Today I’d finally had enough. I’d been dealing with the same issue at work for the past 18 months and despite my best efforts to put an end to it, nothing had worked. I decided to take matters into my own hands, which is why, in today’s all-staff meeting, I spent my turn giving the team an update on my projects while rubbing my boobs. I started with just my left hand, gently caressing my nipple. I then added my right hand to the party and massaged both of my breasts simultaneously.
I didn’t moan. I didn’t stop talking about the important matters at hand. I didn’t smile, laugh or even breathe deeply. I simply rubbed my boobs as though nothing was amiss the entire time I gave my update. Most of my co-workers were silent. Some did their best to suppress snickers, and my friend Jenny fought tears as she worked to suppress her mirth. Some of them knew what was happening since we’d talked about it. The others averted their eyes except for two men, who listened to my update as though I was not sitting in front of them making out with myself; they were the reason I began this crusade.
I’ll call them “The Adjusters.” They’re those men who stand in office doorways and move their junk around so ferociously, you’d think their dicks were being attacked by fire ants and happened to weigh 30 pounds (the effort it takes them to move things around is astounding). The men adjust themselves, and yet they don’t stop talking; their faces register no knowledge that they are doing this. One guy tends to loudly clear his throat while speaking, and after each clearing, moves his dong to the other side of his pants.
My boss happens to be the other adjuster. He’s an intelligent man, graduated with honors from an Ivy League college, moved up the corporate ladder faster than a speeding bullet and truly knows his way around the advertising world. But in each one-to-one meeting, each team meeting, each conversation at the water cooler, he adjusts. He remains eye contact, and outside of the fact that he’s going to town on his junk like a starving man attacking a buffet, nothing is inappropriate. I’ve tried everything. I left a note on his desk saying if he has a problem with itching “down there,” they have creams for that. Once, I tried calling attention to each adjustment with a simple, “Oh my,” and wide eyes each time he touched himself. Nothing.
I talked to the HR rep who laughed at first, then got all serious and started freaking when I said she needed to talk to him about it. “Umm, how do I talk to him about that?!” she asked, clearly starting to panic. I said that was her job, and I’ll be honest, I think it’s what did her in, because she quit the next week.
So, I thought long and hard, and I decided to give The Adjusters a taste of their own medicine. We’d all had conversations about how uncomfortable it was, but the hard part was, these men never came onto us. They never said a word about our appearance or dress, no dirty jokes—nothing. They were pillars of proper workplace etiquette except when it came to keeping their hands off their rods.
The meeting ended with my update, and as everyone was leaving, I watched the adjusters. I was waiting for some sign they’d received the message and seen the correlation between my feeling myself up and their penis ping pong game. Both men nodded at me as they left. I watched them start a hallway conversation. I couldn’t hear what was being said, but both men stood facing each other, pocket hockey happening at an alarming rate!
WTF?! Was there no getting through to these men? My shoulders slumped as I gathered my things, realizing my chest caress had most likely been for naught. If these two men could stand in the hallway and have a work conversation while batting away at their crotches, I probably wasn’t going to change that.
But I’d given a good ole college try and felt good about that. I’m not sure what I’ll try next, group feel-up? A marriage between my hands and my crotch in the next meeting? Or maybe the rubbing was not enough, maybe I need to go full rogue and bounce, shake and jiggle them while pinching my nipples. Or maybe I do nothing, but that wouldn’t be very fun.