Party Pooper

Dear Suri, I showed up early to this party I was invited to, and my friends got pissed ’cause they weren’t ready. I ended up punching a hole in their door! I was just so over their kid stuff bullshit. I’d do it again tomorrow! — Jimmy Pesto

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Dear “Jimmy Pesto,” Punctuality is as much a virtue as it is a social grace. While it is unfortunate that distress has been felt on both sides, it is certainly not too late to make things right.

The process begins with a sincere and respectful apology on your part. In this case, compensation and accommodation will also have to be offered for the property damage.

Friendship is a delicate process, but it is essential after a transgression for both parties to offer necessary concessions, to keep this important bond intact. ~ Suri

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Suri Says™
by Suri Syrtauwnya
Advice Editor
Residential Life Magazin

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Fair Weather Friends?

Dear Suri, I finally got a job after being out of work for almost a year, and now people are coming out of the woodwork wanting to take me out for drinks and celebrate. Where the hell were they when I was down and out?!

I’m not trying to be a whiner here, but I faced some pretty scary days, Suri. A couple months, I was close to getting evicted, and I skipped meals most weeks. I’m not looking for sympathy, I’m just saying.

So it’s a little hard to accept all this attention as genuine. I’ve a mind to tell everyone to shove it up their ass! — (Anonymous)

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Dear Anonymous, Congratulations on your new job. May it be the perfect fit, and help bring you much happiness.

Humans, as you know, are terribly complicated creatures. There are times when a well-meaning friend feels they are unable to offer any real assistance, or perhaps they are in a similar situation – dealing with shortcomings and frustrations of their own.

This is by no means an excuse for those who may have, indeed, written you off in your time of need. Perhaps, with your new perspective, this is an opportunity to re-evaluate your current relationships, and also create renewed bonds with others.

It is wise, however, to take care not to make rash decisions, or take severe actions you’ll regret later on. ~ Suri

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Suri Says™
by Suri Syrtauwnya
Advice Editor
Residential Life Magazine

Parking Wars

Dear Suri, Though there are no assigned spots in my company parking lot, the natural understanding amongst co-workers is that once you “claim your spot,” it remains yours until you leave the place or get demoted or something. If you’re sick or on vacation, other people might park in your spot while you’re away, but they all know that things go back to normal once you get back. Or at least most people know.

parking-lot

There’s this one guy at work who doesn’t get it. He’s new, so one day I took him aside and explained the “rules” as I just explained to you. And do you know that the guy went ahead the next week and still took my spot?! Total dick move, if you ask me.

I approached the guy again to give him a little reminder. I didn’t get violent or anything like that. I just let him know what’s what, and that he shouldn’t be parking in my spot anymore and being blatantly disrespectful.

Next thing I know this douche goes to HR and rats me out! Don’t worry, I’m not going to do anything reckless to him or his car, but I have to make my point clear, you know? How should I let him know that I’m not going to just sit back and let him steal my space like that? — Stressed in Salinas

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Dear Stressed, As you detailed in your opening paragraph, there are no assigned parking spots at your workplace. Barring a written policy that has been disseminated to every employee (new and existing), I fear your efforts will continue to be in vain.

There is a cliché that states “Pick your battles.” The decision before you, then, is whether a parking space is worth professional discipline and possible termination. Take good care to reach the choice that will best benefit your positive future endeavors. ~ Suri

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Suri Says™
by Suri Syrtauwnya
Advice Editor
Residential Life Magazine

Give Her the Cold Shoulder?

Dear Suri, I am still enamored with a young lady with whom I’ve been on several romantic outings. Suddenly, however, she has been behaving in a most aloof fashion.

Acting on advice from friends (and several Internet sites), I made the decision to give her ‘the cold shoulder’ for a pre-determined amount of time. The plan was to really ‘teach her a lesson’ on how unacceptable her recent behavior has been.

But instead of ‘seeing the light,’ she has opted to immediately cease our interactions. I am hurt and confused, and am not sure what my next steps in the matter should be. — Heartbroken in Hoboken

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Dear Heartbroken, Communication remains the key to any successful relationship – be it friendly, professional, or romantic connection.

It’s wise to approach your female friend with a sincere apology and explanation of your perhaps misguided actions. Whether she accepts this concession and provides ‘next steps’ will, of course, be entirely up to her.

