Category Archives: work

Have Job, Will Grumble

Waking up for work in the morning is never an easy thing to do. I think it must be at least 11 times harder when you haven’t done it in 11 months.

After starting a new job earlier this week, I was reminded of that unwelcome gut punched feeling first thing in the morning when you realize you really, REALLY can’t go back to sleep this time. No matter how (very) tired you may still be. No matter how much (5 hours) more you could sleep if given the chance. No matter how much you can think of nothing but doing this:

for the rest of your life. You simply cannot. You must awaken and you MUST get this party started.

The first thought that enters my brain each morning that I wake up at 7:00 am is “Ugh. Seriously?” followed by: “Urrrrgh… this is fucking brutal.” then: “I can’t do this somebody please kill me kill me now.”

What makes it all the worse is the fact that it’s September (BLARF!) and this brings back all sorts of crippling memories from the ghost of 1st week back to school past…

***

It’s the RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RI_[lazy two finger click] of 5:45 am, followed by the RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*R_[irritated palm slap] of 5:54.

It’s the staring at the ceiling in utter frustration and anger from 5:54 and 6 seconds – 5:57 while slowly facing the reality of the responsibility that awaits you; brushing teeth, getting dressed, walking around places and making sounds come out of your mouth all the while trying to look cool and seem normal enough not to become a social pariah at least for one more day. Truly horrific shit…

***

Finally managing to pull myself off of the mattress is at once one of the simplest and most difficult tasks I will encounter all day. Get past the point of actually laying down and you’re golden. Unfortunately, it’s usually not until around noon before I actually start to feel good about the decision I made this morning. The time leading up to that is pure and total hell full of doubt and remorse and daydreams about sleeping while simultaneously eating, watching television and reading internet gossip. Of course, by 2:00 I can’t help but feel irritated that it’s NOT 5:00 yet so it’s really just a ceaseless nightmare.

At least it is for me. For others, waking up is the least of their problems.

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Look What *I* Found! Friday: Yeah, you just TRY to get stuff done (i DARE you) Edition

If you’ve read this blog before it should come as no surprise that I love my cat. It actually borders on obsession. Ok, let’s get real here, it IS obsession. He’s really awesome though, so I have a hard time seeing how this is my fault. He’s adorable and affectionate and, for whatever reason, likes to be wherever I am at. all. times. however inconvenient or inappropriate that place might be*. 

*yes, i’m talking about the bathroom and no, just because i let him in there while i’m showering or toilet… ing, doesn’t mean that i’m in a losing battle for the upper hand in this relationship while simultaneously cultivating a mini fur-monster who knows that if he mews and *scritch*scritch*scritches* at the door relentlessly i’ll let him in there because SOMEBODY has to look out for our home furnishings and i’m starting to not like where this is going so let’s just move on shall we… 

SHALL we? 

When I work from home it is unavoidable that at one point or another “the stinky one” decides that the place he needs to be at that very moment is on my lap or, even better, on the desk: lower half splayed across the mousepad while he claws and chews on the power cord or with legs strategically placed on my keyboard so that I accidentally send out interoffice announcements that read like: 

Hello All, 

I will be taking lunch from 1-eeeeeerrrrtttttttt78uuuiiiiiiooooooooooppppppppppp’ 

So I wasn’t too surprised when I found that monkey falling asleep in this position today: 

It’s really hard to be annoyed with him however TOTALLY ANNOYING it may be to shift his fuzzy little body around my work station so that I can actually get some, like, work done once in a while. 

Sheesh! 

sorry bout dat! dis iz bedur spot? affink dis werk owt gudz cuz nao ai can rilly keep mah EYE on yew...

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Where Dreams Go To Die

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Filed under (me), work

The Quest for Perfection Only Leads to Despair

Growing up I longed to have green eyes like my grandmother. I thought by having green eyes I’d be just that much better: prettier, confident, more likeable. It’s not like I had a PROBLEM with brown eyes in general, just the fact that I had to have them. I wanted to be different and unordinary and in my immediate family filled with eyes of brown, their presence became my oppressor.  

In the 8th grade I wore a pair of disposable purple contacts for almost the entire school year. I wore them long after their life-span until they were yellowed and itchy. (There’s a really good reason they’re labeled as disposable.) I didn’t care though. I suffered through it because I wanted to be just that much closer to my idea of personal perfection.  

