There are more than a couple adages that caution against dipping your pen in company ink, a.k.a. shitting where you eat, a.k.a. getting your honey where you make your money (to name a few). There's not one psalm, proverb, or parable, however, in favor of banging someone you work with. And yet we all insist on going for it. Sometimes it works, and you two write a coffee table book together, and sometimes it doesn’t, and he tries to get you fired for canceling a conference call and you have to have an awkward meeting with HR about boundaries. Anyway, here are a couple of things to keep in mind going in.
Pro: Instead of meeting someone at the bar and waiting six months to find out they only listen to soulful deep house vocals and is "separated," if you date somebody at work chances are you already know them, have seen them drunk, and share a lot of interests, goals, and a tax-bracket.
Con: Anytime you’re like, “great presentation, Kevin!” everybody rolls their eyes because they know you’re sleeping with him.
Pro: Working together completely eliminates the “should I call? Should I wait for him to call?” dilemma because duh, you’re going to see him in 10 hours.
Con: Holy shit you’re going to see him in 10 hours! Okay, just … be cool. No big deal. What are you going to wear? You want to look good because HE’S going to be there, but not look like you dressed up or anything, because that would be too obvious and you’re just going to work. You’ll have a huge knot in the pit of your stomach until that first “hey” in the hall and then a three-minute moment of relief before the next knot in the pit of your stomach wondering what the fuck “hey” is supposed to mean.
Pro: It’s a really good idea to stick around afterhours and make out in the stairwell/supply closet/wherever. That way, if your boss is giving you shit about some bullshit you can just look past him at the spot where you were fooling around last week, and be all, “heh.”
Con: You can never bang anyone at work ever ever again, because you’ll be ‘the official sponsor of office blow jobs’ and every new male hire will give you that look. If you DO get with someone else, you’ll have to date him for at least two years just to dispel any “for a good time call” rumors.
Pro: Banging someone at work is a good way to offset the day-to-day doldrums of shoot-me-in-the-face data entry, gathering in the conference room for a depressing-ass sheet cake and apple juice birthday/baby/going away celebrations, and lunch meetings centered around “blue sky brainstorms" that really could have been cleared up in an e-mail.
Con: You can get fired for that shit.
Pro: Nobody knows! You’re sitting across from him at board meetings all coquettish, like, “we diiiiiiiid it last niiiiiiiiight” and what’s more romantic than secret lovers?
Con: Everybody knows. Oh, you think you’re slick when you guys rode the train in together twice this week, even though he lives on the east side and you live on the west? You think that little split at the end of the block where he goes in and you're like,”oh, let me stop for a sec and check my voicemails at 8 a.m." is fooling anyone? Jenny from Legal SAW you. And Kate from Comms swears she heard your voice change when he got on the elevator. And now you’re having lunch together? Pshhht. I have an idea, why don’t you just announce it in the company newsletter? Under ‘Spots I’ve Blown Up (my own)’?
Pro: Your entire life becomes wrapped up in a tidy package between work, the bar, and his apartment. If you’re lucky, it’s all along the same bus line and there’s a grocery store on the way so you can get some errands done.
Con: Lawd, don’t let him have a crazy ex/baby mama. Best believe she’s going to come up to YOUR place of business, ruining allllllll YOUR game, talkin’ bout, “where is she? WHERE IS THAT HOMEWRECKING BITCH!?" And she’s talking about you (and she’s right).
Allison Davis is a writer and TV producer living in San Francisco. If you were to run into her at a cocktail party she would probably casually name-drop HBO, CBS, PBS, FOX, Converse, Chipotle, Piano Fight and Current TV before mumbling something about needing a martini and leaving abruptly.
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