A couple of months went by and I was content not talking to Yolanda. It was December and I was in the Christmas spirit. Then disaster struck Kelly. She got shingles, which is a painful and long-lasting illness that strikes middle-aged people. The older one is, the longer it lasts. I believe Kelly was out for over a month. Tanquerey was her sub and was on her route everyday.
I never knew much about Tanquerey because she always worked routes on the other side of the building. Come to think of it, I still don't know much about her and believe it's impossible to get to know her, as only nonsense comes out of her mouth. She has all the symptoms of a histrionic personality disorder (believe me, I know about broads with HPD, just read the posts in the wackyland tag. X-P) One of the symptoms of HPD is "having a style of speech that is excessively impressionistic and lacking in detail". Tanquerey would single someone out and say nonsense about them. IE: She would approach Kelly and be like, "Hi kellybelly kellybelly kellybelly", then all day walk around going "KELLYBELLY KELLYBELLYKELLYBELLYKELLYBELLY!" -Stuff like that. The only HPD symptom she didn't exhibit was the inappropriately seductive appearance. Her clothes were drab, her body dumpy, and her face looked like a female version of Danny Devito, so much so that I had to make an effort to train myself to stop calling her 'Danielle' subconsciously.
Tanquerey was ugly on the inside too, like always talking about people behind their backs and saying the f-word every other sentence. I got a bad first impression of her when she made fun of a guy for wearing a belt and tucking his shirt in his pants. -Like who cares? She also bragged about the mind games she played with the guys she dated. When she found out about my relationship with Randall and trips to Australia, I could see the angry and mean grimace on her countenance only for a split second before she became nice in an extra syrupy way, almost like the perfect protege of Yolanda's, except she wasn't as good at being phony.
Tanquerey caught on that I wasn't talking to Yolanda. I was completely open with her, telling her what Yolanda did and how I didn't want people talking about my relationship with Randall, especially in reference to his age. She tested me almost immediately, asking what I'd have in common with a person twenty years my senior. When I mentioned that we liked wilderness hikes, she asked me if I was thinking about the future. Would he be able to keep up with me in twenty years? Would he still be alive? I should have warned her to drop it just then, but like a dummy, I didn't.
Then Tanquerey got it in her head that she was going to throw a bachelorette party for me. Now, I've been to a bachelorette party for a girl who used to work there. I'm no prude. I giggled along with the other ladies at the male stripper, even going so far as to stuff a dollar in his shorts. I left the room before things got out of hand, however, and wasn't amused when Tanquerey planned a party that was even raunchier than that. She and Yolanda got downright crude, going so far as to suggest that the gifts should be sex toys. I heard one or the other describe some beads that go up someone's butt. I turned around and told her it wasn't a good idea because I wouldn't have any friends to invite because my friends were all church buddies (hint hint) and wouldn't be into that type of thing. Still, she wouldn't take no for an answer, even going so far as to call one of her cronies over to help plan.
I finally got stern with her when she ordered me to start talking to Yolanda again, because Yolanda was helping her plan the party. I told her that I didn't want anything to do with Yolanda, that I didn't want to go to any party with Yolanda in attendance, and that I didn't want a raunchy bachelorette party as it was. Tanquerey looked genuinely shocked and appalled that I'd stand up to her and refuse a direct order. Another HPD symptom is delusion of grandeur, along with the perceived ability to manipulate people to do ones bidding. She thought of herself as being such an amazing personality that I'd bend over backwards to do her bidding. I also think she saw my polite and conservative nature as being a weakness, as if I was like that because of a low self-esteem. It's rather the opposite, as it's more important for me to stand up for my principles that it is to be liked.
Things went downhill from there. After I put the kibosh on the engagement party plans, Tanquerey started acting squirrelly. She started obsessing over her highschool days and bragging about how she was a big partier and a huge bully and mean girl. She would say stuff like 'preps are losers'. I'd be thinking, Lolwut. Who talks about highschool at this age? I had already hit the big 'three oh' and she wasn't much younger. Then she told her first outrageous untruth. Compulsive lying isn't an official symptom of HPD, yet put all the symptoms together and you have the perfect recipe. Every histrionic person I've ever met, -and I've met quite a few- would lie profusely. Tanquerey told this cockamamie story about the reason she had a GED instead of a highschool diploma. She claimed that she attended school on a Monday, got all her assignments for the whole week, then ditched every other day to attend wild parties. Since she did all of her assignments for the whole week perfectly, she technically got straight 'A's, yet they wouldn't pass her because of her poor attendance. I considered it impossible that a broad who was such a poor liar and who told a story that stupid could possibly be a straight A student.
Side note: One thing I should mention before going on. Yolanda and Tanquerey are both dirt poor from making bad decisions in life. Yolanda first lost $$ in a divorce, then from letting her scumbag friends extort money from her....scumbags who she allowed herself to be at the mercy of when she moved in with one of them. Tanquerey was a single mother with children from two different fathers. She was extra stupid because she bragged about how she never wanted to be married, and she was what I called a 'princess without a kingdom'. She was one of those terrible subs who wouldn't answer her phone if supervisors tried to call her in on her day off. She also would give her hours to another sub if she was on a route she didn't like. Just as a princess would get part of a peasant's crops, so she would get part of our tax dollars in the form of foodstamps and WICS because she refused to work full time. X-P She once told me 'money isn't everything'. It was likely sour grapes, yet I thought, Money sure is everything. It buys both opportunity and nice things for our children.
