I was in the middle of a merger deal, working 80 hours a week, for about two months. For weeks, I’d been telling the partner, I was best man in an upcoming wedding and I couldn’t work Saturday the 5th. He assured me that I’d be fine. “For God’s sake, what kind of monster do you think I am?”
The Thursday before the actual wedding weekend, I reminded him yet again I wouldn’t be able to work Friday or Saturday night. Once again, he assured me that would not be a problem—though I did note the change in his words. It went from “of course” to “not a problem.” The next day, around 4 PM, I emailed him to say I was leaving for the weekend. His electronic response: “What do you mean “leaving?”
My head almost exploded. What do you mean, what do you mean “leaving”? We’ve been talking about this for weeks, asshole! Two minutes later, he was at my door, dropping work-bombs on my desk. Revise the lock-up agreement, tweak the merger docs, revise the S-4. So I just looked at him, like a psychiatrist might look at a sociopath talking calmly about decapitating a young boy, and reminded him that I was best man in a wedding. I wasn’t a guest, nor an usher. I was best-fucking-man!
“No, I just want to go to my best friend’s wedding,” I said, choking back my rage.
Asshole partner took this in, nodded, and then began cross-examining me. Where is the wedding? What time is it? What time will it end?
My mind started racing. Is this the moment I quit? Should I just tell him to fuck off? Punch him in the face as hard as I can? Instead, I just stood there nodding like a cowardly bobble-head doll, agreeing to work through the night (and blow off the rehearsal dinner). He did, however, agree to let me attend the wedding. From 5 to 9 on Saturday I was a free man. But he wanted me back at the office by ten. Because there was work to do. I agreed. Even thanked him for his compassion.
So I went to the wedding and had a miserable time. Not even a sip of wine. And like a loyal associate, I was back at the office at 9:45, in my tux, ready to work.
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Photo by DannyBen