Wednesday, June 15, 2005

The listening ear

The listening ear.One of the biggest tasks of the CL and one that offers surprises as well as unexpected turns in the day.

If the CL’s office is dually cozy, warm and welcoming, then the office remains full of well meaning members and sundry visitors. Some are more sundry than others, of course. Be prepared for everything. A two year old clinging to his mom may enjoy looking at a board book, a three or four year old may like to look in the treasure chest that lives under the desk because he/she never knows what will be in it- stickers? Toys? What??

Irate and irritated folks may release their angst more freely if the sitting furniture is comfortable and well worn.

Lamp light will open up the tightest lipped folks, so use it carefully as TMI is a possibility. The stories that are revealed within the confines of the CL’s office can be most informative, yes. Careful what you ask….
“ So, Mrs. Smith, any relation to Benji Smith? I know that she is also a member here…..”
“ The Smith family goes back to 1822, the smiths had 12 children and my mother’s father married my cousin’s third uncle who had 5 children and then none of them gave birth, so there you have it in a nutshell, CL, we’re all cousins. I married my 3rd cousin twice removed and renovated.”
“Well. How about that?”

Hazards and solutions…
Sometimes people come in seeking assistance. Most are truthful and in need, others are not so truthful, though they may be in need of something different than they think. On occasion, aromatic visitors may inhabit the CL’s office. This is why keeping a small dish with gum on the desk within reach is helpful. In the event that the aromatic visitor leaves behind a pungent waif, here’s a new-found solution.

Listen for the weekly landscape guys. When the blowers get close, leap from your desk and run outside and grab their attention. If the landscape guys do not speak especially good English, then offer them the hand signals that demonstrate where your office window is and then, gently grasp the blower and aim it that way. Rush back into the office and open the windows. Wave the confused landscapers in, in, in. Then step away from the window.

Momentarily, leaves, small sticks and dust will fly through the window and into the office area. Do not be alarmed by this. These items bring with them fresh, outside air. It is a well known fact that only city pollution can offset certain strengths of visitor aroma. Close the window and pull out the hand vac. It is well worth the effort.

It is important to act on this ASAP. Carpet and upholstery absorb significant aroma pretty quickly. Some CL’s have more experience with odor removal than others. Trust this source. If office plants are wilting, it may be too late for the air-blow clearance plan. In these circumstances, I suggest purchasing OUST or Citrus Orange.

We hope these tidbits of advice come in handy from time to time.

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