Office Gripes: What’s Not Written in the Employee Handbook

Everyone has those days where they just don’t feel like being bothered with anything; not cleaning a filthy home, feeding stray cats, and probably the most likeliest, not going to work. Especially if that day happens to land on a Monday or any other day of the week that ends with the letter “y.” I have news for you. It’s okay. Not wanting to be bothered doesn’t make anyone any less of a better person than the next – because like I said, “Everyone has those days.” 

Since work is the one place the average persons spend most of his time more than any other place on the planet, it’s a good thing that you brought it up. First of all, what is work? Work is a place where you go to do a lot of things you don’t want to do for a bunch of people you don’t want to be around all day long. Some would argue that’s no different than family, and in a sense that’s true. An employee knows his coworkers just as well as he knows his relatives. The difference between work and family though, is that you get paid to do one and not the other. 

I’m not going to spend a lot of time explaining to you why we work. To sum that up quickly, if you don’t work, you don’t eat. Everyone has to work to earn their keep. That theory dates all the way back to the caveman and if you don’t believe me you can go back in time and see for yourself. What I am going to explain to you, with a very short list, is the minor technicalities that are overlooked at work, that easily turns a good day bad. Because I know you have about five minutes left in your fifteen minute break, I’m going to keep this list short. Perhaps by the time you finish reading it, when you get back to your desk you’ll hopefully be more inclined to chuckle rather than make pencil lead-tip daggers out of memo pads and envelope glue. 

Work, no matter if you love it or hate it, is never an easy place to be or an easy thing to do. But if you understand how it operates it’s not such a bad thing to deal with. Getting a paycheck every eighty hours isn’t such a bad thing either – which in fact is the part everyone loves. On the other hand, no one knows all the little details that come along with the package when they sign their name on the dotted line – aka, the employee employment verification contract that binds all employees to their duties governed by a bunch of silly rules called policies. The policies are the blah blah blah’s of the job. They are to be expected. Since they’re all spelled out in black and white, let’s talk about the little things employees aren’t forewarned about. 

  1. Coworkers that stand outside of an employee’s office or cubicle and hold a conversation, without including the employee whose space is being violated.

    Three thoughts come to mind: (A) Can you be any more rude? (B) who cares? (C) see (A).

  2. Coworkers who hold their entire telephone conversation on speaker phone.

    I digress, (A) Can you be any more rude? (B) who cares? (C) see (A).

  3. Any meeting that begins before 10AM.

    Let’s be honest here. Who the hell can concentrate before 10AM?  Nothing in the world should be that important. After having to deal with crawling out of bed, karate-chopping through morning rush hour traffic, and fussing at the cafeteria lady for not putting out a fresh pot of coffee, asking anyone to do anything except breathe before 10AM is asking too much!  Where is the compassion?

  4. Staff meetings that run well over into the lunch hour.

    If you want an employee to work hard, you have to feed him. Food is the battery that keeps the body working properly. No one should feel as if they’re working in a Chinese sweat shop (Trust me, it’s not fun. But that’s a story for another time). Bottom line, any time a stomach growls louder than anyone can speak, it’s time to end the damn meeting.

  5. Brown bag lunch meetings.

    Epic violation of the employee handbook manual. Somewhere written in the bylaws is a clause that awards an employee a full hour of personal time (thirty minutes for lunch and two fifteen minute breaks…triple that if you work for the government). Dear supervisors and all those alike: The words “brown bag meeting” are fighting words! “Your space; My space.”

  6. Coworkers who are too overwhelmed to complete their own work assignments without assistance.

    Seriously? The finger should be pointed at management for not hiring people who know how to manage their time better. Management should look into time management courses for their staff development retreats. Management should also have its ass kicked for not warning employees that the phrase, “…and all other duties assigned,” means doing someone else’s job.

  7. Supervisors who wait until an employment performance review to enlighten the employee on all of his/her screw ups.

    In all honesty, you can apply gripe #6 to this this one here. However for the sake of being redundant, waiting until the last minute to do or say anything just isn’t fair. You don’t throw a brick at someone without telling them to duck if you don’t have any intentions to hurt them.