Both Yolanda and Tanquerey started making snide comments directed toward me. Both of them would talk incessantly about how people shouldn't have children with guys much older than themselves or make dirty old man comments. I mostly ignored them, every once in a while calling them losers, pieces of crap or some other dead-on comment. Yolanda got the hint and stopped addressing me directly. She only made the snide comments directed toward me. Tanquerey didn't get the hint. She'd shout my name loudly, pretending like I wasn't replying to her because I couldn't hear her. Jealous of my relationship with Randall, who took me on nice vacations in Australia, she'd come up with a cockamamie story, then ask my advice. IE: She talked about her filthy rich friend from South Africa who worked for Oprah Winfrey and who took her yachting. She asked me if she should tell him about the feelings she had for him. Too polite to tell her that I didn't give a crap what she did because I didn't give a crap about her, I replied that she was free to make her own life decisions.
Okay, this is getting long and I can't write about every stupid thing they did and said or else I'd be writing a novel to rival Anna Karenina in length. Lets fast forward to almost a year later to November of 2009. The cases were moved by then, so I stopped getting trouble from Yolanda, who got very quiet. Yolanda is a coward who won't cause trouble unless she has you isolated. Around big groups, she reverts to being a phony and sycophant. Tanquerey got worse. It seemed like the new positioning of the cases forced me to be around her more than ever before. She got to where she'd constantly butt into my conversations to ridicule my opinions or tell me how my interests weren't worth having. She'd never add anything to a conversation, except to talk about tv shows she watched, videogames she played, or some other nonsense no1curr about. I looked her right in the eye and told her that I had the right to my opinion and that she wasn't to bully me. Believe me when I say that I'm not just going to stand up for my opinions on the internet, then pussy out irl.
I was astonished when Tanquerey would meet me in the parking lot every so often and do something like invite me to friend her on myspace or go out with her and some work buddies to some event. I thought, Really? Is this trick 4 real? I couldn't figure out if she had such delusions of grandeur that she thought I'd pal around with someone who treated me like crap or if she was playing that game her and Yolanda were fond of in the cul-de-sac, where they'd keep on me until I'd blow up and call them a scumbag. Each time, I'd ambiguously give consent, them quietly not attend a function or not look her up on myspace.
In mid November, Randall got really sick and I had to take two weeks off. It was the perfect time to take off because we got unseasonably warm weather. I was keeping Randall's condition a secret from the work people, just as I've kept it a secret from you LJ readers, although I'll reveal it soon. When I went back to work, Kelly stopped me to talk while she smoked a cigarette under the canopy. She told me that there was a rumour going around that the reason I took the two weeks off was because I either had trouble keeping a pregnancy or that I had trouble even getting pregnant. I never got any proof who was spreading the rumor, but it was awfully funny when Yolanda and Tanquerey started obsessing over babies and being pregnant, almost as if they knew about the rumor and were rubbing it in. Tanquerey even went so far as to talk about how she was either pregnant or thinking about another baby. When I got back from a leave of absense taking care of Randall, Tanquerey actually went down the rows and asked everyone what they'd do if they found out they were pregnant. When people tried to ignore her, she'd be persistent in calling their names until they answered. When she got to me, she didn't ask me and skipped because *wink wink* I couldn't get pregnant, right? I was like, "Seriously!? Are we, like, eight years old?".
ETA: I forgot to add a detail that was pretty important. When I was off taking care of Randall, Tanquerey called my cellphone at 10:30PM. Then she left a message so I'd know it was her. I heard the Iowa fight song at 10:30 and wondered if something was wrong. Imagine how pissed I was to find out it was her! The next day, I called my substitute and told him to spread it around that I wasn't to be bothered at home, except through him. Shortly after, I get this indignant text from Tanquerey! It basically was like "Memememememememememe someone at work might have died. Mememememe...." I called Russell (sub) and found out that a guy had died of a heart attack a few days before. It was no good excuse to call my phone at 10:30PM. I definitely wasn't up to sharing my best (guy who died whom I hardly knew) memories with some broad I couldn't stand at 10:30PM. Besides, she isn't capable of caring about anyone but herself and was calling to harass. Even she isn't so stupid and uncouth to believe calling someone late at night is appropriate! I texted her back telling her she wasn't welcome to call me and that I wasn't entertaining her attention seeking behavior. She had to have the last word, with a text like, "Mememememe ME!" That was the end of it. She didn't call again, so I didn't have to file harassement.
When I got pregnant with Gretchen, I didn't tell anybody. Only the supervisors knew what was going on with me, and I was cool with them. It took three or four months for me to start showing enough for people to guess. That's when Yolanda and Tanquerey had to finally shut their mouths about it for good.
I think I handled it well. I stood up for myself without having to be a victim and file a harassment claim. Even better is how my case is positioned far enough away from both of them, as Tanquerey is on a form 50 route far away until they dismantle and absorb her vacant route after the holidays, Then when she's stuck bouncing around again, she'll still be far enough away because they moved the cases again while I was on maternity leave, and I'm across from a bunch of Frankfort Square routes she doesn't do. Both Yolanda and Tanquerey make a point of talking to one another every day, even though their cases are far apart, because birds of a feather and all.. I'll still talk to Yolanda (if I have to) about work related things because she didn't invade my home life in the middle of the night.
It took me a couple of sessions to write this entry because it's difficult to find time with Gretchen. I also have a lot of things to do, like put up Christmas decorations, plant 12 trees I have heeled in on the side of the house and finish my stone walkway from the house to the garage. The outdoor activities might have to wait for spring, as any warm weather in the winter finds either the ground too soggy or the atmosphere too windy to get any work done. When the weather gets extra cold I'll then find extra time to get back into this, for sure.