I recently began to receive jokes, including a highly-suggestive one, from someone with whom I do not have the remotest of a relationship. My biggest concern is that since these e-mails also have a dozen other people in the “To” line, everyone else would be seeing I am on the list and jump to the conclusion that half my day is spent reading and forwarding jokes, hoaxes, and the other time-wasters.

Of course, not only will those dozen people see my name as a recipient, but everyone they forward the message to would see my name. You can imagine how many generations of forwarding happens with these things. Half the school system would likely see me prominently listed amongst others well known for their ability to fritter away the day. Not the best image for an administrator to portray!

What should I do, I wondered? If I ask the person to stop sending this stuff, will feelings be hurt? Should I say something to the person’s boss and risk the person getting in trouble (as well as me being labeled a fuddy-duddy)?

I decided the best thing to do would be come clean with the world as to what happens when one of these little off-task diversions comes my way. So, if you forward me jokes, hoaxes, cartoons, animations, etc., etc. be forewarned that:

  1. I will not be offended. After all, I am a school administrator and have heard everything before, so I have a pretty tough skin.
  2. I may turn 8 shades of red. While I am hard to offend, I am pretty easy to embarrass.
  3. I will probably spend two seconds looking at it and simply hit the “delete” key. The delete key and I are best buddies.
  4. If it’s really funny, I may hit reply and tell you so. Be advised, however, that my standard of “really funny” is pretty high, so don’t hold your breath.
  5. If I wind up laughing so hard that I fall out of my chair, I might send it to one of two of my closest co-workers.

    Please know up front, however, that under no circumstances am I going to send it to “7 people” or “everyone I care about.” If you “tag” me and I am “it,” well I guess I am just going to have to stay “it” for a while.