Kerry Leon believed that the exasperated look that briefly flashed over her face during a recent Zoom meeting went unnoticed. But she was sorely mistaken: Her eyeroll was absolutely noted by her peers and superiors, and has since sent ripples throughout her small company.
The eyeroll in question occurred during the company’s third Zoom call of the day, which her boss problematically refers to as “the afternoon pow wow.” During this particular meeting, Leon’s most patronizing coworker, Larissa Murphy, asked Leon if she would be comfortable looking over the spreadsheets.
“Yes, Larissa, I’m comfortable doing my job,” Leon thought, rolling her eyes before catching herself and resuming a polite, helpful expression.
“We didn’t even need to have that meeting, so I guess I was feeling especially cranky,” explained Leon. “Most of our Zoom meetings are pretty pointless, actually. Luckily, I don’t think anyone noticed.”
“Oh, we noticed,” confirmed Leon’s boss.
In fact, Leon’s annoyance was noted by nearly every other participant in the nine-way call, and each of them now thinks her eye roll had something to do with them personally. Shortly after the call, her boss moved her off one of their biggest projects, thinking that her eyeroll meant that she was feeling overworked and unappreciated. And Leon’s post-Zoom meeting Zoom meeting, where she and her work husband Jimmy typically complain about how annoying everyone else is, was unusually chilly and gossip-free. Jimmy had assumed that the eyeroll was a response to his dog barking in the background, which he thinks everyone secretly complains about in their post-Zoom meeting Zoom meetings.
In fact, the only person who didn’t notice the eyeroll was patronizing Larissa, who’d been busy noticing how shiny her forehead was and wishing she didn’t have to powder her face three times a day.
Meanwhile, while slightly confused by her coworkers’ strange virtual vibes, Leon has been obliviously and happily going about her day. In the free time before her company’s 5PM daily wrap-up Zoom call, she’s mentally preparing for another Zoom call with her extended family this weekend, which will definitely be drama-free and not traumatic at all.