I'll be on time tomorrow but you'll still be a bitch

Just got out of a “come to Jesus” meeting with my bitch of a boss and HR. Apparently I have a “pattern of chronic absence.” This "pattern is made manifest in being absent twice and late seven times over a four-month period. “Late” was in most of those cases no more than ten minutes and because of unexpectedly heavy traffic.

OK yes, I recognize it is my responsibility to be on time to work and yes, I have been late more often than I should have (in most cases through no fault of my own) but here’s what frosts me about it:

  1. Every time I’ve been running late or sick I have followed proper procedure for notifying her.

  2. It honest to god most days in my job is not that big a deal if someone is a few minutes late.

  3. One of the days she’s citing me for was a day when I was at an urgent care center for chest pains, which urgent care visit I waited to make until my lunch hour precisely to minimize my time away from the office. Another day was a follow-up visit for those same chest pains two days later, again made on my lunch hour to minimize my time away from work. I missed no full days because of these pains.

  4. As we’re coming back from the meeting she gives me this little, “it’s not me, it’s the company” speech. What with the “new attendance policy” (charmingly called “Attendance: Patterns of Abuse”) that “they’ve” implemented “they” are really cracking down. BULL-FUCKING-SHIT. You’re the supervisor. It is your responsibility to identify the supposed “pattern of abuse.” Had you not decided that this was a “pattern of abuse” this would have gone no further. Step up to it, bitch. This was your decision and yours alone.

And, as I’m typing this up between calls, she walks over to me with the “record” of my supposed lateness days. Does this record consist of, oh say a printout of the log-in and log-out records of my user ID? No, it consists of a blank calendar where she’s highlighted days (in green) and then hand-written the alleged infractions underneath. The phrase “making shit up” comes to mind…

So yeah, I’ll be on time tomorrow, but tomorrow you’ll still be the lamest excuse for a half-ass boss I’ve ever dealt with. And I’ll be here bright and early tomorrow morning thinking it.

the “come to Jesus” meetings are for reprimands?

If she comes in after you, just softly say, “tick, tick, tick” when she walks by.

That sucks.

Didn’t you have some other situation about a month ago with this same boss? Maybe there are some personality issues working here.

I was once “downsized” from a public relations job basically because my supervisor didn’t get along with me too well. It was a classic personality conflict: I was a Type B, and she was a control-freak bitch.

Not to worry you unnecessarily, but if my recollection is correct and she’s basically nitpicking minor crap to drag you to HR, it might be worth polishing up the old resume.

Otto, I’m sure you are pissed and feel put upon, but your employer honestly isn’t asking anything unreasonable.

It’s your responsibility to judge your commute, and leave as early as necessary to ensure you are on time – all the time.

Certainly you get sick time, but I can’t tell if you asked for half days prior to leaving the building for your doctor’s visits. I’m guessing not, since they seem to be logging it as a ‘no call, no show’ which means you were gone and no one knew why. Very serious.

Sorry, but these people have a valid case, and I can tell you for certain that they are starting a paper trail that will allow them to fire you if this persists.

Damn that bitch for wanting you to actually be at your job when you’re supposed to be there.

What kind of horshit rule is that?

If you let her get away with that she’s going to impose some other arbitrary bullshit like expecting you to stay till the end of your shift.

She must be a monster

You actually have to be at work on time?!?! Man, what kind of crazy shit is that?! I think you’ve definitely got grounds for a lawsuit Otto.

That sub-human bitch.

There’s no way I can know ahead of time that there will be unusually heavy traffic on a particular day. I live 10 minutes away and I leave 30 minutes early. And if traffic is backed up I call in to let her know.

Nope. Left for urgent care on my lunch hour at 12 noon. At 1:00 I called to to let her know I was at urgent care and didn’t know how long I would be. I asked if she wanted a doctor’s note as required by policy (and don’t get me started on the ridiculousness of expecting a grown man to bring in a note) and brought her the note. Sat down with her when I got back to explain the basics of my medical issue and advise her I had a follow-up appointment also scheduled for my lunch hour two days later. I was back at my desk after the follow-up appointment exactly 1/2 hour after the end of my scheduled lunch time. My boss knew exactly where I was at all times, and given the fact that I woke up that morning with actual chest pains, I could have missed a lot more work.

To her credit, the HR chick looked embarrassed that these two were included in the supposed “pattern of abuse.”

Try 40 minutes early.

Sounds like there’s a lot more going on than tardiness. Maybe you’re an asshole, and they have a double secret policy against that.

Wow Otto, you don’t seem to be getting a lot of sympathy here. Maybe some slackers will wander in and give you some support.

Fact is man, 10% of the days you are supposed to be working you are sick, tardy, or having an emergency.

