Two weeks ago I was busy with annual staff appraisals. I know many people I work with secretly loathe these rituals but they are an inevitable tool for touching base so we just get on with it. I had a copy of 101 Ways To Kill Your Boss by Graham Roumieu sitting idly on my desk which was a good ice-breaker. BTW check out what the genius Sunny Bindra thinks of these office games.
One of my colleagues, let’s call her Cathy because that’s not her real name, has been troubling me recently. Cathy has a first rate mind and her work is greatly admired by her peers. But lately she’s started acting out of character – missing deadlines, turning up for work under the influence and generally coming within inches of being shown the door.
Cathy is also very attractive and charming. You better believe it when a gay man says that. However this immensely talented woman is steadily gaining a reputation for being an easy lay. My colleague Sheila confided in me the other day that some clients now refer to Cathy as 'the Trampoline of Harambee Avenue'! Tragic considering this whispering campaign is happening behind her back and it’s the guys she’s changing weekly who are the culprits.
Anyway she walked into my office looking stunning as usual in a well-fitting pin-stripe business suit and tottering on black heels. I felt an unfamiliar twitch in my trousers but I quickly telepathed a sharp warning to my cock, If your dick causes you to sin then cut it off, from the scriptures or somewhere I can’t remember where I saw it written. Then I said please take a seat. I had my nasty-Tamaku speech all ready: Listen very carefully to what I’m about to say because I’ll only say it once. From now on you must come to work to do what is expected of you. That’s called Pride. Bring your own morale with you if that’s what you need to earn a living. Think of your career and the lovely cold hard cash that comes with it. If you think that’s too difficult then perhaps it’s time you reconsidered your future here. No ifs no buts.
But I didn’t, I just paused to think for a minute while stroking my sixteen greying beard hairs and asked, is there something troubling you?
That’s when she covered her face and started crying. I hate seeing any tears so I said I’m so sorry Cathy if something has upset you we can adjourn our meeting. But she composed herself quickly and told me that she was recently diagnosed with HIV! I ended the meeting there and then but we carried on talking for two hours. I said you need to take responsibility for your life because if you carry on like this you’ll surely find an early grave and it may not be the HIV. She said she had not found the courage to talk to anyone before so I said I’d put her in touch with some professionals who will help and she has nothing to fear but fear itself. We talked about lots of stuff that she wanted to talk about like plans for raising a family. I laughed in mock horror when she said that she’s looking for a guy but the good ones in Nairobi are all gay. I said loudly nooo! In my head I thought yeess!
Finally she left my office looking much brighter and more like her old self. Something tells me she’ll turn things around soon. I'm also praying that she does.