Claire (spotsofcolour) wrote in thequestionclub,

Irritating Workmate Habits

Dear TQC - I need your help!

I've just started a new job, and the guy I share an office with... well, he's a little strange. I can cope with that. I can cope with him constantly trying to tell me the correct way to walk up and down stairs, or how to finish a phone conversation by putting the receiver down, or when he tells me every detail of what he's going to do today like it's at all relevant to me. I can even cope when he blows his nose like he's trying to play a tune, then spends the next couple of minutes picking any stray bits or inspecting his hankie. What I can't cope with is the noise he makes when he eats - at first I thought it was just when he sucked on cough sweets, but no. It's EVERYTHING.

He chews in this really weird manner, and makes so much in the way of unpleasant saliva-y smacking noises that I can hear him ten feet across the office. It's driving me mad. For some people nails on a chalkboard set their teeth on edge, but for me it's really wet eating noises, saliva-y noises, licking noises. I'm only three weeks into my job and already I get twitchy when I see him reach for a snack.

What can I do, TQC? He's worked here for years, so I'm not sure what I can say to him about it... And I can't look for a new job, having only been here 3 weeks. What advice do you have for dealing with irritating noises?

DK/DC: What things really irritate you?
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