NORMA JEAN: Too Far Gone
April 26, 2000
Dear Norma Jean,I'm on the verge of having an affair with my boss, *Ned. For three months he's been making subtle passes at me. Last week he rubbed himself against my buttocks as we passed in the copier room. The sexual tension between us is nearly unbearable. I think he is an attractive, desirable man and I am willing and eager to have an affair with him. We're both single and in our 40s.The problem, you ask?It's with the other people working in our office (maybe he hasn't been that subtle). One woman I thought was a friend now treats me like I'm the office whore. Another makes catty remarks about "special overtime" I'm putting in with Ned. An older man even took me aside and told me, "Ned is a love them and leave them kind of guy." If the tension wasn't so great between us I would talk to him, but he acts oblivious to all the office gossip going on. Besides, when we're in the same room his eyes glaze over. I really don't know what to do. Do I reign-in my passion? Develop a thicker skin? Do I start looking for another job or damn the torpedoes and proceed full speed ahead? Is this much ado about nothing? I can't think rationally about this. Normally, I'm the most decisive, level-headed person; so is Ned. I can't look to him for help, he's too far gone, and I'm not far behind.Can you offer any direction, suggestion or alternative? I can handle anything that develops between Ned and I, but I don't know what to do about the rest of the world we work in.*J.L.AlbuquerqueJ.L, sea shell eyes ...It sounds to me like you're in the most exciting stage of this entire drama -- frottage in the copier room; ooh-la-la! It doesn't get much hotter than that. Or has it?Surely you're old enough to see that the office harpies only add to the "forbidden fruit" aspect of this (fatal) attraction. "Fishing off the company pier," as we so fondly call office incest here at the Weekly Alibi, is strictly off limits for all the reasons you've mentioned, and more. Be my guest, dive right into the belly of this beast, but I doubt that you can handle it as you so righteously say at this stage. Better start looking for another job too. Even if this rush is destined to be "the real thing" you'll want to preserve peace on the work front. This Ned guy must love coming to work every day as the tension mounts; wow, what fun. And where is the reality?You're both single (thank God), never discuss the attraction, buttocks are a-bumpin' and employees are a-rumbling, and ol' Neddy is glazed over and a rumored womanizer to boot ... hmm. One night after work, when the going gets weird and the big nasty comes down, hold on. It's going to get rough.Your sober addict,Norma Jean*Names have been changed.