How I literally told my boss I won’t figuratively suck his dick

I’ve been sharing this story with my colleagues for a while now, but I felt y’all might get a laugh out of it as well.((I have a few other stories from this horrible place until I got fired for good, but this was the most extraordinary. Let me know if you want to hear those as well.))

This is back when I started by IT career in 2001 or so, as a lowly PC repair tech, in a shady shop in the centre of Thessaloniki, Greece. This particular shop (bankrupt and closed for many years now) was located in a fairly central street in the city, with a big storefront and fancy looking image. The truth however is that the original owners had sold it after the .com crash to a really sketchy character, who kept the name and purchased it through a chump partner he found.

  • Let’s call this guy Brakoulias (not the real name but phonetically similar enough.)
  • RespectedTech was an experienced guy who was with the company since the previous owner iirc.
  • EffYouSales an experienced salesman who had no respect for Brakoulias, but who the latter desperately relied on.

Even though I was nominally a local PC repair tech, Brakoulias took any job he could find and expected us to fulfil it. In this case he found a cheap gig to do in Athens (~500km away from my location) so he calls me into his office. This was around 3 months after I started working there.

Brakoulias: db0, I need you to go to Athens to setup a company office that moved. I’ll pay for your transport and hotel room and you’ll stay there 3 days to set their new office up. RespectedTech will be taking point.

me: Sure Boss

No mention of any extra payment or overnight stay, but I (naively) assumed there was going to be some bonus for it.

So off we went and I made the following wonderful experiences

  • Brakoulias paid the cheapest train ticket he could find. Which meant a 500km distance became an 8-hour ride.
  • The hotel was some degenerate hole in the ground (It was literally below-ground). He booked a double room with a double bed for me and RespectedTech to stay in. It turned out that this bed was also broken and heavily listing towards my side, which ended up with some mutually involuntary “snuggling” during sleep.
  • The place I was supposed to setup was some sort of magazine editing office. The guy who owns it was there and he decided to try and impress me by explaining how he paid for his expenses through illicit gun trade.
  • The new office was so dirty and the PCs we moved so old, that it permanently stained my work cargo pants with dust and crud. I had to throw them away afterwards.
  • They had some wonderful ideas such as keeping monitor cables close to the monitor by holding them with cheap packing tape. Said packing tape was of course also glued to the monitor screen itself, and as cheap packing tapes do, left a ton of pieces behind. Guess who had to scrape and clean that off…
  • RespectedTech turns out, wasn’t there to do any of the manual work. He just set up the switches and networking and basically sat on his arse all day while I was crawling under every desk.

As you can imagine, an overall wonderful experience, but I did my job and went through it, hoping for the bonus at the end.

A bonus that of course never materialized when I came back. But being a new and fairly shy tech, I didn’t press the issue.

A few months later, the subject came up with EffYouSales when I was bitterly whining that we never got any extra bonus for this gig.

EffYouSales: What do you mean you didn’t get anything? RespectedTech got a bonus for it.

me: whaaaa?

EffYouSales: Yeah man, he got like $(3/4s of my monthly wage) for it

me: Well, why did I get fuck-all?!

EffYouSales: Well, did you ask for it upfront?

me: Was I supposed to? I thought this was fairly common sense!

EffYouSales: Not with Brakoulias it ain’t! Next time he asks you to do anything extra for him, ask what you’re getting up-front before you accept.

Lesson learned and time passed. Around 3 months later, Brakoulias asks me back to his office

Brakoulias: So db0, I have another gig like 3 months ago. You did pretty well last time and this time it’s a pretty quick one-day thing so you’ll be going alone. You’ll take the night train tonight and return with the night-train tomorrow and thus no need to pay for a hotel, eh? You’ll be back at work the day after tomorrow.

me: Alright. What will I be getting for this gig?

Brakoulias (incredulous): Your normal wage of course! What do you mean “what will you be getting”?!

me: Well, you’re sending me off-site to another city 8 hours away, I’m losing my next 2 afternoons/evenings of personal time, and I’m sleeping in a bad train flop bed. I think that deserves more than my “normal wage” for the day.

Brakoulias (sarcastically): Alright then, what do you want?

me: 100 euros

Keep in mind, this was approximately 1/4 of my monthly wage at the time, since I was getting paid under the table at significantly below market rate.

Brakoulias (personally wounded. WOUNDED I TELL YOU!): Alright db0…I didn’t expect you to blackmail me like that…After all I’ve done for you, this is the thanks I get…This is personal betrayal…I’ll find someone else…

I later find out that he did find someone else to do it, a local tech from Athens. He just wanted to do it for free and pocket all the reward for the gig himself.

A short while later, Brakoulias calls a meeting for the whole staff. It went something like this.

Brakoulias: I gathered you all here to discuss company loyalty and specifically how you all need to be doing your part for the good of this company.

Brakoulias (Looking at me): Like how db0 here, didn’t want to do his job when I asked him to.

me: If you’re going to talk about me, It’s not my job to travel to other cities and sleep in trains!

Brakoulias: RespectedTech does it, why not you!

me: Because RespectedTech gets paid to do so! You didn’t even want to give me 100 euros, which means the monkey you found was even cheaper than that!

Brakoulias: Ah ummm, well nevertheless, you can’t just demand extra payments from me when I’m desperate like that!

me: Last time I didn’t mention anything at all, and you conveniently forgot to give me anything as well, while RespectedTech received, how much was it?

RespectedTech: Oh, uh, about 300 Eur. You didn’t get anything?!

Brakoulias: This is just disrespectful to the company and to myself, to request extra payments, it’s blackmail and this is not a behaviour we should be supporting…

At this point I kinda stopped listening. I had gotten really flustered and frustrated by being made an example for everyone, and put in the center by surprise like that, for asking what should be obvious.

My thought-process went berserk and my sense of justice took control of my mouth.

me (Interrupting): You know what Brakoulia? The only way you’ll ever be satisfied is when we suck your dick!

Those were my exact words.

Stunned Silence Ensued. People stopped breathing for a few seconds.

Brakoulias: Please leave immediately. I don’t want to see you anymore…

I get up, gather the few things I had and go home.

A few days later, a colleague called me and asked me to come back to work. Brakoulias changed his mind and wanted me back at work (not trying to brag, but I was good at my job) but was too proud (or cowardly) to ask me back himself. I went to work the next day and we all happily pretended that meeting never happened.

But I did get a high-five from EffYouSales


About this entry