Unless you do some fantastic job when you’re actually at work, I can’t see why any employer would want to keep you around. And the traffic excuse has to be the lamest. EVERYBODY has to figure out their typical worst time to work and adjust their schedule accordingly but you can’t somehow figure that out.

No traffic reports on the radio or TV? Check them early in the AM, and adjust your schedule accordingly.

It doesn’t (from your OP) sound as though you’re ‘abusing’ anything, OTOH, you’re not really doing so hot at being on time, make the extra effort.

Pretty low to call someone out for being absent when they’re sick and at the doctor, though.

Well, then your gripe is with your commute, because it is still your responsibility to arrive on time. I hope you haven’t used this as an excuse, because that would probably just piss your boss off more.

I think calling at 1pm to let them know you will not be back from lunch on time qualifies as zero notice. You need to plan better.

Right, because that’s fucking the first thing that should be on his mind when he’s in the emerge for chest pains.

Did you miss this part:

It sounds potentially serious, but definitely planned. If the OP decided he could wait and leave at a set time, he could have informed his employer. It is also evident he realized ahead of time there was a chance it would take more than his lunch hour. I hope it wasn’t serious, Otto, but really you could have handled it better with your boss.

You know, it’s all well and good to rant about “stupid” policies that your employer has…but really, I don’t think you’re offering your readers the big picture here.

Here we have Otto talking about the acts of petty rebellion he’s undertaking to annoy his managers.

Here’s the thread where Otto celebrates not being fired, but merely being put on probation.

Here’s the original “I think I’m about to fired” thread.

I seem to recall other instances of job bitching, but I was too lazy to search through other threads, so I only linked the ones Otto himself started.

Maybe there really aren’t any legitimate performance issues and your boss is just a bitch. Or maybe we can just go with Occam’s Razor and assume that the most likely explanation is the correct one.

Working in a call center sucks, no doubt. However, I don’t have a whole lot of sympathy for someone who takes a crappy job they hate, acts out and thinks they’re above the rules, and then is surprised when they get tagged as a problem employee.


Hell, you need flextime, your 8 hours start when you get there, within a specified window. No tardiness, no having to arrive early to make sure you are on time (like I did for a number of years).

If you had a union they would probably have already gotten you this benefit - as well as representing you when this supervisor
starts with a bunch of petty shit.

Okay, chest pains are an excusable absence in my book, though they might have more credibility if you didn’t wait for your lunch hour to go to the urgent care facility. If you think you’re really having a heart attack, then you should go to the hospital immediately.

Regarding the follow-up visit two days later, you should have reported to your supervisor that you had the appointment as soon as you knew it was scheduled during working hours. Then you should have reminded her of the appointment on your way out in case you were late getting back. (I don’t think I’ve EVER visited a doctor where I was in and out in less than an hour.) And if you were late returning, upon your return you should have immediately acknowledged that you were late coming back and perhaps asked her if you could make up the time by staying later that day or cutting x minutes off your lunch hour the following day.

Now about those tardies… 7 times in 4 months is inexcusable. Yeah, yeah, we all have traffic. I had to fire a girl once because she was constantly 10 minutes late for work due to a train. She just couldn’t, or wouldn’t, adapt to the possibility that there might be a train…on the train track…that already had a history of blocking her path at least twice a week. I can’t say that I had much sympathy for her when she was finally let go.

So, Otto, you KNOW traffic may be heavy enough to cause you to be late because 7 days out of 80 it HAS caused you to be late. You have several choices: a) you can see if your schedule can be adjusted so that you are not traveling during rush hour; b) you can leave 40 minutes ahead of time if the traffic helicopter reports especially heavy traffic; c) you can have a discussion with your supervisor to see if she will allow you to make up the minutes missed at the end of the day or your lunch hour. or d) you can wait for the day when the world becomes Ottocentric and no one in your fair city will venture forth into the world until you have arrived at work.

Your boss may be a bitch and she may be a Jesus lover. That doesn’t mean that she doesn’t have a legitimate beef about your chronic tardiness. And 9 times out of 40 is the beginning of a bad trend.


Four months is about 122 days, of which 5/7, or 87 days, are work days.

Constantly would be 87 out of 87 days.

Otto was late 7 out of 87 days.

7 < 87.

Roughly 8% late. Not bad, not good (probably above the national average though).

I’ve had my share of bad supervisors but in this case, I’m mixed from what I’ve read in the second link Jadis posted. The sup praised you Otto and probably was the only reason why you kept your job and you’re bitching? I’ve had ones that wouldn’t do that.

And I’m surprised you’re getting away without address verification. I work in exactly the same environment (cell phone company) and when I was in the hell pit, sorry, Customer Service, we had to ask for address verification. I’ve caught my share of people who couldn’t recite their own address.