Recently, a woman’s sharp tongue made me think of a coworker from my past who had a sharp/uncensored tongue.
Years ago, I was working as a temporary secretary in a sales office. The office was divided into units based on the products to be sold. Salespersons would meet with the personnel of various companies in hopes of getting contracts.
One morning, one of the salesmen had a really important meeting with a company that promised to sign up for a huge monetary contract.
Just as the salesman was about to leave for the meeting, the salesman said to his secretary, “Wish me luck.” His secretary responded with, “You would have better luck if you weren’t wearing those brown shoes with that blue suit.”
I could see the salesman’s “feathers drop.” He did not have time to change his suit or shoes. Why would she say something like that to him? He left with a sad look on his face.
His secretary made a comment about needing to say something to people when they needed to be told.
I put on my biggest grin and said very cheerfully, “Yeah, but you don’t like for people to tell you anything about yourself. In fact, most people don’t dare risk telling you anything negative about yourself.”
Oh my goodness. She looked like she was going to cry. A woman who had worked with her for years laughed out loud and chirped, “Well now, the truth is the light, or is it?”
I went back to my desk but later went over to her. I told her that I did not mean to hurt her feelings, but she needed to be aware of how much she hurt others with some of her comments.
She agreed with me, or at least she said she did. We continued to be friends even after my sharp tongue.
While visiting in another town, I encountered a woman who was/is verbally abusive. Her neighbors love her and tolerate her behavior, but I cannot.
She now knows that I do not consider her important enough to be in my life and kow-tow to her sharp tongue. As Joey Adams* said, “With a friend like that, who needs enemies.”
* Joey Adams (1911-1999); comedian, radio host, nightclub performer and author.