Surprising Secret My Boss Revealed One Night

The Surprising Secret My Boss Revealed One Night

So then…our boss Kate packs some files in her bag and says, “Hey, are you free for drinks after work tomorrow? I want to talk to you guys about something.”

Becky and I look at each other and say, “Sure.”

Kate says, “Tito’s?”

“Yeah,” we say.

As soon as Kate leaves, Becky says, “I wonder what she wants to discuss.” (Kate’s only a few years older than us – she’s mid-30’s and we’re in our late 20’s. She’s really smart and funny, so we love joking about our clients with her.)

“I don’t know,” I say. “We usually go to Tito’s after work in a group. Sounds like she has something confidential to tell us.”

Becky murmurs, “Yeah.”

“Maybe the company’s getting sold or we’re merging or something?” I suggest.

“Nah, I think it’s something personal,” she speculates.

“Oh!” I exclaim suddenly. “I know what she wants to tell us!”

“Me too,” says Becky.

Me:                  She’s pregnant!
Becky:             She’s gay!

My jaw hits the floor.

“What? Gay? She’s married to Peter!” I say.

Becky says, “Have you ever actually met Peter?”

“No…” I admit. “But I’ve only worked here a couple months. But she talks about him all the time – he works in finance downtown – he travels; they go running together.”

“Yes, but you’ve never actually MET him,” she asserts. “I’ve been here awhile and he didn’t attend the summer picnic or the holiday party because he was on ‘business trips.’”

“Oh, I don’t know…” I say dubiously.

“Well, I guess we’ll find out tomorrow night,” says Becky.

As I head home, I ponder the secret Kate plans to share. I’ve already started thinking about decorations, gifts, and cake flavors. But am I planning a Baby Shower or a Gay Parade?

That night I tell my boyfriend the mystery – and the two different theories.

He shrugs indifferently and asks, “Well, could she be gay?”

“I don’t know! I don’t know any gay people!” I say.

He laughs. “Of course you do,” he says. “You just don’t KNOW they’re gay.”

“Oh. (pause) Really?” I ask skeptically.

I’m from a small conservative town in Louisiana – and I attended college in Des Moines, which is not exactly a thriving metropolis. I’m not very sophisticated, but I sort of figured if I met someone who was gay, I’d know.

He teases me, “It’s not like they’re gonna wave a rainbow flag at you and wear a nametag saying ‘Hi, I’m gay!’”

I laugh. He’s probably right. I probably know people who are gay but I just don’t know they are – which makes me wholly unqualified to determine if Kate is or not.

And of course, I like and respect Kate regardless of her sexual orientation – but it would surprise me so much since she’s MARRIED.TO.PETER!

And no one’s ever come “out” to me before, so I go to the mirror to practice my casual head toss and shrug like “no big deal, man” so she’ll know I’m a sophisticated live-and-let-live chick.

The next day, I keep glancing at Kate to check for a baby bump.

After work, Becky and I meet Kate at Tito’s and order chips and salsa and margaritas.

Kate says, “I feel like I’m close enough friends with you guys to share something personal – I’m gay.”

I shrug and say, “That’s cool.”

But inside, I’m thinking: “OMIGOD OMIGOD! She IS gay! I can’t believe it! I totally thought the news was pregnancy! And did I just say “that’s cool?” OMIGOD I used a tone of voice like I was letting her know that her gayness is “cool” with me! Who am I to give approval over gayness or not? OMIGOD I’m trying to act all sophisticated and nonchalant but I’m coming across like a total moron! THANK GOD Becky gave me a heads up last night so my jaw didn’t drop open IN FRONT OF KATE – and so I didn’t ARGUE with her that she can’t be gay since she’s married to Peter and OMIGOD what IS the story with Peter? Does HE know? Shouldn’t she be telling PETER instead of us? Maybe we’re the practice run for Peter! OMIGOD am I handling this right? Am I frowning judgmentally? Am I smiling maniacally? Do I look confused? I want her to know I’m her friend no matter what she tells us — and that her gayness is fine with me. No, it’s MORE than fine – it’s terrific! I LOVE her gayness! How can I convince her I’m not anti-gay? I’ll tell her I LOVE gays! I’ll tell her I’M gay!”

As I’m whipping myself into an existential liberal crisis, Becky is smoothly thanking Kate for confiding in us.

