men with bare chests at work, charging late fees when freelancing, and more

It’s five answers to five questions. Here we go…

1. Bare chests at work

I have an “is this weird or is this COVID?” question.

My employer held a vaccine and booster clinic recently, by appointment only. The setup was like most ones I think we’re all used to in this pandemic era: booths that have partitions but are not private and a large observation area for post-shot folks. In order to receive his shot, one fellow untucked and entirely unbuttoned his oxford shirt. He did not have an undershirt on. Just his nips to the wind. And then he sat there chatting for several minutes before getting his shot. I didn’t think I was going to get Chippendales with my morning mRNA, so I was admittedly a little startled. Is… this weird? Should he have worn an undershirt? Or am I being overly prude and this is this just what we should grow to expect when we get vaccines at work?

(P.S. It’s entirely possible he forgot he had an appointment and was just leaning into it by pretending it wasn’t weird to sit in the middle of a conference room dressed like Magic Mike.)

Nah, it’s weird! (Can I do a whole week where I just issue verdicts of weird/not weird? That sounds very relaxing.)

Maybe his shirt was so tight that it was hard to roll up the sleeve enough to expose his upper arm. Although … some men feel VERY FREE about taking their shirts off and don’t think it’s a big deal, even in normally buttoned-up environments like work. He may be one of them.

I like to think he went home and told his partner, “I did this weird thing at work today and I don’t know what I was thinking.”

2. How do I charge late fees when freelancing?

I’m freelancing while I’m in between jobs and as anyone who has freelanced knows, getting people to pay you on time can be a challenge. I have a term right on my invoices indicating my pay period and late fee terms so my timelines aren’t secret or easily missed by my clients. You’ve spoken about late fees matter-of-factly in the past so I’m assuming they’re not wrong to have, but how do I ask for them or warn clients about their impeding addition? Do I have to give a bunch of reminders or do I just send a notice with a form letter style of “this invoice is past due and a fee of X is applied”? I need some language and process tips!
Also, I usually give a bit of a grace period for new clients since I know it can take longer to get a new vendor set up, but is this undermining myself?

Ideally you want to have the late fees in your contract so that the client is legally bound to pay them. It’s much easier to collect them if you can point to a contract.

But if the fees aren’t listed in a contract (and they may not be, especially if your clients are the ones writing the contract and you’re just signing — which is sometimes the case for freelancers*), then the deal with late fees is … you can try. Include them on the invoice as you’ve been doing. The first time someone misses a payment deadline, let that be their one grace period — email them and say, “I can waive the late fee this time, but I want to make sure you see it for the future.” But it’s also the case that some clients in some industries just don’t pay late fees if they’re not bound to them via a contract, and if they have more power than you in the relationship (like if they’re a huge corporation with a ton of freelancers and you’re one person without a ton of sway), there isn’t always anything you can do about that. You can try! But getting it into your initial contract is the safest way.

Another way to do it is to have an “early payment discount” that you apply if payment is received X days early (and which is the real fee and deadline you want).

* About freelance contracts: If a client insists on providing the contract rather than using yours (which is common in some industries, especially if they use a bunch of freelancers and have their own system set up), know that you can push back on clauses you don’t like. I routinely mark up contracts and send them back to clients saying “can we change X and Y?” and most of the time they agree.

3. Was I too positive or was my friend too negative?

A while back, I was unemployed and I had an interview that went pretty well, although I didn’t end up getting the job. Even though I was desperate for a job, I didn’t mind that much, because it was a temporary position with a long commute. The interviewer rang me and told me that it was down to me and another person and the other person was chosen as they had much more experience than me. After having sent out numerous applications and never hearing back, I was actually feeling quite positive about the outcome. Obviously, I would have been happier if I got the job but it made sense that they would hire someone with more experience.

A few days later, I had coffee with a friend and mentioned what happened. I said that despite the rejection, I felt pretty good about myself, because I gave my best and did pretty well. I was definitely not saying this in a tone that could be interpreted as resentful. To this, my friend said something along the lines of: “You know, they just use not having enough experience as an excuse.” I do tend to be over-sensitive, so I think she was just trying to encourage me and not realizing that I ended up feeling the opposite way.

Was I too positive or was she too negative? I feel that if they didn’t want to hire me due to whatever reason they didn’t want to say, they could just send me a brief email. There is no need to personally call me with an excuse. In addition, if it is not about the experience, they could simply say that I am not what they are looking for. I feel that what the interviewer said is what happened: they considered hiring me, but choose to hire the person with more experience. I don’t believe that it is an excuse that they made up to cover some other reason for them not wanting to hire me.

It’s impossible to know for sure — some employers do use “we went with a candidate with more experience” as a sort of catch-all explanation for why they’re not hiring you — but your friend is definitely off-base in assuming it’s always an excuse. It’s true a ton of the time! Maybe in this case there was more to it, but there’s absolutely no reason to assume that — and if she thinks it’s always BS, then her understanding of how hiring works is wrong. She’s also approaching it in a strangely adversarial way; employers don’t need “excuses” to not hire you and they’re very comfortable just rejecting people with vague language or not bothering to send a rejection at all (let alone call you).

I also can’t figure out why she thought “they use that as an excuse” would be comforting to you! Implying that there must have been some secret reason they found you unsuitable for the job aside from this very straightforward explanation is … kind of a crappy thing to put in your head?

Anyway, your take on the interview and its outcome sounds good to me. Hers sounds off.

4. Checking back with a candidate who rejected an offer a few months ago

I work for a small construction company and we have had an opening for a more technical office position for the past year or so. Despite my best efforts, we have only had one candidate make it to the final round.

This person was out of state and flew in several months ago to take a tour of our facility and interview with managers. We ended up making them an offer and after some consideration they turned it down without giving a reason.

Now it’s been several months and we wanted to reach back out in case something has changed. I’ve never done that before, and wanted to get your perspective. How impolite is it to reach out to candidates who have already rejected a job offer? And if I did, what kind of script would you suggest?

It’s not rude to do! They might have already taken a different job or still be uninterested, but there’s nothing wrong with checking in. I’d say something like, “I hope you’re doing well! I know when we last talked, you had decided the position wasn’t for you but I wanted to check in and reiterate our interest in case anything has changed on your side. We haven’t found a candidate who we like for the role as well as you, and if there’s something we can change about our offer to make it more appealing, we’re very open to talking. Either way, I hope things are going great for you.” (Ideally you’d personalize that last bit — like “hope things are going well with the iguana project you told me about/the new baby/fill-in-the-blank.”)

Also, if you’ve adjusted the salary for the job, definitely mention that. (And if you haven’t, consider whether you need to, and then mention it if you do!)

5. Changing my religious observances at work

When I started my current job, I was in the first stages of exploring conversion to a new religion. Recently I finished that conversion, and now I’m thinking about asking for accomodations like maybe leaving early one day or refusing overtime in certain occasions.

I wasn’t observant when I started the job, and it’s been almost two years. How do I bring up these requests to a manager given that I didn’t ask about them when hired? For context, in my opinion, my leaving early or not working overtime would not affect the overall operation of the business. It may require moving schedules around.

Be straightforward! “My religious practice has changed, and I am now observing the Sabbath and will need to leave a little before sundown on Fridays and won’t be able to work Saturdays” (or whatever accommodation you need).” Depending on the type of job, you might add, “Can we plan for me to make up that time earlier in the week?” or whatever makes sense for your situation.

{ 595 comments… read them below }

  1. Loulou*

    I also find the behavior in #1 weird, but OP’s coworker is acting in concert with seemingly every male politician in Europe! There was even a roundup of these photos in the Guardian.

    1. Felix*

      It is actually very hard to roll up the sleeve past the bicep on a lot of shirts – basically impossible on most men’s shirts. Ideally he would have thought ahead and worn an undershirt, but if this was a clinic in a workplace and button-ups are part of his work attire, he wouldn’t have really had any other option.

      1. Bluesboy*

        Exactly, a well-fitting shirt is basically impossible to roll up past the elbow. You also really can’t just undo a couple of buttons and just slip it off the upper arm unless the shirt is too big. If the shoulder seam is in the correct place, with a non-stretchy material, it just doesn’t work (I’ve tried). You have to go at least halfway down and at that point you might as well undo the last few buttons rather than try to do an impression of Houdini in a strait-jacket.

        If he had been sitting in the waiting area and getting undressed, I would get it. But once you’re in the partition area, you get ready for the jab, it seems to me that it would be disrespectful of others’ time to just wait until they are ready and only then start preparing.

        So I don’t really get what the issue is. It’s a non ‘obscene’ part of the body that we all see regularly at the beach, exposed strictly (and necessarily) for medical purposes.

        1. Cordelia*

          I worked as a vaccinator in our staff clinic, and would have been grateful to this man. We need access to your bicep without any tight clothing around it, and we have a lot of people to get through. Very helpful to get ready beforehand rather than arriving in front of the vaccinator in your coat, removing various layers, attempting and realising that you can’t get your arm exposed without removing your shirt… it all takes time. The thing I find weird is that you could see your colleagues having the vaccine, without a curtain shielding you – because yes, some of your colleagues will need to be exposing their bra. It’s a medical procedure, not a work event, and I don’t think it’s weird

          1. Lily Lurker*

            Yep, one time I completely forgot I was getting a flu shot at work and turned up wearing a dress OVER a turtleneck. The nurse was set up in an office, but they were leaving the door and blinds open as people shuffled in and out, with a queue in the hallway. It was going to be difficult to reschedule my shot so she drew the blinds, closed the door, and I stripped down to bra and undies. I felt like such an idiot! And my colleagues were all worried that I had needed privacy due to fainting or something, so kept asking what had happened. I have been appropriately dressed for every subsequent vaccination :)

            1. Alienor*

              I did the same thing one year at flu shot time. The nurse and I had to go into the nearest womens bathroom and she gave me the shot while I stood next to the sink in my bra. Fortunately no one came in to use the bathroom during the couple of minutes it took for me to take off my shirt, get the shot, and put the shirt back on. It happens!

            2. Dust Bunny*

              I literally have a specific dress I wear to mammogram appointments because I can unbutton it at the top and then re-button the bodice securely around my waist like a makeshift skirt. Easy access but no loose clothing to fumble.

              1. Kal*

                I always wear a camisole under my shirt that provides sufficient coverage for me to just take my main top off and still be comfortable being seen. I also have ones with a shelf bra, which, while not being all that supportive on their own, the fact that they don’t have any metal also means I can be safe keeping it on for EKGs and such instead of relying on the horrid hospital gowns or similar coverings.

                I also have a specific set of shirts that I use for vaccinations that have a nice soft sleeve that can be popped entirely off my shoulder for easy vaccination and then pop back down to cover the bandaid and go back to looking nice. There are so many ways that clothing can interact with medical procedures.

            3. Zephy*

              I chose to wear a long-sleeved dress the day I got my COVID booster and flu shot, right before Christmas. Thankfully the dress was a stretchy jersey material and had a boatneck neckline, so I could just sort of scoot and pull it over to the side and pop my shoulder out far enough, but it was a little awkward to do.

            4. MCMonkeyBean*

              Haha, dang now I’m glad I’ve only ever had to remove my shirt! That definitely sounds like something I would do though. Glad they were able to provide you with some privacy even if that ended up drawing a weird amount of attention.

              (Not sure why they wouldn’t just have the blinds closed the whole time at least anyway though!)

            5. Lizzo*

              My spouse has mocked the “cold shoulder” shirt style that has been popular the last couple of years, but it turns out it’s the perfect thing to wear for vaccination days!

              1. Princesss Sparklepony*

                I know. I’ve never been fond of that style but it’s perfect for vaccinations. Dolly Parton wore one for one of her vaccinations.

                I usually have a tank top with an overshirt. So the overshirt comes off, or partway off to bare the upper arm.

            6. JustaTech*

              Yup, did this on flu shot day (thankfully just the turtleneck, so I was only 1/3 undressed in front of coworkers), and wore a dress for my COVID booster that took a lot of wriggling to get out of without stripping.

          2. RabbitRabbit*

            Cis woman here, I had a too-tight shirt on at work when I went to get my flu shot from Employee Health. The vaccination room (pre-COVID) was set up to handle two recipients and two vaccinators at a time, and I just shrugged and figured someone was getting a bit of a show, so I sat down and undid my shirt buttons about halfway so I could easily bare enough of my arm.

            I would find this guy sitting there for ‘several minutes’ with an undone shirt a little odd, but maybe he did it to be ready and then felt awkward at the thought of rebuttoning his shirt only to surely to be asked to be ready for a shot the very next moment.

            1. Lunch Ghost*

              That’s what I figured. I was imagining the conversation at home that night going, “…so I had to unbutton my shirt, so I did, but then I got into a conversation with the person giving the shot, and I’m sitting there thinking ‘maybe I should hold my shirt closed? Or will that be more awkward and noticeable? Is it more awkward for my coworkers to see me with my shirt open or me trying to hide my chest?’ for what felt like ages.”

            2. Kicking-k*

              Yes, another cis woman here who has so far only remembered to wear short sleeves for one out of three Covid shots. I have fairly large arms compared to the rest of me; I can’t usually roll any sleeves past the elbow. I didn’t undress early, but at one clinic my bra did get an unaccustomed partial reveal. (It was a non-skinmpy sports bra, though not through forward planning.) Others have been in cubicles with no sightlines and maybe the guy was expecting that?

              It sounds from the description in the letter that the man may be a workout enthusiast (Chippendale’s/Magic Mike…) so he may be fairly used to undressing in locker rooms without thinking too much about who else is there. And yes, I can also see thinking “I’ll get ready right away” and then realising the wait is a little longer than you thought, but just deciding to go with it.

              So I’d go with “awkward, perhaps unfortunate, but I’m fairly sympathetic.”

            3. Atalanta0jess*

              Just a quick note that it would be totally fine to just say “woman” rather than “cis woman” – many trans women would likely have similar wardrobe and privacy concerns as cis women.

              1. Nina*

                …except it’s less likely that a cis woman would be outed against her will at work by having to partially disrobe…?

            4. CowWhisperer*

              One time I was offered a flu shot at my son’s yearly physical appointment. I was wearing a 3/4 length fitted sleeve shirt so I took off my shirt and got my shot in my bra. Only after I put my shirt back on did I realize that neither the MA or I thought to close the door to the hallway. Honestly, that didn’t bother me at all – and I’d have probably have been hanging out chatting with the shirtless guy equally shirtless in the same conversation.

              Some of this might be because I have a science/chemistry background. If you do much lab work, you learn that in case of a lab accident you may have a second or two to make a decision between stripping naked in front of your coworkers and getting into a safety shower to prevent/minimize chemical burns – or deal with chemical burns worsened by extended exposure to your skin. So I mentally accept that a moment or two of awkwardness is a fair price to pay to avoid an ICU trip.

              1. never mind who I am*

                When I got one of my Covid shots, I (male) was wearing a long-sleeved polo shirt. I pulled my arm out of the shirt leaving my right side exposed. I said something to the person giving me the shot about the possibility of horrifying people’s delicate sensibilities with my partially-unclothed torso. She replied “nobody’s even going to notice.”

                There are advantages to getting vaccinated in a hospital. :-)

              2. Elizabeth West*

                Yeah, when I first started work at a materials testing lab, I asked what the shower in the middle of the room was for (no curtain, just a showerhead and a drain) and they told me if something bad spilled on me, that’s exactly what would need to happen. In fact, they said, “We will probably take your clothes off you and put you under it as first aid.”

                I understood the reason for it. I was also very careful not to spill anything!

                1. JustaTech*

                  We’ve been told *not* to have people strip if they need the emergency shower because some people would be too embarrassed and not get in the shower fast enough. The idea is while the person covered in whatever is under the shower other people will have run off for help and spare lab coats for coverage. Then the contaminated clothes come off.

                2. never mind who I am*

                  Take a look at this video from Iowa State:

                  Their procedure is: Get under the shower and turn it on within ten seconds. Remove clothing after you’re in the shower. Don’t let modesty slow you down. A colleague might be able to provide a lab coat or something for modesty.

                  When I was taking an EMT class many, many, many years ago, they taught us that in an emergency, modesty goes out the window. If I spilled nitric acid on me, I wouldn’t care if people were pointing at me (I might get upset afterwards if they were laughing and pointing), even if the shower is right next to a window, as depicted in the video.

          3. Hats Are Great*

            When I have a vaccine appointment, I wear an asymmetrical top that has a big hole over my left bicep, the vaccinators always comment on it. I say, “Yep, this is my vaccinatin’ shirt!” I bought it just before Covid because I liked the asymmetrical neckline, but it’s been excellent for wearing to vaccine appointments and then people comment all day, “Oh, you got your booster! Did you wear that shirt on purpose?” YEP!

            I’m just happy everybody gets such a kick out of it!

            1. A. N. Mouse*

              That’s delightful! I’m reminded of Dolly Parton’s cold-shoulder vaccination shirt, too.

        2. Willis*

          Totally agree with this. The headline makes it sound like multiple men are hanging out in the break room topless or something. But this is one guy unbuttoning his dress shirt for medical reasons. Maybe it was momentarily awkward, but I can’t really see giving it much thought beyond that.

          1. Salad Daisy*

            Totally non PC comment – Topless men? Where do you work and are they hiring?

            Seriously, he may have been more embarrassed than anything and was just trying to be nonchalant about it.

          2. Ann Nonymous*

            He didn’t just unbutton his shirt or take one arm out, he TOOK IT OFF COMPLETELY and then sat there for a while topless. He wanted to be seen that way.

            1. LawBee*

              The letter says untucked and unbuttoned – am I missing something?

              Regardless, this doesn’t feel like a big deal to me. Momentary awkwardness while someone gets a vaccine shot – worth it.

                1. Grizabella the Glamour Cat*

                  I read it that way at first also. Just read it again, and I still feel like it could go either way. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

        3. Ally McBeal*

          I came here to say this – I used to work in finance, and MANY of the office bros had their shirts custom-made or at least highly tailored.

        4. kittybutton*

          This was my reaction! I disagree with Alison and the OP. It is awkward, sure, but not the coworker’s fault for creating any weirdness. I’m guessing the coworker wanted to get ready ahead of time and probably did feel a little awkward that he was prepared several minutes too soon. I would have done the same thing – just act like it’s not weird.

        5. Harvey 6 3.5*

          I agree with Bluesboy. When I rarely went into work, pre-covid, I would get the flu shot when it was available. And if I was going into work, I had to wear a full suit with long sleeve shirt. So when the nurse took me into the room for the shot, I had to partially remove the shirt (I didn’t take it all the way off) to expose my upper arm. I don’t think this is that weird at all (though in fairness, we had actual separate little rooms, so only the nurse saw me).

        6. Candi*

          When I went to the pharmacy for my shots last summer, I wasn’t wearing short sleeves because it was hot, but for the shot -usually I wear lightweight long sleeves to avoid sunburn.

          (Can I do a whole week where I just issue verdicts of weird/not weird?

          I laughed really hard at this and want this to be a thing. Maybe starting with archived letters.

      2. Anonys*

        Yes, with most jumpers too. I have had to remove my shirt/jumper for all of my vaccines. And he might not have known that getting the vaccine would be so public – I certainly wouldn’t expect that coworkers would be able to actually watch me get the vaccine (all three vacinnes I’ve gotten there was noone who could see expect the medical staff, both at work and at the vactination centre).

        I still think it’s weird to be shirtless around your coworkers and I feel like if a woman was sitting getting her vaccine in only her bra people would unfairly consider it even more of an outrage (and I certainly wouldnt be comfortable with coworkers seeing me in my bra). But for some reason male bare chests are seen as less scandalous than even women’s bra-adourned chests and I also get why this guy prioritized getting his booster of the weirdness.

        1. Librarian of SHIELD*

          I’m jealous that OP’s company had partitions! Most of the vaccine clinics I’ve been to for work have been in an open conference room where each vaccinator has a station set up that’s basically a folding table and two chairs.

          1. DataGirl*

            Same. Ours was in a giant event room with probably 20 or so people giving shots at tables and at least that many waiting the 10 minutes afterwards in the back, plus the line of people waiting- zero partitions. And when I took my kids to the pharmacy to get their shots it was also just in chairs out in the open.

          2. I've Escaped Cubicle Land*

            That’s the same set up we had. Folding table and chairs spaced out. No dividers.We had dividers for the flu shot clinic but not for the Covid vaccines.

          3. SpaceySteph*

            When my work does flu shots they just line a bunch of folding tables up in a lobby and there’s 0 privacy– and usually only like a couple floater chairs where you go grab one if you’re the type to get faint. Otherwise you just stand in front of the next available nurse and get your shot. They do like 8 people at a time. Its pretty efficient but not very private– I usually wear a sleeveless shirt with a cardigan or jacket for work, so I’ve never considered what would happen if I had to get half-nekkid in the building lobby.

            (Covid vaccines I got at CVS which did have semi-private cubbies)

          4. quill*

            Flu shots at work this year were “step forward six feet, hand me your paperwork” and then “step forward six feet, give me your arm.”

            They were also in the parking lot as a covid precautions.

          5. Outta Here*

            Ours were in the high school theater, with the vaccination stations on stage and the post-vaccine wait in the audience. Didn’t get any good shows, though.

        2. Elenna*

          My first two were in a school gym with just folding tables and chairs, no partitions or anything. My booster was in an actual medical clinic with private offices, but there were two people getting jabbed at once in the same (largeish) office, and there was no privacy or anything between them. So, yeah, I wouldn’t really expect a private area.

          1. ThatGirl*

            My first two were in a large rec center gym, same idea. I actually saw a woman with a hijab come through and was vaguely curious to see how she would handle exposing her shoulder, but I got distracted by my own shot and forgot to watch.

          2. Elizabeth West*

            Agreed; I wouldn’t count on it. Our flu shots at Exjob were given in a giant conference room. Everyone could see you. Most of us wore t-shirts to work, so disrobing wasn’t really an issue.

      3. Asenath*

        Even women’s long-sleeved shirts aren’t really suitable for vaccinations because it’s often difficult to roll up the sleeves far enough. I don’t know why this man didn’t think of it – but I can see easily forgetting, especially if it’s at work. I have to remind myself (like this morning!) to be sure to put on a very short-sleeved shirt, with any covering garment being easy to remove, like a sweater or jacket – nothing that needs to be pulled off over the head.

        I can see the actual stations in a temporary vaccination clinic being less private than those in a regular blood collection clinic, though. I’ve been to temporary flu clinics in the old days where the shot was given in a private room off a conference room, and the clinic I go to for blood collection has curtained cubicles. The big public clinics often have very open stations, with lots of space around them, but no curtains or separate rooms. I don’t know what they do if someone arrives needing to remove half or all of their top garment. I haven’t seen it happen.

        1. DANGER: Gumption Ahead*

          Its pretty easy to forget stuff like workplace boosters and put on the wrong clothes for the occasion. Laundry day, everything else at dry cleaner, very important meeting after and this shirt works best with the clean suit, just plain forgetting (I’ve done this), remembering the clinic but not thinking about how vaccination and clothes can intersect in bad ways (I’ve also done this). To me it sounds like he handled the, “Oh crap, I am getting a vaccination and can’t roll up the sleeve on this shirt!” as well as he could in the moment. Much better than the time I wore a turtleneck sweater, decided the solution was to take off my shirt because I had a camisole on and got my earrings caught in the sweater and thus the turtleneck stuck on my head. Good times and, yes, my dignity is recovering.

          1. Ms. Hagrid Frizzle*

            I can absolutely connect to the “remembering the vaccination is happening but missing how that should impact my outfit for the day” . . . Thankfully my coworker reminded me we had a closet full of event shirts that hadn’t been used (event was canceled)! One quick wardrobe change in the bathroom and I was all set.

        2. Butterfly Counter*

          An anecdote:

          I went to the CVS for my booster in a long sleeved t-shirt. I just didn’t think about the need to roll up my sleeve. My option was to pop my shoulder out of the neckhole (in the middle of CVS) or to roll up my sleeve. I got the wrist cuff up to my shoulder, but it was SUPER tight. When the tech gave me the shot, I felt liquid roll down to my elbow. I thought she had missed and squirted COVID booster all over my arm.

          Nope. The wrist cuff had squeezed a whole stream of blood out of my shoulder when she took the needle out!

        3. EmmaPoet*

          Many years ago I was at at the grocery store and found out they were doing free flu shots, so I got in line. It was winter in a cold climate, so I had on my coat and a turtleneck sweater underneath. I ended up worming my arm out of the sweater and draping my coat around my torso so nobody could see my bra. Luckily I had a friend with me who helped play modesty shield and the shot went fast.

      4. TootsNYC*

        And it may have felt weird enough to have had his shirt off, but it may have seemed even weirder to act all coy about it and try to only expose the arm and not any other part. That might’ve actually made him feel even more self-conscious, as if his bare chest was something shameful.

        So he just went all out.

      5. Person from the Resume*

        I read this and the response and wondered how was someone supposed to roll an oxford shirt up to their shoulder. This reads as (1) guy forgot he was getting a vaxxed or (2) guy dressed as he normally would without consideration that he was getting vaxxed and in both cases did what he needed to do to remove clothing to his shoulder.

        It’s can feel awkward, but it’s a vaccination clinic and not a normal work event. Maybe he felt awkward too and kept t chatting trying to make it normal.

      6. MCMonkeyBean*

        Yeah, I’d give this a pass. Sleeves are not meant to go up that far! Ideally he’d have worn an undershirt, but this is an unusual enough thing to have to prepare for at work that it’s easy to not remember that when getting dressed.

        I think the bigger issue is with not having more private partitions for exactly this reason! I got a flu shot at work one time and forgot to dress in a shirt that would make that easy and I had to end up kind of half removing my top as well, but the partition was pretty private so only the person giving the shot could actually see me. I’d honestly be surprised if he was the only person at the office who had to undo their shirt to get the shot.

        1. Phony Genius*

          I can see a lack of good partitions scaring off some people from getting their shot there. When my office does flu vaccine clinics, the people running it always bring plenty of curtains. If they didn’t, I’m sure they would schedule the appointment times for each gender separately so they don’t discourage anybody from it.

        2. Kicking-k*

          He might not even own anything suitable, if he isn’t an undershirt wearer normally. I don’t think my husband owns any plain t shirts that would fit under a dress shirt.

      7. Just @ me next time*

        Our organization offers flu shot clinics every year, and they always send reminder emails to anyone who registers telling them to wear a shirt that has short sleeves or sleeves that can be rolled up easily.

    2. fhqwhgads*

      After about the first week of shots in my area, all appointment confirmations came with a big giant glaring warning to wear a short sleeve shirt, or an undershirt, or basically any top that does not require removal to get to the upper arm. Not that I’d be surprised if some dudes just ignore that completely but ugh.

      1. Eden*

        Men are can forget things or not read notices all the way through just like anyone else. And we have proof that such a “wear an undershirt!!!!” warning was given to him. Feels like we’re making up things to be annoyed at.

        1. Boof*

          I think it just means that yes, perfect etiquette would be to wear something that doesn’t require showing the whole chest. That being said, I could totally see forgetting, or not realizing it in the first place (in a company where no such memos went out), and to me it’s overall no big deal; the bigger deal is getting the shot done!

      2. DANGER: Gumption Ahead*

        I did my first shot at a big public walk0up clinic. The number of shirtless men was kind of astounding

        1. Anonymous4*

          My initial set of shots was done in a gymnasium crammed with tables, chairs, and people. It was warm weather, though, so everyone was wearing short sleeves or tank tops and access to the high upper arm wasn’t an issue.

        2. pancakes*

          My first two were at the Javits Center, and I honestly don’t remember but would not have been at all surprised to see a lot of briefly shirtless dudes in the crowd. We did have a live classical music quartet to distract us, which was very nice. I don’t know why it would be astounding to see people getting shots in their upper arms partially disrobed.

    3. Not that difficult*

      Undone the first couple of buttons and slip the shirt partially of the shoulder. The arm doesn’t need to be exposed.

      1. TootsNYC*

        But that’s kind of coy, and implies that there’s something sexual or shameful about his body. It’s also a kind of body movement that is something women do, and so many they feel they’re being ridiculous if they do it

        1. PT*

          There’s a shocking number of people who write into AAM horrified by men in workout attire that I just don’t get. Have they not been out in public since athleisure became a thing?

      2. Cringing 24/7*

        That still won’t work with a lot of less-stretchy shirt materials. He likely just wasn’t thinking about the logistics of it when he was getting dressed that morning, then did the right thing for himself in the moment, which – unfortunately – exposed his bare chest to people looking at him.

      3. Antilles*

        Depends on the shirt.
        If it’s an off-the-rack shirt that’s a little loose, then you can do this. For a tailored shirt, “just undo a couple buttons” isn’t going to be enough to get your shoulder out.

      1. Sleeping Late Every Day*

        Me too. When I saw the title, my reaction was EWWWW, but the I saw that it was for vaccinations. That makes it more of a medical setting and not so terribly inappropriate.

        1. Stitch*

          Yeah, it’s for a necessary reason. I breastfed and push for that not to be weird, so I think being shirtless to get a shot should be okay too.

        2. Tali*

          Exactly my thought. I have enough other problems that I would not be worried about what clothing my coworkers wear/don’t wear while they’re getting their vaccinations. Like, let’s be happy they’re getting vaccinated, grateful for this scientific miracle, quietly lower our eyes while others adjust their clothing, and move on…

      2. EventPlannerGal*

        I think it really honestly isn’t weird. The OP mentioned the obvious answer – the guy probably forgot to wear the right kind of shirt and decided to just roll with it. I really don’t think that’s a big deal.

        1. LDN Layabout*

          I think it’s more weird to add in stripper allusions regarding someone receiving a vaccine in the midst of a worldwide pandemic, but everyone has their sense of humour don’t they.

        2. Myrin*

          I agree. And the fact that he was sitting there chatting for several minutes is actually a positive for me – my best friend is a physician and she says it’s much easier for her to work with a patient who’s comfortable with their nudity (and she doesn’t mean that in a judgy way, just a neutral observation; she can deal just fine with people who feel shy or even shame around their bodies but it’s objectively easier to have someone who’s unabashedly “nips to the wind”).
          It would be different if he had then made lascivious comments or actively presented himself in some kind of sexual manner, but just sitting there, talking? I’ve had to deal with several bouts of melanoma over the last year and I’ve become so chill with sitting around having various body parts exposed and sitting there, talking, for a lengthy amount of time, I would totally be the same.

          1. After 33 years ...*

            +1 I’ve seen this many times and have no feelings of weirdness. I am simply grateful that people are choosing to be vaccinated.

        3. Anonys*

          My first thought was that it isn’t weird but then I was thinking that probably no woman would feel comfortable getting her vaccine in front of coworkers wearing only a bra (and would be far more heavily judged by coworkers than this guy probably is). That’s not this dude’s fault for sure but 100% a double standard.

          1. I'd Rather Be Eating Dumplings*

            That is absolutely true. Although I also think if the question were gender-reversed and the OP had compared a female colleague to a stripper (as with the Chippendales comment), we would likely be calling them out for that.

            1. Librarian of SHIELD*

              Yeah, that felt really gross to me. The poor guy was just sitting there waiting for his vaccination. The Chippendales and Magic Mike comments are really out of place. Ideally, OP should think about why they felt the need to unnecessarily sexualize their coworker like that.

          2. LinuxSystemsGuy*

            I think you’re right, but I also think that’s more a problem than what this guy did. It *shouldn’t* be a big deal. We all have chests and this is a medical situation. Ideally he or she wears the right shirt to not need to do this, but real world people forget or make mistakes. It shouldn’t be a big deal.

          3. pancakes*

            I would prefer not to have to do that, but wouldn’t actually give a toss if I did have to. I was treated for breast cancer at a teaching hospital and wasn’t uncomfortable giving permission for the occasional student to be present during exams, either. I’m not particularly uncomfortable with my body, and I’d rather they learn on people than mannequins.

          4. Alpacas Are Not Dairy Animals*

            It is definitely gendered but I don’t know if I’d go so far as to say ‘no woman’ would be comfortable – sure, I consider myself nonbinary now in part because it makes more sense than being The Woman Who Is Always The Outlier In Everything but a lot of my definitely-female friends who do, say, field work would probably be chill in that scenario too.

            1. quill*

              Grew up in school drama, and my college roommates were pretty shocked when my attitude was “you’re not indecent if you’re wearing a bra, just very underdressed.”

              1. pancakes*

                I only did one school play, but yeah. I also had a few little bra tops I loved in the 90s, and wasn’t alone in that.

          5. River Otter*

            This is just one IR engineer’s experience, but:
            I make infrared cameras. Most fabric is transparent in the IR. When I walk into the lab where the prototypes are being tested, I do not walk in front of them bc I do not want my coworkers to see my bra through my shirt. My male coworkers don’t even think about the fact that they are wearing transparent tops in front of the camera.
            OTOH, when we take our cameras to school STEM nights, women just stand right in front of them with their bras on display on the monitor, so maybe I am more sensitive than most.
            All I can say about my line of work is thank god trousers are typically made of fairly heavy material.

        4. I'd Rather Be Eating Dumplings*

          Agreed. I don’t find it especially weird and I certainly don’t think it merits passing any judgement on the guy in question.

        5. NoviceManagerGuy*

          Seems like he got stuck in a weird situation and decided to act normal to make it as not-weird as possible.

          1. Shirley Keeldar*

            Yeah, seconded. I imagine he got the shirt off, thinking the vaccinator was ready, discovered that she wasn’t quite ready yet, and his thought process was something like, “Ugh, should I put the shirt back on? No, that’s weird, I’ll just have to take it back off. I’ll just sit here…chatting….nips to the wind….is she ready with that shot yet? No? Still chatting…”

        6. pancakes*

          I totally agree. Fwiw, I say that as someone who gets blood drawn and injections at a cancer center monthly and has for years, which has helped keep me in remission for years. The context here is clearly medical, non-sexual, and a one-off, and I do think it’s prudish to be so concerned about whether it’s weird for someone to be partially disrobed in those circumstances.

      3. PollyQ*

        Yeah, I can understand why some people would be a little weirded out, but I don’t think I’d have cared if I’d been the one sitting in the next booth over.

        Of course, I temped for a family law firm where one of the partners jogged 7 miles into work in the middle of summer wearing nothing but jogging shorts & shoes and came bopping in the door first thing every morning dripping with sweat, so.

        1. Annie Moose*

          My old grandboss did that!! It was a little shocking the first couple times you saw him, but then–you got used to it. Yeah, Jack jogs in the morning and if you drive into the parking lot at the right (wrong?) time you end up seeing him VERY shirtless. It’s certainly unexpected in a work setting! I definitely would’ve preferred to not see it. But it’s not like he was being shirtless at me, or shirtless in an actual work context. So… I got over it.

      4. Allonge*

        Admittedly I am European but I find it weird that people find it weird. He took off his shirt, big whoop.

        Team sports, military, swimming, just locker rooms in general? Shirts off for some time seems completely ok for a lot of guys even in the US.

        And male-presenting upper body nudity in a medical context for a limited time is even less weird.

        1. Alice*

          I was about to say, I don’t find that weird but also I’m European. It doesn’t seem that inappropriate to me, in context. Different if he’d taken the shirt off in the middle of the workday, of course, but for a vaccine appointment? Eh.

        2. londonedit*

          I mentioned in another comment below, but to me it reads like he didn’t even take his shirt off – he untucked and unbuttoned it and then sat there with his shirt open, but it doesn’t sound like he actually fully removed his shirt and sat around topless. In the context of a vaccination clinic I really don’t think men unbuttoning their shirts counts as ‘weird’ in any way.

        3. RebelwithMouseyHair*

          Yes, same here. It’s not weird. It’s a bad setup that requires people to wait in a state of undress in a public area, for the sake of the women who don’t want to show their bra off, for the men it’s absolutely not a problem. This is just something that is not the same across genders.

        4. SavedFromLorna*

          I’m American IN Europe and a guy did this at the vaccine center today. He was really cute, too!

          But even by American standards, it’s, like, fine for a dude to take his shirt off. Weird or maybe surprising at work–I would be equally surprised if my boss here in Spain strutted around nippingly in the middle of a work function–but given the context there’s little to comment on here.

        5. Run mad; don't faint*

          I’m not European, but I don’t find it weird either. What he did makes perfect sense in that particular context.

      5. bamcheeks*

        I find it weird, but more from the point of view that there wasn’t more privacy for people getting the vaccines. What about people who were super nervous or who weren’t comfortable removing layers? People who go faint? People who want to express anxieties or concerns to the person administering the vaccine or disclose other health concerns? I do think there’s a problem here, but I don’t think it’s chest-guy’s problem.

      6. DANGER: Gumption Ahead*

        Same. But then again I’m a woman who has pulled off her shirt to get a vaccine at a work clinic before

        1. Harvey 6 3.5*

          And I feel sexist for finding this weird, because a woman wearing a bra is also basically common at the beach, just like a shirtless man, so why should it be an issue in a medical context (obviously neither seems normal as ordinary garb).

      7. Fake Old Converse Shoes (not in the US)*

        Maybe because it was unexpected…? I don’t know, I even went with some of my coworkers to a swimming pool in the Before Times, but I guess YMMV.

        1. LinuxSystemsGuy*

          That’s true, the entire jogging club (male and female) has seen and been seen by me shirtless at a previous job. Women were wearing sports bras, but we all preferred to run shirtless in the heat.

      8. Cringing 24/7*

        Same! And I’m honestly glad that there’s some gentle pushback from commenters pointing out that dress shirt sleeves just don’t roll up that far, and what are you going to do – NOT get a vaccine during a worldwide pandemic because you forgot to wear an undershirt? There’s a difference between being shirtless for medical purposes and changing into biking attire in a glass conference room.

      9. Nancy*

        Because it’s not weird. Someone comes to our office every year to give out the flu vaccine. We get reminder emails and mentions in meetings and even then a few people show up wearing something not easy to roll up. It happens.

      10. Environmental Compliance*

        I really thought it was going to be some dude randomly stripping at work (a la the boss who changed in front of their subordinate), not…. it was a vaccine clinic and dude likely couldn’t get his upper arm free for the shot without unbuttoning. This isn’t a Magic Mike moment, and referring to it as such seems ickier to me than what the guy did, honestly.

        Though I will say “nips to the wind” is my new favorite phrase.

        1. Run mad; don't faint*

          “This isn’t a Magic Mike moment, and referring to it as such seems ickier to me than what the guy did, honestly.”
          I agree.

      11. Empress Matilda*

        Yeah, I would go with “weird under normal circumstances but nothing about Covid is normal anyway.” It’s not like he was hanging out shirtless in the break room, or even shirtless on a Zoom call (which was my first thought.)

        He was getting a vaccine at work – which again would weird under normal circumstances but is not weird during Covid. His clothes weren’t conducive to getting the shot for some reason – not weird at all. So he went with the most obvious solution to the problem – also not weird.

        So OP, I think you’re being a bit oversensitive – but I would 100% give you a pass on that as well, because I am also feeling oversensitive about everything these days! I think all of our calibrations of “normal vs weird” are so thrown off these past couple of years, a lot of us just don’t know which way is up any more.

        1. Kevin Sours*

          It’s not even that weird under normal circumstances. Companies have been doing flu shot on premises for *years*

      12. Malarkey01*

        Me too, I was like oh that wasn’t what I thought this was going to be about at all, and then I thought it’s really weird when I have such a strong opposite reaction as Alison.
        I honestly see no big deal at all with having to remove your shirt to get a vaccine- which we are DESPERATE for everyone to get. He wasn’t walking around shirtless, he was sitting, ready for a jab.

      13. Xantar*

        Where I come down is it’s unusual, but it’s not inappropriate. I also wouldn’t use “weird” to describe it. I would probably notice it and then just forget about it within a day.

      14. pope suburban*

        Same. I guess growing up in a medical environment (I have a parent who works in hospital labs), I never really acquired the shyness or stigma many people seem to have about medical procedures. Like, oh well, it’s a body, we all have them, gotta take care of them. That feeling has only intensified over the last two years; as long as someone is getting a shot that is incredibly important to us all, I couldn’t give a hoot what they’re wearing or not wearing. Just get on the public-safety train, thanks! (If possible; I know not everyone can get shots and that’s why it’s so important that those of us who can, do)

    4. Glomarization, Esq.*

      I think it’s 234981723% not weird. I was even the female version of this when I got my booster, because like a dummy I’d forgotten the appointment when I was getting dressed that morning, and I wore a shirt with sleeves that wouldn’t go all the way up. Now my doctor knows how shabby I let my “foundation garments” get before I replace them. If it had been a more open clinic situation, I would have draped my outerwear over myself, I guess, but if I were a guy I don’t see why I would have bothered with trying to cover up.

    5. Penny*

      I don’t think its weird, because there clearly wasn’t an option for him otherwise. Weird would be if he had on a short sleeve shirt and took that off entirely for the shot. I just think it was slightly awkward in a way that a lot of human interactions are awkward. The last time I was in the office for a flu shot clinic (ahhh 2019 when we went into the office) the Senior VP was casually talking to everyone while in his sleeveless undershirt. Fortunately, I had remembered to wear a tank top under my sweater that day and avoided exposing half my bra to the office.

    6. Meep*

      I agree. The scandalization (and the sexualization of nipples in general) was rather eyerolling. They are nipples. (Most) Everyone has two. Get over it.

      1. meagain*

        And kind of juvenile to make it a thing as well. It was in a total medical context and by appointment only. It’s not like people were just hanging around to socialize. He was getting his vaccine at his assigned time and protecting his health. I find it weird to not be anything but respectful about the situation.

    7. Christina*

      I was a non-clinical (i.e. can’t give shots, helped with paperwork, observation, sanitation, etc.) vaccine volunteer last Spring. I’m a cis-woman. I got my first shot one day early on when there was an extra dose at the end of the day (before I qualified). The shirt I was wearing wouldn’t allow an arm exposure (February in Minnesota, who wears shirts you can just pull your arm out of unless you know you were going to get a shot). I got my shot in the supply closet with my shirt off wearing my bra.

      Most of the sites I worked at had a private room for situations like this – male or female – who needed to take off their shirt – and those that preferred to drop their pants for the shot (there were a few, and we just wanted shots in people – we didn’t want to judge.) But the site I got my shot at – it was the supply closet if you wanted any privacy.

  2. Pennyworth*

    #2 – I think building in your late fee into billing and offering an ”early payment discount” is good psychology. Just set the early payment deadline for when you would normally want to get paid, and people will think they are getting a good deal when they pay on time.

    1. Hotdog not dog*

      I used to work for a small business that billed that way. The invoices were all due in 45 days, with a small “discount” if paid in 30 and a larger one if paid in 15. The 15 day price was the actual price. We almost always got paid within 2 weeks.

    2. DANGER: Gumption Ahead*

      We had a landlady (is there a non-gendered way to say this????) who did that. $100 off if we paid by the 15th, $50 off if we paid 16-30th, and full rent due on 1st. We freaking loved it because some months when pay periods aligned we had a surprise cash surplus.

      1. Curious*

        I don’t think of “Landlord” as gendered, despite the etymology. It’s not like the landlord is a Lord, to whom the tenant owes feudal duties (corvee, reporting for muster). Indeed, these days, I would expect that most tenants have landlords that are corporations rather than natural persons.

    3. The Cosmic Avenger*

      Either way, the bill should emphasize the undiscounted cost. If the client’s eye first sees $4,000 as the cost, but then sees they can pay $3500 if they pay within 15 or 30 days, that is a huge incentive. It also reinforces the $4K price if they’re late. From a behavioral standpoint, you want to make the undiscounted/penalty cost the norm, it might nudge them to be more motivated to pay on time and less resentful of the higher price.

      1. Antilles*

        It also tends to make it a bit less aggravating on your side – since you know that you’re getting the extra $500 from the “undiscounted cost” for the delays, it’s easier to just sigh and accept it rather than being irritated at them being late.

    4. FG*

      I’ve done both the discount thing and the late fee thing on freelancing invoices & they were always just roundly ignored. I got paid the regular amt whenever the companies decided they wanted to pay. If you want a fee structure based on payment schedule, gei it in the contract

      1. SheLooksFamiliar*

        I’ve worked on 1099 contracts before and always had payment terms in my contracts. I made sure to call out the late fee paragraph with the client before signing mine, or to add it to theirs; no one could claim they didn’t know. I can only recall a couple of clients having to pay late fees, and they didn’t give me grief about it because it was in the contract.

    5. Talley Lach*

      I used to work for a photographer who included the early payment discount bit in the contract and then invoiced the full amount. Some people remembered and deducted the “discount,” everyone who paid late just paid the full invoiced amount, and sometimes people paid “early” and forgot to deduct “discount.” If someone realized later, we refunded them the “discount,” but that only happened once in the 9 years I worked there. All in all, it worked great!

    6. Reluctant Mezzo*

      Yes to this! Old ExJob dragged out payment to normal vendors, especially after 2008, but an early payment discount? We jumped on those so hard they squealed.

    7. Hey Nonnie*

      Also, if your work is producing a copyrightable work product, specifying in the contract that the client doesn’t get a license to use the work until all fees (including late fees) are paid in full can also help. I had a photography client (an international magazine who could afford way better lawyers than I could) try to slide out of paying me at all. I resent the invoice several times. I warned them they had a week before I added a late fee. I added a late fee and sent the invoice again. They ignored all of that.

      What finally caught their attention? The email entitled COPYRIGHT VIOLATION that I sent after they posted my photos on their website. The photos immediately came down, and I finally got paid, though they still refused the late fee, and I just shrugged and told them they don’t get a license then. And that’s where they left it, having (partially) paid for photos they could never use.

  3. Bindswa*

    I’m sure I’ll be in the minority about LW#1 but….for my second shot and my booster I forgot to wear an appropriate shirt. I had to unbutton/skirch my shirt up. I did both in a giant gymnasium because I was so GD excited. I hope I didn’t make anyone uncomfortable. I was blind with joy.

    1. many bells down*

      I was wearing a gigantic thick wool sweater when I went to get my flu shot… in Target. I couldn’t push the sleeve up far enough and had to half undress. Fortunately I had a tank under it!

      1. Doug Judy*

        I did this too for my booster and then I realized I didn’t have a bra on either. I was able to just expose my arm but…yeah.

      2. Elenna*

        Every single time I get a vaccine of any kind I tell myself beforehand to remember to wear a sweater that can roll up. Every single time, I forget.
        Fortunately I generally wear a T-shirt under my sweaters, but I really can’t blame this guy for forgetting about the vaccine when he got dressed that morning. Especially since he was probably thinking of it as “dressing for work” whereas I like to hang out in PJs at home so I’m usually dressing *specifically* to go get the vaccine.

    2. allathian*

      I got my first shot in May and my second in July, and the booster in December. For the first two I just wore a short-sleeved t-shirt, and for the booster I wore a short-sleeved t-shirt and a button-up cardigan. It was a bit scratchy, but that was a minor issue. I was just so happy to get the shot!

      1. Marion Ravenwood*

        I had the same vaccine schedule and wore basically the same thing, but with a long sleeved shirt unbuttoned over the T-shirt in December. I just took off one sleeve of the shirt and rolled up my T-shirt sleeve for the jab.

      2. Librarian of SHIELD*

        I took my mom to get our first vaccines, and we were so happy we rapped My Shot from Hamilton the whole way home!

        1. Malarkey01*

          My husband and I did the same thing!! Sometimes when I need a “happy place memory” I think back to how I felt last March getting that first shot. We had to drive 2 hours each way and I seriously felt like we won the lottery.

      3. SheLooksFamiliar*

        I got my first and second shot in April, and the booster in November. I wore the same ultra-stretchy, oversized Old Navy sweater each time and was able to pull the sleeve up.

        Since I was at a Jewel/Osco store – part of the Albertson’s brand – the pharmacy had 2 private rooms for COVID tests and vaccinations. I was happy to get my shots, and that no one saw my arm flab except for the technician.

    3. Eden*

      Yeah I was wearing a long sleeved undershirt at my vax time since this was the last thing on my mind when asked to mush to the vaccine clinic on foot in the snow to volunteer… So yeah the world could see my bra for a short while. Sitting around unclothed would be weird I guess but imo taking of a shirt for a vaccine doesn’t mean anything bad about him or how he sees himself or his coworkers. Have the people saying he should have worn an undershirt really never forgotten anything while getting dressed? It happens.

      1. Quoth the Raven*

        I mean, real talk here, I’ve forgotten to put my underwear on before pulling my pants up, especially when operating on autopilot, and it’s something I use daily. I only realise what I’ve done when everything feels weird when I move (fortunately before I head out). I actually see it being very possible that he just forgot the undershirt if he’s not used to wearing them.

    4. csj*

      I’m also going to stick up for the men on this one. I’m 47 and have been going to work in a suit, shirt & tie everyday for the last 29 years. Like most men similar to me, any time I need to visit the doctor or nurse it’s at the beginning, middle or end of the working day so I’m in my suit. Shirt needs to be opened and pulled down at one side. Admittedly there is no issue here as it’s at the Doctors.

      Given that this is the norm it’s not surprising that most men would not think twice about this (or not at all) when getting dressed on the day of the shot.

      It’s not ideal in a work setting but with the cubicles being semi private and this being (hopefully) a one off event, it’s not that a big deal, is it?

      1. anonymous73*

        Having to unbutton your shirt and pull off one sleeve is one thing. Completely disrobing in the middle of the office is weird. It wouldn’t make me uncomfortable, but it’s weird.

        1. AvonLady Barksdale*

          Nobody did that. The guy opened his shirt and stuck his arm out. He didn’t remove any clothing, not even that shirt.

        2. Cringing 24/7*

          “Completely disrobing” is an exaggeration, though. He fully unbuttoned his shirt, yes, but it was medically necessary and it would appear that he didn’t remove the shirt (as that wouldn’t have been necessary anyway). Is it weird? A bit. But I’m on absolute auto-pilot every morning in these dreary, apocalyptic days (and most days because ADHD), and I could absolutely see myself dressing for work as if it were every other day, then getting to work and realizing, “Oh, yeah… it’s the one day I was supposed to alter the tedium of wearing the same thing every day by wearing one additional layer of clothing.”

        3. MCMonkeyBean*

          OP says “one fellow untucked and entirely unbuttoned his oxford shirt.”

          No one is completely disrobing. It’s also clearly not “in the middle of the office.” I don’t get why people keep trying to make this sound weirder by acting like this dude was just randomly standing shirtless amidst a bunch of people trying to work away at their desks.

          1. meagain*

            Exactly. It was at a makeshift clinic set up in a conference room and it sounds like he was sitting at his station with a partition. Maybe there wasn’t privacy, but he was sitting in his designated area at an assigned time waiting for his medical shot. People making this weird is weird.

    5. Wendy Darling*

      At this point I’d be fine with people getting full on naked to get their shots if that somehow encouraged them to actually do it! I don’t want to see anybody’s junk but I’d take one for the team.

      I didn’t think about my shirt either but I’m basically always wearing some kind of undershirt so it wasn’t an issue, luckily.

    6. EventPlannerGal*

      I was the same – my first two jags were in June/July ish, and I think I wore off-the-shoulder tops for both. For my booster I was queuing for two hours outdoors at a walk-in in late December, was wrapped up in about eight layers and the issue of accessing my arm didn’t even occur to me until an hour in, and I sure as hell wasn’t leaving then! The only thing that saved me from sitting there in my bra was that my long-sleeved turtleneck turned out to be stretchier than I thought.

    7. Paperdill*

      I had women in my busy clinic taking half their shorts off (granted the ones that this that that I remember also had small babies and were probably so used to doing that breastfeed, they probably didn’t feel much of a difference).

    8. LPUK*

      Here in UK I went to a vaccination centre which was in a convention centre – one large space where you could see the people around you in open cubicles- no privacy at all. But I was so fixated on getting the jab I never even noticed the people around me much less what they were wearing. However, Asa woman, I did make sure I was wearing a suitable sleeveless top I could strip down to, and I did take my jumper off when I reached the top of the queue, for which the nurse thanked me when I sat down. No one blinked an eye

      1. Fieldpoppy*

        Yes I had my first two vaxxes in completely open auditoriums with long rows of people in chairs that the vax carts came to. Was so happy to get them I also would have stripped naked. Happily, menopause means I’m always always always in a tank top with a removable layer ;-). (Toronto for the record)

    9. Bex*

      I also have an anecdote to offer in favor of Magic Mike guy. I used to be on a swim team, and once after a meet I intended to just dry off as thoroughly as possible, pull plants and a shirt on over my suit, and go home without stopping in the locker room. Mid-dry-off, muscle memory took over and I ended up fully changing. I don’t THINK I exposed myself at all because I was used to sort of contorting myself to change under clothing/behind a towel/etc even in the locker room, but it wasn’t until after I had pulled my underwear on that I realized what I was doing. At least one teammate definitely noticed that I had done a full change on the pool deck, and she definitely thought it was very strange. I was too embarrassed to address it, so she probably still thinks I’m just kind of an exhibitionist.

    10. loislolane*

      Honestly in my experience this is not at all uncommon, even if people know in advance that they’ll be getting a vaccine!

    11. Pucci*

      The best work appropriate wear for women for a vaccination at work is a twin set – cardigan over a shell. Remembering to wear it on vaccination day is another issue.

    12. Sweater-over-oxford*

      A few years ago I adopted sweater-over-oxford as my work uniform, and my employer did a flu shot popup in the building. I realized when I tried to roll up my sleeve that I was going to have to go another way. From that day forth, cardigan-over-polo on flu shot day.

      1. Lemons*

        It’s not clear he did. He might have been asked to get an arm out (or remembered to) and timed it slightly earlier than necessary. I doubt he’d have been told “no, I didn’t mean immediately!’ and even if he realised it was a bit premature, concluded it would be more trouble to put it back on. It can’t have been a particularly long interval, and unless the LW could hear what they were ‘chatting’, we can assume it was relevant.
        This eagerness to attribute malice to someone not behaving with impeccable smoothness in an unfamiliar situation is discouraging.

    13. Alex (they/them)*

      yeah I didn’t plan ahead and had to take off my sweater. I had a camisole on underneath but I’m still really glad they were doing boosters in an office with a door that closed lol.

    14. KoiFeeder*

      Yeah, I had my second shot appointment on a very, very bad fatigue day and I started just taking my shirt off (I didn’t even need to! It was an appropriate shirt!) and the nurse had to stop me. Brain was not activated.

      (the nurse ended up making me stay for twice as long as everyone else because I was clearly not functional, which was fair)

    15. Bec*

      You definitely wouldn’t have! I’m a vaccinator, and best practice is being able to see the *entire* arm, from shoulders down. I’ve seen a lot of people (of all genders) who have taken off their shirts to help me out, and I get it’s uncomfortable and a bit embarrassing but I’m thankful because that means I’m not going to accidentally inject into the shoulder or something.
      Most med people would chime in – #notweird

  4. ala*

    #3 that really only makes sense if she was implying that they rejected you for an illegal reason and therefore needed an excuse? But even in that case I agree that “not enough experiance” is a pretty valid reason and theres no reason to assume its “always” an excuse

    1. Mockingbird*

      I have no clue what they were thinking, but my stomach sank reading it as I used to have a friend who’d say things like that, then try to write off all the hurt they caused by saying they were just “blunt.” Notice I said I used to have such a friend.

      OP #3, you had the right take, IMHO. If they bothered to call and tell you why they hired someone else, it was likely very close and they did like you. Your friend was being too negative and a bit thoughtless. If this is a pattern, if they often say things that undercut you when what you need is support, reconsider talking to them at such times. You’re also allowed to tell friends what you need, and tell them if they’ve upset you. (This may be more a Captain Awkward comment than an AAM one, so sorry if I’m against usual policy here, I just remember how bad I felt when my friend made comments like that when I was worrying about interviews and job applications).

      1. anonymous73*

        Yeah I HAD one of those friends too. She claimed to be brutally honest. She was just brutal. One time I brought in something I baked. Never asked for her opinion, but she told me they were “not my best”. If you don’t like something I make that’s cool. But telling me they weren’t my best? Just rude and quite honestly it hurt my feelings. She was the queen of negativity, so I guess she just had to make everyone else miserable too.

        1. Verthandi*

          Ever notice the brutally honest blunt types taking pride in their no-BS candor never use that brutally honest bluntness to say something positive?

          An excuse to these folks are reasons they don’t accept.

    2. Myrin*

      Yeah, I honestly don’t understand how OP arrived it “I think she was just trying to encourage me and not realizing that I ended up feeling the opposite way” – there is no way that this could be twisted into being meant as encouragement; if anything, it actually feels actively mean or even cruel to me! Now I obviously don’t know OP’s friend, their relationship, or how exactly that conversation progressed, so I might well miss some context which makes me judge her too harshly, but just from what’s written here… nope.

      (If it had been the other way around, now that would’ve made sense! Meaning, OP said “that whole ‘not enough experience’ thing is obviously always an excuse and they just hated my guts” and friend answered “oh no, this is a perfectly legitimate thing to say that very often really applies!”. But not like this.)

      1. Trout 'Waver*

        On the contrary, OP’s friend gave essentially the same advice Alison always gives out: Don’t think too much about the wording of the rejection. If OP takes it literally, they could think they’re underqualified for the job! OP’s friend could be meaning “Don’t let them convince you that you’re underqualified.

        Employers so routinely lie about reasons for rejections that you shouldn’t believe a word they in the rejection other than “No”

        1. Loulou*

          Yes, I don’t think it was sensitively phrased, and I’m not sure I’d call it “encouraging” but I think her point was just “don’t read too much into that.” It really can be discouraging to constantly feel like you’ll never get a job because someone always has more experience, so maybe that’s what the friend was getting at.

        2. Smithy*

          Assuming this friend is otherwise fine and no there are no major issues, this would be my read. The friend was saying to not read into it and that their tone/language was more blunt sarcastic than was helpful for the OP.

          I just want the OP to be mindful that job hunting is a process most people don’t like and because of that, lots of people have their own defense mechanisms. For some, it’s to hold onto the positive (making it to the final round/being told they’re qualified but the successful candidate was moreso/etc.), for others it’s to disregard and dismiss everything that’s not positive, for others it’s to dissect every detail on AAM, etc.

          All have the potential to be healthy coping mechanisms if they help us continue to apply for more jobs, take more interviews, and keep moving through the processes. But they certainly won’t work the same for everyone and if one friend’s approach makes you feel bad – certainly don’t engage with them on your job hunt. (And on the flip side, all approaches can be negative if they lead to fixating, not applying to new opportunities, not listening to repeated feedback, etc.)

        3. Myrin*

          Hm, you’re right, I didn’t think of that! I reckon the reason for that, though, was that OP’s letter didn’t read to me at all like she thought she was actually underqualified for this job but who knows, maybe it came across differently in person.

          1. Smithy*

            The one time I got somewhat concrete feedback it was a position that I started interviewing for before COVID, and then the interview cycle ended in the early months of COVID. The main feedback was that they didn’t think I’d thrive in a start-up environment which was interesting to reflect on.

            A year later, I knew someone working there and it turned out that they actually never hired anyone for the position at all for 101 other reasons. From her description, I would have been a terrible fit in the job and ultimately not wanted it at all. Being able to hear everything from the inside, I don’t know if there ever would have been a professional way to share exactly what was happening and if I should personally take on board anything going forward because of that.

            I think it’s super common to be really insecure and nervous about the job hunt process, and I just think that people adopt different coping mechanism. It may be this friend is more of a frenemy and this is just one of many red flags. But if that’s not generally the case, it may just be how the friend goes “thank you, next”. Whereas the OP felt better taking positive affirmative from the experience.

      2. LunaLena*

        I have a slightly different take – it’s more of a sour grapes approach. The friend might have been trying to say “see, the people at that company are all lying liars, you don’t want to work for people like that anyways. You dodged a bullet, you’re too good for them.” She might have thought that OP was just trying to put up a good front and actually felt really bad, especially if she knew that OP was desperate for a job at the time, so putting down the company was her way of trying to make the OP feel better about the rejection.

    3. Lab Boss*

      As a fluent interpreter of over-blunt speaking, I read it as trying to convey “Don’t feel like your experience won’t get you a good job, you were probably just as good as the other candidate and sometimes it just comes down to having to pick one of two good candidates and then you have to say SOMETHING to the one you reject.” Not conveyed well, but I can understand how it could be meant to encourage while coming off as a downer.

      1. Kicking-k*

        Maybe that is it. I remember being very frustrated by “not enough experience” for a while when I was new to my profession. It seemed like a catch-22. There aren’t many jobs (it’s a small, specialised profession) so I couldn’t even take on a less-than-ideal one just for the experience.

        So maybe that was where the friend was coming from and she just didn’t unpack it very well.

    4. Not So NewReader*

      I used to sometimes say this very thing to myself, that “not enough experience” was code for something else.

      It was a big negative, as I encouraged myself to believe that something beyond my control was the reason I could not get the job and I was doomed to continually fight this unseen reason.

      Happily time was kind to me and I gradually understood that my own “logic” may or may not be real but worse yet, it does not serve me well at all.

      OP, I applied for a job with my name all over it. I interviewed with the entire board and walked right through that interview. I was in my element. The Prez called up later and said, “I cannot believe I am telling you this but….”. She went on to explain that the other candidate got the job for x and y reasons.

      Like you, I hung up the phone and I was proud of myself. I faced stiff competition, I held my own and I met a very nice group of people. That is the best that can be expected in a situation like this. I believe your self-talk was 100% correct for the situation. Additionally, you can tell yourself, “If I really rocked that interview then I can go ahead and really rock another interview. I know how to do this. I got it.”

      As far as your friend, if this is uncharacteristic of her then decide to just give her a pass. Or you can ask her what she meant. Sometimes saying, “I’m confused. I don’t get what you mean here.” can cause people to reeeeally think about what they are saying. Either way you go, decide not to dwell on the remark. Your initial thoughts will serve you very well. Hold on to those thoughts.

    5. BethDH*

      I had an acquaintance who saw everything as adversarial between the employer and employee. She would have thought this was a positive way to talk to you — because of course you were perfect and amazing, and anyone who didn’t want to hire you must have had a nefarious reason. It’s like the friend who tries to comfort you after a breakup by saying the ex was a alimeball and probably a cheater anyway.

      1. Jellyfish*

        Yes, I agree. I applied for a job I was technically qualified for, but it was still a bit of a stretch. They contacted me a few days after the final round to say I’d interviewed very well and they liked me, but they hired another candidate for X and Y specific reasons. Those reasons were sound – I’d have picked the other candidate too.

        I felt good about the whole situation afterwards though. I’d done well enough that they made an effort to tell me, and that was nice to know! It gave me a huge confidence boost for my next set of interviews and likely contributed to getting my current job.

        Other people in my life were more defensive of me, saying they organization was missing out and such. They weren’t missing out; they’re very happy with the person they did hire. Job searching is awkward and unpleasant for most people, and sometimes supportive friends don’t say the right thing. It doesn’t mean they’re trying to be hurtful. OP has a lot more data for evaluating the friendship, but maybe she shouldn’t read too much into the friend’s comment either.

    6. Wintermute*

      That was the only thing I could think of is if she’s implying you should fight it because the real reason was impermissible and the “experience” claim was a pretext. But if you’re going to imply that… you’d just say it?

      I’d just chalk it up to the fact that some people aren’t good at being comforting and realize “I have to say something here” and engage their mouth before their brain or don’t realize how something comes across.

      1. Anonymous4*

        Or, “I love my friend and that company hurt my friend so the company is bad and wrong. I will tell my friend that the company is bad and wrong and my friend will feel better.”

    7. Hippo-nony-potomus*

      Some people are really weird about job interviews; they think it’s personal, not basic math. If there’s one job opening and 50 people apply, that doesn’t make 49 people unworthy or deserving of rejection. Here, two people were in the final stages and they could only choose one.

  5. Loulou*

    When OP #5 says moving schedules (plural) around, does that mean other people needing to cover Saturdays or evenings more often? If so, and if this applies to how they do things, maybe OP could proactively discuss with coworkers if there are any times they would be happy for OP to take? I’ve found managers don’t always ask and just schedule shifts using their own logic that might not match staff preferences. If I suddenly had to work more less-desirable shifts, I’d really appreciate choosing which shifts I DIDN’T work too.

    1. allathian*

      Yes, I agree. Luckily I have very flexible working arrangements, so this doesn’t really apply to me currently, but it has certainly done so in the past when I worked in retail.

    2. HannahS*

      I think that’s a really bad idea. It’s not the OP’s responsibility–nor is it in her power–to make her religious accommodations more pleasant for her colleagues; that’s for the coworker and manager to figure out. If you find yourself working less-desirable shifts because of a coworker’s accommodation, you need to talk to the manager.

      When I ask for time off on the first two days of Passover and it happens to be at the same time as Easter (happens every few years) it’s not my job to survey my colleagues to find out who celebrates Easter or who was thinking that they might like to have that weekend off. I tell the person in charge of scheduling that I need those dates off for religious observance. If someone else planned a vacation, or wanted to go to their grandparents’ for lunch, or hates working on Saturdays, it’s their responsibility to tell the scheduler, who will balance the needs of the workplace against how many people have requested time off.

      1. Loulou*

        I’m not saying it’s OP’s *responsibility* to plan the schedule office schedule! Literally all I’m saying is that if this is something that makes sense in OP’s workplace, approaching the boss and saying “I can no longer work Saturday, but Loulou has offered to take my Saturdays in exchange for her Wednesdays” may have a better chance of everyone being satisfied with their schedule. There are fields where it’s pretty common for staff to do some negotiating and swaps among themselves instead of going straight to the boss first.

        Curious why you think this is a bad idea — is it just on principle?

  6. DecorativeCacti*

    I support weird/not weird week. There is so much weird stuff already! Imagine how much more fun it would be if people really dig for it.

    For the record, I think it was weird but also… whatever. At least he’s getting the shot. Let your nips fly.

      1. Expiring Cat Memes*

        Another +1 here!

        Although, I feel like it would be probably end up being 100% weird, so maybe we should just skip the question part and call it weird week – like mortification week.

      2. Kate, short for Bob*

        But maybe if there’s voting it would be interesting to split responses by continent – as someone brought up in Europe this one’s not weird at all

        1. Slow Gin Lizz*

          Yes, this^!!! Please have a Weird Week!! (But not a weird week; I hope your week is quite unweird.)

          1. MusicWithRocksIn*

            Voting would be a lot of fun. Like each day ten super short stories and we all vote on weird or not weird like we did with worst boss of the year.

    1. Tired of being invisible*

      In my version, he opens the shirt thinking he’s getting the shot five seconds later, and by the time he realizes the shot is a few minutes away, well, he’s committed, so he’s just going to pretend everything is totally normal and he isn’t sitting there with his nips in the wind.

      I would also adore a weird/not weird week.

      1. Jessen*

        I was definitely thinking this! When I got my first shot, I got all prepped and then they announced they were having to get a new batch and I’d actually have to wait. So I ended up sitting in the chair chatting with the nurses for like 10min after they’d cleaned my arm and everything.

      2. Elenna*

        Am I the only one who read it as him sitting around for a few minutes bare-chested *after* getting the shot, not before?

        Which would be a little weird, IMO, but maybe he didn’t want to move his arm right away? Honestly at this point I just want people to get jabbed, if he wants to sit around for a few minutes afterwards before covering his chest, sure, whatever.

        1. pancakes*

          Or he has a latex allergy and wanted to be sure there was no bleeding before putting it back on. I don’t have a full-on allergy, but bandages often leave my skin red and a bit irritated if I don’t remove them right away after a shot.

    2. Marion Ravenwood*

      Another vote for weird/not weird week here!

      I also now have “is this weird, or is this Covid?” in my head to the tune of Human by The Killers.

    3. Well...*

      I have a ton of material for this. Postdoc in physics here. Weirdos abound (but often get weeded out as performing academic work at high levels required professional and collaborative skills, which is one of the problems I have with the little I’ve seen of Big Bang Theory).

    4. Mockingjay*

      I didn’t think I was going to get Chippendales with my morning mRNA

      This has to be one of the top 10 quotes in AAM history. Hilarious!

      OP1, it was weird but fine. He was getting a shot in a location other than a medical clinic, so privacy wasn’t going to be perfect.

      1. Curious*

        If a guy had made an analogous comment about a woman getting a vaccine wearing only a bra, would you find that hilarious? Or acceptable? Or sexist?

        1. Anonymous4*

          There are professional norms at an office. Wearing clothes is one of those norms. They were at a vaccination clinic, but wearing-clothes-is-normal still applies. There was a bit of a dislocation of norms, and OP1 was very aware of it and somewhat jolted by the unexpected semi-nudity.

          Yes, what OP could see was nothing compared to what s/he’s see on the beach. But OP wasn’t on the beach. OP was at the office. And at the office, clothes are worn.

          1. pancakes*

            Except, briefly, during a vaccination clinic at the office, which is where they were. It’s not as if he was sitting at his desk shirtless.

            1. LinuxSystemsGuy*

              Especially since there’s almost no way a normal person (let alone someone at either end of the “buff arms/fat arms” spectrum) is going to get a standard dress shirt sleeve rolled up acceptably for a vaccine shot.

        2. Daisy Gamgee*

          FWIW, I actually don’t think it was fair to compare a man disrobing for a vaccine to a male stripper. But I do think it’s a lot more unfair that you’re going to use this incidence of supposed “reverse sexism” to justify something horrible, considering your past points in previous discussions such as litigating whether an action is “really” harassment by counting seconds.

          1. Well...*

            yea the “Curious” username also kind of makes the bad faith engagement more obvious… Like newspaper headlines that are written as questions (when the answer is almost always No, but we’re going to give the incorrect statement a huge platform)

    5. Lab Boss*

      Agreed! I have a lot of questions that are like “Hey, my company did XYZ with bonuses this year, is that weird or normal?” that don’t require a paragraph of explanation, just a temperature check on if it’s normal.

    6. Yay, I’m a Llama Again!*

      Yes, me too.

      And just short and simple answers from Allison – yes/no, no reasoning!

    7. Generic Name*

      Yes, I have at least 2 “is this weird” work stories I’d like Alison’s final verdict on.

    8. Anonymous Luddite*

      I’ve always said that I live my life somewhere between Am I the @sshole and Ask a Manager.
      Weird Week would move us one step closer to the singularity.

    9. Still trying to adult*

      Definitely looking forward to weird/not weird! Maybe not one week all at once, but a day or two sprinkled liberally throughout the year.

    1. Gnome*

      While I generally agree, just sitting Like that and chatting while waiting does strike me as odd. Not bothersome, but odd.

      1. Esmeralda*

        I dunno. I chat with the nurse when I’m waiting for a shot. It’s friendly and also, frankly, I get very stressed when getting a needle stuck in me so chatting helps. Maybe shirt off guy is the same. Or maybe sitting there with all your colleagues around, shirt off, at work, was embarrassing, so he’s talking.

      2. Lily of the Field*

        I guess I just always assume people are gonna odd, and I often do not really even notice. People are weird; this is not excluding myself, of course. If I do notice, I get such a kick out of the oddities of being human that it never strikes me as it’s weird enough to be…upset?…about. I’m not explaining myself very well right now, so I hope this makes some kind of sense.

    2. kittymommy*

      Yeah same. I’m don’t really understand why this is weird. I don’t even think this would register for me if I saw it.

    3. Marny*

      Agreed. Unless he was actually engaging in a Magic Mike-style routine or flexing his pecs like Terry Crews, I’m in the “who cares?” camp. It’s just a chest. Hot take: I find it weird that LW1 thinks it’s a big enough deal to write in about.

  7. Daffodilly*

    Oh, I love the idea of an “Is this weird?” event. If not a whole week, it might make for a fun speed round!

    1. Part Time Poet*

      Yes! Please! That would be enjoyable and greatly appreciated! Because humans do such weird stuff.

  8. Talula Does the Hula From Hawaii*

    I didn’t think I was going to get Chippendales with my morning mRNA
    Well put :D

    1. pancakes*

      I found that a little odd. Does the letter writer also feel like they’re “getting Chippendales” whenever they go to the beach?

      1. Ann Nonymous*

        You know the answer is No. Office attire is in no way comparable to beach attire. You don’t expect to see people at the beach in a suit nor the other way around.

        1. Jean (just Jean)*

          LOLing at the idea of someone struggling to stroll on the beach while in full business suit mode: dressy shirt; tailored wool or polyester jacket and trousers/skirt; and highly-vulnerable-t0-sand-and-salt-water accessories (necklace? pocket kerchief? scarf? necktie?) and leather shoes. Or vegan shoes, but with heels.
          About as awkward as appearing amidst the cubicles and conference rooms in shorts and swimsuit with a towel around one’s neck.

        2. JustaTech*

          I once saw a great explanation of the difference between swim wear and underwear – consent. Swim wear is outerwear, and the wearer has consented to being seen in their swimsuit. Underwear is, well, underwear, and is assumed to be private unless the wearer (and usually the viewer) consents to being seen in just that.

        3. pancakes*

          This wasn’t any old day at the office, it was the day of the vaccine clinic. People’s expectations for office attire ought to be slightly relaxed for these very particular circumstances, or at least mindful of the context. There isn’t going to be a vaccine clinic every week.

  9. Princex Of Hyrule*

    I’ve somehow managed to wear button-up shirts to every workplace flu shot drive for the last 4 years! Thankfully I always wear an undershirt, but last year when my second job was at an indie second hand shop, I looked like an extra from an Avril Lavigne music video in the waiting room. My red plaid button-up untucked and unbuttoned over a My Chemical Romance graphic t-shirt was definitely way more casual than I had intended to me that day (with the button-up buttoned and tucked).

  10. Language Lover*

    I didn’t think I was going to get Chippendales with my morning mRNA

    You didn’t. There’s no indication that he’s an exhibitionist or you would have mentioned his gyrating.

    P.S. It’s entirely possible he forgot he had an appointment and was just leaning into it by pretending it wasn’t weird to sit in the middle of a conference room dressed like Magic Mike.

    He didn’t rip off his shirt and I’m sure his pants aren’t velcro. Ergo, he didn’t need to pretend he wasn’t dressed like Magic Mike because he wasn’t.

    He was just some dude getting a vaccine in an environment where I’m guessing that usually doesn’t happen. The reasons for his shirtlessness aren’t known and you can only control what you can control.

    And what you can control are your eyes. You asked if you’re a prude. I don’t know but the overly dramatic comparison of a man getting medical treatment to male strippers and describing your coworker’s nipples (nips to the wind–OMG, I can’t imagine describing my coworker that way) kind of reminds me of the overly dramatic language used when people stumble across a woman breastfeeding her baby and then blame her breasts for their inability not to stare.

    So judgment: Going shirtless to get a vaccine is a little weird but there could be many reasons for that. Having a bigger reaction than a “hmm, that’s a choice” to one’s self as you look away is also a little weird.

    But I’ve got good news for you and your coworker, the past 2 years have been weird.

      1. Ann of Blue Gables*

        It’s not even a mildly weird action, though. It’s the reasonable action to take when you need to get a shot in the arm that can’t be done through fabric and your company’s dress code precludes wearing something short-sleeved.

        1. Littorally*

          Not to mention — assuming the LW is in the northern hemisphere, it’s January! Winter! Short sleeves are going to be thin on the ground.

      2. Glomarization, Esq.*

        I think that if a person had written in comparing a female-presenting co-worker to “Showgirls” because she had to pull her shirt down over her shoulder for a vaccine jab, we wouldn’t be reading it as obvious humor, though.

        1. Marcy*

          What’s the point of saying ‘well if xyz then you’d be saying abc!!!’? It’s not xyz. You’re making assumptions about other people’s reactions to fit your narrative. If you have an issue with OP’s language, then you can just say that instead of ~informing~ other people how we’d be reacting if the situation was different.

          1. Glomarization, Esq.*

            I don’t think I understand what you’re saying my “narrative” is. What I mean to say is that the LW compared their male co-worker to a stripper from a movie. I don’t think that’s appropriate or humorous, in the same way that I don’t think it would be appropriate for a letter writer to compare a female co-worker to a stripper in a movie. I also suspect that other readers would have felt the same way I do. Perhaps I’m wrong, though.

        2. Librarian of SHIELD*

          I fully agree. If the coworker was a woman and the writer had compared her to a stripper for having to remove some of her clothing for a vaccine, these “jokes” would not be funny. I get what the writer was going for, I just think the jokes were in poor taste and we shouldn’t be making it okay for anybody to sexualize their coworkers, no matter what their genders may be.

      3. Curious*

        The problem is that OP is sexualizing — Chippendales? Magic Mike? — actions performed at work, in a semi-medical context.
        One thing I’ve had reinforced by reading this site is how poor an excuse “I was just joking. Don’t you have a sense of humor?” is for inappropriate behavior.

      4. MCMonkeyBean*

        I agree it was intended as humor, but it doesn’t convey amusement to me. It seems more like using “humor” to describe something they think was genuinely inappropriate. And I don’t think it’s fair to consider it inappropriate in this context. We should be happy for every additional vaccinated person and not judge them for what they wore that day and how that had to be accommodated to receive the shot! I’ll save my judgment for the coworkers that refuse to get vaccinated instead.

        1. Daisy Gamgee*

          Yes, this. At this point I wouldn’t care if I had to see coworkers drop trou to be vaccinated gluteally. I just want people to get vaccinated.

      5. Coconutty*

        I don’t see why that matters when said humor is quite inappropriate and unfair (not to mention hyperbolic) toward her colleague.

      6. RagingADHD*

        Sure, cuz comparing your colleagues to sex workers is just super funny and not sexist at all.

        Are we declaring all visible nipples fair game for sexual jokes now? Because I recall quite a few past letters where nips on show were firmly stated to be nobody else’s business.

      1. CrazyKazi*

        It’s an awkward mix of work and medical treatment, I think the thing to do is remember that, in a hospital setting if someone can’t be dressed they get a gown or are seen privately, it’s just a weird situation and it doesn’t sound like he was trying to do anything weird. Also it would have been perhaps stranger if once he realized he had to wait for the shot he kept getting redressed and undressed.
        Many people get anxious about shots and being “prepped” might have also been helpful to him.

    1. KateM*

      Maybe you could write an example what a post in similar language about a breastfeeding woman would look like? Would be interesting to compare how we felt about that.

      1. Expiring Cat Memes*

        Breastfeeding isn’t a fair comparison.

        There’s a distinction between revealing more of yourself than you might want to because it’s necessary and you don’t have a choice, and intentionally revealing more of yourself than you need to or is appropriate because you can get away with it. What OP described sounded like the latter to me.

        1. MK*

          No. Just as Alison and the OP think this man should have worn an undershirt (which not everyone does or can comfortably do, depending on weather and office temperature), one could say that breastfeeding women should cover up more.

          Please listen to yourself: you described a person removing his shirt in semi-private setting (since there were partitions, one would have to stand right in front of his cubicle and stare to catch a glimpse of his nipples for longer than a second) to get a vaccine as “revealing more of himself than he needs to because he can get away with it”!

          1. Expiring Cat Memes*

            OP says “have partitions but are not private and a large observation area” . That came across like it’s a pretty open space. We have no way to know for sure, but it doesn’t sound like OP was standing directly in front of the cubicle staring as you suggest either.

            I’m not saying he should have worn an undershirt (they’re not a thing where I am), but there’s a way to at least try to be modest if you are in full view of your coworkers and you want to avoid the potential to make them uncomfortable.

            To suggest that every instance of a man removing his clothing in any medical context is the same principle as a woman feeding her child completely denies the fact that exhibitionism is part of sexual harassment and that it happens under medical pretexts too. It doesn’t sound like that’s what was going on. But you can’t deny that possibility entirely because: breastfeeding? It makes no sense.

            (To be clear, I’m not arguing an “it’s weird” point – I could go either way on that. The issue I take is the over-simplistic breastfeeding comparison.)

            1. Esmeralda*

              Seriously? He unbuttoned his shirt. He didn’t strip it off. He didn’t wave it around and toss it to the crowd.

              He unbuttoned his shirt so that he could get a shot. A shot that might help him stay out of the hospital.

              The partitions are there to give a semblance of privacy. Even if you can see into them, social convention =you pretend you can’t see into them.

              OP is comparing this guy, sitting with his shirt unbuttoned while waiting to get a shot (medical treatment), to a porn star. OP needs to not look or to look away or to pretend they didn’t see. And the OP’s humorous tone is, frankly, inappropriate and kind of gross.

              1. Ann Nonymous*

                No, he didn’t just unbutton his shirt and take it off one arm. He took it off completely and stayed that way for an unnecessary amount of time because he wanted other to see him that way. It was the exhibitionist who was being gross and inappropriate.

                1. meagain*

                  That is literally not what the letter says. I don’t find it gross or inappropriate for doing what he needed to do in order to display his arm for a shot. I think it’s quite a reach to know what was in his head or that he wanted others to see him this way. Maybe I missed something in the letter.

                2. Myrin*

                  Apart from very uncharitably – and confidently, oh my! – assigning motivations to him that we have no way of knowing, you also didn’t read the letter very carefully: it literally says “one fellow untucked and entirely unbuttoned his oxford shirt”. I guess it’s possible that he later removed the shirt completely but I’d wager that OP would’ve mentioned it because it would’ve only added to her perceived weirdness so as it stands, no, he didn’t take it off completely.

            2. Coconutty*

              That’s absurd. If I need to partially remove my shirt to get a vaccine, the potential discomfort of a looky-loo is not my problem. If a woman needs to nurse her hungry child, the potential discomfort of a looky-loo is not her problem. It is a perfectly apt comparison, and this guy did nothing weird or wrong.

              1. Ann Nonymous*

                It would have been fine if he had partially removed his shirt. But he didn’t. He took it all the way off and stayed that way in full view of others in the office. Unnecessary and exhibitionist.

                1. Coconutty*

                  Actually, the OP said his shirt was “untucked and unbuttoned”, which is pretty much what I would expect someone to need to do to get a vaccine while wearing a dress shirt, since the sleeves tend to be pretty fitted and aren’t going to roll all the way over the bicep. And it’s hardly his fault that the place he was sitting get vaccinated was “in full view of others in the office.” There’s nothing unnecessary or exhibitionist about any of that (again: partially removed shirt, medical procedure, not this guy’s problem that it’s a semi-public space), but there’s definitely something really icky about a colleague being so thrown off by it that they felt the need to ask an advice columnist whether it’s “the new normal.”

                2. Librarian of SHIELD*

                  You’ve said this several times in the comments, but that’s not actually what the letter says. The letter says he untucked and unbuttoned his shirt. That’s what you would expect a person to do if they were getting a vaccine and their shirt sleeve couldn’t be rolled up high enough.

        2. LDN Layabout*

          I think you’d need to be be really digging for a reason to be offended to think it’s the latter.

          Men’s formal shirts have very little, if any give to them. If they’re properly fitted, not even ‘tight’, it’s going to be difficult/impossible to roll them up high enough for the vaccine to be received. He was also behind a partition and not fully ‘in public’, even if the booths are not fully private.

        3. Cordelia*

          It didn’t sound like that to me – sounded like he got ready for the vaccine and then had to wait longer than expected. Unfair on him to make it sound like exhibitionism

        4. Loulou*

          Not following you! If you are getting vaccinated then exposing your bicep is necessary and you don’t have a choice. It’s not like he did this during a COVID test.

          (I said I find this weird, in the sense that I have not seen someone do this where I live and it would likely be seen as unusual, but it seems like a huge stretch to suggest any malintent at all on the part of this guy)

        5. AvonLady Barksdale*

          He didn’t dance around or rub his nipples or make jokes about, “Hey, I’m naked in the office!” He… sat and had a brief chat while getting a shot. He wasn’t taking advantage of the situation, he was preparing for a shot. If I had been there with an Oxford shirt, I would have had to do something similar. I might have held the shirt close, but I would have been sitting there in a bra, shoulder exposed, chatting to ease my anxiety and nerves. Like this dude.

          For the record, I’m in the US, I’m a cis woman, I tend to dress conservatively and I am a giant prude.

      2. Bluesboy*

        I am 100% on ‘Magic Mike’s’ side here, but yours is not a fair comparison, it’s a different situation.

        The fair comparison would be if a woman had prepared for a vaccination ‘nips to the wind’, and I think we all know that the woman would have been judged much more harshly than the man in this situation.

        1. amoeba*

          I mean, when I got my flu shot at work (similar setting – big auditorium with booths), I was also wearing a shirt with long sleeves that I couldn’t roll up. So I pulled it down over my shoulder because it was quite loose, but a) I’m sure that my bra was still visible and b) if that hadn’t worked, I wouldn’t have had any second thoughts about removing my shirt completely. I do try to wear short sleeves for vaccination appointments but just because it’s easier and quicker, not because I’m at all worried about showing skin.

          But then I always felt that here in Europe we’re a lot more relaxed about undressing for medical procedures, have sat half-naked and chatting at a doctor’s office many times…

        2. Xavier Desmond*

          I can 100% say that if a woman took her shirt off for a jab I wouldn’t dream of writing in to Allison to call it weird and anyone who did would be eviscerated in the comments here.

          1. ala*

            agree. This site would absolutely eviscerate anyone who used this kind of language to talk about a female partially undressing in a medical context

          2. Bluesboy*

            Neither would I, and I agree that the OP would be eviscerated. Maybe I wasn’t clear, I meant that society in general would judge her more harshly.

          3. Expiring Cat Memes*

            I disagree. I think a woman taking off her shirt and sitting around chatting for several minutes in view of her coworkers would elicit a far stronger reaction as to its inappropriateness. What’s up with pretending that men’s and women’s chests are equally sexualised?

            1. Xavier Desmond*

              I think you’re right about society in general but I was talking about this site in particular. My point was that neither a woman’s or men’s chest should be sexualised in this context even in a joking way as this OP does.

          4. Grey*

            Just view the comments for “Are patterned stockings unprofessional” a few years ago for the other side of this.

        3. RebelwithMouseyHair*

          No that’s not a fair comparison at all. The fact is that men can go topless in a film and nobody would think to give it a PG rating because of that, whereas a woman flaunting even her bra, definitely. A woman wearing a sexy bra, or going topless, is blatantly sexual and there’ll definitely be viewing restrictions for children. The children’s film Kirikou, depicting a tribe in Africa, was not released in the US because it showed the women topless (as customary in that tribe).

        4. MCMonkeyBean*

          I have already commented in two places here about a time I, a woman, did in fact have to partially remove my shirt to get a flu shot at work–and since making those comments I have also remembered a time I had to do so at the allergist clinic. Unless you are wearing a short-sleeve shirt you are not likely to be able to get the sleeve high enough without doing so. And it’s completely reasonable that someone getting dressed in the morning would not remember to think “oh I better wear a short-sleeve shirt for when I get my shot later today” and adjust their usual outfit accordingly. (My allergy shots were monthly so I actually did get to a point where I was pretty good about remembering to dress appropriately, but it’s still easy to forget especially if it’s something less common like a flu shot or covid vaccine.)

