Jannelle, a late-teenage (college, I think) person is visiting one of my departmental colleagues. My colleague has known and worked with Jannelle's mom for a while - they've collaborated sporadically over the last ten years. I know her parents a bit, respect their work greatly, but they are not collaborators. Jannelle wants to be a biologist, and is here for a couple of weeks to see What Biologists (other than her mom) Do. She's been hanging with my lab for a day or so.
Jannelle seems bright and interested. But damn, she's got a manner that just fucking rubs me the wrong way. I've been trying to figure out what it is, so that I can decide if I'm being a jackass, or this is really an issue. I doubt I will do anything different, since I'll be polite and open no matter what.
I like uppity. I like sassy. I like being argued with. But I don't like being interrupted. I don't like people just walking into my office and starting to interrogate me. Would I use the word interrogate if, before asking the exact same questions, she had said "excuse me, do you have time to talk?". Not at all sure about that one.
Honest admission: if she had been a he, I would have been more irritated. I try to be open to everyone, but being interrupted by males really frosts my shorts.
I don't like people who are observing, in the middle of The Lab clearly doing something (prepping a large animal for surgery) start asking a million q's. I understand you are curious. I like curious, but you are being distracting. I was only seeing this from the door, and not part of it, so I didn't step in just then.
It feels to me that this is a kid who was encouraged to question, and explore, and grab life. But, I also feel like this is a kid who had every question answered by her parents, and who was taught that it was ok to interrupt others when she did have a question.
I think it is the interrupting that gets my hackles up. I recognize being interrupted is a button for me, and its been that way since I started. or was born. So, recognizing that, does it make a difference to how I treat this kid? I think not.
Some beautiful hackles raised: