We were having a conversation at work. Neil, a chap who has worked for me for many years, whose real name is Nick, but I don't want to reveal it, said:
"I went to M&S yesterday and they had some really great offers on half price pants"
I stopped him in his prime, I had no choice, no option and certainly no interest. Salespeople are trained to show interest in things that they aren't interested in, man managers are trained to demonstrate interest in their team and what's going on in their lives, but there are limits. A chap can only be pushed so far before he breaks. I had been pushed to that point.
Sometimes I can tell, call it a sixth sense or blogger's intuition, but I just felt that this was going nowhere, at a serious rate of slowness. His opening line was a tiny clue too.
"Neil" I said, although I actually said "Nick".
"I genuinely don't want to be involved in this conversation."
"What do you mean?" he asked, with a wounded tone.
"It's a conversation about Marks and Spencer and how you got some cheap pants there."
"Yes but they're very good quality" he replied.
"I just don't feel old enough to have this conversation. It's not remotely interesting. I'm just not capable of it yet."
His pride was hurt, I could tell. I didn't care though.
Sometimes these fellows have to be told.
Now if it had been cheap drumsticks that would have been different.