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Consider Yourself Ameliorated

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(I work as an assistant. My boss tends to be really rude and always assumes he’s more intelligent than the people he’s talking to, but he usually isn’t. He also assumes I’m gay because he calls it a “lady job”, so I can’t wait to introduce him to my girlfriend at a company party.)

Boss: *shaking my girlfriend’s hand* “Oh, I thought [my name] was gay.”

My Girlfriend: *trying to be polite* “If he is, that’s news to me!”

Boss: “Well, it’s good that you were able to fix him. After all, we don’t want people like that working here. And we’re all always improving and ameliorating our lives, aren’t we?”

My Girlfriend: “Those are synonyms, and I don’t think that their definitions are what you’re actually trying to say, but okay…”

Boss: *condescendingly* “Young lady, they are NOT synonyms.”

My Girlfriend: “To ameliorate something is to alter or change something for the better. So yes, they are. And, even if [my name] was gay, who says that’s bad or in need of improvement? People are who they are, you know.”

Boss: *snidely* “It’s cute that you think you’re smart enough to compete, but—”

(At this moment, my boss’s boss approaches. He has apparently been listening in on the entire conversation.)

Boss’s Boss: *to my boss* “You’re fired. Clean out your office tomorrow.” *to me* “I have an opening for an executive assistant on my personal team that I’d like to offer you.” *to my girlfriend, shaking her hand* “It was lovely to meet you. I hope you can join us all for lunch sometime this week!”

(I found out later that my boss had had a few discrimination complaints filed against him over the years, and when his boss overheard what he was saying, he’d had enough. I did take that promotion, and my new boss, his wife, and my girlfriend and I all have lunch at least twice a week!)

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