May my boss cease to be. Please.

What do you do when every single day, every single hour that you spend in the presence of your so-called “superior” – a person ordained by other people, you’ll note, to organize and channel your work and make sure you stay devoted to it, a person who is supposed to have moral authority over you and “keep you in line” when you’re not working a hundred percent – when every single second you spend in the presence of this person reinforces the dreadful, unflappable certainty you feel in your gut that this person is not only intellectually, but also morally, cognitively and spiritually inferior to you, in fact so utterly inferior to everyone you know in all respects that it’s a wonder this person hasn’t at some point in their life simply popped out of existence, their continued life being such a gross violation of the laws of natural selection that God should have long ago sued.

I just managed to say “I hate my boss” in 155 words. This is the kind of verbosity bred only by just the right mixture of seething resentment and careful tactical planning (I know now, for example, that if my boss were ever to read this, she’d give up on the post after the 20th word because her daily allowance of Big Words had been reached, turn off her computer, putter around like a confused chicken for a few minutes, fall asleep on the bathroom floor, then go to work the next morning and spend all day wondering what the toilet and the bathtub had been doing in her bedroom). She is the embodiment of the stereotypical Middle Management Nightmare. She is responsible for facilitating the flow of information and communication from our department to our department head and upper management, and she uses this position to apply what seems to have been the one gift bestowed upon her at birth, which is Taking Credit For Other People’s Work. The astute reader will notice I put this in first-letter caps. This is to further underline the fact that she has elevated this particular activity into a form of art so refined that it falls squarely within the first-letter caps canon, falling just short of being italicizable or even boldable. She doesn’t know how to open a can of Coke without garden clippers or use a cell phone without electrocuting herself, but boy, can she Take Credit For Other People’s Work. She can Take Credit For Other People’s Work until the cows come home, baby.

Hmm. I’m being excessively verbose again.

Okay, forget what I wrote above. In fact, erase all that from your head the way a piece of pickled ginger cleanses your palate in preparation for the raw, uncooked truth, 'cause here comes the sushi:

Fuck my boss. Fuck her in her stupid ass.

I’ve said all I need to say.

Now that was a good rant. I admit that I skipped the first two paragraphs, but was compelled to read the whole thing by the excellent ginger analogy. And I’m glad I did – that was quality.

I’m always amazed at how consistently companies seem to accumulate managers whose only job is to annoy and anger those they manage, without accomplishing anything else.

Fnoonf, I certainly sympathize… but… are you posting at work?

I mean, I’ve had some truly insane bosses… ranging from the “too dumb to pour sand out of a boot even if it had detailed illustrated instructions printed on the sole”… to “megalomaniac convinced that his current low-level management job is but the first step on the road to greatness, so let’s change everything around hereabouts, not for efficiency or convenience, but simply because I’m in charge, and I say so.”

…and I am here to tell you that a truly stupid boss is a blessing. Really. Particularly with a smart cookie like you around. Learn her habits. Learn how to emulate her thought patterns.

If you’re bright enough to write a rant like that off the cuff, you’re bright enough to channel the energy currently being burned in resenting her… into … learning her… influencing her… steering her… and eventually achieving total control over her, without her ever realizing it.

Then, at best, she’s your play toy. At worst, you can manipulate her into doing something truly insane, and the Powers That Be will replace her, hopefully with someone equally as stupid, but more congenial (although you can’t really count on this).

Think about it awhile…

God, sometimes it really is necessary to stop and count your blessings. How lucky I am to have a cool, sane, smart and humane boss, and an all-around pleasant workplace atmosphere. Even the few crazy things that happen (as well as crazy people) are more entertaining than they are sinister.

[Emperor Palpatine]Only then will your journey to the dark side be complete.[/Emperor Palpatine]

Fnoonf I sympathise. Been there, seen it but, I hope, never done it ( as a manager).

It seems all to often that these sort of people rise to middle management and have the following characteristics.

  1. Play the blame game - if something goes wrong find the person who was responsible and rip them a new asshole, instead of determining why it went wrong and making sure it doesn’t happen again.

  2. Taking Credit For Other People’s Work - or, if it got done properly it’s because of how good I am and if it went wrong… see 1.

  3. Looking for the bad side of someones work and emphasising that instead of looking for the good side and encouraging that.

This is beautiful. Thank you, Fnoonf

Does that first paragraph remind anyone ever so slightly of the worldview of Ignatius J. Reilly in Confederacy of Dunces?

Does your supervisor, perchance, in need of some “theology and geometry?”

Plagiarism is a popular pastime on message boards. So popular, that I, for one, just yawn and move on. I don’t even bother to point it out anymore.

Shoot her point blank in the face and say it was an accident.

Upon further query, say “Honest”.

–Xavier, who graduated in the Lou Ferrigno School of Martial Arts–

Ain’t what I was trying to say. The paragraph simply reminded me of the worldview espoused by the character in the book I mentioned. That post ain’t plagiarized.

