’s certainly not her right to throw out someone else’s property. And a coffee mug is not “filth” and almost certainly won’t attract bugs.

  • The Elf June 15, 2011, 11:43 am

    So *THIS* is the other side of Passive-Aggressive Notes!

  • Brenda June 15, 2011, 12:02 pm

    @karma, I have to decidedly disagree. When you take something that doesn’t belong to you, for whatever reason, no matter what you did with it, it is THEFT.

    HR or the office manager should have been immediately notified the moment Marie posted the sign. Again, she did NOT have the authority to do anything that she did. When she went ahead and tossed the items, she should have been fired then and there. It does not matter how one feels about a dirty sink, it does not give one the right to take matters into one’s own hands.

    I’ve worked in large and small offices. I currently work in a large office now, where we are responsible for our own mugs and cups, but every two weeks the maintenance department cleans out the refrigerator. A lot of new employees, especially the younger ones, will leave their coffee mugs sitting in the sink, mistakenly assuming someone will clean it up. Sorry, no. We may rinse them and move them to the side, but if you want a clean mug, you will have to do it yourself. Amazingly, they tend to figure this out within a few days, and the sink stays fairly clean. And office management absolutely does not care if your stuff, including the container, gets tossed, if you didn’t label it before cleaning.

  • Library Diva June 15, 2011, 1:55 pm

    Enough people have taken a side as to who’s right or wrong here, but I just want to add that the office is generally not the place for anything you really value. If you’re Steve Jobs, you can hang up your Monets behind your Chippendale desk, sure. But the average office worker who shares space with others is better off just bringing in things that are easily replaced and don’t have tremendous sentimental value.

  • Abby June 15, 2011, 2:01 pm

    I think Marie sounds like a pain, but honestly, OP sounds just as obnoxious. I don’t think she should leave her mug in the sink if it’s so important to her. Nor do I think complaining to her boss about the mug was really professional either. And I don’t see what Marie’s ‘training’ of Jane has to do with the story, other than to just give OP’s theory that Marie is just such an awful person more credibility. Sounds like an extremely petty place to work with the staff spending more time complaining about each other than doing actual work.

  • kingsrings June 15, 2011, 4:14 pm

    Anybody who cares about a particular item wouldn’t leave it laying around in public, like the OP did with her mug. You can’t do that and then cry foul when someone steals or throws it away. Obviously, it didn’t mean much to you if that’s how you took care of it. I once saw a sign above our sink from an employee at my now-former employer begging for whomever took her $$$ Harley Davidson coffee mug to return it. Um, why would she leave it there in the first place if it was so $$$ and sentimental to her?? Our place had a policy stated above the sinks and posted on the fridges that anything left in the sink overnight or in the fridge past Friday would be tossed, no exceptions. Nobody wants to see their working space turned into a pig sty, and adult employees shouldn’t leave their dirty dishes lying around. If they get tossed or stolen, well that’s what happens.

  • AgreeWithAdmin June 15, 2011, 4:33 pm

    I was SO happy to see the Admin’s note after this story. All through the story, the letter-writer sounded like she could have been one of my former annoying, slobby coworkers! We actually did have a rule that no dishes could be left in the sink and all employees must clean up after themselves in our kitchen/breakroom. We even had a dishwasher, so all you needed to do was rinse your mug out and throw it in there, but some people would still be lazy and just set something in the sink! It drove the not-lazy, not-slobby coworkers crazy. Marie may have been rude if this story is 100% accurate, but I wonder if we got an overly biased version of the story. None of my coworkers would have thrown out a mug and lied about it just to spite someone or anything (although we have definitely wanted to, instead of caving in and cleaning up after the others). However, I know people disposed of others’ unclaimed dishes or tupperware that was left in the fridge so long that it got moldy, so I’m guessing that if things were left too long in the sink they might be fair game to throw out (after a few warnings) too.

  • --E June 15, 2011, 5:21 pm

    This is a joke, right?

    I mean, sure, Marie sounds fairly horrible, but there is no justification for leaving you mug in the sink for more than two minutes, let alone two days. It’s a communal sink with coworkers, not family members or roommates (who perhaps shouldn’t be subjected to that either, but living arrangements are a different range of negotiations).

