So then...

About Me

Welcome to my blog. My pen name is Eva James. I'm an aspiring writer paying the bills working as a legal secretary. Relentlessly bullied by my former boss, I looked for another job but the recession hit. Feeling trapped, I recorded everything in this blog, which serves as a revealing insight into workplace bullying. WEEK 1 starts the story and, as the weeks progress, you'll note what starts as banter soon spirals out of control. Sadly, it's all true. Whilst along the way I've found alternative employment, my passion for blogging about workplace bullying remains. Trevor Griffiths, legendary theatre, TV and film writer said at the outset, "I like the writing a lot: smart, cool, placed. If you were prepared/able to take your prick of a boss on, you'd marmelise him."

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

WEEK 17 Cludo

I was expecting a quiet week this week, HOWARD being on a skiing holiday. He got away just in time to miss the e-mail. For the next two months requests for secretarial leave are denied. The Practice Manager said they had to do it - too many fee earners were away and they need us here.

Later, her suspicions aroused, the PM began looking into the fee earner’s holiday claims. She started with OLLIE, our criminal solicitor, and was horrified to discover he’s never filled out a holiday form and already used double his holiday entitlement in a mere six months. How very MP’s expenses fiasco of him.

When OLLIE said he forgot to tell her he’s off to New York in a few days, she insisted he fill out a form. The PM showed me what he’d written on it. He demanded to know why he has the same holiday allowance as a typist - we owe our jobs to him and we aren’t grateful enough as it is. It ended with, “I will not be treated the same as a bloody typist!” Well, that told us.

Except it wasn’t enough for OLLIE. When passing a fellow solicitor he yelled, “And you can piss off too.” He hates her because she’s Indian. OLLIE rolled his eyes at me. He thinks I’m a comrade. We often work late and because I’m quiet he thinks he’s teaching me about life. Depressing the hell out of me is more like it. Most evenings he sits there wiping tomato relish off his shirt from his BK Big Whooper with cheese, as he rants on about the shit way the company is run; the shit way the country is run; how shit it is that women have the vote etc. I sit there typing as OLLIE blusters on. Now and then, I’ll stare at him blankly as I open a fresh bottle of Anadin or St John’s Wort.

I wish he was away more often.

When he left for Court the support staff gathered round the PM’s desk. We agreed someone has to stop him before it goes too far. But how far is too far? It’s not the first time he’s verbally attacked the woman. Last time there was an enquiry. Everyone had to do witness statements. It was like a short story submission for Bella Magazine – stopping just short of a cash prize for the most original. The statements were totally different.

I’d been three floors up. I told them I didn’t see it but they still insisted I write a statement. I got carried away and I confess mine had the Cludo Character Mrs White, attacking Dr Black with a branch of racism in the Law Library.

We looked for a brave face who’d stand up to OLLIE. No one volunteered. My blog is as close as I get to brave. But if they catch me doing this I’m guessing OLLIE has a few of those white sheets with eyes cut in them hidden in his desk. If I’m lucky I’ll tie them together and escape out the toilet window just in time.

See you on the soon,

Eva x

1 comment:

Beads By Becs said...

Hi, a friend of my recommended your blog as I'm being bullied by a director at work. Problem is, I've not been there long, and she's told me I'm not going to make it through my probation period and I need to look for another job. She seems to think that because I have hobbies, and because I don't eat, sleep and breathe work that I'm not dedicated. She also likes to mention how hideous it is that I'm overweight, and that it is not good to be unhealthy, and I really should take 45 minutes exercise 6 times a week... all of this while there is no-one in the office, so I don't have any witness.
I've started reading your blog from the beginning, I intend to read it all eventually.
I imagine that if I was in your shoes, I too would keep my head down, and just get on with things whilst dying on the inside... but as it is, I have zero job security, so I'm desperately looking for another job.
Congratulations on a wonderful blog though - really well written. If it wasn't so late, I would keep on reading!

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