Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Buy your own gum

I chew gum. Lots of it. Gum frequently lies on my desk. Apparently a colleague mistook this to mean that I am a free gum dispensing machine. Just like a skimpily dressed woman isn't always a slut, someone with lots of gum in his possession isn't always a benevolent gum distributing philanthropist.

But this colleague, he keeps coming to my cubicle every few minutes, asking for gum. Now it's true that I have lots of gum in my possession. But by God, I have worked my ass off to acquire it. Gum is not easily obtainable in this neighbourhood. I have to drive 2 miles through heavy construction and 4 traffic lights to get gum. So I don't buy gum everyday. I buy a weeks worth and chew it in stages. I have designated fixed gum chewing times during the day when I indulge in this activity. Once when I enter the office in the morning and once after lunch. None in between. You hear that? NONE IN BETWEEN.

And now I am supposed to cater to this undisciplined gum chewing habit of this colleague of mine? That's ridiculous! Now, I have to make two trips to the gum store instead of once every week. I have to re-arrange my entire life around his gum addiction. Sometimes, gumboy asks me if I want soda from the fridge, that he will get me a can since he's going there anyways. What are you doing, I say to myself, no, I don't want soda, don't try to buy my gum with your soda, I will get my own soda, thank you very much. I would walk to the soda even if both my legs were broken or if I were blind and the only way I could get to the soda were to accidentally fall into the ladies room and be escorted out firmly with womanly compassion and dignity destroyed. No, no soda for me, gumboy.

So now, because of this colleague, I have stopped being openly gum-crazy. I hide my gum in my desk drawers now. Whenever gumboy comes to my cubicle, I tell him I am out of gum. He looks at me unconvinced, but what can he do? There's no gum on my desk.

When it is time to chew gum, I unwrap my gum quietly. He sits in the next cubicle so I have to be very careful. Even the slightest sound of rustling paper will have him snapping at my heels in a ferocious gum-induced rage. When I talk to him with my mouth full of gum, I have to make sure he doesn't see it. I have had to hollow out the fleshy part of my cheek from inside with a knife so I can keep my gum in its own nook, safe, secure and invisible.

And I cannot throw away my gum wrappers in the trashcan willy nilly. When he's prowling around my cubicle after I leave in the evening, he will spot my wrappers and the jig will be up. He's a nosy fucker. I think he used to be in the CIA. So I have to take precautions. Every time I throw my wrappers in the trash I have to rearrange the trash to keep them out of sight. Sometimes I swallow them. They taste like gum without the taste.

Once he caught me chewing and accused me of not being truthful to him about not having gum. I lied that I had just purchased some when I had gone to lunch. It is true that lying, just like murder, is easier the second time around. He stared at me with accusing eyes but I continued to chew with confidence. Truth might not be on my side but justice surely was.

I think every man deserves the freedom to chew gum in peace without having to worry about being discovered in the act by his gum-borrowing colleague. I hope things will change for me soon.


Vidya said...

This reminds me of high school, and how at lunch I could never chew my gum/mint in peace after lunch without everyone asking for a share. After a while, I simply stopped carrying gum.

You better hope that the friend doesn't read your blog. =P

Thanu said...

OMG I had an exact same guy at my work too...

He would come and ask me for gum all the time. Once he actually puthis hand in my purse and pulled out the gum and asked can I have a gum?

I should have responded with u didn not take my permission to put ur hand im my purse, how come u need permission now? All that came out of my mouth was sure.

Later moved my purse and told him couple of times that I didn't have anymore gum and he finally stopped.

Trevor Penn said...

You gotta buy your own gum. That's man law !!!

zambezi said...

I dont blame the guy popsie. He sees you have an abundance of gum and then he feels that if you have so many and that it wouldnt actually matter if he took few from you. He must feel that he was actually doing you a favor by getting rid of your addiction to gum. I used to do bum ciggs all the time from my boss cos he had so many and he was always happy to give me one. This was a few years ago. I eventually realized and stopped. Its your fault. You should say, go buy your own fucking gum.

Anonymous said...

you should tell your colleague to broaden his target gum chewers. At least 5. That way he can mix and match and keep a guy per week. It will take a while for the gum chewers to sink in the feeling that they are being robbed.

But yeah, u shud just tell your colleague to "go get your own gum bwoi !"

RobRoy said...

The same thing happened to me, expect I chew black tar heroine.

Anonymous said...

Gawker you are hilarious! I love your blog & I check it everyday. Love the post...
Thank you :-)


gawker said...

safe away : I don't think he will. Unless, of course he decides to borrow my computer. Goddamnit.

thanu : You should have encouraged him to do so and next time put a mousetrap in your purse.

seashells. I agree. Man Law.

zambezi : I am a nice person and I don't like confrontations. I will willingly part with gum if it means peace and quiet at work.

slime : Thats actually a good idea but no one else chews gum here. Plus he is too lazy to go anywhere else. I am the closest.

robroy : where do you get this famous black tar heroine everyone seems to be talking about? And would it make my teeth whiter as trident does?

Sunny : thank you. Appreciate it.

Anonymous said...

You are hilarious.