Friday, June 01, 2007

office solicitations

One thing I don't understand about working in an office is the collections process. When someone has a bday, we give money. When someone needs bail money*, we give money. When someone's in the hospital, we give money. I'm sure if people here had going away parties (instead of just disappearing) then we would give money. The other day someone's dad died, so we gave money.

**Callous bitch alert**
I don't know the son. I didn't know the dad that died. He was an old sick man though, so it's not like he was surprising anyone by dying. I still gave a dollar because I'm sure they can use it, but I was the one on the list who gave the least.

I can't give money to every person that works here that has a problem. Nobody's ever given me money for anything. Plus, this is a pretty big company. There are about 100 employees, most of whom are in the shop and I never see or talk to, let alone know their names. Yet I am still expected to give.

I remember a time at a different job when a coworker had all her laundry stolen from the laundromat. And I mean ALL her clothes and her 3 young kids' clothes. They literally only had the clothes on their backs left. I had no problem giving her money then because a) I knew her pretty well and b) it was an emergency. But things at this office have never fallen into that category. I don't know people well, if at all, and it's not ever been an emergency (except maybe that bail one, but I was still brand new so I didn't get any details).

I simply can't afford to help everyone. Sure my boyfriend just got his first paycheck and he makes 4 times more than me after taxes. But besides the fact that that's his money and he knows these people even less than I do, we need that money to pay rent and stuff. Nobody seems to notice, but I'm not exactly rich. I would have no problem (or less problem, anyway) sharing my wealth if I had any wealth to share. As it is, part of my dinner fund was just given to someone that I don't know to help with (I guess) his dad's funeral arrangements. That dollar is not going to do anyone any good except for me. And don't say that "every dollar adds up" because I'm the only one that gave as little as a dollar. They're lucky they didn't get a handful of pennies.

So I'm sorry that that guy's dad died, but I'm also sorry that I have to donate or else be shunned by people I don't know and will only have to "deal with" for 2 more months. What a stupid arrangement.

* This happened my first week here. I didn't give any money because I had no idea who this was and why I should help them get out of jail.


mar said...

you're not callous for not being guilted into giving.
we have the solicitations at work too. we're even allowed to 'donate' our sick time if someone has an emergency (1 woman recently had a double mastectomy & had used all her time off being misdiagnosed, but i also work in a hospital)
anyway, we get the whole 'donate for funerals' thing from the secretaries via e-mail and i only give if i know the person well. and then usually under $5. when my grandmother passed away 2 months ago, no one did anything for me, except my close coworker who palmed me $10 right before i got outta dodge. it came in handy trying to get a meal between my flights, so that was nice, but i didn't expect anything, nor did anyone else make an offer like they do for everyone else. and gosh, i've only worked there for two years.

SUEB0B said...

Wow. That is crazy. I think a card might be more appropriate. On the other hand, I am bereaved...anyone want to send some cash dolla bucks my way?

super des said...

I have friends who can donate sick time to coworkers. One (former coworker of mine) just found out her 6-year old daughter has stage 4 lymphoma, so yeah, my friends that work there donated their sick time.

I would rather donate to both of you because I know you and love you, than this random person.

Suzanne said...

I really hate your office. It is more fucked up than even my old office, and that is saying a lot.

jessabean said...

We take people out to lunch on their birthdays. I started working at this job in November, and I believe EVERYONE on my team has a birthday between November and February. That's about 10 birthdays to help pay for. It's nice and all, but kind of expensive, especially for the people (like us) trying to get on their feet.

That bail story takes the cake, though. Hardy har har. :) Don't feel bad about the money. It should be completely optional, and they can't make you feel guilty for how much you give.

super des said...

I really hate my office to. All these things just add up to my desperation to get out.

If anyone asks me for money again, I definitely won't give.

MsLittlePea said...

That's crazy! You shouldn't feel bad at all. I agree with Suebob, a card would be fine. One that can be passed around for everyone to sign. When I got sick my husband's company sent me a really nice bouquet and I appreciated it but I wouldn't have been insulted had I received nothing-those people don't know me. Plus I know that bouquet came out of the company's expense account. People shouldn't be 'obliged' into helping- that leads to resentment about helping. Help from the heart is the best kind, like you did for the lady who had no clothing. What a silly place to work! I feel sorrier and sorrier for you with every post about this job!!

Brillig said...

How ridiculous! If it were totally anonymous, and people gave what they felt like giving and no one got "credit" or guilt for it, then that would (sorta) make sense. But to make everyone feel like they must give or be shunned is SO crazy!!! Oh, Des, I hope something GREAT comes along for you after this stupid job.

super des said...

Everyone (y'all) is always right.

Anonymous said...

Oh my God, please tell me you didn't literally mean there was a LIST. Please.

I hate, hate, hate office solicitations!!! I made a rule years ago that I do not give to the group fund. PERIOD. And it made me look like Uber Bitch at my last job (I was there 8 yrs), but damn, there were a zillion people in that office, a birthday every other day, someone always getting married, etc., and I'm freakin' broke! Now, the corollary to my rule was that I'd give the very shirt off my back or the last buck in my account to a friend in the office, or someone who I felt a heart tug to help, and have done so many times...personally, directly from me to that person. But birthdays and crap? No. And I wasn't unfair about it, because I didn't want people being guilted into giving toward a fund for me, either. Happy birthday flowers or whatever don't smell nearly as good when you know people gave toward them grudgingly. Harumph!

I also hate your office, on principle. You are NOT callous, not at all. You are DISCERNING. Hah!

super des said...

Discerning AND broke. And a little callous still.

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