      3. Myrin*

        I mean, Language Lover did exactly that right there in their post: “the overly dramatic comparison of a man getting medical treatment to male strippers and describing your coworker’s nipples […] kind of reminds me of the overly dramatic language used when people stumble across a woman breastfeeding her baby”. Language Lover isn’t comparing the situations themselves but the language used to describe the situations – so if you want “an example what a post in similar language about a breastfeeding woman would look like”, you’d just have to change “man” to “woman” and the whole vaccine setting into one of breastfeeding and, well, you’d have that example of a post.

    2. Modine*

      It’s obviously a lighthearted query, not a big deal. I like those letters, especially after today’s depressing letter from the medical office manager.

    3. theletter*

      I think the humor involved really a matter of punching down vs. punching up.

      The weirdness stems from our double-standard around nipples and regional/situational/cultural variations in appropriate exposure for men.

      in almost every context, a woman’s exposed nipples are a vulnerability, but for men that’s rarely the case. Men rarely suffer consequences when they expose thier nipples, even if it does make some people uncomfortable.

      In this instance, the LW was uncomfortable, even though she knew that these are weird times and mass vaccinations require some adaptations which means that some privacy accomodations are going to be sacrificed and this man who quickly and quietly exposed himself as is culturally appropriate in many settings so that public health can be administered efficiently was not, actually, doing anything wrong, but knowing that if she were to do the same thing it would have been a THING, it made her uncomfortable. So the discomfort is covered with humor that punches up, not down.

      This is why we can’t just compare the situation to the opposite – a woman would have been disciplined for indecent exposure, and would suffer real world consequences, and making a joke about that would be in poor taste.

      1. LDN Layabout*

        Referring to your coworker as a sex worker for removing a piece of clothing that’s in the way of medical treatment isn’t funny.

        While the comparisons to ‘if a woman did it’ can’t be 100% accurate, this isn’t a dude parading around for attention. He is behind a partition, even if it isn’t 100% private, and waiting/receiving medical attention. That’s why it comes off poorly.

        1. meagain*

          At his assigned time for a vaccination appointment…. not lurking around the office or hanging out.

      2. EventPlannerGal*

        I think that’s a reach, honestly (and that a lot of people reach like this to use the punching up/punching down concept to justify distasteful jokes and commentary that really aren’t accomplishing anything). I don’t even see anything in the letter to specify that the OP is female, in fact. I’m sure there are a lot of people out there making biting satirical comments on the double standard of male/female nudity, but OP just seems to me like someone who interpreted this pretty easily explicable situation in an oddly sexual light and got called on it. Such is life.

      3. Annie Moose*

        How about we just don’t sexualize anybody who’s doing normal things in a non-sexual context, rather than fussing about whether it’s “punching up” or “punching down”? Just don’t sexualize people. At all.

        1. Librarian of SHIELD*

          THIS. theletter’s not wrong that women get this kind of treatment more often than men do, but what follows from that should not be “so it’s okay if we sexualize men sometimes because it doesn’t happen to them very often,” it should be “so we should try not to sexualize other people regardless of their gender.”

      4. RagingADHD*

        Wait, wait, so if the coworker who needed to get their arm out of their shirt for the injection were NB or trans, it would *not* be okay to make sexualized jokes about their body, because that would be punching down, right?

        But because you assume that he is cis, then it’s fine? Is that the logic here?

        Cuz either way it just sounds like a whole lotta sexism.

      5. BigHairNoHeart*

        Thank you for saying this, I agree. I get why others are upset about him being sexualized at work in a relatively benign situation. That ideally shouldn’t happen to anyone. But it’s just not comparable to when women are sexualized at work in similar scenarios. There isn’t the same pervasive history of oppressing men at work by sexually objectifying them that there is for women, so making that comparison feels off to me.

      6. Alpacas Are Not Dairy Animals*

        We’re really at the limits of punching up vs punching down analysis here. LW being exposed to her male co-worker’s chest is not in and of itself oppressive to her, and how she imagines her own parallel actions would be disciplined – which, in this exact medical care scenario, I think would be unlikely – is also not her colleague oppressing her. So I don’t see that the coworker needs to be punched, whether up, down, or sideways.

    4. miffed*

      Thank you, this was exactly what I thought!
      There’s no way an oxford shirt that fits would be loose enough to roll the sleeve all the way up to the shoulder. Dude either forgot or didn’t have a work-appropriate shirt with sleeves that could be rolled up far enough.

      Disappointed with Alison’s response on this one as it seems not thought-through at all. The man went to get a vaccine and had to provide access to his upper arm, and the OP objectifies him and compares him to a stripper? And… he’s the weird one? In what world is it ok to talk about coworkers like that?

      As to what he was thinking, possibly “Wow, that lady is making me really uncomfortable by staring at my chest while I get my vaccine.”

  11. Seven hobbits are highly effective, people*

    I’m just glad that there was a reason of some kind for #1 to be shirtless, and that the reason was something that would not happen every day. Given the “men with bare chests at work” title, I was imagining a group of dudes forming a “shirtless at work” club or possibly someone who decided to solve their “my food drips on my shirt at lunch” problem the way you keep toddlers from getting ice cream on their shirts at the beach.

    1. TiredEmployee*

      I was expecting something like they joined a videocall with a colleague who was shirtless while working remotely. That I find weird (just keep the camera off no one needs to know!), but someone removing their shirt to receive an injection I’d barely consider worth a comment unless the shirt they removed was already short-sleeved.

      1. Bluesboy*

        Ooh, that happened to me recently! I was on a call with an investor who kept his camera off because ‘he wasn’t feeling well’. Then it came up that he was at his apartment in Monte Carlo and had an amazing view, so he turned the laptop to face the view to show us and turned the camera on (it was spectacular).

        Then he just turned it back to himself without thinking, and he was sitting there without a shirt. I think he realised, but by then it was too late so he decided to play it chill and just took the last 45 minutes of the meeting topless. THAT was odd, not undoing a shirt for a medical procedure!

    2. Bagpuss*

      Yes, given the context it doesn’t seem at all weird to me – it’s not really about someone being ‘topless at work’, it’s about someone having a minor medical procedure in a situation that didn’t provide for complete privacy.
      I’d just assume he hadn’t realised he wouldn’t be able to roll his sleeve up far enough,or that he had forgotten about the jab / got dressed on autopilot and hadn’t thought about wearing something looser fitting. (also, if someone doesn’t usually wear a vest/undershirt then it seems a bit odd to expect them to do so just because they might need to briefly remove their shirt – they may well not have any if they don’t wear them, and adding an extra layer of clothing might easily means they’d be too hot / uncomfortable all day.

      To be honest, given the medical reason I wouldn’t even think it was particularly weird if a woman had had to remove more clothing that is usual in an office setting.

      (I’ve definitely had situations where I’ve forgotten that I was booked to donate blood, so wasn’t thinking about access and clothes when I was getting dressed – I haven’t ever had a situation where I’ve worn something that I couldn’t roll up the sleeves far enough, but only by luck! )

      1. EPLawyer*

        Yeah like the letter yesterday where the guy’s headshot is him in his bathing trunks. Guy having shirt off to get a shot, NBD. It’s a medical procedure, HE”S GETTING VAXXED THANK YOU VERY MUCH, and I presume right after he buttoned his shirt back up.

    3. Mr. Cajun2core*

      I imagined a co-worker exercising or something along those lines. A few years back there was a letter about a male co-worker exercising in the common area between buildings during his lunch without a shirt on.

  12. Paperdill*

    OP1: As a person who worked in a big vaxination clinic, this was a regular occurrence. Lots of people in business shirts that won’t roll over the arm and don’t wear undershirts. My clinic had some chairs with privacy curtains if people wanted but most of these guys declined and just took their shirt off. And I’m talk the very high up execs of a BIG organisation. I realise you don’t expect it, but it one of those many things none of us were expecting in the pandemic and really not something you need to think about further.

    1. Epsilon Delta*

      Yeah, I was surprised Alison classed it as weird. I mean, I’m sure it would be surprising to suddenly see Dale from accounting’s chest and stomach, but at this point in the pandemic and societal breakdown, I don’t think it would flag as straight up weird to me anymore. All the norms are out the window.

      1. noahwynn*

        Yeah, I think it is just potentially awkward for all involved. So like the gaps in bathroom stalls you just ignore them and pretend you saw nothing.

    2. Fiona*

      Exactly. It’s such a non-event that his shirt was off to get the shot. It’s literally the only circumstance I can imagine being acceptable!

    3. Paperdill*

      Actually, just reflecting on this further, I remember lots of out staff and the recipients (we are a health organisation so the first couple of months of our clinic being open was largely vaccinating our own staff) feeling really excited and positive about the whole this with the occasional shirtlessness being referenced as an example of the whole organisation being equalised, open and together in our goal – cleaners in seats nexts to brain surgeons, accountants next to nurse unit managers, speech pathologists next to engineers, all together, being vulnerable but still doing something positive to work towards our goal of getting out of this pandemic and celebrating all we have worked for together for the past long months. It was just such a positive and amazing environment to work in and I will remember it with joy in my heart all my life.

      1. Phoenix Wright*

        This is an amazingly beautiful comment. Thank you so much for all the hard work you did during the pandemic.

  13. Scottish Teapot*

    LW 1 – what kind of undershirt would he wear? My husband doesn’t own anything that I would think could be classed as this. Genuinely given the circumstances i don’t think it was weird. He was there for a vaccine, couldn’t roll his sleeve up so took the shirt off. Maybe it’s a US thing but here in the UK I doubt anyone would’ve raised an eyebrow to this. Let’s just applaud him for taking the vaccine

    1. Developer Number 10*

      I would agree with this sentiment. The only time I’ve worn anything under an Oxford shirt was when I was travelling to Norway in the middle of winter – here in the UK, that’s just too many layers for comfort, especially with office heating and air conditioning. I suspect I do still own a couple of plain white T-shirts that could be used in this situation, but I’d never want to wear one as an undershirt in the UK.

      I’d also point out that for injections, I’m constantly reminded to relax my arm – that way, it doesn’t hurt when the needle goes in. Relaxing the arm is pretty much impossible with a full length sleeve bunched up around the bicep, so arm out is the way to go.

      I know decency standards are slightly different in the US – but my thinking would certainly be along the lines of “I can spend 5 minutes wriggling around trying to get just one arm out, or I can take 30 seconds to remove my shirt, and try to pretend I’m not embarrassed by my slightly overweight middle-aged body”

      1. TiredEmployee*

        When I got my booster the nurse was in such a “get them through as fast as humanly possible” zone that I didn’t have time to relax (mild needle phobia) and afterward my arm ached so much more than any jab I’ve had before. Also left a huge bruise that hung around for more than a week. Would not recommend!

      2. UKDancer*

        Yeah I don’t know any men who wear undershirts particularly especially not those who work in offices. My grandfather used to but he worked in a factory so needed the layers and lived in a not-centrally heated house in a cold part of England. Most of the office based men I know just wear a shirt.

        Also the injection site is a lot higher up than people think. I wore what I thought was a cap sleeved top for my first jab and it still wasn’t high up enough for the jab so they had to roll it up. I would imagine a fair few people didn’t think about how high they needed the sleeve to roll and decided it was easier just to take it off and be comfortable.

        1. londonedit*

          I also don’t know any men who wear undershirts. I suppose my grandfathers used to wear a vest under their shirts in the winter? But that was back when central heating wasn’t as good/common as it is now (though with the price of energy nowadays maybe we’ll all go back to wearing 15 layers in the house and having ice on the inside of the windows…). And it doesn’t sound like this chap actually took his shirt off – it sounds like he untucked and unbuttoned it and then sat there with his shirt unbuttoned. Reading the title of that letter I imagined he was sitting there with no shirt on at all, but it doesn’t sound like that was the case. For all my Covid jabs I’ve worn short-sleeved tops (with a cardigan in December for my booster – I just took one arm out of the cardie) and I’ve still had to roll up my t-shirt sleeve, so I imagine if you’re wearing a full long-sleeved shirt then unbuttoning it would be the easiest thing to do.

          1. ThatGirl*

            My grandpa and dad always wore undershirts, and my husband (age 38) does on occasion. But I understand that it’s not as common as it used to be.

        2. Thistle Whistle*

          I think undershirts (or for those in the UK vests/semmits) are just not really a thing in many places. Perhaps your colleague isn’t a vest wearer. Here you might get an older guy still rocking the humble string vest but not often. Plus it brings to mind Rab C Nesbit, which isn’t a mental image you want at work.

        3. L.H. Puttgrass*

          Hi, my name is L.H., and I wear undershirts. (“Hi, L.H!”) I find that they help avoid sweaty armpits and nipplage. And some white shirts are a bit too see-through than I like, so an undershirt helps keep pink me from showing through.

          But I get that it’s decidedly old-school. I wouldn’t expect someone to come up with an undershirt on vaccine day if they don’t usually wear them.

          1. Mr. Cajun2core*

            I am with you. In the southern US men sometimes sweat even with anti-perspirant and A/C. Just walking from your car to your office can cause some men to sweat. The plain white t-shirts can prevent pit-stains and even prevent mild perspiration from showing through.

              1. Mr. Cajun2core*

                Maybe slightly increase in sweating but it is offset by the absorbency as Paperdill stated.

            1. Ali + Nino*

              I had no idea this was NOT a thing for men. My husband is from FL and always wears an undershirt, no matter the season. The more you know!

          2. JustaTech*

            Hi LH!
            My husband wears an undershirt when he wears a button-down shirt (long or short sleeved), I assume to prevent his chest hair from sticking out. It also helps keep sweat off his fancy silk Hawaiian shirts.

            (I had a boss who wasn’t into undershirts, which meant on days he wore thin, light colored shirts I got to see *all* his tattoos, which felt weird because, like, in theory they were covered/private, except they weren’t.)

        4. Brian Gardiner*

          I’m almost 60 and I have never worn an undershirt in my life. And for the record, I worked in a factory for 30-years. They just aren’t worn anymore, period. I haven’t known anybody to wear one since the 1980’s, and even then it was old European guys (I’m in Canada). Expecting someone to wear an undershirt is like expecting them to have their fedora on.

      3. Cordelia*

        absolutely – as a UK vaccinator, I would have very much appreciated the quick shirt removal rather than the slow realisation that there really wasn’t going to be an alternative. Maybe it’s a UK thing, but I am grateful for it!

      4. Michelle*

        This is so strange to me, as I live in a very warm climate and my husband never goes out without a plain white undershirt. Even under t-shirts, but especially under polos or nice button-ups. It absorbs sweat and keeps his shirts from staining at the armpits. I know other men who do the same, although I obviously haven’t polled every man I know, and I don’t check under their shirts on a regular basis. ;)

    2. Maria*

      Exactly! Once I realized it was for the vaccine, “Oh! Not weird at all then!”. So I was actually really surprised by Alison’s verdict.

    3. EventPlannerGal*

      Right, I mean, context is everything. Under most circumstances it would be quite weird for someone to be sitting in your conference room injecting all your coworkers with hypodermic needles, for example. But as part of the vaccination programme, it makes perfect sense. If the guy was just going taps aff at his desk on a random Tuesday, that would be weird. But in this context, it makes sense.

    4. Allonge*

      Some white formal shirts can be sheer enough in certain lights that men (are expected to) wear white undershirts under a formal shirt-suit-and-tie, so if they take off the suit jacket, the semi-transparent thin shirt material is not an issue. Or they get cold, or both.

      1. Allonge*

        Which does not mean it’s weird not to! But this happens in office envronmetns enough for people to think this is the norm. Still better to get the vaccine, though, and I don’t find it weird.

      2. That IT Guy*

        Right. I think I’ve gone without an undershirt *maybe* once in an office setting and I felt like my nips were on display for all and sundry that day. Never again.

        That said, in this context? I would have had some mild surprise to be suddenly confronted with that view, but nothing more than that. Not weird.

    5. Lab Boss*

      I almost never wear a button-down shirt (formal or casual) without wearing a thin white cotton sleeveless undershirt under it. I’m a big guy and it helps prevent any embarrassing peekaboo belly issues if my shirt gets hitched up or the buttons gap; plus prevents any nipple visibility issues in a thinner or light colored shirt. Not that anyone is obligated to do what I do- but at least for me in the midwestern US, it’s totally normal to have on a second layer.

    6. Emi*

      Just like, a regular undershirt. Maybe this is a UK/US terminology thing, here it means a short-sleeved or sleeveless/tank top made of lighter fabric than a t-shirt and generally more close-fitting. I think you call it a vest? But it’s quite common here to wear one even in the summer, to extend the life of the more expensive dress shirt and for coverage if the shirt is sheer.

      1. Mr. Cajun2core*

        Undershirt means exactly what you are describing. Usually plain white and short sleeved and cotton. Fits close to your body. Yes, especially in the southern US they are often worn to extend the life of a more expensive dress shirt. Sometimes they are also called t-shirts. T-shirts can also be colored and heavier material and worn by themselves in very casual situations.

        1. UKDancer*

          Much less common in the UK I think. We call them a vest as a rule and I wouldn’t expect anyone under about 80 to wear one under a suit. My grandfather would be 105 if he were still alive and he’s the last one I knew who wore one.

          Perhaps it’s because the UK isn’t as hot and humid as the US so shirts don’t come under the same pressure of perspiration. I don’t know.

          1. Mr. Cajun2core*

            I am 54. If I were not in an area that was so hot and humid, I would most likely not wear one if I were wearing a tie.

            Also, some men wear them in a more casual environment such as business casual to not expose as much chest hair. I am a very hairy man. If I wear a golf shirt (or any buttoned shirt) and don’t button the top button a ton of chest hair sticks out! That is even with most of the buttons buttoned, just not the very top one.

            1. Cthulhu's Librarian*

              Personally, I wear one for those moments when I have to replace toner in a printer, or crawl behind a bookshelf that hasn’t been moved in a half a century. Dress shirt comes off, undershirt functions for sufficient decency for the next half hour, and then dress shirt goes back on.

              I assumed most men did something similar (ie, having one on in case you needed to fix your car on the way home from work, or similar). I am actually surprised by how many people in this thread say they don’t know anyone who does – but we all learn something new every day.

    7. Karo*

      Yeah, I think it’s a cultural thing. I’m U.S.-based and I expect men to wear undershirts if they’re wearing a button-up. Not entirely sure why I expect that, but I do. I certainly don’t blame the guy for taking his shirt off in order to get the vaccine, but it would certainly feel weird to me.

      1. Anonymous Luddite*

        US based doesn’t narrow it down much. I’ve worked coast to coast and have never seen such an expectation. And, if this website has taught me anything, I would respectfully suggest you interrogate why you’re putting dress code expectations on the opposite gender.

    8. alienor*

      In the US you can buy men’s undershirts in multi-packs like underpants. They’re just plain white T-shirts, usually with a V neck so as not to show, and they’re thinner and closer-fitting than a T-shirt you’d wear as an outer layer. I don’t think it’s very common for men to wear them anymore, though – I remember my dad wearing them under his work shirts when I was a kid (late 70s/early 80s) but my husband never did and I don’t think any of my male friends do. I think they’re mostly holdovers from a different era, like slips and stockings for women, unless you live in a really cold climate.

      1. OftenOblivious*

        Or a really hot climate and you wear them to help absorb sweat — both to avoid the sweat stains and keep your buttoned shirt nicer, longer.

        1. Kevin Sours*

          Maybe. I live in a hot climate and find undershirts way too hot. But it’s also dry so sweat doesn’t build up.

    9. Critical Rolls*

      Possibly it’s a regional U.S. thing, but I’ve lived in a variety of locations in the U.S. and have never encountered a strict expectation of undershirt wearing. And, decency-wise, I am not remotely concerned by a man needing to take his arm out of his sleeve to get a vaccine. I rarely fully disagree with Alison, but I do today. LW is way off base and should avert her eyes if she’s bothered.

    10. Anonymous Luddite*

      Agreed. The last time I wore an undershirt, it was a uniform requirement and that was 30 years ago. At least where I am, men’s fashion has changed to the point where undershirts are rarely if ever worn.
      Furthermore, I do the laundry in my house and there’s no way I would double the number of shirts to wash in a week.

    11. Jean (just Jean)*

      This thread has me seriously considering the option of undershirts. FYI I’m a cis female who perspires *heavily* in our humid region. V-neck would solve the show-at-the-neckline issue. The problems are:
      – How do I fit my middle-aged female body (breasts and belly) into a garment cut for people without breasts?
      – Since I would retain my bra, how do I avoid the heat buildup of wearing not two but three layers above the waist?
      – Would the undershirt’s sleeves fit smoothly under a woman’s cotton blouse or t-shirt?
      Does anyone have suggestions? Maybe I’ll re-post on the weekend thread, since this applies to both work and non-work clothing.

      (Maybe I could fit into the larger size of boys’ undershirts?)

      1. The Gollux, Not a Mere Device*

        Craft stores sell cheap t-shirts intended for dying and other fabric art, in a wide range of colors including white. They’re often the “unisex” style that fits better on people with small or no breasts, but not always. Sold that way, you can buy one (or three, or seventeen), rather than possibly being stuck with four or six t-shirts that don’t fit you.

        I’m recommending cheap shirts because they tend to be thin, which would be useful here.

      2. pancakes*

        There’s a brand called Numi designed to fit smoothly. I haven’t tried one so can’t comment on the effectiveness. They’re pretty pricey but look well made.

      3. Librarian of SHIELD*

        You can get very thin, very inexpensive t-shirts in the juniors section at Walmart. I use them as undershirts pretty frequently.

      4. Budgie Buddy*

        If the goal is to deal with sweat, how about something like Uniqlo’s Airism line? They have a variety of cuts made for women.

  14. Liz*

    LW1: I feel this is on the clinic, not the coworker. They should have privacy screens. I’ve never been to a booster venue that didn’t have folding fabric screens between the stations to afford patients some privacy, whether it be a canteen, gym, or church hall. It’s really common for people to have to disrobe for jabs – either because they find they can’t roll their sleeve up far enough, or they forgot to sling a tshirt on underneath their clothes – not to mention people who might be phobic of needles and would rather not have eyes on them while they cry, shake, or otherwise try to compose themselves. I’d follow the coworker’s lead – avert eyes, and pretend it’s just not a little bit awkward.