It was also around this time that I bought my first straightening iron. With that discovery I was taking great strides toward finding my “best” self. One without kinky-frizzy hair overtaking my head and face. Now I had the sleek and smooth strands that it seemed all the rest of the world had without struggle.  

i was making "sexy-face" in this picture which is WAY more embarrassment than i'm ready to deal with just yet...

I soon learned that all these methods of “improvement” were really just a means of trickery to hide my own self-loathing. For the moment I would feel better about myself because it was like I had duped mother nature: “Haha, bitch. Look at me now! I’m AWESOME! No thanks to you… ”  

living the lie

But contacts must come out at night (unless you want to peel them off your eyeballs the next morning) and at the slightest hint of humidity, even the most fastidiously flattened hair will curl when confronted with moisture. It’s physics. Or something…  

After years of fighting my ocular pigmentation and follicular genetics I decided to toss the lenses once and for all and chop off my hair. I no longer had to worry about spending hours on my tresses or what might happen to it if exposed to certain elements. Extra hold hairspray and Bed Head wax were my good friends and little, if anything, could permeate my super coif…  

giving the camera my best "jerk-face" and Ronald McDonald a run for his money

It wasn’t too long before I began to miss my long hair and all the hassle it had once caused me. Talk about indecisiveness. I just couldn’t figure out what it was that would make me happy with the way I looked. If it wasn’t my hair bothering me then it was my jiggly thighs, chunky arms, convex belly, excessive body hair, et al.  

I began to realize that something had to give. Since I was kind of stuck with my physical attributes no matter how much it des-troyed me to accept, it became clear that something had to be me. I had to start being happy with what I did have and not focus so much on the flaws.   

Isn’t it less plausible that “perfect” people are not without flaw themselves but rather that they refuse to let it ruin them? Food for thought…  

I know I’m not covering ground-breaking content by saying all this. I think most sane/living people have this revelation at one point or another otherwise they end up insane/dead. Since I’m not all that keen on joining the latter just yet, it became clear that I had to start thinking highly of myself* otherwise I couldn’t expect anyone else to.  

I mention all this because for most of my adulthood my “career” has existed in complete opposition with this theory.  

Instead of looking for change inside of myself I kept expecting each of my jobs to hold the answers to my professional pursuits. I never had a good idea of what it was I wanted to do when I “grew up”. I figured with enough time and effort put forth I could shape my job(s) into something that would last the test of time, make me happy and secure. Clearly, this never happened.  

I have never had a job that I wanted. I have only had work that I needed. For the last 5 years I have had 3 jobs all of which I have taken on out of sheer desperation. The need for money has always been the determining factor in seeking employment; my personal needs from a job have always taken a back burner because of this.  

It’s not that I think my story is all that different or all that much worse than anybody elses out there. We have all hated our jobs at one point or another. We have all faced workplace injustices and convinced ourselves that we deserve better than (because in my experience we usually do) what our jobs can offer us.  

The difference is this: I’m not playing second fiddle in my life anymore.  

When I started at my current job, 3 years ago, I was definitely bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. I was eager to please and willing to take on ANYTHING that was up for grabs. It was never a means to be a show-off or better than anyone but to prove, mainly to myself, that I was a hard-working, fast-learner who would rather be busy at work than twiddling my thumbs, clockwatching and praying for day’s end.  

I won’t bore you with the specifics now since I’ve gone into quite elaborate detail about both my rise and fall from grace at work before. I will, however, say this: There was a time when I thought I could make my current job work for me. I envisioned an almost perfect future for myself and my family given the opportunities this job could afford me. I considered myself lucky for having a job that some people work towards and look forward to having their whole life.  

It didn’t take long for me to realize that my quest for “perfection” in a career path I hadn’t really wanted was only leading me to despair. I needed to be happy and if I couldn’t feel that way with what I was doing then I had to be the one to make the change because lord knows the job wasn’t going to just start getting better. I had to learn to accept imperfection from both life AND myself.  

It certainly hasn’t been easy but I’m not about to give up.  

It’s been incredibly hard for the über practical person I am to commit to taking such a risk. To embark upon a chapter full of the unknown has left me riddled with questions in search of answers:  

Q: What if I quit my job and then CAN’T just CANNOT find another job and I have to shuffle back with my tail between my legs begging for employment?  

