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Management Hates Me

Posted May 13 2009 10:38pm

For reasons beyond my control, I needed to abruptly move out of my office to a new suite down the street. It's actually in a better location, closer to major subway stops. I've been there a few weeks now and it's become clear that the leasing/managing office prefers to handle tenants' issues in their own time and via their own methods.

The original plan was to have my name on the door of the office suite within 2-3 business days. A week went by and nothing. I knocked on management's office door at that time and the superintendent of the office simply yelled through the door. "WHAT DO YOU WANT?"

"It's Rob Dobrenski, I need you to..."


"Rob Dobrenski, in Suite 705. I need you to put my name on both the suite door and the professional directory in the downstairs lobby so my clients can find me."


I looked to my right and down the hall where my office is located. Unless someone had snuck over there during this brief, loud conversation to put my name on the door with those acrylic letters, then tip-toed back past me, the job was not done.

"No, you didn't do that. I need you to address this right away."

Shit, I could hear the man say loudly, which led me to believe that stentorian was his normal way of speaking, because I think he said it under his breath.

He opened the door, looked me up and down, and said, "Fine. We can do that later today. What's your name again?"

"Rob Dobrenski. I emailed it to you, per your request, when I moved in. You said that would assure you spelled it correctly.

"Are you the dentist?"

"No, I'm the Psychologist. Ph.D."

"Fine, later today."

"Thank you."

The next morning when I arrived I saw the following on the door:

Ron Dobrenski, pH.d.

Back down the hall I went and knocked on the door.


"This is Rob Dobrenski. You spelled my name and credentials wrong on the door."

Fuck, he said this time, and opened the door. "Fine. What is your name again?"

"Rob. Dobrenski. Capital P, lower case h with a period, capital D with a period."

"You don't like 'Ron,'" he said with a smile. "Like Ron Jeremy?"

"There's nothing wrong with 'Ron,' it just happens to not be my name. Please change it immediately."

A few hours later a client came in with a smile suggesting he couldn't wait to have a laugh. "Hey there...Ro."


"You see your door?" he said, shoving a thumb over his shoulder.

Sure enough, the man was right:

Ro Dobrenski, Ph.D.

There was no time to address the issue then and there, but I seethed through the entire session, wondering if the asshole superintendent was just screwing with me. After my client left humming the tune of "Row Row Row Your Boat" to further damage my professional credibility, I immediately went down the hall again


"You put my name on the door incorrectly. Please open up!"

Asshole, he said this time. "What is the problem this time?"

"My name is not 'Ro Dobrenski.'"

"It's not?"

"No. And as a matter of fact I'm willing to wager that 'Ro' isn't anyone's name, at least not anyone you or I know."

"Oh riggggghhhhtttt," he said, suddenly remembering something. "We ran out of 'B's'. We should have some in a few weeks."

I considered drawing a temporary 'b' in with a Sharpie, then realized how stupid that would look. Defeated my eyes narrowed to slits. "You'll rue this day, Super." And I walked off.

I decided to simply deal with the phantom letter until another client mentioned her son joining the college crew team. "You know," she said, "rooooooowing" with a wink.

So, in an act of defiance I took the 'O' off the door, leaving an almost respectable 'R   Dobrenski, Ph.D.' in its place. I suppose I could have just addressed the matter in this way from the get-go, but my new office mates have their full names on the door, so it crossed my mind that I might look like some sort of Shrink Rebel to my new peers. That is something I don't want, at least not yet. Of course they could just read this site and assume they will be the topic of innumerable blog posts in the future. And they'd be right, so let's all hope it doesn't come to that just yet.

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