Humor with a Side of Forum Insight

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Capt MJ, Aug 24, 2017.

  1. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ 10-Year Member

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    As I watch threads unfold and develop into occasional unpleasantness, it's a great reminder of how flat email/internet posting is in its inability to fully convey tone, much less body language and intent. You just never know how a reader is going to interpret something based on their experience, beliefs, culture, even mood in that moment.

    My ears do perk up when people say something, quickly followed by "just joking" - but it's all about context. It's a lot easier to figure out if someone you are two feet away from is kidding around with you in a shared context, or being a passive-aggressive jerk in another, or just awkward in the moment with a poor choice of words.

    At work yesterday, when I was visiting an office new to me, I was introduced to someone by my boss, with whom I was traveling. All very pleasant. Later, this guy button-holed me out of earshot, starting with "don't take this the wrong way (my radar now on), but I don't need your help with X," and he continued with a negative tone and content, that bordered precariously on the personal-professional line. I smiled warmly and pleasantly, expressed how much I appreciated his candor in helping me to decide where to devote my skills and energy in the office. He also moved into my personal space, and I maintained eye contact, stood tall and held my ground. I ignored his bait and outmaneuvered him, while remaining professional. All that "other stuff" helped me understand his words, and bless my Navy career, I learned to handle all kinds of people in the workplace.

    So, the humor...I do love Broadside cartoons, and this one resonated with me today, see attached. I would add another option, the adding of a smiley or winking emoji, as an equivalent of "just joking." It can hit readers all different ways. Humans, we just love to rile each other up, but what richness we share.

    IMG_2291.JPG
     
  2. Maplerock

    Maplerock Proud to be an American 5-Year Member

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    Thank you. :angel:
     
  3. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt 5-Year Member

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    CaptMJ: your post hit a nerve. How many other other women has this jerk approached using the same "style" and intimidation. Clearly he has never met someone of your stature and I am sure you messed up his day. I hope that you don't end up in a toxic workplace but if so - get out of there.

    Regarding your comments on catch phrases, emoji's, etc: During my active duty time, I had a standing tactic I used any time someone began a statement with "Sir, with all due respect..." I stopped them and told them that it was my experience that any time someone invoked that phrase the very next thing they said was, in fact, disrespectful. So I challenged them to stop, think about what they were going to say, and then proceed. This stopped some discussions from going somewhere it shouldn't have gone or creating unexpected consequences for the initiator.
     
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  4. Wishful

    Wishful "Land of the free, because of the brave..." 5-Year Member

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    Two negatives make a positive right, so here goes: Capt, with all due respect, I really like the cartoon, no offense...;)
     
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  5. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ 10-Year Member

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    The trifecta!!!
     
  6. LongAgoPlebe

    LongAgoPlebe 5-Year Member

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    Boy, I thought *I* was having a bad week, trying to get a few hundred freshmen to call me Doctor or Professor LAP instead of Mrs. LAP!

    I call Capt MJ a Jedi, fully-versed in the ways of Jedi mind tricks. The Force is strong with her.
     
  7. brovol

    brovol Member

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    I use those phrases from time to time, and perhaps it is me you are referring to. Likely it is the lawyer in me , but regardless, saying "with all due respect " actually can be taken literally to qualify the point which follows as responsive and to the point, but without calling the other person an idiot at the same time. Now admittedly it can also be used sarcastically as a mechanism to call the other person out as an idiot; and I must admit to being guilty of that too. Usually though I don't do that unless provoked, and rarely do I feel regret thereafter.

    These forums are great, and I particularly like how most of us have some conection to at least one of the academies, and also share a common interest in helping those who want to attend one, serve and lead. However, we don't always share political, philosophical, or personal views or perspectives, and on occasion conflict will ensue. Again, perhaps because of my legal and judicial background I don't believe that debate or banter on these issues is a bad thing. Indeed, I think it is healthy. But I don't run the forum, or moderate, so I will go with the flow, and won't be too upset if I am called out if warranted. And if Capt calls me out I know I deserve it because she is my favorite poster on the forums.

    And Capt, while I know you always can handle yourself as well as anyone, and took care of business beautifully with the stupid coworker, I still would love to punch him in the face. ....but there I go again.
     
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  8. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Moderator 5-Year Member

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    Capt. MJ: "These aren't the plebes you're looking for......move along, move along"
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2017
  9. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ 10-Year Member

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    Your Honor, these phrases can indeed be used with no nasty undertones. They are good English workhorses that get hitched to plows both shiny and the ones riddled with tetanus-spiked rust.

    You all kind souls have to imagine me as a junior officer at my first duty station overseas, first female in the job, women roughly 3% of the Navy with most being Nurse Corps. Of the examples I, and any other first-waver due to gender, ethnicity, race, religion, have by the dozens (sea stories!), one of my first challenges in developing a hide of steel, game face and never let 'em see you sweat armor was when I was a Port Services boarding officer for an aircraft carrier (all-male crew of 4000+) calling at the naval station. I was met by the XO, a Captain who was cordial and pleasant as he introduced me to others I needed to brief on port arrangements. We sat down in his office, alone, and he commented "I hope you don't mind me saying this, but you look like you could give..." I will not, of course, say the rest. The sweat pumps kicked into high gear in my armpits, I went impassive (I hoped), looked back at him and said evenly, "Captain, I have the logreq right here, if you'd like to go over it." And waited. Thankfully, he took the cue. That happened less and less as the culture changed, consequences became more severe, and the Navy started to look different. I was 21, right when women were graduating from the SAs and entering line officer communities. For any parents thinking OMG!!!, this was at a time when med and law school quotas for women were being lifted, and "stuff happened" all across the workforce.

    I wandered off on this, but I do credit my Navy OCS training and being in the pressure cooker there, expected to maintain military bearing, with helping me to dig deep for the strength to fight the battles I could and walk away to fight another day when that was best, via the high road.

    The guy yesterday, the office boor/bully? Amateur hour.
     
  10. brovol

    brovol Member

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    You rock Capt!! Move to Michigan so we can hang out. Lol.
     
  11. sheriff3

    sheriff3 5-Year Member

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    As a father of 2 young women and a husband I shuttered when I read what that Capt said to you. Good on you for keeping your bearing. One has to wonder what his reaction would be if his daughter called and said " my superior officer said this to me"....
     
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  12. truenorth

    truenorth Member

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    To think this malarkey still happens in 2017. Sigh. CaptMJ: you're our hero.
     
  13. Sydney C.

    Sydney C. 5-Year Member

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  14. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ 10-Year Member

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    Many of my peers, who had occasional jerk moments in our twenties, when they became fathers, did a full turnabout, wanting nothing and no one to get in the way of their daughters and whatever they chose to do. I have friends who were among the first USNA women in '80 and later, who now say classmates come up and apologize to them for their share of the stuff they dealt with. After all, that was in the 20th century...

    Overall, I am delighted with the welcoming culture of my new company. Occasional nitwits add variety to the human mix.
     
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  15. greeneggsandham

    greeneggsandham New Member

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    They were briefing wrong info on BRS in March. Hopefully they have corrected it.