Who Is Your Stylist?

doormanFor the past two days I have had to wade through pages and pages of legal documents (don’t ask!) at a venue in central London. While I was within the building, I embarrassed myself. Well…to be honest, I think I embarrassed someone else. I wandered into the ladies back stage at this rather swanky venue. I walked in and then I walked out moments later and asked a guy who looked familiar, but who was dressed like a doorman, if he knew who I could ask regarding the supplies for the ladies facilities. He looked at me with an odd expression. So I spelt it out nice and clearly for the gentleman, “there is no toilet paper” in any of the cubicles.

He asked me who I was. I explained. He apologised and said he would contact management. Then he introduced himself. I immediately recognised the name. That’s when it clicked why he looked so familiar! He is the owner of the venue (and several other central London properties). I have been at events where he has been in attendance, but I have never actually spoken to him before. I decided to play dumb because I didn’t want him to realize I knew who he was!

I know you might be wondering. Look at the picture above. If you see a man dressed like this, don’t you think “doorman”??? Would you look at him and think he owned numerous central London properties and could probably buy a whole country – not Greenland though! (Greenland is not up for sale – ok!!!)

I asked the owner of the building, a man who is rolling in mular – more money than Scrooge McDuck – where I can find more toilet paper!!! I am taken aback at how smooth I am at times! I realized this was a faux pas. Yet I did not actually feel embarrassed. Instead the hilarity of the situation started to choke me, and I had to restrain myself from giggling. Well, he and I had a little chat about all sorts – the weather, British politics, and the increase of violence in London. It was such an odd conversation. I was desperate to think of an excuse so that I could escape. It took me a while though to come up with something. Anyway…

I think he needs to invest a little cash in hiring a style guru. Someone who is so rich should not be walking around dressed like a doorman!

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I Had Piles!

kiddoThose first few years out in the world of adults were an education in themselves in toughening up generally, and learning about interacting with these grown men who seemed to regard me as a woman. Maybe that was the case legally, but I felt as if I had only just left school and wasn’t really ready for adulthood at all. I still don’t think I am ready yet. It also seemed the pace of life made it very difficult to try to figure out what was going on around me, especially when it came to interacting with men.

blondieI had become easily embarrassed because of all this male attention that sometimes seemed to be due to my being tall-ish and having long-ish golden hair and an ample bosom, I was having so much success in other areas, but when it came to men – well in those days I realized I was easily flustered.

For a short time, I held an administration support post within the fashion industry. One day I was assigned a task that seemed simple enough: take this list of codes and go and find each of the garments (in the massive “development” store-room that housed them) that they belonged to. When I started though I realized this was going to be a laborious and very-time consuming effort. I was checking hundreds of tiny codes on labels and not finding the matching codes. It took me a couple of hours just to find about eight garments. I had several pages listing codes, roughly thirty codes on each page.

Now one of the men who worked within the company had become a popular topic of conversation amongst the women in the office. He had been given a big role within the company. He was extremely physically attractive, bronzed skin and many other eye-catching features, wealthy (due to success in business), drove a very flashy car (he was not much older than 30 so he had chosen a very sleek sporty number) and at that time lived in a nice pad in an exclusive area. It had also been mentioned in the media that he was now single again.

women gossipingCan you understand why the women who worked on the same premises began to bring up his name again and again? It all seems so ridiculous looking back and I am sure many of them would see that now. But I was a young woman who had been raised with respect for others, and now hearing this conversation confused me (and sometimes shocked me).  I have never liked gossip, it is one of the huge drawbacks of working in offices or any workplace with a large team.

Anyway, one of the ways in which I was effected was that whenever I passed this gorgeous specimen of a man, I was more nervous than before. I think it is fair to say that without any real substantial reason, knowing nothing of his true character and qualities, I was over-awed by him because of what others had said about him.

So, that afternoon I was still alone in the “development” store-room.  I was feeling rather dejected by my lack of progress and overwhelmed at the task ahead. There were rules about this store-room. Although there were a couple of secured doorways, those with a security swipe card were not to use the store-room as a short-cut (which it would have been). You were only to go into that store-room in connection with a work assignment – otherwise their was a lot of potential for employees to steal the latest designer clothes that were in stored there.  I heard one of the doors open and then slam shut, floowed by loud, quick foot-steps. A moment later I was surprised to find him right in front of me enquiring as to whether I was alright. Of course, that had not been his reason for entering the store-room (he was probably using it as a short-cut) but he had noticed me and came over. I remember nowgorgeous man that he really did have a beautiful smile and he was very friendly to me. At the time – I was just so glad to see someone. Although I felt nervous around him, this was overcome by my feelings of desperation at my predicament.

So, I told him the task I had been assigned and said that it was taking me “ages”. He took the paper-work from me. For the next few minutes he looked over the codes on the top sheet and pulled out another ten or so garments. He knew his work that well that he could see a code and recalled the garment it referred to. I was pretty hopeless staring at him and thanking him each time he handed me an item that he had matched. Anyway, he worked his way through all of the codes on that top page. I was so grateful I could have hugged him, but because it was him, of course I couldn’t. (By the way, I do prefer to think that he would have helped anyone in my place and it was a wholly unselfish act of kindness on his part to give a young woman his time and help.)

When he had finished, he asked me if there was anything else he could help me with. My words: “I’ve got piles”.  Now of course I meant the remaining pages of codes and of course he knew that too, but he could not resist it…He said “sorry I can’t help you with that – it’s going to have to be the doctor love.”

At the time, I was mortified. Later, I knew he was only teasing and I realized he had just given me fifteen minutes of his time to help me, all the while bestowing on me his beautiful smiles and his kindly chatter. (I have often thought that if some of the women in the offices had ever known I had been on my own with him for fifteen minutes, in a rather isolated and confined space – well that would have led to a lot more talk perhaps, and have given them easy opportunities to tease me frequently.)  He…had every right to give me a little tease after showing such kindness didn’t he?

nervousLessons learned: try not to be over-awed by fellow humans especially when you don’t really know anything substantial about them. When you are over-awed, try to keep your composure and think about the words that come out of your mouth because otherwise you may embarrass yourself yet again. When you do embarrass yourself and someone can’t resist teasing you – often they are truly kindly and don’t say what they say to be cruel, they just love a little laugh. Being able to laugh at your own mistakes is a fantastic asset. Never forget that what really makes a man or a woman is the qualities in their heart which will spill out all the time.