A: That’s not going to happen because the fact of the matter is that job is NOT right for me. I’ve done my time there, worked my butt off and if it comes down to absolutely needing money I WILL find another job; full-time/part-time/whatever it takes. Even if it means I must take a considerable pay cut, as long as I am happily living in the moment and satisfied by my way of life then that’s all that matters.  

Q: What if I find myself completely unable to handle the prospects of self-employment/entrepreneurship and all the hardships/inconsistencies that are involved?  

A: Then I get myself another crappy corporate job somewhere else and hope it’s not as bad as the place I left behind except I can’t imagine ever being that desperate because I’d rather have sold off all my personal property and/or sell oranges by the freeway than go back to cube-hell. (15 internet points if you can correctly identify the origins of the probably imprecise, definitely pilfered orange quotes!!!)  

Q: What if I realize I’ve made a terrible mistake and the 9-5 corporate life really is for me?  

A: Not gonna happen. Not now, not never. Just, NO.  

I will never be perfect and, moreover, do not wish that for myself anymore. Perfection is boring, stagnant, tepid, flat and EASY. That’s right, the quest for perfection is a pursuit for the easy way out. It always has been for me, anyway. Looking perfect makes it easier to get by, you don’t have to use your intelligence or personality as much and that’s just sad. Working the perfect job is also easy because you will likely never feel the rush of a real challenge, the thrill of seeking out something new and unfamiliar.  

I’m not looking for that anymore. I’m looking to live the shit out of my life.  

Starting… NOW.  

So, if you’re looking for a hard-working, smart-mouthed, wannabe writer/blogger extraordinaire, cat obsessed, manic-depressive misanthrope… I’m totes your gal. 

*My definition of thinking highly of myself fluctuates often. One day thom could mean: I am the effin’ cat’s pajamas! I totally rock at life and I’m going to conquer the pants off of the UNIVERSE!!! Give it another day and thom sounds more like: At least I’m not the biggest heinous-faced loser on the planet. Probably…

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unprofessional diagnosis? life-sucking death-belly with a side of the runs.

The week following BlogHer I spent laid up, all fetal-like, writhing and moaning with an intestinal pain so intense I became convinced I must be afflicted with a late stage stomach cancer of which there is no cure. 

My unprofessional diagnosis? Life-sucking death-belly with a side of the runs. At least that’s what it felt like.

The best way I could describe my discomfort was that someone was giving my lower intestine one helluva indian burn, wringing their hands violently back and forth upon my delicate innards. Eating made it worse and my countless trips to the bathroom did nothing to save myself from the pain. On top of that my head was fuzzy, my footing poor (when I could even bear to walk) and there was a gray cloud of limitless funk hanging over my head due to my overall less than stellar condition.

On Tuesday I made it into work only to leave by 3:30 because I felt so shitty.

On Wednesday I called out after spending most of the night like this:

By Thursday I was lured into the false hope of a day without ailment and I decided I would go into work after the doctor’s appointment I had scheduled for that morning. Professional diagnosis? Gastroenteritis. Basically a bad case of heartburn and diarrhea. According to the doctor this could have been caused by either an infection or by stress.

I felt better just knowing the prognosis and having some medicine to quiet my symptoms but my doctor suggested that if I still felt bad on Monday to schedule an appointment with the diagnostic clinic and provide them with a stool sample. Since I wasn’t bowled over with the prospect of having to present my shit in a cup to a stranger I told myself I was on the road to recovery and I was basically as good as new!

Once mid-day hit I realized just how wrong I was. Here’s a peek of me at the office that day:

Not to say that scene is all that different from any normal day at the office:

And YES I do, in fact, give my work phone the finger in real life because I truly HATE that fucker with every fiber of my being and because I’m super mature like that.

Turns out I WASN’T better and the worst was yet to come.

But I survived (even though the same cannot be said for President Zachary Taylor) and I didn’t have to give any of my infected dumps away! Even worse than the crappy way I felt during that whole time, my week of ailment put a serious kink in our “things to get done for the wedding before the wedding which is ridiculously soon and we probably should have been on this stuff a while ago but who knew wedding planning was so hard?! WE DID but we just procrastinated the fuck out of it all anyway because apparently we like to do things the hard way and because of that it might have caused the life-sucking death-belly sickness by adding to the stress of trying to get it all done in the span of 2 months” list.

So yeah.

I’m kind of jealous of Zachary Taylor right now…

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Sucka

Somehow I have been sucked into spearheading a project for work that I had absolutely no interest in whatsoever.  

