Friday, February 09, 2007

Just BSing around

when I look back at my career, regardless of what other responsibilities I've had, there's been one common thread. I talk for a living. Considering that I'm an introvert who could easily become an agoraphobic hermit, I find that rather ironic. However, life sometimes leads us in directions that just can't be anticipated. When you talk for a living though, there's one thing you can't help noticing; there's a whole lot of bullshit in this world.

When you work in sales, you inevitably end up working with a bunch of bullshitters. Now, I like to think that I can bullshit, but that I'm not a bullshitter, except in fun. In fact, I've been accused of being way too serious for my own good. However, I love working with jokers and storytellers. They're fun, and I don't have to try to talk. In fact, being their audience has always been part of my charm. Plus I have a lot of fun letting my quirky sense of humor sneak up on my entertaining, extroverted co-workers. I'll hang around with them, pleasant, quiet and smiling, and when the moment is right, I'll drop a one line coup de grace. I can never plan these things, but when they happen, it's the line that people will remember, the line that will make them laugh, blush or get really pissed off hours later. A combination of those three is sometimes my favorite reaction.

The bullshit entertainers can be fun, but the bullshit conversationalists are really my favorite. Nothing can make a lunch hour when you're stuck in the office more entertaining than someone who can talk about everything, whether they know anything about it or not. Sometimes this is difficult. Living in the small town south where everybody knows everything about everybody, no topic of conversation is off limits. This includes sex, money, religion and politics. I've heard more about blow jobs, bankruptcies, baptisteries, and yeast infections than anybody ever needs to hear. Getting a combination of those in one story actually has happened more than once, and I confess that some of those tales are among my favorites as well.

The political conversations are a different story. As a liberal, I'm definitely in the minority here. Heck, I don't really think of myself as all that liberal, but I'm far from the middle of these country roads. Some rural southern Democrats can make Republicans look suspiciously leftist. I've found in my years of working with bullshitters that nothing can deepen the manure like being in the majority. (This applies to both the right and the left.) A lot of times, when the political bs has gotten deep, I've sat agog at how clueless and sometimes how heartless some of my conservative co-workers have been and at how completely unrealistic and short-sighted a few of the true liberals have been. Regardless of party affiliation, I've frequently been stunned at how uninformed some opinions are.

For the last several months, I've worked with hard core Republicans, the type that think a surge in troops is an excellent idea, that global warming is a myth and that the scandals from Gitmo are manipulations by a liberal media. Otherwise, my co-workers are really wonderful people whose company I enjoy, but I've learned to just keep my mouth shut and let their bs pile up. This is a task that has required both discipline and tact. However, the tide is turning. I have a new co-worker who's more liberal than I am, and unlike me, talks all the time. I have the feeling that the bs is going to get fun again, at least for awhile.


Blogger Lisa :-] said...

I suck at bs. Which is why I am not in sales.

Funny story--I had some guys come into the cafe today and want me to do something in support of the Columbia County Republicans. I opened my mouth, and decided NOT to say the first thing that came to my mind (which was something like, "Are you kidding???") Instead, I said, "I'm sorry, but we're totally a-political here..." I was quite proud of myself... ;)

February 09, 2007 10:42 PM  
Blogger Gannet Girl said...

Cynthia, you are writing so much I can't keep up! All wonderful, though.

I'm with Lisa on this one. My brother is a great BS-er, which is why he has a brilliant sales career. I'm so...oh, EARNEST. I'm like...oh, I can't think of a character. Like a nun who swears.

February 10, 2007 7:42 AM  
Blogger alphawoman said...

I am so tired of all the bs required of my job. I look forward to the moment when Joe gets transfered again and I can look for a job that requires a lot less bs in the name of Capitalism.

February 10, 2007 9:04 AM  
Blogger Theresa Williams said...

I'm not good at B.S., either. See, I can't even write out the whole word! :-) I'm too ernest, too.

February 10, 2007 5:12 PM  
Blogger health said...

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February 12, 2007 3:53 AM  
Blogger gigi said...

I'm still trying to imagine how the story about the blow job in the baptistry that resulted in the yeast infection that led to the inevitable bankrupcy goes.

I am not a bullshitter either. With the steely discipline of a Trappist monk I rarely open my mouth to speak, and when I do it is only to emit great shiny pearls of wisdom and truth. Really.

February 12, 2007 7:13 PM  

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