    As someone else noted above, the crap job of cleaning up after all the office slobs always falls on the Maries of this world (because the managers aren’t going to be arsed to deal with it. They’re managers, not housekeepers). OP, you were wrong.

  • AS June 15, 2011, 5:57 pm

    @Lia – what you say is so true. Unfortunate, but true. I have once been the “Marie” (victim, not cleanliness police) in a lab I had worked, and whatever I did was wrong. I didn’t know anything, and when someone asked me questions, I was “acting” as if I knew if I answered the question right (this was a science lab).
    I have seen other people being the victim in other places, and when that victim leaves, someone else replaces them. There is often a leader, and everyone better be in their good books otherwise you’ll become the victim. And almost everyone would make sure to side with them.
    BTW, after reading this story several times, I get the feeling that the part about Marie telling her Jane that she has to do all the work is exaggerated. When someone has to learn the work that someone else is doing, they have to “do all their work”, so that they can learn them. Marie probably didn’t mean to say that Jane has to do all the work that Marie is supposed to do, but to do all of type of work Marie does so that Jane learns. It is possible that Marie misunderstood the boss, or Jane misunderstood Marie and complained to the boss (and if the boss is the type who falls for women who approach them tearfully, he supported Jane!). It is also possible that the OP only knows Jane’s side of the story, because, well – Jane is OP’s friend and the boss didn’t completely take Jane’s side but rather only clarified the doubt. (Chances are that boss spoke to Marie and Jane in his office, and not in front of the whole office; the latter would be a faux pas in itself). Well, who knows what actually happened. But I surely would take this story with (more than) a pinch of salt.

  • Marfy June 16, 2011, 3:01 am

    And….this is why I always always ALWAYS wash and put away my coffee mug when I’m done with it.

  • AmandaElizabeth June 16, 2011, 5:14 am

    As an employer I am appalled that some posters think it is my responsibility to set the rules for what we would call a ‘smoko room” (not that anyone smokes in there). I do not employ children I employ adults, and if they cannot decide on their own rules that is their problem. I can see why Maria thought that the poster was a slob, and why she cleaned up the room by throwing out the dirty dishes. If the poster brought the matter to my attention I would consider it would reflect badly on her not Maria, and that the OP was someone who did not consider her fellow workers and was careless with her belongings, and that Maria went the extra mile to ensure that the room was kept clean. If someone requests by means of a sign that everybody takes care of their own mess, by way of a poster and another worker tears that poster down because ‘she had no authority’, then again I would think very poorly of the one who tore the notice down, not the one who put it up. I would also be looking at the workers who left their dirty dishes in the sink.

  • James June 16, 2011, 8:50 am

    Couldn’t agree more with Library Diva’s comments – never leave ANYTHING at work that you would be sad at losing. Even if you work in a small enough office to know & trust all your co-workers, there can still be visitors coming in on business purposes who might think nothing of helping themselves to something that catches their eye. It’s not right but it’s an unfortunate fact of life.

  • Maitri June 16, 2011, 11:18 am

    Count me among those who don’t think it’s necessarily “disgusting” and “nasty” to have a few dishes in the sink.

    Now, the place I used to work, with 4 other women who left ALL of their breakfast and lunch dishes in the sink until I finally got sick of it and washed them, gagging the whole time? That’s nasty.

  • Josie James June 16, 2011, 11:50 am

    In the small office where I used to work, every person was assigned a week to keep the break room kitchen and sink clean. Everyone was responsible for washing their own dishes, but if for any reason, they didn’t have time or had to leave something in the sink, the person who was assigned the week cleaned it up. This worked well for us because everyone had their turn to clean up.

  • Chris June 16, 2011, 12:18 pm

    Team Maria! Next time the poster will wash and remove her disgusting dirty dishes and not leave them for someone else.

    I do the same darn thing and will continue to do so. However, being the boss, I have every right to do this as my staff has been told repeatedly that everything dirty in the sink at days end goes into the garbage. It isn’t my job to pay an exterminator because my staff choose to live like slobs. The stuff in the refrigerator on Fridays get thrown out too. Leave Tuesday’s pasta in your favorite tuperware bowl all week. Say goodbye to it because it won’t be around Monday.

  • RP June 16, 2011, 9:42 pm

    Stealing and disposing of someone else’s property is wrong and that’s what Marie was doing.

