My mom and I were at a nice, local restaurant for lunch recently. As we waited for someone to acknowledge our presence (that's a story for Yelp), I glanced around to see what other patrons were eating. (I'm nosey, did I tell you?)
I looked to my left (casually, of course) and saw two men in business attire sitting at a table, finishing up lunch and having a conversation. Mr. A was munching on a bread roll slathered in butter. Mr. B was looking down at what was left on his plate, sipping on some water.
Then I saw it. Mr. A had inadvertently left some "debris" (that's a nice way to say it) on his chin. Now, I'm sitting a solid eight feet away from Mr. A and I can plainly see that he has a massive blob of butter (I think it's butter - it could have been sour cream) under his bottom lip. Massive. I immediately turn away and face my mom, so as not to be caught staring at this eating faux pas.
My mom puts down her menu, and begins to say "I think that..." but she trails off. Because she now sees what I see. Her seat has a full on view of Mr. A in all of his buttery glory. She sits there a moment, speechless. I say "you see it, too, don't you?" And we have a little laugh.
Now, I don't want to make fun of Mr. A in this blog. Because I have spilled and dribbled and crumbled all over myself in public. This blog isn't about making fun of Mr. A. It's what happens next that I need to talk about.
Mr. A and Mr. B continue on with their conversation. We see Mr. B looking directly at Mr. A. He says nothing. He continues on as if nothing is askew. I am mentally screaming to Mr. A "Please just use your napkin. It's right there!" A minute goes by. At this point I tell my mom, that man (Mr. B) is not his friend.
Mr. B could just politely say "Hey, A, you've got a little something on your chin." And Mr. A would immediately put his hand up to his chin, feel the smear, and grab for a napkin, and they'd have a brief chuckle and move on with their conversation. But he doesn't. Because he's no friend. He doesn't care that Mr. A is in an embarrassing situation. He doesn't care enough to tell him when something is wrong. He just goes about his business blindly, hoping things will automatically fix themselves.
Two minutes go by (at least!) before Mr. A grabbed for his napkin, purely as a reflex - Mr. B did nothing the whole time.
I want you to know that even though I'm your Virtual Assistant, I'm going to be your friend, too. I'll be honest, and let you know when things aren't right. I won't hide. I won't pretend things are rosy. I'll point out the problem, and I'll even supply the napkins to help clean things up.
25+ years of business experience. 12+ years of virtual experience.