I Won’t Ask my Boss Where the Bathroom is and Other Idiosyncrasies

So, in the emotional chaos that has been the last few weeks, it may have been lost in the shuffle that I’ve begun a new internship and a new job. Anything would’ve been an improvement from my old job so obviously I’m in the clouds over working on sports. Mostly it’s nights and weekends so it works with my school schedule really well and I’m totally used to not having a life anyway. I’ve spent two weeks at my internship and I really like it so far. But, on Mondays, I go straight from class to the office and I leave the office and go directly back to class. What this means practically is I no longer have the opportunity to go home to take care of business. Business, in this case, includes eating lunch and using the bathroom.

I arrived on Monday afternoon almost 20 minutes early. I’m conflicted whether it’s acceptable to be that early for an internship because what I do is dependent on what my boss assigns and explains to me and if I’m 20 minutes early, I could be cutting his lunch short or something equally awful. So, I sat in my car for five minutes and then, despite using the bathroom before I left campus, I realized I had to pee again. So did I do what a normal person would do and go inside and ask someone in the office where the bathroom is? No. Of course not. I wandered the hallways of the office building until I found a public bathroom, praying I didn’t run into anyone from my office because I know almost no one’s name. I’m still unsure if there is one in the actual vicinity of the office, but I’m leaning towards no. Had I not had to use the bathroom today, my strategy would’ve typically been to observe people in the office until I was confident enough that I knew where the bathroom was and then pretend as if I knew all along. Today, I noticed people going in and out of the office a lot for no apparent reason, so I surmise that the bathroom is, in fact, the bathroom in the hallway.

Does all this seem odd to you? That’s because it is. But, it’s only the beginning of weird things I do very differently than most normal people, I’ve come to realize.

I mentioned earlier that if I were more than fifteen minutes late for class, unless it was a three hour class, I just won’t go. To be clear, three hour classes at Hofstra are classes that occur only once a week. Most of them only allow one or two absences a semester since once class equates to a full week of learning time. Basically, I can’t really afford to miss a three hour class unless I’m bleeding from my eyeballs or something. Most upper level Film courses, especially of the practical nature, are three hour courses. But take, for example, a Psychology class – Psychology being my minor. They are typically 45 minutes to an hour and a half and occur two or three times a week. They are also typically huge classes, like, full lecture halls, because Psych is so popular. I will not EVER walk into one of those classes more than 15 minutes late.

1. If I am 15 minutes late to a 45 minute class, I’ve already missed a third of the class. Walking in now would just insult the professor.
2. Everyone is going to turn and look at me and presumably judge me. There is no valid reason to be that late for class and if there was, parking certainly wouldn’t be one of them.

I’m not kidding. I will not go to that class. My paralyzing fear of unwanted attention will justify me sitting in my car for the remaining hour and fifteen minutes of that class, or if it was my only class for the day, driving all the way home. Thanks, Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Super cool of you to waste my gas and time. It’s probably not a shock to any normal person that most people wouldn’t think twice about walking in and taking a seat, not for a second worrying about anyone staring at them. Well, I do. This extends to walking into crowded bars alone. Won’t happen ever. My friends went out earlier than I got out of work? Oh, ok. See ya next weekend guys – unless I can wrangle someone to escort me inside I will not be coming. But, I will gladly stand in front of a room and strangers and read something I’ve written with virtually no fear at all. How do I reconcile that? I can’t. Nothing I do makes sense.

In addition to not asking where the bathroom is, I generally just have trouble asking for help or for people to clarify things for me. Again, probably for fear of being judged. If I don’t know how to do something on an editing platform, I’ll click around and google help until I figure it out. Normally, this makes a lot more work for myself and I devise really backwards ways of doing things. If I just asked them how to do it, they’d be happy to show me and I’d really learn. But, then I’d also be inadequate.

I will not allow my boss to buy me lunch or coffee. He offers constantly, but because I feel awkward accepting, I eat alone in my car before I go to my internship and never eat with the other people in the office. This I know is probably detrimental to me, but I won’t change. Additionally, there is a small kitchen which I’ve never even been in that apparently has coffee and water and snacks but I will likely never take anything. If there is a bathroom in the office, this is where it is. But, I don’t think there is. Someone please explain to me why I’m so weird.

Between the buildings where my new job is and where my internship is, there is a deli. It will likely take me weeks to go in there for dinner between jobs or lunch before work out of fear of running into someone from the job I’m not at. Why? I don’t know. They’re all very nice people. There’s no reason for me to be afraid of them.

This is only the beginning. I’m truly an oddity.


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