Where I work, there is a certain expectancy that you are going to show up for work every day and be prepared to perform your duties. I realize that this expectation seems rather obvious, but there are other factors to consider. For example, here at the office I accrue sick time. Right now I have almost 400 hours of sick time on the books. That's a lot of time I could miss and still receive my normal salary. We accrue vacation time (of which I use a lot), which is more time I could use to miss work. And last, for every designated holiday (of which there 8 per year) I accrue 8 hours of holiday time which, yes, I could use to take time off from work. All these things in mind, people still issue out a verbal assault on those who are not at work (usually in good fun, but still an assault none-the-less).
Now, I myself am in a particular quandary. I plan to miss a minimal amount of work, although I will be put onto a light duty status tomorrow. I will be here, but will pretty much be limited to a desk job and answering phones. Not ideal, but is better than me not being here at all. Even though I won't be missing work (yet) I am not exempt from the verbal abuse.
Take my good friend Dean, for example. Apparently, according to him, my modified work status will not really change anything because my co-workers are used to carrying my slack anyway. My good friend Tim has stated that they hardly notice me at all anyway, and simply have gotten used to the very little amount of work that I do. My wife, simply states that I do my best to do as little as possible and this won't make any difference either.
Do I take offense to this? Not in the least. Do I think they don't care? Absolutely not. I don't know where this odd way of showing support and care for a person came from. Saying the opposite of what you really mean seems, well, backwards. But it is what it is. There is a saying that goes around the office to some of the new guys, as they take a ration of flack for simply being the new guy, "When we are joking with you, its because we like you. When no one talks to you, you should be worried." And so it is, and so it is.
So I am here at work right now, knowing that moving my ankle as little possible is the only thing that keeps it from hurting. And to my dear friends who so happily comment on my inability to do my job, I say "The phone in front of me is ringing. Some one hand it to me!"