    Everyone should be allowed to correct their mistakes before they are forever damned. Equally so, it can’t be much of a mistake if the person offended doesn’t address the issue at the time and place of said incident. [That’s right. I said it!] This can easily lead into a big fat case of ‘your word against mine.’

  8. Employees who don’t hold the elevator after they’ve watched you trip over your shoe strings in an effort to catch the doors before closing.

    Introduction to Corporate America 101. Most coworkers couldn’t care less about you if you aren’t working on a project with or doing something for them. It really is no more or less complicated than that. Everybody’s a nobody until somebody needs somebody. Also it’s pretty funny to watch anyone trip and fall trying to catch an elevator.

  9. When the cafeteria runs out of caffeinated coffee.

    When it comes to dealing with certain demands, expectations, and the performance of miraculous feats, caffeine is the sedative dart that keeps the peace in a brood of animals. “No coffee,” ranks up there with “brown bag lunches” in the category of “Fighting Words.”

  10. No liquor in the vending machines.

    I don’t think management or Congress will ever go for this but you have to admit that it’s a pretty good idea. It would help everyone to take some of the edge off, especially in the cases of gripe numbers #5, #7 and #9.

  11. When two or more employees take a dump in the bathroom at the same time.

    There are only two words to say for this: “Gross,” and “Ew!” The one thing that two or more people should never share is sh*t.

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Hottywood Ha-Ha!

“If you’re not a morning person, don’t worry. You’re not alone. There’s a support group for that. They meet at the bar.”

  

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Hottywood’s HORRORscopes: Week of June 26-July 2, 2011

At the very moment the sun closed its eyes to sleep the moon brought out the freakiest of freaks. Freaks disguised as people to whom money you owe and that whiny coworker whose ink pen you stole. They plotted all week to get you stuck in a love triangle with karma and luck. What happens next can only be told through the scribes of a scroll as it slowly unfolds.

Below are Hottywood’s cookie fortunes as revealed by the moon and the sun, in addition to the itch on the bottom of his foot. 

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Capricorn

December 22 – January 19  

People will be able to look at your eyebrows and tell if your underwear are too tight.

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Aquarius

January 20 – February 18

It is your concern when your neighbor’s wall is on fire.

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Pisces

February 19 – March 20

The universe will use you as a guinea pig to test the theory of finding luck in a pigeon crapping on your head.

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Aries

March 21 – April 19

Escape a sticky situation by answering a question with a question. You will sound more convincing if you speak in Pig Latin and a Jamaican accent.  

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Taurus

April 20 – May 20

You feel like your life is going nowhere right now, and you’re probably right. But the guy sitting next to you is going nowhere a hell of a lot faster, so you’re all good.

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Gemini

May 21 – June 20

You only got dressed this morning because you had to. If anyone asks, the electric company turned your lights off and you dressed yourself in the dark. 

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Cancer

June 21 – July 22

A very nice gentlemen will show up at your door step with a sheriff and about twenty furniture movers. Things might get ugly. Bake cookies.

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Leo

July 23 – August 22

The stars have foreseen and it would appear that in your next life you will be a Walmart cashier.

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Virgo

August 23 – September 22

The only thing you can answer that never asks any questions is a telephone.

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Libra

September 23 – October 22

If you want to sh!t at ease put your elbows on your knees.

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Scorpio

October 23 – November 21

They say there’s only one month that has 28 days. Technically, that’s a lie.

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Sagittarius

November 22 – December 21

Never interrupt your opponent while he’s making a mistake. 

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Quote of the week:   “You can’t depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.” 

This Week on, “Ask Hottywood!”

CLICK HERE to leave a question for Hottywood.

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Dear Hottywood, 

While trying to be a good friend to another, I made a big mistake. I thought I saw my BFF’s boyfriend hooking up with another girl. This weekend my BFF invited me to a cookout over her boyfriend’s house. Naturally I felt like she had a right to know what her BF was doing, so I told her about the girl I saw him with. She was mad!  When we got to the cookout, she approached him about it and a big argument erupted.  Fastforward.  The other girl came out of the house. That’s when things got really bad. To make a long story short, it turns out the girl was his cousin.  She flew into town with her parents to attend a wedding.  They all hadn’t seen each other in about eight years, so he took the cousin out on the town.  That’s obviously when I saw them together. (Oops! My bad.)   

