Awkward and bizarre

West Orange-Stark High School, a college prepa...

Disclaimer: This is neither my work, nor my high school. Public Domain Image via Wikipedia

Wednesday I returned to work to find that the brief time apart had not made CafeMan any more at peace with my decision not to date him.

Well, all along I had suspected that “peace” is much more my thing than his. That was sort of the point.

He no longer ran from the room in my presence, but he was very stilted towards me. In the same way that previously it had been blatently apparent to anyone nearby that he liked me, now it was uncomfortably apparent to everyone nearby that he was – for all intents and purposes – not speaking to me.

Hence, Day 1 back at the office: Awkward.

Thursday morning I got my coffee (no sign of CafeMan) and settled back at my desk to attend a mandatory webcast, when a friend from another department stopped by.

“I feel like I’m back in high school,” he said, popping his head over my cube wall.

I looked up from my screen, startled and confused. He’s been dealing with career-related drama of late, so I assumed that’s what he meant.

“What happened? What did they say this time?”

“Oh. No. Nothing like that.” He grinned, bemused. He adopted his best teenager tone, “Maria wants me to tell you that she wants to talk to you, and to meet her in the ladies room in 5 minutes.”

I rolled my eyes. “Seriously? You’re right, that IS very high school, and I hated high school.”

Maria (not her real name) is a very sweet woman who works with CafeMan.

This almost certainly cannot be good.

But curiosity won out, and I met her.

She proceeded to tell me that CafeMan wants to talk to me, and that I should know that he was very upset because of my note and she told him he has to treat me like every other customer or he’ll get in trouble, but that apparently he’d been telling everyone in the cafeteria staff of both company buildings that I was going to be his girlfriend and bragged about us talking over coffee as if it was a date. [Even if it was a date, which it wasn’t, I don’t see that as either bragworthy or  appropriate.] And that one of the guys in the next building who sometimes fills in here told him, in response: “No way, she’s too pretty for you” [which is crap in every possible sense, and I didn’t need to know it], and that I should know that [coming back to her original topic] CafeMan wants to talk to me but that I shouldn’t let him except to tell him to leave me alone because he talks too much. He’s crazy, she tells me.

Oh my goodness. A week ago she was playing matchmaker, and now she’s giving me the warning wave-off (as if I needed it). 

Egad. It’s TOTALLY high school. It’s worse, because I didn’t get involved in these kinds of gossipy sessions when I was in high school.

Bleah. How did I get sucked into this vortex?

So sure enough, at lunchtime CafeMan wanted to talk to me.

Basically to tell me that he’s friendly with everyone and he’s trying to be friendly with me too (Yes, I’d like us to be able to be friendly again, I affirm) but he just can’t right now and that I need to give him some time because my note really hurt him because I am so much in his heart. 

I am a person – he tells me pointedly, pinching his own arm to underscore the point – and I have feelings.

I’m not sure if that statement is meant to imply that by contrast I don’t have feelings, or that I don’t care about his feelings. Neither is true nor particularly nice, but I’m going to make allowances for the fact that no one who is disappointed – even if being so disappointed over so little seems a bit “off” to me – is at their best.

Anyway, he’s trying, he tells me – I nod appropriately, relieved that he is talking to me without having an outburst – and that if I have a problem with him of course I can call his manager.

Wait, what? When did managers get involved?

Anyway, it’s going to be uncomfortable for a while now, but I hope it will get better. Although now it seems to me that there’s a whole Maria-vs-CafeMan dynamic going on in addition to the awkwardness between us.

Day 2 back at the office: Bizarre.


About aka gringita
Flotsam generator. Amateur photographer. Avid traveler. Christ follower.

3 Responses to Awkward and bizarre

  1. Pingback: Shhhhhh! « aka Gringita

  2. Like, oh my god! You two could totally be prom king and queen if you gave him a chance!


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