Workplace Guilt


Easter Hatch!!
10 Years
Jul 17, 2009
So they opened up a new Dunkin Donuts 200 yards from my house. I am already getting tubby, but that is not my rant.

They have been giving away free meduim iced/hot coffees for 2 weeks now. DH and I were 2 of the first 100 customers, so we got 2 t-shirts that entitle us to free coffees whenever we are wearing them.

In short: we have been getting a lot of free coffee lately.

I have also bought a TON of donuts for my coworkers, the daycare ladies, donut holes for the kids at the daycare, sprinkled donuts as treats for the neighbor's 5th birthday dinner, etc. Even my husband takes his employees there before work.

In short: they have gotten all my disposable income since they opened.

So last night, when I bought the sprinkled donuts I asked the manager if I could pick up coffees for all my coworkers. She's seen me enough to know I am not trying to take advantage of them, so she said OK. I get the coffees (8), take it to work, and am HERO of accounting. Then, our (very nice but does not get me at all) resident Russian employee comes by and asks why I bought everyone coffee. (Read with appropriate accents:)

"Just because," I smile.

"But that a lot of money, you spend. What for?" she asks. Not wanting to take more credit than is due, I say,

"The new DD is giving away free coffee, and I thought everyone would like one."

"Oh, you don't buy them?" She looks a little annoyed.

"Nope, everyone can get them for free. Did you get (a coffee)?"

With disgust, "Yes, thank you."

Now I feel a little *cheap*. Sure the coffees were free, but I didn't dig them out of the trash, I tipped the barista, and I juggled 8 cups up two flights of stairs. **sigh**

Technically this person is my subordinate, and I get this a lot from her. She is a AWESOME worker and very nice, even if I think she is a little weird. ANY time I try to teach her something new, or re-assign her work, she asks if we are going to fire her. It must be a cultural thing. Or maybe I am just a cheap, cheap wench.
Dunkin' Donuts is my very most favorite donut shop, all other donut shops pale in comparison to DD

Of course, they closed the only DD in all of greater Lynchburg about 7 years ago, so no more Boston Cremes for me.

I am soooooooooooo jealous!
Dunkin donuts is my favorite coffee in the world, especially when someone else brings it to me.

I AM an accountant, soooooo..

Can I come work for you? I promise to be grateful for every large, cream no sugar.
It's entirely cultural, don't worry about it, the longer she's here she'll either get used to it, or learn not to say anything. Before I had a kid, I had a job at a huge company teaching overseas transferrs how to work and get along in America.
Maple donuts anyone? Coffee rolls?

Seriously, I am a little butt-hurt.

I gave the extra coffees to HR. THEY liked them. I hope they remember me next time I am harassing them for neglecting their paperwork.

Edited: DD's new shirts say, "Friends don't let friends drink Starbucks."

And you can buy their coffee in the grocery store too!
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Easier said than done, I'm sure, but try not to take it personally. It's cultural and there's likely at least a little bit of misunderstanding in the communication to add to it. What you did was a very nice thing and she probably does appreciate it more than she shows -- if nothing else think of it this way, every time you explain something like this she learns another thing about the culture and people here. I imagine it's hard to acclimate as an adult.
You can bring me coffee anytime. You will get a joyous thank you. I love DD coffee, and still think Starbucks needs to figure out how to make a cup of coffee.

I think it is probably cultural. I used to work with people from a lot of different countries, and some of the least likely things could cause consternation, puzzlement or dismay among some of the people I worked with. It came from both directions too. This was in an academic setting, so education was not a factor, cultural differences were.

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