My BFF looked so embarrassed and I felt horrible for telling her what I saw.  Her boyfriend, on the other hand was mad because he felt like she didn’t trust him.  He told her that he ought to take her phone and go through it to see if she was messing with anyone, so she could see how it feels not to be trusted.  And that’s exactly what he did.  He snatched her phone right out her hand and started going through it in front of everyone.  And guess what, he found some text messages from another guy!  If you think the first argument was bad, you should’ve seen him go off!!! 

Needless to say they broke up, and neither of them is speaking to me anymore.  What can I do to make up with them?  I feel terrible! 

-Whoops 

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Dear Whoops, 

Where the hell were the cameras?!  That sounds like a cookout not to be missed.  I have to be honest and tell you that it’s not going to be easy getting back into their good graces, for a number of reasons.  And though I’m sure you don’t want to hear those reasons, in my personal opinion it’s necessary for you to hear them so you don’t ever make this mistake again.  

  1. Although you may have had your BFF’s best interest at heart, you should’ve had your facts straight before you opened your mouth to tell her what you saw.  There’s a funny saying my grandmother used to tell me when I was growing up: “Believe nothing and only half of what you see.”  By spreading rumors (because that’s all you did really, started a rumor), you made yourself out to be a big fat liar; a gossip.  Put yourself in their shoes.  If the tables were turned, you wouldn’t speak to your ass either.   
  2. You didn’t mind your own business.  Friend or not, your BFF’s intimate relationship(s) should not include you, if but for no other reason than the fact that no relationship should be influenced by an outside source or a third party.  Relationships are complicated enough, so when a third party enters the building it shifts the balance of the relationship itself.  This was probably your biggest mistake.  By nature you chose a side – your BFF’s.  It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that would piss off her boyfriend.  No matter how you look at the situation, you were destined to screw someone over.  Unfortunately things backfired and the tables turned on your BFF, which in effect means you screwed her over instead.  Your intentions looked malicious and now you and everyone involved look like fools. 
  3. You didn’t think out the consequences of your actions.  If you would’ve considered the consequences, you could’ve easily avoided your first and second mistakes.  

Someone probably really wants to kick your ass right about now, so what you need to do is steer clear of their path for a while (Isaiah 26:20).  

A)        You are the enemy.  You broke up a relationship on the grounds of your unproven theory that someone was cheating; not knowing the person cheating was your BFF.  [Side bar: Would you have told her boyfriend that your BFF was cheating on him if you’d have known?]. 

B)        They need time to figure out how to deal with everything: A gossiping friend/frenemy/associate/the devil; the discomfort of a broken relationship; trust issues; embarrassment; and the willpower to [again] keep from whooping your ass for running your mouth.

C)        You need a timeout to reflect on the consequences of not minding your own business and allowing someone else to make their own mistakes. 

If or when your friends decide to forgive you is beyond anyone’s vision.  They both have reason to be mad.  Only time will tell how this game will play itself out.  Perhaps a bag of muffins and a gift card to McDonald’s to your peeps wouldn’t hurt, but if I were you, I’d deliver the peace offerings via pigeon messenger just to be on the safe side.  

In the future, if you consider minding someone else’s business, if thinking back to this little incident doesn’t deter your decision, I want you to think of this little knock-knock joke: 

    • “Knock, Knock!
    • Who’s there?
    • Scott.
    • Scott who?
    • Scott nothing to do with you!”

Either way, everything happens for a reason, so you’ll be okay tomorrow and tomorrow is only a day away. 

REFERENCES:   Psalm 30:5; Psalm 103:9; Psalm 126:5

Hottywood

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Hottywood’s HORRORscopes: Week of June 12-18, 2011

Welcome to another edition of you know what.  Some things may look bad but there’s always a “but.”  A bright side at the end of a tunnel so dark.  The only way to see it through is to be ready from start.

When you’ve run up against odds you can’t face yourself, in a breath; in a psalm, Hottywood Helps!

Below are Hottywood’s cookie fortunes as revealed by the moon and the sun, in addition to the itch on the bottom of his foot. 

