You can't be sued for being rude, an appeals court said.

The state Court of Appeals' ruling, which overturned a lower court decision, resulted from a lawsuit filed by a woman who contended she had to quit her job and undergo therapy because of a co-worker's alleged obnoxious behavior.Nita Mundy, former branch manager of the Anchor Savings Bank in suburban Hapeville, had charged that a public relations officer had subjected her to a series of humiliating pranks.

"Alleged tasteless and rude social conduct . . . is not actionable," the appeals court said.

The court ruled that the Jonesboro woman had no grounds to collect damages from her boss or the co-worker.

Mundy said Wednesday she has not worked since August 1985 and still is being treated for the distress she claimed fellow employee H. Street Kornegay had caused. After leaving her job, she said, she could not even go into a bank for more than a year.

"My job itself was not bad at all," she said in a telephone interview. "I really enjoyed my job."

But during her last six months of work, life became difficult, Mundy said.

"Working with the added stress, or distress, created such an environment that eventually I could not function as a manager," she said. "It was very distressing. It took away from me personally and professionally."