Maybe you’re wondering how something like this happens?  

Well, appaaaaaaaaarently, it’s because I am a sucker.  

Who sucks.  

Mightily.  

As you may already know, I hate my job. As more and more time has passed since I started here I have become less and less interested in impressing anyone with my awesomeness. I know I’m awesome. So why should I waste all that magnificence at a place that ranks only slightly above having a persistent stabby migraine accompanied by moderate anal leakage? I just want to do the job I’m paid for and forget this place at the end of my day. That includes avoiding any and all “special projects” that would “look good on my resume” or “present strong innovation for the department”.  

I’m JUST. NOT. INTERESTED.  

mmmmmkay?  

My boss presented the idea of creating a department-wide newsletter a few months ago and I feigned a smile and a nod hoping he would just forget about it like he does everything else in the way of ideas brought to his attention. What I should have realized was that he only forgets the ideas that others come up with. When it’s his idea, one that his boss is now privy to and that will reflect exceptionally well on his annual review, (since it was his idea. you see where I’m going with this?) you can bet the last sugar packet in your grandma’s handbag that it’s going to happen.  

I was told the reason I was approached for this task was due to my having graduated with a degree in Communications.  

When you tell most people you have a Bachelor’s of Arts in Communications it’s usually followed with a closed lipped smile and a raised eyebrow similar to one you might receive if you were 5 years old and just declared you had returned from the moon.  

Apparently, in my line of work, a Communications Undergrad degree screams (use your best Oprah voice): NEWS LETTER!  

Despite my numerous protests and general declarations of disinterest I still managed to get roped into this mess under the pretense that I would work with a group of people to produce the final product. What started as a “group” mysteriously devolved into just one other (highly unreliable) person who, upon our first meeting to discuss said newsletter, stated “Well since this is your project (meaning me) I’ll let you take the reins and you just let me know what you need help with”.  

Yeah, GREAT.   

This is why I didn’t want to be involved with the project in the first place because I knew “being involved” was just clever semantics for “do EVERYTHING”.   

So here I be.  

Forced to actually WORK at work (oh, the HUMANITY!) except as you can see I have chosen to use my time wisely and compose a blog post rather than start on this newsletter mess.  

It’s called prioritization, people…  

My deadline is Friday to come up with SOMETHING in the way of a layout for this exercise in time-wasting. Since I already blew off my responsibility for this project during our last meeting I need to get cracking, otherwise… well otherwise I imagine something truly horrific will happen to me like getting poked in the hand by a bag full of HIV needles that someone disposed of in the public restroom at work instead of in the proper receptacle OR getting mauled in the face by a rabid bear with HIV even though finding a bear in New Jersey is about as probable as finding a bear with HIV so in reality my punishment would be more along the lines of getting a well deserved stink-eye from my boss.  

***  

On my way home from work yesterday I get this text message from the bee:  

ur cat shit all over the place  

Since “all over the place” wasn’t enough detail for me, I asked “WHERE exactly?” to which the bee responded:  

by the door, by the shoes, by the ottoman, by the fireplace, by the litter box, on his legs, on his back, on the side table next to the door, EVERYWHERE.  

I expected to find diarrhea smeared and splattered across every inch of the house based on the level of disgust I could sense from his response to my question. Instead by the time I got home I found a totally un-fazed, mostly shit-free cat and a bee with a severely furrowed brow.  

In my quest to discover what could have been the cause of my little stinker’s butt dysfunction I noticed that, in my haste to make it out the door, I had left the filter complete with the ground remnants of that morning’s coffee in the sink. Since the stinky one is getting bigger by the minute and has recently discovered the joys of the kitchen counter/sink area I deduced he had gotten into my left-over caffeine and thusly exploded his bowels all over the house.  

I thought my explanation/admittance of guilt in the situation would speed up the forgiveness process between the bee and the shit source himself but it didn’t really work the way it played out in my head and instead resulted in a grudge now being held against me.  

Awe-SOME!  

To honor his poop-tasticness, the little orange monkey who lives in my house who is really a cat but probably at least partly a monkey, even more so now since “the incident”, named Scott McKitten, has his own Facebook page and he wants to be your friend!  

He’s new to the whole social networking scene so he might hit you up with a “meep” or a “mrowr” here or there but mostly he just sleeps and plays and looks cute.