    I don’t understand the assumption that the OP is lying about the condition of the break room. She went out of her way to point out that the sink did not have many cups at anyone one time or stay their long enough to create a problem and yet that’s exactly what many people here are insisting happened.

    I’m not convinced the OP was wrong to go to her boss about it. On the one hand you should choose your battles but on the other hand how many times have you heard about somebody being able to back up a harassment claim because they had no documentation of prior offenses?

  • Krista June 17, 2011, 12:59 am

    I have to agree with admin on this one…I also regularly teach my children that if something matters to you, you must take care of it. In fact, if our children show a special interest in a toy or possession, they are not even expected to share it, as long as it is kept out of sight of visitors. Everyone has items they treasure, and if you want those things to be where you left them, you’d best leave them in a responsible place.

  • Enna June 17, 2011, 6:34 am

    @ AmandaElizabeth, I can see why you would be disapointed in and employee in OP’s postion to complain about her bowl being thrown away but the issue is that Marie lied about doing it – so surely that just makes Marie and OP as bad as each other?If Marie said “yes I did, because I put the sign up, and you didn’t listen.” But at the same time if someone had put the mug in the sink BEFORE she put the sign up and so didn;t see it they didn’t get the warning.

    I think both Marie, OP and the coworkers are all as bad as each other really. Marie should have warned her collegues verbally that people need to do their washing up and spoken to employer about it. Then she should have put the sign up but still give people warning. Throwing the mugs away is passive-aggressive and should be the last resort when other ways have failed. It’s not good for morale or the working envrioment. This was not tactful and is hardly good “practise” to recincile disputes in the office. Constructive critisism/caring confrontation is the best way forward not passive aggressive confrontation.

  • Lizajane June 17, 2011, 9:29 am


    Big difference in your situation. You are the boss, and have the authority to set standards and policies and have done so.

  • Michele June 17, 2011, 3:08 pm

    I think both were rude here. It’s rude to leave your dirty things in a communal sink, but it’s worse to take and throw away other people’s property. Marie had other things she could have tried to remedy the situation – talk to the bosses? Talk to the ‘offenders’? It’s never ok to throw away someone’s property

  • Tonja June 17, 2011, 11:14 pm

    I hung a sign in our breakroom( I AM the manager) that clearly states to wash your own dishes, and not to leave them in the sink, or I would toss em out. This happened after I walked in one morning, walked to the sink, and was greeted by a giant centipede in the dish filled sink. Gross.

  • Jennifer June 18, 2011, 7:26 am

    I also have to disagree with the admin. This woman sounds a lot like my ex-roommate. She never cleaned anything, ever (I ended up doing her dishes because they would mold), but she threw a fit when I left anything on the counter or “in her way” and would throw it in the sink. It could be in a corner on the counter and I would leave it for like 5 minutes. She destroyed dish towels (they got stains), rolls of paper towel, boxes of cereal, and oatmeal because I either left it on the counter or on “her side” of the top of the fridge (and in the way of her red bull). If she ever cleaned anything I might have understood, but she never cleaned anything, this was the only “picking up” she did. I should have just dumped her molding dishes in her room.

    I got out as soon as the lease was up.

  • Jennifer June 18, 2011, 7:29 am

    Just a note, I was very irritated by how people left the kitchen on our dorm floor. I did NOT throw the dishes away. I washed them. Because throwing away someone else’s property, even if they are irritating you, is childish and stupid.

  • Amp2140 June 18, 2011, 11:15 am

    Personally, I’ve thrown out other people’s dishes before. Granted, it was in a building shared dishwasher where most of the items were moldy and had been there for weeks, creating a hazard for bugs.

    Someone with an issue with dirty dishes in a smaller setting could simply just put them on the person’s desk, or in their room, in a housing situation.

  • --Lia June 19, 2011, 4:16 pm

    Jilly and AS– Thanks. My conclusions on totem poles and how the folks on them behave comes from years of observations and a few times on the bottom of them. I should clarify that being on the bottom of the totem pole doesn’t mean that you’re always right and people think that you’re wrong. It means that it doesn’t matter whether you’re wrong or right; people still think that you’re wrong– and gang up on you. Once you get nervous, you start to make more and more real mistakes.

