Sunday, September 9, 2012

Better Red Than Psycho Killer

Today we have an item from a woman that works with what can only be described as a complete freak.  He sounds to me like the kind of guy who has a shed in the back yard just for drying the skins of his prey.  I'm pretty sure he's uttered the words "It puts the lotion on it's skin.  It does this every time it's told." at least once.  Read on...

Dear Boss Lady,
I work for a financial services company as a software developer.  I have worked in this career for a very long time and have worked with all types of people and I have to say, I pretty much get along with everyone, or I did until a weird little man moved into the cubicle next to mine.  In a way, I feel like the word "weird" isn't quite strong enough as I am starting to wonder if he's the type of guy that eventually goes postal.

I don't know a lot about him, but what I do know is that he HATED me from the moment he saw me.  As strange as this may sound, I think that he hates me because I have red hair.  As soon as he moved in, he began to greet me in the morning with nothing more than the stink-eye.  He seems to be angry and seething for the entire day as he is always slamming his drawers, grumbling under his breath and if I speak to someone above a whisper, he screams at me as if I just kicked his dog.

In interesting contrast to his behavior toward me is how he behaves when his wife calls him at the office. All of a sudden, his aggression changes to what I can only describe as subservience.  He gets all mealy mouthed and says a lot of "yes dear" type of phrases. It's like I watch him morph from a ball of fury into Mr. Peepers.

Now, here's the reason that I think that he has an issue with redheads -  When I walk down the hall toward him, he pushes his body up against the wall to give me a wide berth to pass, as if I had a highly communicable disease.  I have taken pains to observe if he does this with anyone else and the only other time I've seen him do this is when a redheaded woman from Finance was in the aisle near his cubicle and he got visibly agitated because he couldn't get to his desk without getting within three feet of her.  Also and more significantly,  we had to take a training class last spring and the class instructor was a very friendly woman with flame red hair who greeted everyone who entered the room by shaking our hands and introducing herself.  When she grabbed his hand to shake it, he completely freaked out and screamed "Get your cold clammy hands off of me!".   Everyone in the room just froze.  I don't know if she went to HR about it, but she definitely should have.

While it certainly seems strange to call this discrimination based on hair color (what?), it does seem to pretty clearly factor into it.  I have seen him have very civil conversations with other people (mostly nerdy, older male developers), but he has never been even remotely civil to me.  I have never said or done anything to this man in any way.  He seemed angry with me from the moment he moved in.   I'm at a loss.  Any ideas?


  1. I'm thinking his wife is a redhead.

  2. Or possibly he is hot for redheads-wife not included but clued in to it and keeping tabs.

    1. He sure does sound like he's afraid of her. Me thinkst she rules the roost. All sorts of weird B&D/adult baby scenarios are going through my head and it's making me sick. Gotta think of sunshine and puppies not odd middleaged men in pampers. Sunshine and puppies...sunshine and puppies...sunshine and puppies