    1. Everdene*

      I think that’s a YMMV thing. Where I got all my vaccinations and booster there was just a massive hall with windows open and up to 100 people organising, delivering or recieving shots and tables spaced as far apart as possible. No privacy whatsoever.

      1. londonedit*

        Yeah I think there are definitely different setups depending on the venue. My first two jabs were at an old office building where they’d commandeered a floor and set up little partitioned-off rooms with doors and everything (I don’t know whether they’d put those in when they turned it into a vaccination centre or whether they were left over from the offices that had been there before). My booster was at the local pharmacy, in a private room at the back. But I’ve seen footage on TV of other mass vaccination clinics at huge venues like conference centres or football stadiums, and those literally just have banks of tables and chairs, sometimes with curtains/partitions in between but sometimes not.

        1. TiredEmployee*

          Yeah, I had my three all at different locations with screen-setups ranging from borderline-claustrophobic to none. One at a football stadium and two at malls, but all just big rooms with numerous vaccination-station tables and varying means of queue-control.

        2. EventPlannerGal*

          Total tangent (sorry Alison) but I find the different setups really interesting, and sometimes weirdly moving. My first jags were in a giant conference centre, but by that point everything was pretty well prepped and there were little booths and waiting areas etc. My booster was in a vacant former River Island that still had the clothes rails pushed up to the walls – no screens/booths, just some little tables and a lot of very tired vaccinators. My mum’s booster was scheduled in the city’s central mosque, and a friend had has done in a tent in the station car park. I find something quite touching about all these random places being commandeered for the common good, even when the arrangements are a bit hodgepodge (maybe especially then!).

          1. londonedit*

            I agree, there was something really moving about the scenes last year when people were turning up in droves to their local stadium or old office block or random sports hall, queuing up and being greeted and jabbed by lovely volunteers. I don’t usually go in for the whole ‘British blitz spirit’ thing but for a little while it did seem like we were all pulling together.

            1. After 33 years ...*

              My first, second, and third (last week) were in settings exactly like this. Getting it done quickly was priorized over all else.

            2. Anononon*

              Yup, I got my first two shots at a mega site set up by my state, and most of the coordination part was run by the National Guard, and I remember thinking “this is what the National Guard should be used for!” It was pretty cool just the mass effort and enthusiasm by everyone.

          2. Bluesboy*

            My son’s first jab was in an exhibition space/kind of museum thingy where it’s almost completely dark and there are these insane tower structures that look like they’re going to fall down on you at any moment.

            Do a Google image search for ‘Hangar Bicocca Milano’ and you’ll see what I mean. It would make an excellent haunted house, but probably not the best place for someone who is already nervous about getting the vaccination…

          3. Bagpuss*

            Yes, the different locations and the way people worked to make it happen as inspiring. I loved seeing people going to Salisbury cathedral (and the organist showing up and playing requests while they waited) for instance.

          4. Ana Gram*

            It really is kind of cool. My first was in a warehouse, second was an empty department store, and booster was disappointingly normal in a drug store.

        3. HannahS*

          Yeah, mine’s been a mix, too. The hospital vaccination clinic was in an atrium space, and had nurses at tables spread apart. My flu shot was in a conference room*. My third COVID dose was in a pharmacy, in the little room.

          *You may all enjoy hearing that the hospital tempts their workers to get the flu shot by offering chocolate bars (full sized! not mini!) to anyone who gets their shot. Someone will post a picture of a full-sized Kit Kat in our group chat, and all of a sudden there’s a STAMPEDE. I’ve been stopped in stairwells by doctors breathlessly asking me if there are any left. It’s hilarious. We’re all large children in green pyjamas with a terrifying amount of responsibility.

          1. Bagpuss*

            I was ridiculously disappointed one time when I donated blood, and they only had kitkats, not club biscuits, afterwards. I mean, I can afford my own club biscuits, and I’d give blood even without the chocolaty reward, but I do love the free chocolate!

            1. UKDancer*

              I refuse to donate anywhere that doesn’t have club biscuits. I went to a mobile donation centre once and they only had custard creams which is just wrong so I’ve not been there a second time. The place I usually go has both orange and mint clubs and I reward myself with one of each.

      2. Quoth the Raven*

        In my city (Mexico City, though it might have been similar in other place), vaccines were rolled out by age groups, by boroughs, and by first letter of your last so you had to go when the city said you had to go, or else you’d have to try and find an alternative. The venues were mostly adapted (I got my first one in a sports hall and the second in an exhibition centre) and the sheer volume of people meant there were no booths or screens, just rows upon rows of socially distanced plastic chairs.

        I usually wear short sleeves and had no problem just pulling the sleeve up, but even if someone had plain out removed their shirts, everything was so fast paced and I was so high on adrenaline after the shot I didn’t really see much of anyone anyway.

      3. Cordelia*

        I ran a staff clinic, and we did have privacy screens, I think partly because of the odd mix that LW1 has experienced – work environment merging with medical one. Men do sometimes need to remove their shirts, women do sometimes need to show their bras – we didn’t want anyone to have to do this in front of their coworkers/managers/employees. Also, some people are fearful of vaccinations and don’t want or need their coworkers seeing them crying or scared.
        I think if LW1 can reframe her thinking into “medical procedure not work event” she wouldn’t find it weird.

        1. UKDancer*

          I’m glad you had screens. I would not want a vaccine where any of my colleagues can see me. I have issues with needles and really struggle to keep a professional demeanour when I’m being jabbed and I don’t want my colleagues to see me like that. I think privacy is very helpful and I did find the lack of it for the Covid booster (because there were no screens at all) quite difficult. Fortunately nobody there knew me so I managed.

          1. londonedit*

            Same! I don’t think I’d have agreed to have any of my Covid jabs at work. I very much wanted to go somewhere where there would be privacy (I checked with friends beforehand to make sure the centre I booked at would have private areas) and I think I’d have really struggled if other people could see me, let alone if colleagues at work could see me.

        2. Eden*

          I went to a hospital staff clinic for one shot and there was zero privacy, just a couple of tables set up in the same room as intake. I’m sure if someone had requested privacy they would have been accomodated, based on how that hospital’s other clinics have gone, but it wasn’t the default.

      4. EPLawyer*

        Yeah I got mine at a football stadium. Sadly, not on the field but in the Ladies’ Club (it was VERY NICE, if I had the money I would go to a game there). They just had rows of tables set up. You rolled up your sleeve, I wore a short sleeve shirt under a VERY HEAVY JACKET (it was March it was still cold) and was on my way.

    2. Bagpuss*

      I think it depends on what’s available.

      My first two were both in non-medical venues, the first was in a sports club – they had small dividers between each of the people giving the jabs but they were in a long row and the end was open, so not dully private (and you walked past others to get to the ‘booth’ you were sent to so would be able to see other people)

      The second does was at the local agricultural showground also in a huge hall – there were small dividers but again only between each person’s table, not at the ends, and low enough that while you couldn’t see over them if you were seated, but anyone much over 5’5″ would have been able to see over when standing. They were doing the bet they could in the circumstances.

      Last yar when I got my flu jab my doctor was running their normal flu jab day at the local hall rather then in house, as it’s bigger and allowed for better distancing, they just had 8 stations set up each with a table with their materials on and you walked up, got jabbed and walked out, no privacy at all . As far as I recall the invitation did include a reminder to ensure that you wore clothing that meant your shoulder was accessible but I’m sure they got some people who forgot or misjudged how far they could roll their sleeves up.

      1. UKDancer*

        Yes, facilities can be limited.

        My first two were in the sports hall of the municipal leisure centre with dividers between the vaccination stations so you had some privacy. My booster was at a community centre in a room with no dividers at all so you could see everything. My flu jab I went to Boots for because my company gave out vouchers for the jab to people not otherwise eligible. So that was in a small room by the pharmacy counter.

        I think it also depends what time of year it is when you have the vaccine. In summer it’s a lot easier to wear something removable whereas in winter most people are wearing more layers (at least in the UK) and it can be harder to extricate yourself gracefully from them.

        1. EvilQueenRegina*

          Yes, time of year definitely makes a difference – I know I had my second one in the middle of the UK July heatwave and was wearing something with short enough sleeves for it not to be an issue, but my booster was the beginning of January when I did need more layers. If this man’s timeline was anything similar and it wasn’t an issue for him on previous vaccine appointments, I can easily see him not giving it a thought this time around.

    3. Haven’t picked a user name yet*

      My vaccine clinics were efficiently organized by the hospital and it was held at the local Rex center gym. No privacy screens. Room between vaccine sites/setups so you weren’t listening to the person next to you. But open. I think there may have been one screened in area but I don’t know if it was available if requested or for something else. I didn’t notice who had what on.

    4. Golden*

      I kind of do too, especially since it was set up by the employer. Every time I’ve gotten a vaccine, I’ve been asked about medical conditions, which some might want to keep private in a work environment.

      My work ran a flu shot clinic and I was grateful for the privacy, because I was trying to conceive at the time and wanted to ask the nurse if the shot would impact anything. The day of the shot clinic lined up with the best day to “do the deed”, which my coworkers did not need to know! I actually think I’d rather them see me in a bra!

    5. Elenna*

      Interesting, none of the places I got my vaccines had any sort of privacy. The first two were large school gyms (two different places) with folding tables and chairs. The booster was a medical clinic with closed offices, but they were giving two people shots at once in the same office. For that matter, I usually get the flu vaccine in a mall clinic which is also just folding tables and chairs in the middle of a mall with no privacy.

      Maybe there were privacy screens for people who wanted them? IDK, but that wasn’t the default, anyways.

    6. AnonInCanada*

      I’ve got two of my three shots in mass vaccination clinics run by the city. They were in very large spaces with no privacy screens of any kind — just a bunch of spread-out tables for people to sit and get their shot, and a large waiting area for the 15 minute wait required after the injection. Mind you, I also got those shots in the end of April and June respectively, when it was pretty warm around here and short-sleeved shirts would be more the normal apparel.

      In OP’s case, I really don’t understand the commotion. The man couldn’t roll up his sleeve, and as a courtesy to those in line behind him, took off his shirt in advance in order to get the shot quickly. It’s not like he was doing a Chippendale’s dance or “being Magic Mike” or giving the Full Monty here. Some people just need to stop being prudes.

    7. Malarkey01*

      None of mine had any privacy. My husband and I got our boosters in a grocery store, at a table next to the tampons and toothpaste as shoppers walked by. My husband even said “oh that reminds me we need toothpaste and grabbed some of the shelf as he was having the alcohol swab wiped on him. My son’s was in a closed hospital cafeteria and everyone just sat at tables.

    8. PT*

      I got vaccinated in a Target fitting room (through the in-store CVS pharmacy) and I think it was the most private vaccine setup I or anyone in my social circle had for COVID or even that I’d seen for flu. Normally for flu you just get a sad half-assed attempt at a partition around two folding chairs by the pharmacy.

    9. Paperdill*

      My clinic had curtains for privacy if people wanted – a lot of Muslim women chose to use them. We would offer them to men taking their shirts of but almost all of them declined. I’m one Australia, though, and we tend to have a pretty casual attitude to that kind of thing.

    10. Ana Gram*

      Eh, when I was vaccinating we were averaging 3 minutes/person. There was time to look around and gawk because you sat down, answered questions while moving your clothes, and got the shot, and moved on. We did have a private area that a few people used- kids, women in modest dress, people afraid they’d faint, etc. but otherwise it was rows of folding tables and chairs. Our county site is still at an empty department store. Screens just are available and they’re not a priority.

  15. ADHD project manager*

    For #3: I spent months at a certain applying, getting invited for interviews, and then getting rejections very late in the process, with positive feedback. It was usually either more experience, or a focus on something specific that I couldn’t bring, and on highly competitive positions. I think that I even got told at some point the decision could have gone either way.

    My takeaway was that for professional jobs, there’s often some space in how to shape the position, and the final decision between two roughly equally qualified candidates often comes down to either personal click or a choice for a particular emphasis that wasn’t necessarily decided up front. There’s a point where it’s almost luck of the draw which candidate gets chosen, and the only thing to do is to realize that if you hadn’t done well, you would not have gotten that far, and if you keep trying, and keep doing what you’re doing, the position where you’re the candidate with the best click will come by.

    1. londonedit*

      Definitely. I’ve been involved in a hiring process from the interviewer’s side of things (my boss did the first interviews and then I sat in on the second interviews to ask a few questions and provide a second opinion) and it was absolutely the case that in the end it came down to two people who were equally good in different ways, and we went for the person who we thought would get the most out of the job and who *just* had the edge when it came to some specific skills we were looking for. The other person was super qualified and interviewed really well, but just wasn’t quite as well suited for that specific job.

    2. Smithy*

      Absolutely this.

      I also think that ‘years of experience’ can also be a helpful substitute for ‘kind of experience’. It may be that one person has 4 years and another has 2, and it’s that clear cut – but far more often I’ve found that you’re looking at someone who’s experience aligns more closely in a way that matches the ambitions of the role more so than a true quantitative measure. And leaving that kind of feedback to HR sounds fuzzy at best.

      To the OP, I also want to say that having shaky self esteem or low motivation to apply for new roles is far more common than being super confident and eager. And because of that, my number 1 piece of advice is to share the most job hunt news with people who will make you feel best about your process. Maybe you need straight sunshine and rainbows, maybe you just want to focus on the immediate steps ahead and never get too optimistic, – and for some people a more sarcastic/the whole system is rigged approach suits where they are. Or you want a selective mix at different times. No approach is wrong, but take ownership in who’s helping you feel best and select accordingly. Not saying this friend needs to go in the trash, but perhaps they do when it comes to job hunting.

    3. Alexis Rosay*

      Yes, this is so true. Many times when hiring I’ve been on committees that liked two candidates for totally different reasons. Sometimes there is one person who’s more experienced and one person who’s less experienced but seems more excited about the specific duties. Etc. Both are great and we almost have to flip a coin to make an offer.

    4. korangeen*

      I’m surprised so many others actually get some form of feedback. Most all the job rejections I get, even after interviewing, are along the lines of: “Unfortunately we’re unable to offer you a position at this time. We appreciate you taking the time to go through the process, and we wish you the best of luck with your job search.”

  16. Helvetica*

    I think the only slightly thing weird about #1 is that he took off the shirt several minutes before getting the shot, rather than just before it. But I agree with previous posters that generally..this was fine.
    I got a vaccine just a few weeks ago, forgetting that it was happening, and wore a tight turtleneck. So my only option was to remove my one arm and let the rest of it sort of hang on me. Fortunately it was in a private doctor’s office but maybe I still would’ve preferred not to sit there in my bra but well, what can you do but accept the situation.

    1. LDN Layabout*

      People start getting ready earlier because they want to be ready as soon as the person giving them the go ahead does so. No one wants to be fumbling with their buttons or similar while others are waiting on them.

      1. londonedit*

        Yep…in the pre-appointment information here it asks people to make sure they wear something that allows easy access to the upper arm, and at the big walk-through vaccination centres at the height of the vaccination drive last year the volunteers at the entrance were telling everyone in the queue to take off any coats/jackets so they were ready – they didn’t want to waste time with people having to remove clothing once they were sitting down with the vaccinators. So it makes perfect sense to me that this chap would have unbuttoned his shirt to get ready while he was waiting for his jab.

    2. Olivia Oil*

      This was my take, but upon reading others’ comments, if he was just following orders to be ready by the time it was his turn, it would make sense.

      Yeah, I’m going to vote for “Not Weird”.

  17. Knope Knope Knope*

    LW3: FWIW, I’ve cited “more experience” when I’ve had to choose between 2 strong candidates abd it’s always been true. Sometimes when you have 2 good candidates something just has to be a tie breaker (if only that was always the case!). But I’ve only ever personally called a rejected candidate when I thought highly of them and wanted to leave the door open for future roles. I would take the interviewer’s comments at face value. And like Alison said, making excuses not to hire someone isn’t really a thing unless there’s a pre-existing relationship.

  18. Jules the First*

    LW4, I’m in that job! I turned them down for what were very good reasons at the time, and when they called me again six months later, those reasons mostly didn’t apply. They reoffered, I said yes, and five years on, I’m so happy I did.

  19. meagain*

    I don’t think the shirt off is weird at all. I purposely wore a sleeveless shirt to mine because I had a real fear of SIRVA. (After knowing someone this happened to, not with the Covid-19 vaccine.) Everyone told to to keep the arm completely free of clothing so that they could get the best placement. Especially with a lot of unqualified people giving shots. (I also had a terrible experience with my booster and when I spoke to the pharmacist about it at a well known drug store, they told me that to be honest, the people who were giving shots were outsourced and that they had never met them before that day. I told my partner to wear a sleeveless shirt for his to and to make sure they could see his whole arm and make them show him where they were going to place the shot. If he had been wearing a dress shirt that day, then he would have needed to take it off. I’m sure he thought I was paranoid, but I didn’t want any issues.

  20. Panda (she/her)*

    OP2 – I am not a freelancer, but I do have to follow up on invoices as part of my job, and I can help provide some language to use. I will add that sometimes large corporations take a while to pay though! I recently had to approve payment to a subconsultant and between us receiving the invoice, accounting entering it in our system, me approving it, my boss approving it, then waiting for the next payment cycle…it was something like 2 months. And I approved it as soon as I saw it, many don’t.

    Anyways, back to ways of following up:
    Follow up 1: “Hi Sarah, just wanted to confirm you received X invoice? Payment is due on January 31.”
    Follow up 2: “Hi Sarah, my records show that X invoice is still outstanding, would you mind checking into the status on your end? Payment is due next week, and I wanted to make sure you’re aware so you can avoid any late fees.”
    Follow up 3: “Hi Sarah, wanted to check with you on X invoice as it’s now past due and showing as unpaid. Do you have an idea of when we can expect payment to go through?”
    Follow up 4: “Hi Sarah, I’m wondering if you could look into X invoice. It’s well past the payment deadline and still showing unpaid on my end. Please let me know if you have any concerns or need to discuss.”
    This is as far as I would go with email, after this I would call the person and ask about it.

    Good luck! It can be frustrating dealing with companies which don’t need to put food on the table and don’t have the same sense of urgency around payment.

    1. Mrs. Bond*

      I agree with this. In my experience, if clients are late paying, it’s almost always either because they forgot about it, or some bureaucracy like Panda described. Give them at least one friendly reminder before starting to enforce your late fees.

      If you’re planning on freelancing for a longer term, go to your bank and ask about a business account with overdraft protection. This can cover you in case of delayed payment.

      And, of course, don’t continue to work for people who routinely don’t pay on time.

    2. SnappinTerrapin*

      I assume the two reminders before the bill is due are for customers with a history of being late. It irks me when, after 20 years of doing business together, a service provider reminds me twice that my bill is due when it has always been due.

      1. Rana*

        I agree! I used to pay bills and it was really annoying to get emails reminding me when a payment was due when I had already entered the invoice, gotten it approved, and scheduled the payment to arrive on time. I always felt like people accusing me of not doing my job when in fact I had. And then it takes time out of my day to reply (or at least read and delete). Getting TWO would really have infuriated me. Please only send those if the vendor has a track record of being late, and maybe when it is the very first invoice, though I would phrase that more as “Since it is the first invoice I’m sending you I wanted to check that you received it and have everything you need to process payment.”

        For those who might not know how payments work at larger companies, it is very common to process an invoice immediately but schedule payments to go out just in time to make the due date. If you have enough invoices, having the cash in your bank account for the whole 30 days (the usual payment term on invoices) can actually make a difference. So we never pay invoices before they are due. Also, invoices go straight into an automated system, so you are not going to get a response when we receive your invoice. You’ll just get your check in the mail (or e-payment, please accept e-payments they are so much easier and more reliable!). I sympathize with a freelancer’s anxiety about this, but please give them at least a chance to pay on time before bothering the AP clerk.

      2. Panda (she/her)*

        Yeah, I rarely follow this actual script – my invoices are due upon receipt, so there is no “overdue” date – I usually follow up the first time if it’s been 3+ months since it was sent, and would follow up every couple of months after that if it still isn’t paid. The most typical reasons for not getting paid (at least for me) are either that the client forgot to approve it in their system, or that they are disputing the amount of the invoice.

  21. Houdini*

    Just a random fact (LW 1’s story):
    In Malaysia, a large proportion of women are practising Muslims who wear a headscarf/long sleeves. Over the past 1 year, some modest clothing stores have been marketing “vaccine-friendly blouses” – one of the shoulders/sleeves actually have a hidden zip to open and access the deltoid region for vaccinations. Solves the problem of having to remove/loosen the whole shirt entirely!

    1. urguncle*

      Finally, a reason to wear those awful “cold-shoulder” sweaters that designers swore we wanted for so long.

    2. Morning reader*

      On days I expect to get a shot, I’ve chosen to wear that off the shoulder (is it called cold shoulder?) blouse I bought by mistake when those were all the rage a few years ago. Perfect for vaccination day!

      1. lizard*

        I think cold shoulder is when the general shape is normal but there are shoulder holes, while off the shoulder just doesn’t have sleeves there.

    3. NotRealAnonForThis*

      Interesting how societal adaptations happen, and sometimes quickly!

      I think we had a couple shirts that had a similar hidden closure for access to my child’s PICC a few years back. They weren’t easy to come by, so I’m glad that these options are gaining traction!

  22. Antigone*

    I work at a university so our booster clinic was a jumble of faculty, staff, and students in a big open area. While I was waiting for my 15 minutes to be up I was idly tracking people who fully took their shirts off and got up to four. It’s apparently very common! Though, again, some of them may have been students so it’s not fully a professional setting.

    1. LPUK*

      One thing capitalism is good for – there’s always someone who finds and addresses a gap in the market – ingenious!