Emotions are a confusing and delicate matter, to be sure. However, purposely behaving in a rude and abrasive manner rarely leads to a positive outcome to any interpersonal communication. Best of luck to you! ~Suri

Suri Says™
by Suri Syrtauwnya
Advice Editor
Residential Life Magazine

Should You Socialize with Fired Co-Workers?

Dear Suri, There have been some changes recently at my workplace. My boss was recently let go, which, of course, has the rest of us on edge as to if or when we will be given the boot, as well.

One of my coworkers has decided to schedule a lunch with our former boss. I am not sure if I will participate.

I liked her, as a manager and a friend, but I’m afraid that the meeting might get back to my current supervisor (who happens to be her old boss — the one that fired her), and it might create an issue. What do you think I should do? – Emily M.

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Dear Emily, It is a difficult time for working professionals, to be sure! The days of logging 30 years of service with one company and retiring with full benefits appear, sadly, to be over. There are, however, several business relationship tenets that have withstood the test of time. One of these is networking.

The choice of whether or not to attend the planned luncheon is yours to make, and yours alone. But consider the potential networking opportunities you will miss — both with your former employer and your current co-workers, alike — should you choose to ‘sit this one out.’

We, none of us, know what the future holds. Unfortunately, this has proven doubly true in the working world. Through it all, however, we still have control over our own integrity and true, personal convictions.

I am confident you will come to the decision that is best for you. ~Suri

Suri Says™
by Suri Syrtauwnya
Advice Editor
Residential Life Magazine

Workplace Woes

Dear Suri, There are some changes taking place at my work, and I’m not sure if I should be concerned or not. A few people have already been let go, but my manager says those were “isolated incidents,” and that “no one should be concerned” about losing their jobs.

My friends say I should feel ‘safe,’ because I’ve been there for three years, and just got a raise. But I know that things aren’t always what they seem.

tetris
Don’t blink!

I just had an evaluation, and my objectives for this year are basically the same, just on a ‘higher level.’ When my boss said this, it made me think of Tetris: the shapes might remain constant, but everything speeds up so fast that if you’re not careful, you will soon get squashed.

The problem is, now that’s all I can think of! I am so stressed every morning before going to work, and every night I just know that I’m going to be called into the office the next day, to be canned. I just know it!

What do you think I should do? — Herbert in Highlands, TX

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Dear Herbert, It is an unfortunate fact that we live in an age where economic uncertainty and a dwindling loyalty (from both employers and workers alike!) has become the norm. However, the importance of hard work and determination remains.

There is also something to be said for the notion that people have the power to “will” themselves into outcomes that may run counter to what may have come to pass, had a certain situation been allowed to naturally progress. This is, of course, impossible to prove.

So, it may be best for you to simply continue doing the very best you can do, plus a bit more. This is what has earned you repeated anniversaries with the company, plus the increased salary you’ve mentioned.

At the same time, however, you may wish to ‘keep your eyes open’ to other opportunities for which you may be a good fit. ~Suri

Suri Says™
by Suri Syrtauwnya
Advice Editor
Residential Life Magazine

Don’t You Want Me, Baby?

Dear Suri, I like this girl, and I’m pretty sure she likes me. We’ve been out a bunch of times and really had fun together. Lately, though, she seems like she’s trying to ignore me. It seems like this started after I told her I like her.

I have no idea what I did wrong, and I would fix it if I knew. And I didn’t just say that to sleep with her like my friends think. I really do care about her.

The problem, though, is that it’s like the interaction just completely stopped! I mean, friends communicate. They tell each other what’s happening in each others’ lives, share in the good times, and offer/accept support during times of stress or sadness.

In our case, though, we haven’t spoken for weeks now, she doesn’t respond to my messages, and when I call, she seems annoyed.

So, I’ve been leaving her alone. But I hope I won’t have to do that forever. — Alton L.

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Dear Alton, Kudos to you for expressing your feelings! You must feel like a weight has been removed from your shoulders.

In many cases, however, doing so also forces others to assess their own sentiments. This process is unique to each of us, and the time it takes to realize a decision varies greatly. In some cases, a decision is never reached.

From what you have described, however, it appears the ‘hard part’ is over with. It may be wise, then, to remain patient for now, and allow your friend to evaluate her own emotions on the subject.

In the meantime, take care not be become discouraged and, instead, carry on with your current approach. I believe a resolution to the matter is closer than you think. ~ Suri

Suri Says™
by Suri Syrtauwnya
Advice Editor
Residential Life Magazine