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I have done something this week that is highly embarrassing and I will probably be downgraded in my annual review for it. [as if it were important to anything at all].

We have had a client call (I could hear the calls from this client on the other person's speaker phone) and the caller was abusive, yelling, threatening, sarcastic and generally obnoxious.

I was supposed to call the person back and I didn't. I just couldn't bring myself to do it, no matter how many times they called, no matter that they got mad enough to call the downtown bigwigs.

All my instincts said, "Crazy. Dangerous. Stay away." The client can sound rational occasionally, especially when talking to a manager, but when speaking to a subordinate, it's like something nasty stuck to a shoe sole. I was afraid.

Now I have to explain and apologize, not only to the client, but to the president of the corporation (and various bigwigs inbetween). How do you say someone's crazy and threatening when all of a sudden they're sounding like a reasonable, sweet, understanding person? Makes me look/feel like the crazy one.

It was stupid and cowardly of me. Next time, I'll bite the bullet and let myself be abused--that's all they really want, someone to defecate upon. Someone they can jerk around. Then they feel better.

This client isn't the first, nor will it be the last. But for the first time I was too cowardly to accept the abuse, knowing ahead of time it would happen. Merde!

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