He also wants to quiet the vicious rumor that cats suck out your breath while you’re sleeping, especially that of children.

Cats don’t discriminate, silly! They are just as likely to kill a grown human as they are a child and it has more to do with suffocation rather than the act of  sucking breath.  

And if you’re still not convinced he’s “friend” material, he wanted to leave you with this message:  

b mah friend or i shit on ur evrything...

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Cry Me a River, Justin Timberlake…

Well, it’s shaping up to be a regular BLAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH week for blogging. Although I had intended on making another Lenny & Lloyd comic for this week’s post, my wrist started giving me trouble which then led to a loss of sensation in part of my hand which resulted in a diagnosis of CTS from my doctor. So now I’m splinted up and having some difficulty just typing.

I know, I know. Boo to the Hoo.

Hey! You know what I haven’t complained about it awhile?

WORK.

And guess what?

It still BLOWS.

Things are bad everywhere and corporate America is no exception.

When you are the low whoa-man on the totem pole at a place like the one I work for, the only place to go is OUT. As in look elsewhere for employment because the job you’ve got now probably won’t even exist in a few years and lord knows you’re deluded if you think a promotion is even a possibility in your future.

Because it’s not.

They may feed you a decent helping of bullshit to keep you “hanging in there” but the truth is there’s nothing better for you down the line. Sure, they want you to think that there is, because they don’t want to lose the work horses they have while there’s still work to be done.

Maybe you’ve been working there for 20 years. Well don’t think just because you spent the better part of your lifetime slaving away for some soul-eating giant that they’re gonna give a shit about you when the lay-off fairy comes a callin’.

There’s risk involved with any job: corporate, non-profit, independent, etc… but there’s a big difference between faltering due to your own mis-steps as opposed to getting shit-canned because some 6-figure making asshole decides that the best way to save his horribly mis-managed company is by making you redundant.

I’m not trying to say one is worse than the other, because being out of work is the same no matter how you slice it, but I know that I’d rather be the one responsible for my career failures as opposed to some big-wig in a leather chair sending me a pink-slip via our company’s intranet.

***

This afternoon I have an inter-departmental meeting to attend.

Kill me. NOW.

What makes this meeting unlike the others I typically attend is that it’s like HOURS long (2 1/2 to be exact) and it’s mandatory, which leads me to believe that some shit may be or is currently on its way to hitting the proverbial fan. The sorry thing is that I’m kind of hoping for “bad news”.

This is how much I hate what I do: I’d rather face a lay-off at a time when I have no other means of income or another job in the pipeline than continue working where I do.

You might be thinking: What the fuck is WRONG with you?! Why don’t you just look for another job, asshole?

Well, I guess where I’m at now is that I have looked and I don’t want just another job. If my only options for future employment are based around the work experience I already have acquired (customer service, retail sales, copy center employee) I think I’d rather live out of a cardboard box in my parent’s flooded basement.

No, REALLY.

Which only leaves me with one option: I need to take a risk.

I’ve never been good with the prospect of risk-taking. I have low self-esteem and because of it I usually talk myself out of things before I even get the chance to fail. Not to say I’ve not had my fair share of failure, because if falling down in a room full of semi-professional dancers, literally YEARS after you’ve last set foot in a dance studio, during an audition to become a cast member on a Disney Cruise ship isn’t failure well then I-DON’T-KNOW-WHAT-IS.

But seriously folks, it’s GO time. Now or never. Gotta make this happen or fall prey to the vicious corporate machine which will inevitably spit me out more bitter and jaded than I am already.

***

I may have labeled myself as “lazy” in the past but that’s not entirely true.

More like a half-truth.

I can be lazy. I REVEL in laziness from time to time because, DAMMIT, it feels good to do nothing sometimes. However, when crunch time comes around and I’m down to the wire, I can always count on myself to get the job done. Whatever it is.

In short, I’m a highly successful procrastinator.  Some of my best work has been done just moments before it was due.

At least in my opinion…

Which is why I am sort of hoping you’ll help me in wishing for “the worst” for me today at this meeting. Keep your candles burning that some bad news for the department will be delivered which will leave me out of a job here and FORCED to take a much-needed mother-effing-risk in my life.

Otherwise, I fear I will sit complacent in front of this keyboard that has given me little more than a crippled wrist for another 3 years or so just because it’s paying the bills.

For now.

