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Scared Sick Day

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You got sloshed at the office-party open bar, told the boss how much you “really, really love” her—and spent the night with your cubiclemate. How to handle the Monday-morning rumor mill?

Kill Them With Kindness: Disarming politeness is very effective for dousing inflammatory gossip, says Sue Fox, author of Business Etiquette for Dummies. If someone brings up the indiscretion, speak calmly, and use lines like “I’m really not comfortable discussing that.”

The Buddy System Don’t shun your partner in crime. “You don’t want to hurt the other person’s feelings,” says Hilka Klinkenberg, founder and president of Etiquette International. Have a private chat about what happened, and avoid dismissive statements like “Oh, my God, I can’t believe we did that.”

Composure, Composure, Composure: Act natural, no matter how weird you really feel. “Don’t slink off into a corner or vow to move out of town,” says Fox. Making more drama out of the incident just prolongs the embarrassment.


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