Tuesday, March 13, 2012

1990: Bee in your bonnet

You know when you don't like someone - you can go off that name forever. Mine is Madeleine. I used to think it was a lovely name until a certain person came into my life.

So who was she? Well, she was my boss. I say boss. She was certainly bossy but she wasn't much cop as a manager. She got by on pure brown-nosing and blaming everyone but herself for things going wrong. I'll admit I wasn't the best at my job, but it was dry as dust and I'd had one morning's worth of training. It seemed to be on a suck it and see basis, but with Madeleine around this just made things more precarious and far less clear than they could have been.

With her hairy legs and ghastly manner, there was no point standing up for yourself if she picked on you, as you were seen as being 'confrontational' and 'hostile'. She once slapped a choclate bar out of my mouth. I was outraged. She knew she was wrong, but would do a hasty 'okay, sorry, forgotten? Let's move on. Friends?', all in one breath. You didn't have a chance to vent. I'm cross just thinking about it.

Not that it would have done any good. Management thought she was marvellous. A trained lawyer with lots of contacts in the biz, plus she invited the top brass to her wedding. Though I wasn't expecting an invite at all, she took me into her office one day to break the news that she wasn't extending me an invitation. She said she knew I'd always wanted to go to a Jewish wedding but she was only inviting the bosses, so there, there my dear. I never had the chance to say I wasn't bothered. I felt kind of dumb.

There are few people I have disliked as much in my life. She made my life an utter misery. Because she didn't understand what was going on half the time she just muddied waters constantly. I was so relieved when I eventually moved teams. But with her reporting my every move to the bosses the tone was set. But I still had another five years to serve. At least it wouldn't be with her.

Now, every time I hear that name, I bristle. I do hope you don't have children called Madeleine. That name is tainted forever. She'll grow up to horrid.

Still, at the very height of our fractiousness, this song would always lift the spirits. It was the one thing I wanted to hear before I left the house, which would put a spring in my step all the way to the bus stop. Have you ever tried it at karaoke? Exhausting. But what a mood lifter.

Happy Tuesday.


  1. It's Charlotte for me - my shoulders still tighten at the thought of her. Absolutley awful, bullish women - who had rocketed up through the city rankings in a blink. Before I worked with her, she'd chewed through four other people in a year. When I went on leave, the backfill chap almost walked out within days looking for a career change .

    She is my benchmark by which all other bastards are measured - and no one has pushed the needles further into the red than Charlotte *cringes shoulders*

  2. I'm afraid I have a Manchurian Candidate reaction to the name 'Sarah'. Formed during the days of several encounters with feathered-fringed, Lady Di-collar toting, hyperthyroid-eyeballed 'gals' from "Heref'd'shr" or "Chelters" who pretended not to know where Ilford was and who would ask incredulously what it could possibly be like "to live in a house with a number on one's front door rather than a name at the bottom of one's drive".

    *breaks out in sweat. Adopts glassy stare. Polishes Luger absently*