***

In other-news-about-things-I-actually-accomplished-this-week-that-don’t-include-complaining, I acted as guest photographer on the bee’s blog yesterday while he was down with the sickness.

So, scoot your boot on over there and check it out.

Mormon hugs & three-toed sloth open mouth kisses to you all!

Oh, and just so this post isn’t TOTALLY random:

UPDATE:

It’s now after the meeting and I’m still totally employed.

BUMMER…

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Filed under (me), just a thought..., work

‘Cause it’s the little things… That do us harm

Sometimes I just forget to do simple things. Simple things like eating regularly or getting enough sleep. Like taking my meds daily or wearing my occlusal device (which is just a fancy name for a mouth guard) to prevent my compulsive nighttime tooth grinding. I mean it’s not like I don’t want to eat. I LOVE food for chrissake, just not when I have to make it for myself. Now that could be part of the problem. When left on my own, the most I’ll ever “make” is a beeline for the fridge to rake through what’s available in leftovers + 2 minutes in the microwave. Ok, I have been known to crack open a can of tuna fish adding mayo and sugar (don’t you judge me) and, if I have them, carrots and onions but since I don’t really buy fresh food often enough that last part doesn’t usually work out. I guess in my mind, if it takes longer to MAKE the food than to EAT the food, then it’s just not worth it. This does not apply to meals made FOR me, because I will eat those without complaints.

Exposing my shoddy cooking skills wasn’t where I was going with this. To be honest, I wasn’t really GOING anywhere with this post anyway. You see, I’ve been in this weird kind of funk where I feel generally unproductive and lethargic and just BLAH. I haven’t really felt incited to do much of anything since we’ve been settled in our new home. I think all the craziness over the last few weeks/months took a major toll on my brain meat. I’m just EX-HAUSTED. Allllllll. the. time. exhausted and where I would normally be buzzing around getting things done, lately I can’t seem to be bothered. The dishes? Leave ’em. Laundry? What’s wrong with what I’ve got on? I changed my underwear last week. WHAT? Go for a walk? Sorry, can’t. Forgot how.

At work I was presented with the task of taking on a department-wide monthly newsletter. This was met with a healthy grin and multiple emphatic head nods on my part but inside I felt little more than ho-hum at the prospect of this new task. In truth, I would rather be busy here than bored (like usual) but even a project seemingly right up my alley brings little joy to my altogether joyless outlook at the workplace. It seems like I’m just complaining about my job YET AGAIN and in a way that’s exactly what I’m doing only now it’s not just about my job. My lack of motivation and excitement has begun to seep into my personal life as well. Sooooooooo, not really an improvement. Just a more balanced level of melancholia. Shit.

I need an attitude adjustment. Or something. Maybe a green tea colonic would help. It can’t be as heinously awful as it sounds. Right?

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Fallen Star (On The Rise)

Heh. Get this. Yesterday I was speaking with a colleague on a seriously overdue topic. During this conversation she informed me that in the office, I was known anymore as “The Fallen Star”.

Say it with me now: OUCH.

I guess this requires a bit of back-story. When I started at my job  I think my lack of complete and total incapability came as a shock to my superiors because they were used to dealing with a lot more ineptitude and a lot less consistency and determination from their employees. I know this sounds harsh on my co-workers and seems like I’m just painting myself as a brown-nosing douchette, but honestly, I’m just telling it like it is.

(not an actual falling star. I will let the artist explain here)

When I first started my job I was the only member of my team to have a college degree, which IMHO is completely overrated and plenty of college educated folks are nothing more than moronic automatons no matter how you slice it, HOW-EVER, the corporation I work for ranks having a diploma just below its celebratory view of nepotism. You see where I’m going with this, don’t you? Being the “college gal”, the expectations for my output were high, and only continued to grow as my performance began to match my credentials. This wasn’t a problem for me since I have always been a very focused (read: OCD) over-achiever (due to a cripplingly low level of self-esteem) and can’t help but give my all to any project I’m working on.

Needless to say, my bosses just loooooved me. I was the “go-to girl” for all inquiries and issues in my department. I’m talking people employed with the company for 20+ years were coming to me, ME, with questions on procedure or suggestions on how to better execute a plan. I was told that I “energized” the group with my positive attitude and general zeal and fervor for the tasks at hand. In reality all that excitement was due to my need to remain occupied in an otherwise boring boring BO-RING job. I figured that the busier I kept the less I would have to absorb of my surroundings thus denying the realization of how truly UN-fulfilling my job actually was.

