Okay, to be honest, I am the female co-worker in question.
As said, I inherited a piece of horrid code and was told to 'make it work'. I was leaving in one hour for a long weekend. I needed to make it work without a lot of time learning how to make it perfect -- I would have time for that when I returned from vacation. I have a small OCD problem -- I cannot let go of thinking about coding and solutions when a known problem is waiting and I didn't want to spend my weekend worrying/losing sleep over another person's code.
To be frank, the following sums up my statement perfectly:
Don't be pedantic. This is not a teachable moment.
Most of the time I enjoy learning. I used to be a sys admin so CPAN and perl module installation are truly old hat to me. I always use warnings/strict. I'm not afraid to rip code apart. I don't mind being handed a broken piece of code and being asked to fix it -- provided it is not "fix it right this second before vacation".
I appreciate help and enjoy learning from people who can improve my style, show me new modules, show me how to use existing modules, white board over various approaches, and challenges that advance my skills, all the while avoiding condescending comments - more precisely, I enjoy perlmonks.
Thus, although I've been using perl for years, I'm relatively new to the site. I am a novice perlmonk (and fairly proud I made it all the way to novice level!!). :)