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Capricorn

December 22 – January 19

It’s bad luck to bathe in the sink of any Golden Corale bathroom.   _________________________________________________________

Aquarius

January 20 – February 18

Beware of anyone who goes to the salon to get their unibrow curled. 

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Pisces

February 19 – March 20

All of your white socks will look brown in the wrong light. 

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Aries

March 21 – April 19

Everyone will know when you’re lying because your voice will be strangely out of sync with your lips.   

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Taurus

April 20 – May 20

The roots of your hair will itch like it’s being attacked with a bag of paperclips. _________________________________________________________

Gemini

May 21 – June 20

Your perceptions of man should not be based on your own faulty shortcomings.   

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Cancer

June 21 – July 22

Two wrongs don’t make a right, but what good is a right if it’s done for the wrong reason? 

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Leo

July 23 – August 22

Silent farts aren’t really silent.  They come out at a frequency only dogs can hear.

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Virgo

August 23 – September 22

There’s no need to wonder if what you say is dumb.  Everything you say will sound as if you’re speaking with a mouthful of caramel.  Everything sounds dumb.

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Libra

September 23 – October 22

Every time you tap a key on a keyboard, a gypsy lightening bug is kidnapped and sold on the black market. 

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Scorpio

October 23 – November 21

Only a wise man would put popcorn in his pancakes to make them flip by themselves. 

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Sagittarius

November 22 – December 21

Anyone who blows you a kiss really doesn’t want to touch your lips.   

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Quote of the week:  “Be lazy in everything except for loving, drinking and being lazy.” 

40 Excuses To Get Out of Work

Everyone knows work is the playground for the game of life’s tricks. Written in just about every employee handbook across the nation is a clause that limits our toleration of deadlines, meeting changes and everyone’s last minute assignments but our own. Because of this taming of the shrew, we are paid not to get beside ourselves when burdens become too much to bear without the heavy use of profanity, a 2×4 plank and a shot of non-communion wine. No matter how large the paychecks or how great the incentives, it’s safe to say that there are some days where we just don’t feel like being bothered with the game, the playground or the players. So to beat game at its own game, you have got to be able to think quick on your feet and be a better bullshitter than it.  

The most common bullshit of them all is not minimizing your computer screen from the Solitaire game when your snoopy coworkers sneak into your cubicle. It is without question coming up with the best excuses to get out of work for the day.  

According to a popular employment recruiting site, about 41% of hiring managers are suspicious of their employee’s excuses for getting out of work. Outside of a little cold or minor car trouble, most excuses aren’t believable, they say. I say “horse pucky!” What do they know? If life throws its highest cards at you while you sit behind a desk working for a stiff in a name brand necktie, why the hell shouldn’t you get a little creative with your excuses not to deal? After all, it is a game and your boss and coworkers are all major players on the field. If you must play you might as well get a little gutter with it. They’re dicking you one way or another.  

Below are a few excuses that’ll help you cut your days at the office in half by 100%. Free free to use them at your leisure because although not being bothered is more than less than rare, having a good excuse not to fill a seat in the next departmental staff meeting trumps any card every time. Whether it’s believable or not is something the receiving ear has to take up with God.

 40 Excuses To Get Out of Work

  1. My bangs fell out and now I must to go buy some synthetic tresses or either a pack of extra thick eye brow hair to cover my big ass forehead.

  2. I’m renting a baby llama for my girlfriend’s niece’s best friend’s business partner’s cousin and I need to stay home to vacuum the poop from the front door foyer and tip the delivery man.

  3. I got my private parts stuck in the zipper of my pants and need immediate medical attention.

  4. At 3:00PM I’ve been scheduled to referee a pie fight between the Comcast and Verizon Fios cable men, since they both think their cable services are the best. The loser will come in next week to make up the hours that I’ve missed today.

  5. I ran over a squirrel while texting during an illegal street race with a blind man on a bike.

  6. The goldfish that I flushed this morning stopped up the toilet and now my cup runneth over.

  7. I have to go to the airport to pick up my French-Asian pen pal, Delicia Van Wu.

  8. My son beat up his teacher for taking his M&Ms during recess. The teacher threatened to have him expelled and now I have to go beat the teacher’s ass, myself.