    I don’t know how it started with Marie, but once it did, her best option was just to stop using the break room. That’s hard but not impossible. You get breakfast at home, lunch from a brown bag that you eat at your desk and wash the plastic containers at home. You don’t snack, don’t get coffee during the day. That’s probably healthier for you anyway. If issues about cleanliness come up, you’re out of it. Of course, Mari would probably be accused of being anti-social if she did that, and everyone would natter about how she has no friends and pick on her some more.

    The most unfortunate thing about totem poles is that you move down on them if you refuse to pick on the people on the bottom. Try to be a friend in that situation, and you set yourself up to be next in line.

  • Susan June 20, 2011, 8:35 am

    The OP started with “I have a coworker who recently showed me that she has no respect for the people she works with in the slightest.” It sounds like the OP! Leaving a cup in the sink for two minutes is not a problem, leaving a cup in the sink for 2 days is disrespectful and obnoxious! She might be annoying, but I don’t blame Marie a bit!

  • Cath June 20, 2011, 4:29 pm

    This issue here is that both Marie and the OP are wrong. Deeply and completely wrong. People are very bad judges of time, both time spent waiting and time spent forgetting. The OP forgot that the one day wait was actually 3 and the mug had dregs of coffee or tea and was starting to form a magnificent new life form, and keeps people from effectively using the sink and is rude. Marie forgot that she’s not the boss of anyone and throwing away things that are in your way and belong to others, no matter how disgusting, is also rude.

    So, what to do. If you know who owns the now disgusting item, the polite thing to do would be to place it carefully on their desk with a little note saying something to the effect of “I know how much you cherish this, so I knew you would want it back.” Omit any reference to the new life form. If Marie didn’t know who owned it; she should simply dump out liquid contents, remove from the sink and place under the sink in the “lost” box. Ask the Office Manager to post a note directing owners of missing items to the lost box. FYI, a copy paper box with a bin liner is really, quite effective and facilitates the monthly toss out too.

    And while s/he’s at it the OM needs to establish a rotating fridge and lost box toss day. E-mail everyone letting them know that items in the fridge and lost box will be tossed on this (x) Friday at this (y) time.

    In our office of 90 we usually have work teams that get assigned this once a month. Things that are going away are put on a break room table while the “big dig” happens. They are usually left for an hour or so then another e-mail announces last call to claim lost items, then away they go to the trash/rubbish/dumpster. Works remarkably well, items don’t spend a lot of time becoming hazardous waste, and irritation is kept to a minimum. Nothing stays in the sink imparing other’s ability to use the sink and nothing smells, attracts fruit flies, or just generally becomes icky.

  • Y June 21, 2011, 1:52 pm

    I have to disagree with the admin note. You’re assuming that having the mug purposely thrown out is that same as the mug being damaged or stolen. It is not. While the OP would be completely in the wrong if she was lamenting that her mug had been broken or that someone had walked off with it, that is not what occurred. A mere employee, who had absolutely no authority to determine office policy, threw away another person’s belonging despite the fact that the only place the “rule” about leaving dishes existed was in her own inflated head. The OP is slightly wrong IF she is leaving dirty dishes for hours on end, but Marie is VERY wrong and extremely self-absorbed with obvious delusions of grandeur.

  • Chris June 21, 2011, 3:41 pm

    How about this? How about people stop setting up their JOB like it’s their little version of home? Stop bringing in enough food for a small army, and them leave it in the break room to rot and be forgotten about? Just bring in your breakfast and/or lunch…and then clean up after yourself. That way, we can avoid the Marie/OP drama that goes on in, I would guess, EVERY office in this country. I can’t stand people who have fresh produce in their desks, on the counter in the break room, in the fridge and only eat a fraction of it and they are the first to complain about a mouse infestation. : /

  • Jillybean June 21, 2011, 5:15 pm

    On a somewhat related note, I was in our lunch room at work the other day and noticed stickers on our microwaves. They have been there for a while now, but this thread made me notice them again. Basically they say that due to inadequate ventilation people aren’t allowed to heat up fish products in the microwaves. Since the signs got put up, no one does. An assistant in one of our programs put it up, because she finds the smell nasty. No one cared that she isn’t “in charge” – the fact that it bugged her enough that she hung a sign (and had half the office nodding in agreement) had everyone complying. And the boss said after the fact, “Yeah, good idea.” Can’t imagine that would go over well in Marie’s office.