Kate shares that she encountered some bigotry at her previous company when she was open about being gay, so at the next company, she just didn’t mention her girlfriend. But then everyone at that company tried to fix her up on blind dates. So at this company, she figured she’d just give her girlfriend a different name (and a different gender) and then she could speak freely about their activities, vacations, etc.

She said that worked for awhile, but as she gets closer to her coworkers, she feels deceptive to leave that detail out – so now she’s telling us.

Oh thank GOD! “Peter” is really Marnie. And Marnie DOES work in finance downtown, travels, and runs on the weekends – and she is absolutely lovely and we like her instantly when we meet her later.

And based on how well we handled the news that night at Tito’s, Kate comes out to the whole office, which all goes smoothly. And Kate and Marnie soon take in foster children, eventually adopting 2 kids.

And I’m convinced that this happy ending is all due to my ability to react to Kate’s secret so casually. (I was practically like The Fonz in a black leather jacket, with a shrug and a thumbs up, like “Aaaaaay, that’s cool.”) Totally awkward and goofy – but hey, that’s me.

This is henceforth known as The Night I Blessed All the Gays – (Even Though They Didn’t Actually Need My Blessing).

— Darcy Perdu

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(Has your boss or coworker ever confided a secret? Are you sophisticated and worldly – or awkward and goofy like me? Have YOU ever confided a secret to a colleague – how did they react?)

My SECRET Accomplishment (Photograph-Forbidden)

Secret Accomplishment - No Photo Allowed

READ the story below — or click the Play button to HEAR it!

So then…I poop a Q.

An amazing, perfectly-shaped Q.

It is truly a remarkable thing to behold, but I cannot think of even one person that I can show.

It’s not exactly the type of thing that you can point out to a co-worker –

Like “Hey, Brenda, come look at the Q I pooped! Come quick! It’s an UPPER CASE Q!”

And probably not the type of thing to gather the family round for a group viewing —

Like, “Hey, kids, look what Mom just made!”

It’s one of those things I will have to keep to myself.

I consider taking a photo.

But I couldn’t text it to anyone. And I couldn’t post it.

And I certainly wouldn’t want the Costco photo guy to have to print it out –

or for some relative to stumble across it years from now in a faded photo album and say, “What the hell is this?”

Or DO I?

It is a pretty incredible accomplishment.

“That’s the time I pooped a Q!” I’d say proudly.

“No shit?” they’d say admiringly. And we’d have a good laugh at the unintended pun.

I check my exquisite sculpture and marvel again at its uncanny resemblance to the letter Q. I almost wonder if perhaps tomorrow I will produce another letter – and if, in fact, someone is trying to send me a message.

Since today is a Q, the rules of spelling would dictate that tomorrow’s letter would need to be a U, so I’m wondering what letters would come next. Over time, would I be spelling out Queen?



Quick, Get Me Outta Here – I’m Trapped in Your Lower Intestine!

My God, that would take weeks to spell out. But you can be sure that I’ll be checking to see if such a message is forthcoming.

I’m not entirely sure when I first began examining my output. I know there was a time when I wouldn’t have given a thought to checking the bowl – just take care of business, wash hands, and out the door.

But at some point awhile back, I started the habit of a quick glance.

I’m not sure if it is curiosity – or a health check – or just that my daily life is so devoid of real accomplishment that my confidence needs the occasional boost from creating a successful bowel movement. Sort of a Defecation Celebration, if you will.

But oh today, I am quite proud. I’ve produced a perfect Q — and with no conscious effort!

This was not deliberate, I assure you. Don’t envision me intentionally leaning, rotating, gyrating to create this letter – this was all perfectly natural. And a delightful surprise!

And yet, there is no way to preserve my masterpiece. No bronzing. No shellacking.

A quick flush and it will be gone forever.

I can only write about the existence of it in this post – with no evidence to support my claim.

But I assure you, it is a perfect Q.

— Darcy Perdu

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(Comments: I had seriously considered not allowing comments on this post since I usually encourage you to post a RELATED story – and I’m not quite sure I can handle reading about YOUR poop, your KID’S poop, and your PET’S poop that resemble other letters, shapes, states, and celebrities. BUT…you were gracious enough to read about my Q – so bring it on – deluge me with stories of your funny feces! Keep it as clean as you can!)

My Secret Accomplishment - Photography Forbidden P

The Horrifying Secret That EVERYONE Knew But Me

The Horrifying Secret Everyone Knew But Me - Hilarious!!  #mom #daughter #parenting  #thetalk #funny

So then…I open my backpack and untangle my jump rope from my friendship bracelets so I can reach my math workbook.

