November 15, 2010

Workplace etiquette: A poll about The Pigs and other disturbing behavior

Bare feets.

Loves 'em.

I'm not a foot person by any means, but what is cuter than a baby's bare foot? And there's something freeing about running around naked from the ankle down. If I lived in a warm enough climate, I'd go barefoot at home 365 days a year, no question. I love to let the pigs wiggle.


Last week, I walked around the corner of my cube to the printer, which my team shares with an event-planning team in the next row of cubes. (I work for a giant corporation, so it isn't unusual to sit right next to people you never, ever interact with. Except when you're both at the printer.)

As I was waiting for my printed wares, around the corner came one of the event her bare feet.

Again: Big corporation. No one's wearing suits in our area, but neither are we preparing to attend a seaside campfire or lounge in a grassy meadow. Business casual is what we all subscribe to.

And this woman fit the bill, with her sweater set and gray trousers. Perhaps she was going for the fashion equivalent of the mullet: Business up top, party below the pant cuffs.

My reaction? "Ew." And then: "Ew! Ew ew EW!"

Because, first of all? While I absolutely kick off my shoes underneath my desk from time to time, it's just not right to expect my coworkers to bear the sight of them while taking an innocent stroll to the water fountain.

Second? There's no way there isn't some gross, funky stuff happening in corporate-office carpeting, and this woman is just asking for some kind of nasty fungal infection.

And third? Because she's flaunting her bare piggies all over our biz-nass, said fungal infection will eventually make its way into our (fabric-covered) cube walls, and I'll end up with pinkeye or staph or flesh-eating bacteria. Why is this woman messing with our cube farm homeostasis? Wasn't the fruit-fly infestation of 2008 enough? HOW FAR WILL IT GO, PEOPLE?!

As if that wasn't enough, the very same afternoon, this happened: I walked down the hall to the bathroom. Thankfully, we have separate bathrooms for men and women (as all public buildings -- and homes -- should), but we do have to walk right past the men's on the way to the women's. Right as I walked by, the men's door flung open, and a dude walked out...still tucking in his shirt and buckling his belt.

Wait, let me rephrase that.

A man walked out of the bathroom WITH HIS PANTS STILL UNDONE, shoving his shirt DOWN HIS PANTS with his hands while WALKING DOWN THE HALLWAY in full view of me and God and everyone.

I... Yeah. I couldn't believe my eyes, and I still can't.

So, friends, two questions for you today:
  1. Is it ever acceptable to go barefoot at work? If so, please cite examples.
  2. Why would a grown man who, presumably, has been IN THE WORLD, think it's OK to finish shuffling things around down there while walking down a well-traveled hallway?

Thank you. And a happy Monday to you and yours.

13 backtalk:

Wendy said...

EWWW! That means he so did NOT wash his hands?!?!?! I hope he didn't shake anyone's hand that day! DISGUSTING! Ewwww.

Bare feet = gross in the office. I like going barefoot as well, but at HOME. Not at work. Our office cleaner lady cleans barefoot. That bothers me on a lot of levels. She's walking on our floors barefoot and she's walking on them after she cleans. There's probably little piggy marks on our kitchen floor right now becuase she walked across it after mopping. GROSS.

Sarah said...

hahaha! This cracked me up.

Aside from a lifeguard or something, I cannot think of one workplace it is okay to go barefoot. At least throw on some slippers lady!

And that guy, I see that all the time. Not in my office - I work with all women. But I feel like guys just do that. odd.

the grumbles said...

i am a BIG BIG fan of bare feet, and i am guilty of taking off my shoes under my desk from time to time when no one can see. BUT– walking around without your shoes on at work, especially in an office setting is SO NOT OK. for one thing, they never ever ever clean or vacuum the carpet in here and it gives me the creeps. also, ew.

i happen to know for a fact that some of my male coworkers around here don't wash their hands. the men's and women's bathrooms share a back wall and you can hear when someone flushes, runs the faucet, etc. on multiple occasions gentlemen have flushed and then i hear the door swing. and yes, i know who you are, and NO, i will not shake your hand. ever.

Maura said...

Please just promise you'll point the guy out to me one day.

Maura said...

Please just promise you'll point the guy out to me one day.

Iris Took said...

Un, "f@#*ing, believable.

The bare feet is just gross and weird.

The pants. That's just plain wrong and borderline sexual harassment. WTF.

Erika Jean said...

1. never acceptible! EW.
2. Momma didn't raise him right!

Biscuit said...

most. unfortunate. blog post. ever.

Ugh, I need warning signs on posts about feets, mkay? People are sick.

wrestling kitties said...

HAHAHA! This post cracks me up!

NO. Bare feet are NOT acceptable. EVER.

I do not like grown up feet AT ALL. So even talking about it grosses me out. My boss walks around with no shoes but at least has socks on. It took me awhile, but I am ok with it now. But bare feet = NO! Plus, even if the germs were not an issue, am I the only one who has smelly feet....especially if I am not wearing socks?! My cubicle would smell so bad if I didn't have shoes on!

Man buttoning his pants as he walks out of bathroom = unacceptable.

Ky • said...

Love this post.

1.) Bare feet are not ok at work WHEN your co-workers can see you. :) We are moving into new offices and today I took off my shoes (bare feet) whilst I put away my office crap. I had to. My feet are swollen and my wedges hurt.

2.) That man was gross. Take the extra 4 seconds and zip your junk in the bathroom.

(My new office has a "unisex" bathroom and it TERRIFIES me. Omg.)

Jessie said...

Finding the right catering company can make any event a breeze!

Written Permission said...

Really "Jessie" (if that IS your real name)? Can it?


(And, I detest the term "breeze" when it's used to describe how easy something is. It's lazy marketing writing. Stupid Jessie.)

Trophy Life said...

1). not ok with unisex b-rooms but i did experience them when i worked at bluffton and there was only one guy. but, it, was, weird....and zip up your pants pre-exit. you KNOW he did not wash his hands either

2). bare feet at work at your desk, hidden - sure. acting like you're at a picnic - not ok. put your shoes on.

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