My out of control busy life continues… I’ll work about 50 hours both this week and next – including Dec 26th the day after Christmas, which I’m guessing is a holiday for MOST people. Not me.

The good news is another one of my awesome readers stepped up to write a guest post for me. This is from Justine, she is a great writer who shares funny stories about her life. I am thinking about hiring her to put some shelves up above my desk!

In keeping with the “work” theme today, she’s giving some advice on how to handle a certain annoying type of coworker.


In general, I consider myself a pretty friendly person.

I have good manners. I get along with just about anybody. And I can make small talk like nobody’s business.

The thing is, while I enjoy being friendly with just about anyone (I rule out terrorists, rapists, and people who didn’t “get” the movie Inception), it doesn’t mean I want to be friends with just about anyone.

Girl’s gotta have standards.

Case in point: co-workers. Similar to the neighbors you inherit when you move into an apartment complex, there’s a fine line you’re forced to dance between “are we friends?” or “are we just forced to see each other a lot?”

For the most part, you can perform this dance without stepping on any toes by simply being polite. Things get stickier when someone starts boogie-ing in your personal space.

I’m talking about the guy at work who keeps trying to give you a nickname.

You know who I’m talking about. The one who says things like, “You’re kind of quiet. I’m going to start calling you The Quiet Girl!” Or, “Why do you always eat lunch by yourself? You’re totally a lone wolf. What’s UP, Lone Wolf!!”

The GAWWKTTGYAN is a character so prevalent, he’s even been immortalized in TV shows. (See: The Office, Andy, and “Big Tuna.”)

Basically what that sentence is supposed to mean is that I’m NOT making this guy up. He is very, very real.

So how to handle it. Obviously, this guy means well. I imagine he doesn’t have a lot of friends, which is why he has to force over-familiar relationships with co-workers. But we should not have to be subjected to nicknames that basically point out that we want to be left alone.

So here’s what you do:

(You’re at your desk and see GAWWKTTGYAN circling in. Pretend not to see him. I repeat: DO NOT ENGAGE. Engaging will only reinforce that you are, in fact, buddies.)

Him: Hey there!

You: Oh…hey…

Him: You look tired! Why are you so tired?

You: Oh..that’s…insulting…um, I guess I had to get up early?

Him: Aw man, isn’t waking up THE WORST? But you really look tired. I’m going to start calling you SLEEPY GIRL!

Widen your eyes like you are genuinely shocked/a little frightened of the possibility. Then timidly murmur, “Are you?”

The GAWWKTTGYAN is nice and also kind of insecure, so he will feel instantly bad about doing something you don’t like (and which, in turn, could make you not like him). Then the following will happen:

Him: Nahhhh I’m just messing with you. See you around!

You: Mkay. (Back to work.)

And scene.

I know. It’s almost like I’m an awkwardness ninja. You’re welcome, world. You’re welcome.

Thanks Justine – written like a true office genius. I have had plenty of encounters with these types of dudes and this advice should be heeded! Don’t forget to go see Justine and let her know what you think of her guest post!

Anyone else care to help me out?

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