  23. LPUK*

    #1. NGL when I first saw the heading I thought the story was going to me that some clueless Organization had organised one of those’Iron John’ training events as a team building exercise. So relieved to see it was only 1 man in a edical setting!

    1. londonedit*

      Yes! I thought maybe it was going to be about blokes going for a run or cycling into work and then walking around with their tops off…but no. It was just a chap who unbuttoned his shirt at a vaccination clinic.

  24. LPUK*

    On the subject of charging late fees, I agree that early payment discounts are the way to go. Large companies may have a policy to accept these as long as the early payment discount covers the opportunity cost of having the money paid out early. Other things I have found helpful, though they somewhat depend on a helpful client, is discussing the payment terms before you submit a quote, then you can quote accordingly. It’s quite usual in certain industries to require a percentage of payment up-front on commission of the work – anything from 20-40% and I have had some clients suggest this route themselves because they know they have a standard 90 days before an invoice is paid. The final option is to ask the company if they have any special arrangements for small companies or sole traders. Retail and marketing companies are often likely to offer these because they want you to still be in business when they need you next andno1 cause of business collapse is lack of cash flow. Other responsible corporations either don’t want the optics of putting the little people out of business, or have committed to sustainable business practices like paying small guys more quickly recognising the disproportionate difficulty late fees cost.

    Finally if you in the position of being able to pick and choose clients, you can decide to deprioritize proven late payers or add an asshole tax to the quote!

    1. Mrs. Bond*

      Oh yeah, asking for a deposit is an important tool to use too. I always do that for projects over a certain size (like, 2k), or for any client I don’t trust to pay on time.

  25. ecnaseener*

    For #5 I might give slightly more detail, like “I’ve converted religions, which is something I’ve been working on* for awhile, and so XYZ.” Not that you wouldn’t still be entitled to accommodations if your religious practice had changed more quickly, but with a complete lack of context I’d be worried about the boss concluding you’re making it up or something. (Especially if we are talking about something that sounds like a big perk, eg leaving in time to get home by sunset every Friday in the winter)

    *reword “working on” to “planning on” or something if needed, idk which religions other than Judaism require a lot of prep work for conversion

    1. Lab Boss*

      Agreed. It’s all well and good to say that in principle your boss should never ever question your religious observances and you don’t need to explain yourself, but in reality a little bit of context and explanation just makes everything flow more smoothly. As a boss I wouldn’t say “no” to an employee who said their religion made those early Fridays necessary, but I’d love it if they gave me a little context like “the sabbath starts at sundown on Fridays and I can’t be at work.” Not because they have to justify their religion to me, but just because knowing your coworkers as human beings and understanding them a little better is nice.

  26. loislolane*

    #1 – it’s extremely common for men and women to forget to wear an appropriate shirt for a vaccine appointment. In the case of a shirt like that it’s absolutely not possible to roll the sleeve high enough unless it’s several sizes too large. I see it all the time. So from the perspective of someone who gives jabs regularly it’s completely normal, and I’m sure the person giving the vaccine was appreciative that he was ready for them!

  27. Delta Delta*

    #1 – Not weird at all. As others suggested, I think he probably was getting ready so that when it was his turn he wouldn’t hold up the line. I suspect he thought it would be just a minute, it turned out to be longer, and then he just waited with his shirt off rather than put it back on. Maybe a little awkward, but not weird.

  28. Alton Brown's Evil Twin*

    #4 – You can also ask if this person has any contacts who might be interested in the position. It can’t hurt to ask. I’ve been on both ends of that conversation, and one time it turned out great for all parties involved.

  29. anonymous73*

    #1 – unless you work at a beach resort, this is very weird behavior. Even if he couldn’t roll up his sleeve far enough to get the shot, unbuttoning and pulling out one arm would have been better than full on nipple display.
    #3 I think you putting a positive spin on the situation is great. It wasn’t overly positive, nor unrealistic. And even if your friend thinks what she said to you is true, she didn’t need to say it to you. It wasn’t helpful and it wasn’t supportive. Hopefully this was a one off because if she’s always like this, I would consider reevaluating the friendship. Job rejections are like break ups. You’re rarely going to get the full truth about the decision that was made, and even if you do, it’s rarely satisfying.

    1. londonedit*

      He wasn’t randomly wandering around the office topless; he was attending a vaccination clinic and unbuttoned his shirt so he wouldn’t have to faff around with it when he was called for his vaccination. I don’t see anything weird about that! OK, maybe he unbuttoned a little bit early, but maybe he didn’t realise he’d be waiting around for a few minutes. I don’t even read it as saying he fully removed his shirt; just that he untucked and unbuttoned it. Is it really that weird to see someone sitting with an open shirt in the context of a vaccination clinic?

    2. Anonymous Luddite*

      I encourage you to talk to any men you may know and ask them how high they can roll a dress shirt sleeve.

    3. Rocket*

      How do you unbutton and pull out an arm without putting nipples on display? If you unbutton a shirt, your nipples are revealed before your arm.

    4. Kevin Sours*

      I don’t think you understand how dress shirts work. I can’t roll my sleeves up that far and they aren’t particularly tight. To comfortably get one arm out I’d need to unbutton it most of the way anyway — and that’s still going to half expose my chest. Sometimes medical procedures require the removal of clothing. You roll with it.

  30. ecnaseener*

    One thing to consider for #1 is that he probably didn’t realize it would be another several minutes before the shot. In my experience with both vaccines and tests, they send you to a nurse’s station, the nurse asks you a few questions, you roll up your sleeve…and then the nurse is filling stuff in on the computer for another five minutes.

  31. JustGetTheDamShotAlready*

    I agree with a lot of people that this is not “a thing”. More than likely he’s never been through a mass vaccine event at work and was just told “I’ll need access to your upper arm” as soon as he entered, not “I’ll need access to your upper arm in 35 seconds to give me time to prepare the syringe–beginning NOW.” While I realize these “booths” aren’t truly private, I think it’s appropriate to pretend they are. Anything you see within one should be ignored. Also, would you be upset if you saw someone breast feeding their baby in a booth? I don’t see how a man showing his chest for a medical procedure in a booth is any different. Having to do either at work is not ideal but also not risque. And finally, given the number of people who still refuse to be vaccinated (or wear a mask), I personally don’t care if you go streaking through the building on your way to get your shot. I’ll even scream “thank you” as you flash by.

    1. Antilles*

      And finally, given the number of people who still refuse to be vaccinated (or wear a mask), I personally don’t care if you go streaking through the building on your way to get your shot. I’ll even scream “thank you” as you flash by.
      Yes, yes, and yes.
      I don’t think we should be sitting here shaming someone for failing to wear the correct shirt for getting the shot.

    2. Anonymous Luddite*

      I needed that laugh this morning but sadly my monitor did not need that coffee bath.

      Right there with you.

    3. Not One of the Bronte Sisters*

      Amen. I wouldn’t care if he stripped down to his shorts. We all have bodies. There is nothing sexual about any medical procedure. I think we Americans need to leave the Puritanism behind.

  32. Jennifer*

    #1 Lol @ nips in the wind. I’m guessing this guy probably forgot. We used to get flu shots at my job every year and I forgot about it once. I would usually wear a short sleeved shirt under a cardigan that I could just slip off to get my shot but one year I wore a top that had long sleeves that were too tight to roll up. The nurse took me behind a partition so I could take off my shirt without anyone seeing. It’s odd that the company providing the boosters didn’t have an option like that.

    1. Bagpuss*

      Possibly they did, for anyone who asked or was concerned about taking off or unbuttoning their shirt / top. But if he wasn’t greatly bothered (and of course culturally, having your short off / unbuttoned does land differently for men and women, so I would guess it would be much more likely that a nurse would notice and offer the option, for a woman) then it doesn’t surprise me that it wasn’t offered to someone who showed no sign of needing it or being hesitant or uncomfortable.

    2. Imaginary Friend*

      I’ve gotten all 3 shots at our county fairgrounds facility. They had 12 stations for giving shots and no screens or anything like that between them. The stations were in pairs with 10-15 feet between each set. (I got my flu shot at the same time – in a different chair, and in the other shoulder.)

  33. shirtless and nervous*

    OP #1 I honestly chuckled at your story. It reminded me of a potential work mishap I have to navigate. I’m part of my work’s respirator program which means yearly I get blood, urine, and pulmonary tests. This included a chest X-ray. The X-ray set up is in a mobile medical trailer and there is a window with no curtain right next to where I’m fully undressing from the waist up and the window FACES THE X-RAY MACHINE! So, when I’m standing there it’s all on display. I’m the only women in the program of about 200 people (that’s a different issue). Every year I have to remind the staff to not allow my coworkers into the trailer until I’m finished and to maybe get a curtain. One of these times someone is getting a show…

    1. Bagpuss*

      I once saw a doctor who had a ground floor office with clear, un-curtained window looking out onto a fairly busy road with a well-used footpath.
      He seemed surprised that I wasn’t comfortable stripping to my bra in full view of everyone passing by. (Actually, I was uncomfortable for other reasons too, but that was the one I felt I could express then and there )

      1. Phony Genius*

        I once saw a urologist in a similar office. I actually had to ask him to close the blinds before he examined the part he needed to examine. Never saw him again.

  34. Coffee Bean*

    #1 I don’t mean this as criticism towards OP as we all have different levels of being comfortable/uncomfortable with any kind of office behaviour, let alone the level of being dressed/undressed, but I think in a pandemic the conventions go out the window a little bit. It wouldn’t bother me for this reason, even in a very corporate environment. Now, if they took their pants off that’d be a different story. ;)

    1. Just So Tired*

      Cis Woman here -During Covid (I was one Covid-vax in) I had the opportunity to get my flu shot at a supermarket. Wasn’t going out a lot at that point, or thinking too much about my clothing choices TBH. I saw they had walk in availability and took it- and then realized I had a tight turtleneck that the sleeve would just not roll up, and no undershirt. I had a short partition facing one side, but anyone who wanted to could’ve seen me with my shirt half off over the side the arm that was getting jabbed was on. I thought about it for a half second before I half undressed and was like, oh well. It’s a sports bra, half a shoulder and an arm. People will deal. So I don’t think it’s weird. Maybe what’s more odd is the combination of work stuff/healthcare stuff.

  35. A good stick*

    I think #1 needs to be chalked up to vaccine at work weirdness. As a nurse who has worked many vaccine clinics, this guy did exactly what I need. His bicep is fully exposed without a constrictive shirt sleeve threatening to unroll. I read this as him exposing the vaccine site and waiting for his shot. I would much rather have to deal with a few moments of “nips to the wind” and conversation than trying to explain that, “No, your shirt isn’t rolled high enough.” And “No, I can’t give your vaccine through your shirt.” If seeing his nips bugs you, don’t look.

    1. Kevin Sours*

      Plus getting a button up on and off is a bit tedious. I don’t blame him for wanting to make sure he wasn’t holding up the line and/or not wanting to put it back on if the wait turned out longer than he expected.

  36. Kittykuddler*

    I don’t think it’s weird. I’m a little suprised that Allison does. Sexualizing anyone’s body during a medical procedure just feels gross and icky to me. If the OP felt weird, she should have averted her eyes and given him privacy just as we’d expect a male colleague to do if rolls were reversed and she had had to take her shirt off.

    1. Cle*

      Completely agree. It isn’t weird at all for someone not to vary their entire outfit for a single shot, it isn’t weird to make sure that the person administering a shot has easy access, and it isn’t weird for there to be a delay between getting ready to get said shot and actually getting it. It is a little odd that OP felt weird enough about it to write in, and it’s definitely weird to make remarks (even funny ones) about his nipples and to compare him to a stripper.

  37. WantonSeedStitch*

    Re #1, I would be feel comfortable assuming that he simply couldn’t roll his sleeve up far enough, and wanted to make sure he was ready to get his shot as soon as the clinician was ready to give it. In many of these kinds of setups, the people facilitating the vax event instruct you to do just that: have your sleeve rolled up in advance, for example. He may well have been wishing he’d worn an undershirt that day!

    Re #3, I wonder if what your friend was insinuating was that the company wanted to hire someone because of connections/favoritism (e.g., the boss’s niece or something), and that they used the “experience” line as a cover for that.

  38. Littorally*

    #1 – Very timely question! I was on my way into work this morning, and I’ll be getting my booster shot in-office today. I realized that I hadn’t planned ahead in terms of what I was wearing at all — just a regular sweater and dress shirt underneath. If I’d considered, I would have worn a short-sleeved polo under the sweater. I hope I can get my sleeve up high enough that taking off the shirt won’t be necessary! (However, I *am* wearing an undershirt.)

  39. Karen*

    LW1: I love your writing style. Bless you for starting my day with “nips to the wind” and “Chippendales with my morning mRNA.”

  40. MCMonkeyBean*

    OP3–Personally I’d stick with your initial feelings! I suppose it’s possible the person is so conflict-averse and afraid of letting people down they lie to all their candidates and say they almost hired them, that seems unlikely. I think you’re right that they didn’t need to call you (as so many don’t both) and they definitely didn’t need to tell you you were their second choice. Even if the explanation they gave wasn’t the real reason, or wasn’t the whole reason–I think you are right to feel that you probably did a good job in the interview process to get that far, and to find it encouraging that maybe you’ll be the top pick soon.

    Good luck on your job search!

  41. Teapot Librarian*

    For OP 3, I agree with you that it sounds like it really was a question of amount of experience. But when I read your letter, I wondered if you and your friend are BIPOC. Your friend’s response really sounded to me like a “ugh, I’ve gotten this so many times but I just know that they hired a white man and it didn’t really have anything to do with experience” reaction. Regardless, I hope that you find a great fit for you soon!

  42. Imaginary Number*

    I missed the part where the person in #1 was chatting for several minutes with his shirt undone. If he’d just taken it off when getting the shot (even if everyone could see) I would say it’s not weird at all and a hazard of doing anything medical in a public space like that.

    1. I'm just here for the cats*

      I thought that at first too, but I re-read it and I take it to mean that he was in partitioned area and undid his shirt but the nurse wasn’t quite ready yet. I know at my booster the nurse had to write things down, verify stuff, before I was given the shot. I (F) had a short sleeved shirt on under my blazer so I just had to slide the blazer off my one arm. But if I had worn a button up I would have to have done what this guy did. I think it was weirder that there was more than one person in the same area getting vaccines without any type of privacy.

  43. ITWorkerBee*

    On OP#1- as the mother of a boy child- I have had to teach him THE WAY of extracting an arm out of clothing without just whipping off his shirt in public for other vaccinations and such. Also a small class in “taking off your undershirt without removing all shirts” has been held…
    Perhaps he’s an adult that never had someone walk him through how to do this?? Or if he’s the type that wears his button ups so tight that he has to turn at the waist to gesture, perhaps he just enjoys everyone being very aware of his nipples?? I hope it’s the former though…

    1. Panda (she/her)*

      I have to have this conversation with my kid (3yo) too. Undressing is not an all-or-nothing activity :)

    2. Potatoes gonna potate*

      I mean….pre COVID is this something that came up often? Aside from the flu shot, aren’t all vaccines administered in a doctors office/clinic? Usually if someone is going to the doctor and expecting a shot they’d dress appropriately for it, hence no need for the shirt-removal class….

    3. CoveredinBees*

      Removing your arm like that is something you can do in a jersey knit type shirt but not in a properly fitting poplin button down. The comment about the nipples was very bizarre.

  44. Phony Genius*

    I just realized how different the conversation on #1 would be if this vaccine were not administered in the arm, but in the posterior.

    1. Green Post-its*

      And if my grandmother had wheels she’d be a bike. That’s nothing to do with this situation at all.

      1. Anonymous Luddite*

        I have to ask: This is the second time today I’ve seen people come down rather hard on hypotheticals.
        Is this a defense against derailing or what?

    2. Person from the Resume*

      If that was the case, the vaccine would be administered in private rooms and there wouldn’t be drive through COVID vaccination options.

      It’s being administered this way because it is injected in the upper arm.

    3. STG*

      That would definitely make the drive-thru events more awkward. Just a line of butts hanging out car windows.

  45. Olivia Oil*

    #1: I don’t think it’s weird that he had to take his shirt off to get his shot – this is relatively common when you forget you have an appointment and don’t dress conveniently. It’s weird that he took his shirt off well before getting his shot and just chatted to his coworkers shirtless, if I’m interpreting correctly.

    My last employer would hold flu shots in our office in a conference room (pre COVID). It was common to walk in and sometimes see women have their blouses partially unbuttoned to get their shot. This was my case once, because I wore a long sleeved blouse to work. We would just face the wall if that was the case. And we would only expose our collarbone immediately before getting the shot and cover up right away, obviously. No chatting with our bras exposed.

  46. x_X*

    1 – Only tangentially relevant, but I have a new neighbor in my apartment complex who sits right in front of the windows, blinds fully rolled up, and often with no shirt on.

    He’s not technically naked, but can we ask the apartment manager to ask him to at least roll down the blinds? I don’t know if I’m just projecting my values on someone else (I’m all about adding curtains for an additional sense of privacy), but what a sight to see every night!

    1. I'm just here for the cats*

      Ok so I’m going to try not to be too snarky here. I don’t think you can ask someone to put down their blinds just because you don’t like the sight. That would be like telling someone to paint their living room because you dont like the wallpaper.
      You could maybe mention it to him in case he doesn’t realize. But do it in a kind way like “hey you might not know this but when it gets dark and your lights are on everyone can see into your living room. I thought you should know in case you thought you had more privacy.” But not like “you need to cover up your windows or put clothes on. I don’t like seeing naked chests”
      I think legally even if someone is walking around naked nothing can be done because they are in their own home. that might depend on the area but I remember something years ago where someone wanted to sue someone else because they took a photo of them in their underwear or naked but nothing could be done because the person was on a public property (the street) and the scantily clad person was walking in front of a big picture window without any covering.
      Now if the guy was doing something obscene, like standing in front of the window naked and cat calling people then that would be a little different. But just sitting in his living room with his shirt off. not a big deal. If you don’t like it don’t look in the window. If his window directly faces yours, then why don’t you put blinds down?

    2. Green Post-its*

      If I’ve understood correctly he’s in his own home, just sitting in front of the window, sometimes with no shirt? Unless there’s something I’m missing, this is 100% normal and you’ve got no grounds to complain.

      If you feel like he’s spying on you or being an exhibitionist that’s a different kettle of fish, but it doesn’t sound like it.

      I could equally ask why you are looking at him every evening. Look away, put down your own blinds. Get some one-way privacy film if you feel like he’s staring into your apartment.

    3. Cle*

      Yes, you are projecting your values on someone else. This is just part of living in an apartment complex, or anywhere with dense housing. You see your neighbors in their homes sometimes.

      1. I'm just here for the cats*

        It also reminds me of something I heard at the beginning of the pandemic where the neighbor could see into their front room and yelled at them for not wearing a mask in their own house!

      2. UKDancer*

        Yes. My neighbours are currently singing (not very well) a selection from Ed Sheeran. I am deeply not in love with the Shape of Them. One of the drawbacks of living in a block of flats is that one can see and hear those in nearby flats rather too well. I think all you can do is ignore them unless they’re doing something illegal or excessively noisy.

      3. pancakes*

        Exactly, and for the times you don’t want to see them, closing your own curtains or blinds works perfectly.

  47. Cold Fish*

    I may be somewhat prudish but I really wish the bare male chest in public would just not be a thing. I was thinking this before COVID when I was taking a class at the local pool. (I was tired of seeing plumbers crack on most of the boys & men walking around without shirts.) I don’t blame LW for feeling a little Ewww as I really don’t want to see any of my coworkers bare chests. **For the record, I don’t really want to see women running around without shirts either.

    1. Jennifer*

      I tend to agree. Just because as women we can’t whip our shirts off whenever we want because of how breasts are so sexualized. I’m tired of seeing plumber’s crack and men whipping off their shirts whenever they feel the impulse.

      1. Jean Pargetter Hardcastle*

        I have a young son and one of my primary goals is to not raise a “shirts off at the pool and gym” kind of dude. I insist that he wear rash guards when he swims both for sun protection and because little girls can’t, so I don’t want him doing it, either. I don’t think it’s fair. (I also have some more conservative feelings about body modesty, but since they’re not really part of our religion or culture, I’m trying not to press him to adhere to my feelings about that.) Now, if society evolves and decides that all small children without shirts are just small children without shirts, then that changes things.

      2. Lemons*

        I’m a woman who doesn’t like the double standard either, but I’d much rather have the freedom extended to everyone than removed from those who currently enjoy it.

    2. pancakes*

      You’d prefer men wear shirts or Victorian-era bathing suits in the pool? Yes, I think that is somewhat prudish. There is an easier way around this than trying to change that, though, which is to visit the pool during the hours for orthodox Jewish women, if your area offers that. I realize that’s probably not a thing everywhere, but it is a thing where I live.

    3. Anon for This*

      I actually agree, and I’m male. In the 2008 Olympics, male swimmers wore full-body swimsuits. Surfers also do. I’d like to see that become a fashion trend among the general public.

  48. Pikachu*

    If you’re doing the right thing and getting vaccinated, show up in your best Borat outfit. Stick some tassels on your nips. Show up naked. I don’t care. You’ll still get a socially distanced high five from me.

    1. CoveredinBees*

      Well that’s certainly a mental image! Thanks for the giggle. Also, I agree. Get the shot however. As long as it isn’t impairing or harassing the person giving you the shot wear or don’t wear what you want. My too-young-to-be-vaccinated kids will thank you too.

  49. ZET*

    Re Op1, imagine the alternative question with the genders switched:

    “In order to receive her shot, one lady untucked and entirely unbuttoned her blouse. She did not have a bra on. Just her nips to the wind. And then she sat there chatting for several minutes before getting her shot. I didn’t think I was going to get Penthouse with my morning mRNA, so I was admittedly a little startled. Is… this weird? Should she have worn a bra? Or am I being overly prude and this is this just what we should grow to expect when we get vaccines at work?”