In the kitchen, I grab two chocolate Ding Dongs and a cold glass of milk, and head to the TV room with workbook and pencil, so I can settle in to watch the afternoon Million Dollar Movie. Life as a 5th grader is good.

I’m halfway through the movie, 100% through my snack, and 5% through my homework, when my Mom calls me to the back of the house, shuts the door and smiles.

I smile too, wondering what prompted this private meeting. I’m a pretty happy-go-lucky 10-year-old kid, so I assume it must be good news.

Young Darcy Happy Shelly 5.25.13
“Next week your Girl Scout troop is going to show you girls a film. So the troop leader suggested we prepare our daughters for what it’s about – and answer any questions you might have,” she says.

“OK,” I say brightly. “What’s the film about?”

“Well, it’s about an amazing monthly miracle – a special stage in a young girl’s life when she experiences some very important physical changes.”

Then she calmly and patiently explains the monthly cycle.

This is MY side of the conversation:

Wait. WHAT?

What are you talking about?
Women do what?
From where? WHERE?
Are you serious?
No really, are you serious?
I am calm.

For how long?
Oh my God. Won’t I die if I lose that much?
OK, OK, well maybe I can handle it, if it’s just five days.
Wait – five days EVERY MONTH?
For how many years?

Young Darcy Surprised 5.25.13
Mom, Mom, you’re kidding, right?
You’re kidding, Mom.
I am calm.

When is this going to happen to me?
That soon?
Oh my God. That’s terrible.
A “miracle?” A “blessing?” It’s not a “blessing.” It sounds horrible!
“Falobian tubes?” “Ovreeze?” What are you talking about?

Young Darcy Confused Shelly 5.25.13
Who cares about babies? I’m 10. I don’t want babies now.
Why can’t it wait until then?
But why not?
Can’t you talk to somebody about that? It shouldn’t happen until you want to have babies.
You gotta talk to somebody about that – you gotta change that.

I just…I just can’t believe it. This happens to ALL women?
Mrs. Hardison? Mrs. Mitchell?
My teachers? The nuns?

How long has this been going on?
Oh come on!
ALL women who EVER lived? Seriously?
What about pioneer women?
Really? Like pioneer women who lived out west in covered wagons?
That’s crazy. That’s just crazy.
I am calm.

So what do you do when it happens?
Yeah, I have seen that big purple box with the white rose on it in your bathroom sometimes.
That’s what it’s for?
I dunno — I just thought it was adult toilet paper or something.
Wait – pioneer women didn’t have those purple boxes. What did they use?
Seriously? Oh my God, Mom, I’m gonna be sick. This is so awful.
All of it. This is too much. Really, it’s just too much.

Young Darcy Panic 5.25.13
Who else knows about this?
Dad? Dad knows about this? My brothers?
Oh my God, how embarrassing!
Everybody in the whole world knows about this except me?
Oh, OK, so everyone older than me knows. But still, that’s like billions of people!
And they’ve all just been walking around keeping this big secret from me?
That’s terrible, Mom. Really. Terrible. Shame on them. Shame on them.

And men don’t do this?
They don’t have anything like this?
That’s pretty unfair, Mom.

Young Darcy Mad 5.25.13
This is just bad news. Bad news you’re giving me here, Mom.
And you know what? I’m not gonna do it.
No, I don’t have to.
I’m just not gonna do it.
Nope. No way, no how.
I’m not.
I’m not.
I’m not.


And the fact is — I am so traumatized by this revelation when I was 10 that I actually succeeded in avoiding this dastardly occurrence until I turned 15. Take that, menses!

But of course Mom was right – this monthly “blessing” and a healthy reproductive system produced my two beautiful babies –

one of whom is now a tall, handsome son –

and one of whom grew up to be a lovely young girl –

Chloe Happy Shelly 5.25.13

who I drew aside one day to tell her about…
an “amazing monthly miracle.”

Chloe Panic Shelly 5.25.13

Written by Darcy Perdu of

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(Who told YOU about this fabulously fun cycle? How did YOU react? Were you traumatized like me – or did you just go with the flow? (Oh, yes, pun ABSOLUTELY intended.) Have you told YOUR daughter yet?)

Original Illustrations for So Then Stories by Shelly Draven

How did YOU find out?  My Mom told me and it did NOT go well.  Nope.  Here's my funny reaction! #humor