  9. There is an embarrassingly foul odor coming from only one of my armpits and I am afraid to leave the house because the stench might kill the pigeons that built a nest over my garage door.

  10. I’m getting my butt hairs braided at the African hair gallery after lunch and will not be returning to the office. Ever.

  11. Today is the only day that I am available to read my daughter’s diary without her knowing.

  12. Today is National I Don’t Give a Fuck Day and I don’t give a fuck what you say, I will not be in the office at all.

  13. I have a mandatory meeting with all the voices in my head and two bill collectors.

  14. Someone told me that toenails can get long enough to scrape the ground. Now that my toenails have finally grown to an unbelievable length, I’d like to test the theory out for myself.

  15. My turrets syndrome of belching keeps flaring up.

  16. I’ve been meaning to return the library book that I borrowed back in the ninth grade. It’s slightly overdue by about eighteen years.

  17. I’m putting my great uncle in a rest home and I need to go visit his grave to see if he approves of the neighborhoods the homes are located in.

  18. My boyfriend just broke up with me and I have to go slash all the tires on his 10-speed bike. Training wheels included.

  19. My kotex string broke.

  20. I’m having man cramps.

  21. My neighbor’s daughter swallowed my cat’s hairball and now I must call a vet to get a referral to a doctor.

  22. I got laryngitis in my middle finger and will be unable to tell anyone to fuck off for three days.

  23. My car flipped over six times before hurling over the rail of the 5th Street Bridge. I’m calling from the bottom of the ocean. I probably won’t be in tomorrow either unless there is an express way from Heaven leading to the office.

  24. My grandmother ran out of glaucoma medicine and I have to stand on the corner and try to hustle a hustler into giving me a stash on credit. That could take all day.

  25. I have massive rug burns on my knees and am unable to walk. You’ll have to get your own damn cup of coffee today!

  26. I lost all my money playing bingo and now I don’t have any change to get on the bus.

  27. I’m stuck in the photo booth at Walmart.

  28. The dog ate my car keys. My wife at my car.

  29. A booty call stole my alarm clock while I was in the bathroom coming up with a good excuse not to come to work.

  30. I can’t find my shoes or my pet tarantula.

  31. There is a busload of Jehovah’s witnesses outside my door and I’m hiding under the couch until they go away. This may take a while.

  32. With all the boiled eggs I ate this morning I don’t want shit to hit the fan.

  33. My mother-in-law came to town for the weekend and got into a terrible accident. I have to take her to the hospital for emergency surgery to get the stick removed from her ass.

  34. My wife’s melons are sore from her recent breast implants and she needs me to stay home to massage them.

  35. I won’t be in the office today because I owe someone money and work is the first place they’ll look for me. Oops! You’re the one I owe money to.

  36. After reviewing my last paycheck, I suddenly became claustrophobic.

  37. Someone told me hard work doesn’t guarantee a successful win so I’m not going to waste my time today.

  38. I think my cocker-spaniel caught an STD from the neighborhood bitch and needs to be taken to the puppy clinic to get tested.

  39. I’m calling in blind cause I just don’t see it happening today.

  40. All my underwear have holes in them and I used the last bar of soap last night.

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Quote of the week:  “Conway’s Law: In any organization there will always be one person who knows what is going on – This person must be fired.”

Hottywood’s HORRORscopes: Week of June 5-11, 2011

It wouldn’t be right if everything was right.  So if everything is right, something’s wrong.  Live in the now but be ready for next; for you have entered tomorrow just now.

This week is not destined and there’s much to be told.  So sit back and be patient as the scroll unfolds. 

When you’ve run out of “woulds,” and “shoulds,” and “coulds…” who’s the first person you think of?   

HOTTYWOOD!

Below are Hottywood’s cookie fortunes as revealed by the moon and the sun, in addition to the itch on the bottom of his foot. 

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Capricorn

December 22 – January 19

If you lie three times on Thursday, you will be dipped in hamburger meat, handcuffed to a postman and serve as a canine diversion on his mail run.   _________________________________________________________

Aquarius

January 20 – February 18

Even when game has pulled the wool over your eyes and everything is as dark as it seems, there is always a bright side. 

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Pisces

February 19 – March 20

Chewing potato chips while talking to someone on the phone causes cancer. 