    OP would be pilloried for sexualizing a colleague undergoing a medical procedure, and rightfully so.

    1. bamcheeks*

      I genuinely don’t think this is true. I have breasts myself and have used them to feed children and had to get used to getting them out whenever, but my response to this would still be, heavens, yes, no wonder you found that weird, but why on earth weren’t there privacy screens.

    2. River Otter*

      That is not at all the equivalent gender switched rewrite. The answer would be, yes, she should have covered herself in someway because in most places it is still literally illegal for a person with breasts to expose them in public unless that person is nursing a baby or performing in a strip club. To even pretend that a woman or other person with breasts can take off her/their top in public the way a man or person who does not have breasts can is a bad faith equivalency. If you really wanted to flip the script to apply to a person with breasts, you would rewrite it so that she/they took off their top and exposed their bra, and then asked the same question: should they have been wearing an undershirt?

      1. ZET*

        Sure, let’s say it was her bra that was exposed. OP still sexualized a co-worker partially undressing in the context of a medical procedure that required it. If anything is to blame here, it is the lack of privacy, but certainly not the co-worker.

  50. I'm just here for the cats*

    #1. At first I thought that the OP meant that the guy got his shot and then was in the waiting room chatting with his shirt off. But when I re-read it, it sounds like he was in his own space and that there wasn’t really any door covering just partisans between seats.. And that he unbuttoned his shirt and was waiting while the nurse got things ready. I don’t find this weird on the guys end. If anything who ever set up the vaccination clinic should have thought about more privacy by having curtains or something.

    It sounds like they need to have a better setup. All 3 times I went to get my shot i was in a private room and it was just the nurse/paramedic and I. Even when I got my flu shot and I was in a larger room their were privacy curtains.

    You don’t mention, and maybe you don’t know, but when did he button up his shirt. Was it right after the shot?

  51. Mr. Bob Dobalina*

    OP#2: I handle contracts for my organization (the client). Although we insist on starting with our contract template when we engage a freelancer, we are certainly willing to negotiate the terms if the freelancer has proposed changes to the contract. That being said, I rarely ever see a freelancer propose late payment interest fees/penalties. If you are in the US, please note that state laws applicable to interest on late payments may apply, depending on where you are.

    1. sofar*

      I work for a large media company, and it’s the opposite. If the freelancer doesn’t sign our contract as-is, we don’t work with them. I hate that. There’s not much I can do about it, except point out regularly that we’ve lost the chance to work with some freelancers.

  52. Green Post-its*

    Question 1 is due to the awkward combination of two environments with wildly different norms – offices and medical facilities.

    If the man were in a medical facility – normal to take your shirt off for an injection.

    If the man was chatting at an average office – weird to take off your shirt.

    However the combo of these two situations created a new environment where you’re all unsure about what rules apply and thus some people do things that are unexpected at work.

    Honestly, I would just think of it as being an anomaly due to the odd mixing of medical/workplace, and forget about it.

  53. RagingADHD*

    #1, sure it’s kind of wierd. If it were normal, then most people would be doing it. Since they aren’t, you know it’s wierd.

    Is it “Chippendale” territory? No. He is not disrobing at you or for your titilation, he’s getting a lifesaving injection, and felt this was the most convenient way to access the injection site. It’s actually pretty gross for you to sexualize him like that.

    Is it a big deal? No.

    Is it your business? No.

    #3, your friend is in a negative headspace and misery loves company. It doesn’t matter who is correct, what matters is that you stay motivated in your job search.

  54. CAMWreck*

    Re: OP1, I’m glad this thread is anonymous… My favorite part about cold weather is putting on thick layers and not having to wear a bra. Unplanned, I decided to get my flu shot while grocery shopping. I figured I could just pull back my sleeve and all would be fine. When that didn’t work, I figured I could shuffle my arm under my layers without issue. The customers in line were not prepared for what they saw.

  55. pancakes*

    LW2, have a look at the resources on the Freelancers Union website, freelancersunion dot org. You don’t need to be a member to do so. There’s a sub-section for client nonpayment in the Freelance 101 section, and another section is a contract creator.

    Whether you’re in NYC or not, there are probably also some resources related to our Freelance Isn’t Free Act worth poking around in for suggested language.

  56. awesome3*

    Has anyone not gone in for a flu shot and realized they didn’t have the appropriate roll-able sleeves on? I think chances are high that something similar happened to the coworker in #1. Just simple unpreparedness. So my answer to is this weird or is it covid is yes, both.

  57. CoveredinBees*

    I really don’t get the big deal about #1. It was an unusual situation and it’s not like he was just wandering around the break room or even the vax area shirtless. Button down shirts won’t roll up high enough. Is it weird to see a colleague shirtless? Sure. That’s why you can look at any other spot in the room. Calling it Chippendales is quite dramatic, even if meant as a joke. It was a moment of weirdness. Let it go.

    1. Tirving*

      I agree. OP’s pearl clutching reaction seems waaaay over the top to me. Big deal he took his shirt off to get his shot and his “nips” showed, he’s not normally wandering around the office shirtless.

  58. Minerva*

    For LW 1 – woman but wear a dress shirt based uniform for assorted activities – dress shirts that fit don’t roll up to expose the deltoid, at least not for most figures. The current fit style is tight, too. I’m not sure what else he was supposed to do.

    It’s not like stripping in a meeting, it seems more like running into a coworker at the pool.

  59. Potatoes gonna potate*

    #3 – I’m not going to touch on what htey said b/c others have mentioned how it’s perfectly normal. But I’m REALLY side-eying what the friend said. Maybe there is way more context to it, like you both share something related to your outside appearance or background and they’re coming at it from that angle. I must have missed it but I wonder if OP asked the friend to elaborate?

    (Maybe I’m projecting my own issues but if a friend who is not in the industry said that to me, I’d think I was rejected b/c of my weight? My “this is why I need therapy” self coming across in ways I have no idea how? Either way, I’d be overthinking it and doubting myself and wondering exactly what was written in the letter).

    1. Olivia Oil*

      Yeah. In my comment below, I provided a charitable interpretation of the friend’s comment, but projecting my own experiences, the friend’s comments reminded me of a frenemy I once had who would find subtle ways to insult me or make me feel insecure, like giving backhanded compliments.

  60. cheeky*

    I think it’s weird and prudish to care about a man’s bare chest, though the facility should have set up privacy barriers.

  61. Olivia Oil*

    #3: Your friend is negative. What was she even trying to say? “An excuse” for what? Spinning things in a negative way when there isn’t explicit evidence for it is an annoying thing to do. I will give her the benefit of the doubt and assume maybe she was trying to make you feel better and imply you *do* have enough experience, but that is a weird way to word it.

    I don’t see any reason to assume the interviewer wasn’t being honest. A lot of the time, there are multiple good candidates and they just have to choose the one with either the most experience or with the most relevant experience.

  62. Ana Gram*

    #1- another vote for not weird! I was a vaccinator over the summer and plenty of people came in for their appointments not wearing tops/dresses that made their shoulders easily accessible. They just didn’t think about it. I have to get shots during the work day every other week for allergies and it took me a good 6 months to consistently remember to wear a short sleeved top those days.

    When I was vaccinating, we had a private room available for those who needed it but most people didn’t care. They just whipped off what they needed to and got the jab. We were working out of an empty Nordstrom so it was surreal enough to start with. A little skin didn’t make it weird! What was odd was grabbing medical supplies from the makeup counters…

    1. OyHiOh*

      One of the sites my community is using for a drive through test/vax site was once a Sears automotive unit. You drive through the repair bays for shots and under the pick up/drop off awning for tests. The teams prepping shots do so in what was once the service office. I’m certain that feels pretty weird too!

      I went to drive thru sites for all three of my COVID shots so add driving and seatbelt calculus to the what should I wear formula. I think I ended up wearing light weight long sleeves over tank tops for all three – take off the layer and good to go.

  63. Attention Dior*

    If I’m getting a shot and have to pull my arm out of my shirt…who cares. I get it if this guy was kind of just sitting there for awhile, I wouldn’t, but…this is a medical thing that normally wouldn’t be done at work. Just avert your eyes and move on. Don’t watch people getting their vaccinations. I feel the same if I’m at Target or whatever. I’m female. To me it’s just…kind of a weird situation that normally doesn’t happen and just…move on.

  64. Keymaster of Gozer (she/her)*

    OP1: as long as people are getting the vaccine I honestly don’t care if they turned up and took off an entire clown’s costume.

    My booster was done at a small venue in the UK and when I got there I was informed that there were 25 steps up to the centre and no lift. I’m disabled so no. The doctor, nurse etc came down to the front door where I was with a chair and did my jab right there. By an open front door, in Uk winter and me with having to take my coat and half my top off (because guess who had dressed for the cold, not a vaccine?).

    It’s not weird.

  65. Beth*

    #1 I’ve been working as a volunteer vaccinator with our medical reserve corp. I’ve primarily worked as an RN with pediatrics and labor and delivery (younger people). So the first few months I only vaccinated the elderly, and almost all the gentlemen would strip down when it was time for their vaccine. It was bizarre, and this is the only clinical setting I’ve worked with older folks, so who knows! I’m assuming this guy was older, and this is a norm.

  66. Miel*

    #1: a couple years ago I was the one who forgot to wear a suitable-for-work undershirt! I forgot it was Flu Shot Day, and I was wearing a tight, semi-transparent tank top under my usual button down. Not what I (a young woman) wanted my (mostly older man) colleagues to see.

    Fortunately the nurse slipped into the women’s restroom with me for a minute to give me the shot.

  67. evadmailj*

    I’m actually pretty disturbed at how OP #1 compared their colleague to a stripper. Covid context aside (we absolutely should not be shaming anyone for getting the vaccine during this global pandemic when vaccination rates are woefully low), would OP (or Alison) be okay with comparing a female staff member to a stripper? It seems to be sexualizing a medical procedure and is wildly inappropriate. Unless this guy brought out a boombox and did a slow striptease to “You can leave your hat on”, how is unbottoning your shirt in order to receive medical treatment even remotely comparable to working in the sex industry (which, no shame at all for anyone working in the very legitimate sex industry).

  68. Milkshake Milksnake*

    Completely unrelated, but yes please do a series of “yes that’s weird” letters haha! They’re actually incredibly helpful.

  69. Jam Today*

    LW #4: I had a recruiter from a job I turned down reach back out to me about six weeks after I started the job I took instead of the one they had offered me, and by amazing coincidence, it was right at the time when I realized I had made a big mistake. I talked to the recruiter, had a long talk with the hiring manager, and ended up bouncing from the Worst Job Ever three weeks later and landed into a much better job for more money and a manager I really respected and liked.

    tl;dr — reach out, you never know what’s going on with the applicant where they are currently (and as the applicant its always nice to know you made a good impression and were remembered well, no matter what happens!)

  70. Katie*

    “(Can I do a whole week where I just issue verdicts of weird/not weird? That sounds very relaxing.)”

    You absolutely can, and I absolutely wish you would.

  71. MeepMeep*

    Regarding #3, I had a similar situation where the VP of a job I’d interviewed for called me personally to tell me that they really liked me and went with another candidate who had more experience. She was so encouraging that I ended up applying for another job at the company shortly after, which I landed. So yes, I do think the letter writer is fine to take what happened at face value!

  72. Daisy Gamgee*

    People often use the truism “not all nudity is sexual” to excuse nudity in contexts where it really isn’t appropriate, but I think this is one context where that phrase does apply. I think receiving a one-time medical treatment that necessitates uncovering a usually-covered part of the body does supersede the usual dress code for a short period of time.

  73. Blue Eagle*

    #1 Sometimes the judgement of Alison and the AAM commentariat confuses me. If the OP is a woman, then the advice is that it is totally OK if her nipples show through her clothing and the problem is with the person who is looking at her. But for #1 above, oh my goodness what a scandal that the man had his shirt off and we can see his nipples. Get the smelling salts!

    1. Mr. Cajun2core*

      Thank you! I had forgotten about the nipples showing through clothing issue. I agree with you 100%

    2. RagingADHD*

      You are correct. There is a lot of cognitive dissonance, particularly around the idea of there being double standards.

      Apparently some people believe that the best way to deal with double standards in society is not to try to make things more egalitarian, but to…reinforce them at every opportunity? Not to try to treat everyone better, but to treat everyone worse.

    3. pancakes*

      It does seem to be a small but vocal minority of commenters who are breaking out their smelling salts for this, though.

    4. River Otter*

      Wow. There is a big difference between seeing the natural shape of a body part through clothing and seeing the body part itself. Not to mention that men’s nipples show through their shirts all the time, but only women get sexualized for it.

      1. pancakes*

        Do you reckon it would be an improvement if we started sexualizing men for their nipples as well? I think that would be a step backwards. Let’s try simply not sexualizing people for having visible nipples.

  74. Caitlin*

    Re: weird/not weird – I love this idea! Laurel Bristow (@laurel_bristow on Instagram) is a scientist that has been doing COVID research and sharing information about the pandemic on her Instagram since March 2020. She’ll sometimes put up questions boxes to do “Yeah dude/Nah dude” responses when she’s too burned out to do in depth explanations.

  75. vax all the things*

    While it would have been better if the workplace in #1 had provided a bit more privacy, the guy in question seems to have undressed the minimum amount required to get ready for a medical procedure in a semi-private space. As others have pointed out, if the shirt is fitted it the sleeve won’t roll up far enough, and he’s not even taken it off, just unbuttoned it.

    Sexualising a co-worker who has had to partially undress for a medical procedure isn’t cool, though, in any circumstance. Given how overt it is in the letter, and that Alison is normally good at calling out letter writers when they are in the wrong, I’m kinda disappointed that got a pass this time.

    1. pancakes*

      Should he have gone home without getting vaccinated that day if he didn’t? I get that this is meant to be humorous but it’s not cool to talk about people’s bodies this way in a medical context.

  76. bluephone*

    I know this is going to sound snarky and I’m sorry but for LW1…have you never gotten a vaccine before? Or an injection of any kind? I’ve gotten vaccines at work and I get regular allergy shots–before COVID, I was getting them on my lunchbreak at the allergist’s office 5 minutes away from my workplace. Sometimes, especially with the “get your free flu shot at work” days, I’d forget and wear something not totally conducive to getting a shot in the upper arm–long sleeved tops, long-sleeved sweaters, sweaters over a shirt, a whole dress, etc. As a woman, I was not jazzed about pulling my top up over my entire arm for the 3 minutes it took to get a flu shot but like, it is what it is. And I would have definitely side-eyed any coworker who was all, why is bluephone putting on a striptease during her in-office flu shot?????? Does she think she’s Demi Moore?????

    IDK, for a workplace blog, maybe we can all at least pretend like we’re not 12 year old prurient boys for five minutes. Just sometimes.

    1. The Gollux, Not a Mere Device*

      I got a third vaccine dose this week, at a drugstore, and the email confirming the appointment told/reminded me to wear a short-sleeved shirt, possible with a long-sleeved sweater or other layer over it for warmth, (It’s Massachusetts in February, and yes I wore a sweater over my t-shirt and under my coat.)

      Because they didn’t assume people would remember, and it’s not part of the usual advice to dress in layers for warmth.

      1. Environmental Compliance*

        I’ve gotten my booster recently – and I have not gotten an email for any of them to remind me to wear something that allows my arm to be accessible. I absolutely forgot for shot #2 that I had that appointment that day, and wore something I had to partially pull over myself. I did wear a tank top under (it’s cold!), but I am a little busty and I’m not sure the tank did anything except technically you couldn’t see my bra, I guess. For shot #3 I wore a very stretchy sweater I was able to pull down cold-shoulder style, which is not really something most men’s dress clothes allow for.

        I don’t think it’s impossible or even unlikely that the guy just….forgot he had an appointment that day.

  77. carrot*

    For #4, I would say reach out! The place I work now originally interviewed me in october 2020 and I turned them down because my at the time current (and extremely awful) job had offered me a promotion that I couldn’t get anywhere else. I took it and it was horrible and I spent months wishing I had said yes to the other job. I mentioned it to a friend who worked there and he got them to reach out again and that time I said yes!

    Hopefully your candidate is not in the same position I was but you never know. Worst thing that happens is they say no thanks and you move on!

  78. Tea and Cake*

    LW 2: the contract should have a Net 15/30/45 in it, and I have always put that specific term (highly visibly) on the invoice as well as date of invoice. I scour the contract to make sure the net x days is from invoice date, not internal approval of invoice.

  79. Lemons*

    Re: LW1. The assigning of off-colour motives to the semi-shirtless man is unwarranted and pretty disgusting. I get that it’s mostly one person insisting he’s an exhibitionist but there’s a fair few on about how he was taking ‘longer than necessary’, ‘totally disrobed’, and other unsupported contentions.
    Something to consider. Social anxiety, as an explanatory if not a mitigating factor, comes up a *lot* on this blog. It’s something I struggle with too and reading this is like someone got in my head and pulled out a long, stringy tangle of nightmares.
    I can absolutely see me doing something like your man in the letter, just from having gone a bit off-centre in an unfamiliar situation. I know I’m less than suave so try to be as efficient as possible, and perhaps I’m a little less bothered about minor doffing of kit than average (I’m a woman, and wouldn’t get my entire rack out, but in a medical situation? I’d conclude that a bit of visible bra would waste less of everyone’s time).

    What I try to keep in mind- and consciously repeat on bad days- is ‘No one is paying that much attention to you.’ Get in the wrong queue, stand in the wrong place, drop something while shopping? It doesn’t matter, and no one nearby is seriously thinking I’m a gold-star div because of it.
    Apparently not the case. Here? Misjudge something in a gawky but innocuous way, and you’re gossip fodder for a tittering readership. This bloke didn’t really *do* anything, and not only does someone find it so memorable that they needed advice (?), it gets a manky sexualised gloss and an answer that hopes he regretted it sufficiently to take his awkwardness home to stew about later.
    I’m absolutely not on a ‘diagnose him with x’ here (I dislike that greatly), but trying to illustrate how this reads to someone who may have got into a similar situation and felt crap about it. If the concern for mental health is genuine, that’s at odds with what comes across as freak-pointing.

  80. LGC*

    …so, this is probably going to be unpopular, but #1 doesn’t feel THAT weird to me. The fact that he just sat there for minutes on end is a little weird, but the unbuttoning of the shirt is less so. Just in general with dress shirts, it’s pretty difficult to roll them up high enough to get proper access – especially on slim-fit shirts. I had to do it when I got my flu shot after work one day (I was mildly embarrassed because I’m a prude, and I was wearing an undershirt).

    That said, I’m more skeeved out by not wearing an undershirt in general. Which is a thing that some guys do! But also, you’re just sweating directly on that shirt and that’s just a recipe for ~*~stains~*~. And possible ~*~chafing~*~. (And possible unwanted displays of ~*~hair~*~.) But also, not that major.

    So, in the context of a vaccine clinic: not very weird, but not totally acceptable either.

    It’s a weird double standard, though. Because we’d be up in arms if a woman took her blouse off and just left it off.

  81. Rapunzel wannabe*

    I am the OP3/LW3 and I just want to thank everyone for their kind words. After reading the replies, I realise that there are a few things I needed to clarify.

    1. This incident took a while ago, and I have actually been in my current job for quite some time. As I said, I do have a tendency of being over sensitive and even holding grudges, which is why I have been thinking about something that happened quite some time ago.
    2. I am no longer friends with this person, and it actually wasn’t a very healthy friendship on both sides. Her tendency of being blunt and using humour as a defence mechanism has hurt me greatly. Unfortunately, I lacked the courage to tell her about it, so I ended up reacting in a passive aggressive way towards her. I definitely acted very wrongly towards her at times.
    3. Her reason for making the comment as a way of being supportive is, as a lot of people have pointed out, trying to say that experience is not the only issue and I shouldn’t be daunted by my lack of it (at the time). Unfortunately, it was the case of wrong place wrong time. If I had been moaning about how my lack of experience is having an impact, then I can get why she would say that. However, what really bugged me is the fact that she said it when I was in a fairly positive mood and was using that as a sign of I am doing something right.
    4. I was worried that I might be too positive because there are times when I feel I am desperately trying to grab onto anything good and forcing myself to be happy. As someone who has mental health issues, there are times when I am deliberately going the other way to make up for it.

    I have been reading AAM for a long time, and I was really nervous at seeing my letter published. But everyone has been really kind and I am really grateful for the well wish.

  82. DTIBA*

    (Can I do a whole week where I just issue verdicts of weird/not weird? That sounds very relaxing.)

    You should TOTALLY do a whole week where you just issue verdicts of weird/not weird. Hell, put out a call for that, ask people to send you questions specifically asking for that verdict, and answer them when you need a not-quite-vacation.

  83. Burger Bob*

    I give vaccines, and I can tell you that while I believe #1 is weird, there are a LOT of people who apparently don’t think it’s weird at all. And it’s not just men. I have had many women who will pull their arms out of their sleeves and hold their shirt up to bare the arm, giving a clear view of their bra. A couple of them were not wearing bras. One of those did not seem remotely self-conscious about the fact that she was showing me her entire boob (we were behind a partition, but it didn’t have any sides, so it wasn’t exactly super private). I just try to get shots in arms as quick as possible, but yeah, from my experience, there are many people who seem to think that stripping is just what you do when getting a vaccine.

  84. Grizabella the Glamour Cat*

    O.T, but I am LMAO at the moment, because ALL of the “YOU MAY ALSO LIKE” suggestions for this post have the word “nude” in their titles:
    – nude spouses and no muting: when video calls go wrong
    – my coworker shared nude photos of me at work
    – I think an employee is sending nude Snapchats to his coworkers … with animal filters
    Thanks, shirtless covid shot guy! ;-p

  85. The Rat-Catcher*

    #1 – I feel like this is the sort of thing that happens when you do medical procedures at your workplace.

  86. Danielle*

    A) I would fully support an “Is this weird?” themed column.
    B) At this point in the pandemic I honestly don’t care if this guy was buttcheeks-out as long as he was getting vaccinated.

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