Anyway, I assure you, the staff here takes plagiarism quite seriously. We delete every instance of it from these boards that we can reasonably identify.

Or, alternatively… this just in from the Nicholas Cage School of Acting:





Both methods will scare your boss, although the latter is the only one that will win you the Emmy (such is the price of fame).

This is a precise description of my boss, the one the OP is devoted to.

I also have another boss, the department head, and he’s kind of a…


…which is, of course, type 6.1a in Grorschach’s Index of Management Phenotypes (GIMP, for short). My other boss, being a lower life form, is relegated to an obscure appendix.

The Dep Head guy isn’t really rant-worthy though, because he seems to have at least a marginal understanding of the fact that being the boss doesn’t entitle you to (a) ownership of the staff’s intellectual property, (b) criminal misjudgment and underuse of staff’s abilities and resources and (c) really, really overpowering perfume (we’re talking seriously narcoleptic floral mayhem here).


With respect to your gracious advice, I don’t think you fully understand the extent of this woman’s uselessness. Let’s just say that in this case, doing what you propose would be a bit like me devoting a whole bunch of my time and energy towards building a boat made of toilet paper. It’s just not worth it.

Hmm. Right then. Twain it is for the holidays.

[smug bastard]
OK, tell you what. Next time you happen upon a post of mine that I’ve unwittingly plucked from the pages of a book I’ve never read, I’d really appreciate it if, somewhere between yawning and moving on, you did take the time to point it out to me. Just a quick poke would be fine. That way at least I can read the book in question and see what’s causing the misunderstanding. Thanks! :slight_smile:
[/smug bastard]

And btw, congratulations on having a sane, down-to-earth boss. I experienced that once, briefly, for two months in the summer of '99. [digress] Of course, he got fired for reasons undisclosed, and they installed a pay-per-minute Model F Efficiency Drone (complete with generic haircut!) who nagged us incessantly, never went to the bathroom (ever.) and ate the same type of sandwich every day using the exact same movements. There was a sort of hideous system to the way he ate; after three pokes of the fork into his mouth there was a wiping of the napkin. Two more pokes, and the subsequent draining of the glass took place. Mountain Dew. Always, always Mountain Dew. These two girls took to calling him The Stepford Boss, which I didn’t find funny at all because it was just too true, somehow.[/digress]


Yes, that has a kind of earnestly murderous desperation to it. As my feelings towards this boss are fast headed in that direction, I fear this method will find itself spontaneously utilized before long whether I choose to or not. I hope it makes her choke on her gum.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go clean out my bile tract.

Immediately after posting, I was struck with the realization that perhaps this wasn’t Twain at all. I turned out to be right, much to my mortification.

I’ll just be over here, cleaning my tract, quiet as I can.


Ah. So (correct me if I’m wrong) what you’re saying is that you actually care about what you’re doing, and that you get some sense of accomplishment out of your job, and that you feel it’s more important to do your job than to ignore it in favor of playing mind games with your idiot boss until she doesn’t know whether to shit or wind her watch?


I’m sorry.

I may need a little time to assimilate that idea… it’s remarkably alien to my way of thinking…

Lord–you mean there are two bosses like that in the world?

My boss at my last college fundraising job was so bad, I don’t think to myself anymore, “How could she be so bad and stay in her job?”, but “How could she be so bad, period?” An all-too-abridged list of shortcomings:

Couldn’t get to work on time. Never stayed 'till 5. Lied about why she was late and why she had to leave early. Missed engagements with her boss, then lied about why she missed them to his face. Refused to call potential donors or meet them face-to-face (excellent behaviour for a fundraiser!) Blamed lack of donations, reporting errors, bad weather on anyone and everyone. Asked embarrassing, inappropriate and downright rude questions to her employees (the low point: asking my colleague if the baby she expected was her husband’s). Gave out way too much information about herself (such as: “I’ve been in a lot of threesomes and they are really fun! You should try one!”) Bragged about how little work she was doing. Took “unscheduled vacations” almost weekly, sometimes not telling us where she was going or when she was coming back. Charged personal expenses to the college. Made homophobic comments to her boss about another of my colleagues. (Most unusual considering her own stated orientation.) Made anti-Catholic remarks about yet another of my colleagues, sometimes within earshot of students. (Not good at a Catholic college!) Oh yeah, and got her Ph.D at the University of Taking Credit for Other People’s Work.

My advice: Go. Update your resume, find some friendly references, and get out. It took me only ten months to get away from my boss, but I think it took ten years off my life. I am now working the length of the country away, for less pay (yes, I was that desparate), and I do not regret it for an instant. Good luck.

Regrettably, Duke, there are HORDES of bosses like that.

And worse. I’ve seen them.

Your advice is sound, certainly. Having a rabid asshole in charge of your livelihood can make you nuts and shave years off your lifespan, certainly.

…but the possibilities are endless when you get a dim one…>:)