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Aries

March 21 – April 19

Someone is really into you and plays the game of cat and mouse very well.  Intriguingly enough for the chase but not so for the catch.   

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Taurus

April 20 – May 20

Man can not survive off the fat of the land alone. _________________________________________________________

Gemini

May 21 – June 20

Don’t open every door that knocks because you never know who is standing on the other side.   

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Cancer

June 21 – July 22

Waiting for someone to throw the first punch may be morally correct but it’s realistically stupid…and potentially painful. 

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Leo

July 23 – August 22

Free yourself from stress by being an asshole to someone else.

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Virgo

August 23 – September 22

There’s more to life than having everything.

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Libra

September 23 – October 22

You can never get enough of what you don’t need to make you happy. 

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Scorpio

October 23 – November 21

Always do sober what you said you’d do drunk.  That’ll teach you to keep your mouth shut. 

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Sagittarius

November 22 – December 21

You can resist everything but temptations.   

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Quote of the week:  “Always give 100% at work:

  • Monday – 13%
  • Tuesday – 22%
  • Wednesday – 26%
  • Thursday – 35%
  • Friday – 4%” 

This Week on, “Ask Hottywood!”

CLICK HERE to leave a question for Hottywood.

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Dear Hottywood,

My boyfriend and I broke up a couple of weeks ago. Ever since the breakup I’ve been a mess. I haven’t been eating. All I want to do is sleep and I keep wondering what I did to make things go so wrong. But my biggest problem is that I feel so bad for sleeping with him after the breakup. Was I wrong for that? Does that make me a ho? Does it make me look pressed?  

Lonely Heart

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Dear Lonely Heart, 

It isn’t up to me to justify or categorize the reasons for your actions. You did what you did and now you need to accept it, deal with it and figure out where to go from there.  I’ll be honest with you, though, and tell you that I understand your reasons for giving up the cupcakes.  Based on what you’ve mentioned (your lack of nourishment, excessive sleep and constant self blame for the failure of your relationship), you shared pillows with him to feel something other than bad.  You probably felt empty inside and just wanted to feel something, anything again. Him, specifically.  

Do I think that makes you a ho?  Or pressed?  No.  I don’t.  I think that makes you human. But don’t get that confused with being stupid.  Sleeping with ol’ boy isn’t going to bring him back to you and it’s probably not going to do anything but get your panties in a bunch, and not in a good way.  

Whatever feelings you felt after sleeping with him were more than likely temporary.  You didn’t do anything but solve an immediate problem for yourself (if not creating more) and stroked his ego (among other things).  Now your emotions are sizzling with the luke warm facade of what was and what will never be again.  For now, I’m going to hand you a get-out-of-jail-free card for thinking with your ta-tas instead of your brain.  Breakups will do that to a person.  Here is what you need to ask yourself, “How long am I going to think or worry about someone who isn’t thinking or worrying about me?”  Stop focusing on what was. Stop crying about what isn’t.  And for peek sake, go somewhere and eat!  There are too many chicken wings in this world for you not to eat…  Wait.  Let me take that last statement back.  If you don’t eat any chicken wings that leaves more for me.   

The bottom line is it’s time for you to pick up the pieces and move on.  Life is filled with love and loss and people gain from their trouncing.  What are you gaining by barricading yourself inside closed doors while you wait for your ex to ring your phone for a booty call?  Don’t remain his bed buddy if you’re not good enough to be anything else to him.  You find someone else whom you will be more worth to or find that place within you that appreciates your own self-worth.  What anyone else thinks doesn’t matter.  At least it shouldn’t.  In any case, don’t let anyone take away what you think about yourself.  No one should have that kind of power over you, no matter how great of a person they are or how good the sex is, because for every one person that’s good, there are about ten other people that’s better.  And if you keep on crying and starving yourself, it’s going to make it that much harder to move on with someone new because you’ll look too gaunt to make an attractive impression.  

Take these words to heart.  It takes a couple of seconds to say, “Hello” and seemingly forever to say, “Goodbye.”  Forever is a long ass time.    

Good luck. 

Hottywood

RELATED ARTICLE:  Summer Sizzles! Break Up to Make Out!

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