Cross-posted from OO!
So my boss is terrible at her job. When I first started there she literally wasn't doing it. We had no trainers, no medical treatment for our athletes despite there being a budget for it. It would sometimes take asking her the same thing 10+ times over the span of 2-3 weeks to get answers to simple questions. It was downright horrific. I reported it to HR, and she almost got fired for it (after corroboration from my colleagues). Truth be told she probably would/should have been but as a woman of color, she'd previously threatened to sue over an imagined discrimination issue in the past so I think they kept her just to avoid all of that. After that, her performance picked up. Still not *good*, but at least bare minimum.
She did, however, increase our workloads - shoveling as many of her responsibilities as she could onto us, delegating even simple tasks rather than do them herself. The feeling i and my colleagues had was that she was creating a paper trail so she'd have grounds to write us up/get us fired in retaliation. Fast forward to a month ago, and I had a meeting scheduled with her over something, with a very short time to do it in. I go into her office, and she hands me a form where she's written me up for "insubordination". It's completely and utterly bogus, all based around two short emails I sent her in fairly quick succession over a short-notice meeting I tried to schedule with her from two days before. I sent one email asking if she could meet, then shortly after sent another saying "Scratch that, I realized I won't have time to do that and get to practice on time." She took my emailing her with the phrase "Scratch that" as rude and insubordinate, despite us having an established history of fairly informal communication via text and email.
Here's where it gets interesting. Right before handing me the notice, she told me that we don't communicate enough and she wants us to talk more. I of course pointed out the absurdity of telling me we should talk more, and then taking offense at a simple email and formally writing me up without talking to me about it. She wasn't interested in that line of thinking. So, I immediately took the email and went to see her boss about it. I gave him the 2 minute run down, handed him the form. He said it was ridiculous, photocopied it, and then told me not to respond, and not to worry about it at all. So I've left it alone since. She's still barely competent, still not doing her job well.
Last week in our staff meeting, she asked us, for the first time since I took the job, what she could do to make our jobs easier. It actually came across as sincere, which was shocking from a woman who has been lazy, dishonest and downright crappy. None of us had an easy answer because this came out of the blue. I decided it might be worth meeting with her to try to clear the air. So, I've tentatively scheduled an informal lunch meeting with her tomorrow. I don't want to spend my time at my job watching my back because of the knife I think she is currently sharpening to stick there. At the same time I work in an at-will state and I'm a white male - the most fire-able of commodities even though I am excellent at my job. Is meeting with her and trying to clear the air a bad idea? Is it stupid of me to think she might handle this like an adult, talk about the issues we've had and try to sort it all out? Should I keep the lunch light, informal and not touch on anything substantial?
Hive mind I ask thee: what is my best course of action?