Dec 18, 2009

I am just going to Pretend I Don't Know What You Mean

Does anyone else out there get inappropiate comments directed there way on a semi-regular basis?

To begin I have to say I work in a predominiately male work environment in refinery / chemical construction.  Inappropriate is the name of the game.  Typically comments are made in a fashion that I am aware that it is a joke.  I am definately not one who is going to run out to HR and file a harrasment claim when I know there is nothing serious behind it.  These come from people I have worked with for several years and consider friends.  I have even had someone tell my husband I couldn't come to the phone because I was under his desk!  Luckily, Clint is also friends with this person and know's he's full of shit. 

Other times it can just make me uncomfortable and give me the heebie-jeebies.  I would think I would be exempt from a bit of the commentaries given that (while still very well portioned) I am currently overweight, I wear no make-up, my hair is in a pony tail daily and my daily work apparel includes jeans, a tee, and steel toe boots.  I am not exactly putting out there my flirt with me persona.  Wearing a ring is also not a deterring factor.  Some of it I realize is just harmless flirting, but other times it sometimes concerns me.

One such case started out as someone just being nice and small talk, then talk of how he and his fiance' are having problems.  The attempt at flirting has been building up for the 2 months I have been at my current location.  Yesterday it escalated to a mistaken identity at Wal-Mart (he thought he saw me, but it was someone else) and followed up by telling me about it and saying "I wish it had been you, I sure would have liked to see you outside of work"  UH-sure-OK!

This mornings comments may have been partly my fault, but it was 5:15 and I wasn't thinking about how things sounded.  He asked how my morning was, and I replied it was ok - little weird - obviously he asked why.  My response was that my little boy had come in to our room about 4 am (15 minutes before my alarm goes off) and was laying with his daddy.  Clint told me at some point that I startled him and was being loud getting ready.  "Being too loud huh?  Wonder what that could mean?"  I chose to ignore the comment from my coworker and pretend like I didn't understand what he was getting at.  Rather than acknowleging the obvious sexual connotation, I replied, "I don't know maybe me brushing my hair was making too much noise" and went on to my office.  I could have said something (probably not as I am non-confrontational) but he is only going to be on this job for another day or two and I usually only see him in the morning when I go get my coffee.  So avoidance won't be too hard from now to then.

FYI:  My being too loud this morning came from indigestion and my loud burping so get your mind out of the gutter!

What would you suggest I do under the circumstances.  Do I need to quit showering?  Hide in my office?

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