De-clawing Catbert

Fact: Precocious kids become precocious adults

I am in a strange silly mood right now. It`s almost manic…following a particularly stressful start to the morning that consisted of juggling some huge ego`s, the FPU getting tetchy with me over the phone and a certain gentleman driving me to the point where I saw red. The horns came out :-/. They never do because I`m Miss Congeniality at work.

But, as the best friend said when she sidled into my office post-blow up, The Angry Aries wears MuiMui (which for the uninitiated is the more affordable Prada line. The Princess is penny-wise!).

So, here`s the thing. I have not spawned…I`m not even sure it`s something I ever intend to do. But I do know that I was brought up in an environment where I was allowed to speak and act freely but – make no mistake respectfully. I was a precocious laatie. I had an answer for everything and always the centre of attention (you can tell, huh?) Well…that precocious laaitie has become a sassy, feisty adult. The thing with sassy feisty adults (who were first precocious kids) is that somewhere along the line you have to learn the basic facts of survival:

1) Sometimes it`s better not to have an answer or opinion for everything. Shutting your mouth can be a very good thing.

2) Throwing a tantrum accomplishes nothing but the amusement of your peers. It is futile and gives you a reputation as a FDQ.

3) (and this is the important one) Pick Your Battles.

If, by nature, you were a precocious and gregarious child you will learn these rules the hard way. By knocking your head, pissing off a few people, suffering from foot in mouth disease all through your teens and moments of general Strohm und Drang. Which is all fine and well…we have to learn that the world does not revolve around us. And if you`re a SMART precocious kid…you will learn these lessons well and realise that the people around you do not always appreciate an over-the-top, tantrum-throwing, know-it-all…

However, there are some kids who never learn this lesson. They grow up to be precocious over-indulged adults – Catberts And when a former precocious kid, turned fairly smart and very sassy adult knocks heads with a former precocious kid now turned very precocious 65-year old adult…there is only so much patience.

I am frenetic and busy by nature. Never a moments rest for this wicked lady. I have had to school myself to slow down and take stock on occasion. A huge portion of my job is human relations and people-skills and that is not achieved by having people confuse your energetic attitude with a lack of interest in their lives or jobs.

So, what am I on about?

This morning the usual cool laid-back demeanor at work went out the window for a brief second. So brief …that if you had blinked you would have missed it. For my team it was very obvious though. And I had to take a step back despite the pressure…grab some coffee and a donout (even though there was no time for coffee and a donut) and take a chill pill…slow my roll…

Before I took someone`s head off. I felt that Catbert (the precocious adult) was deliberately taunting me today. Sure, he must always be the centre of attention and he is over-indulged by most of us because of his age. Sure, he does not even hide the fact that he cannot stand to be managed by a young woman. Sure , we allow his diva-like FDQ behaviour mostly by saying, Too old to change, let him do his thing. Sure, I usually let him get away with saying highly inappropriate things sometimes (this is while I`m counting back from 20 in a bid to exercise some patience and restraint)….Sure.

But this morning I drew a line in the sand. I took away Catbert`s right to be a precocious adult with ME. I wee`d in his sandbox and took away his kitty litter. Because we`re in an adult environment, where we cannot indulge one member of the team more than the other …just because they`re older. Or brilliant at what they do.

Do I feel horrible about this? Absolutely. Should I resolve to stick to my guns…Absolutely.

The Princess says, ‘It`s time to grow up`.

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