This worked well for a time. Then one day all that positivity came crashing down around me practically knocking the marbles right out of my mind. For the span of at least a few months I would cry almost daily at my desk. Sometimes it would just be quiet tears, other times body quaking sobs which would cause those close by to furrow their brows and query “Is everything OK?” I might be a sarcastic bitch on paper but I’m usually pretty nice and composed when face to face so I would just politely nod and excuse myself until I could regain at least the smallest bit of composure to complete the rest of my work day.

I genuinely hadn’t a CLUE what it was that was tearing me up. I figured it had something to do with the job, just resenting how mindless and at times abusive it could be to my psyche. Now, I’ve mentioned this before, but seriously kids, Customer Service? DON’T DO IT! Even when they offer you an absurd amount of money to essentially answer phones and stare at a computer screen, you must realize THIS. IS. A. TRAP! You tell yourself you would be a fool NOT to work there what with all the medical benefits and paid vacation time. That is, until you realize that what you’ve traded for all that is your sanity and now you are left with a compromised mental state and prescriptions for medications you swore you’d never take again.

Anyway, it’s taken me months, close to a year, to figure out what it is that has been eating me up inside. This all goes back to that conversation with the colleague I told you about seemingly 20 paragraphs ago. She said she could relate as she was once The Star of the office and too learned early on that it’s most definitely not all that it’s cracked up to be. You see, The Star is rarely ever praised but behind closed doors. Sure, The Star is appreciated for all the hard work they perform and the trustworthiness they provide the team but it’s not as if they are given awards or monetary supplements, just more crap heaped upon their shoulders. Speaking of the team, they secretly loathe the fond affection The Star receives and retaliate by shirking their own duties and often slinging them off on said object. Are you beginning to see how this star lost her shine?

It became quite upsetting when I would be running around the office trying to get things done only to find one of my co-workers sleeping, you heard me right, SLEEPING, at their desk. If you’re wondering whether or not that person still works here: you better fucking believe they do. I was tired (not sleeping at my desk tired) of being what seemed like the ONLY responsible one, the ONLY one who seemed to give a rat’s ass about ANYTHING to do with our office. The same year I was hired I received an “exceeds expectations” commendation from management which they told me was quite an exclusive honor since I was the only one being awarded as such that year. I was really flattered, not entirely surprised, because when it came down to it, I fucking deserved that honor and probably more for just how much I had gone above and beyond my role in the short time I had been there.

I dealt with the fact that the recession had caused the company to tighten their purse strings and put the quash on bonuses for those who received commendations. I had never gotten a bonus before anyway so what did it matter? Right? WRONG. It started to get to me that the same people who were dragging the team down due to their frequent disappearing acts (30 minutes trips to the cafeteria for breakfast?) which, when your job revolves around being logged into a call center, really adds unneeded pressure to everyone else who is actually DOING their job, were the same people bitching about others getting up from their desk to go to the bathroom without alerting the entire team. I mean, ARE you kidding me?

So you wanna know what happened next? I. JUST. STOPPED. CARING. I figured why should I when no one else does? Why should I work HARDER than most people and make LESS than they do just because of some seniority issue? How is that in any way fair? In retrospect I should have just gone to my superiors and TOLD them of all the -ish that I was privy to, but I had never fancied myself a “snitch”. Little did I know then that it wasn’t snitching so much as standing up for myself. Instead I just made it seem like I stepped off the deep end and left everyone in the office questioning my sanity on a daily basis.

Instead of exhibiting any sense, I resorted to complete immaturity and started acting out. An obvious lapse in judgment, I know this now. I was depressed as hell, hating all things in my life and it was seeping out of my very being during each and every work day. I quit giving a shit about my banal duties. I started slacking majorly, using the majority of my work day to surf the web, pouring my heart out into emails and word documents, some sent, some never seeing the light of day and, TRUST, we are all better off that they didn’t. I truly thought I was losing it. I took on a defensive/morose tone with callers without really meaning to, it just became a part of the natural course of the way things were going. I felt trapped in my job and resentful that I couldn’t seem to escape the hell that it had become for me.

I have finally reached the stage where I know I need to just confront the issues at hand, however sticky they may be. I don’t like being the negative one, bringing bad news to the troops, but I’m past the point of giving a shit. I plan on meeting with my bosses within the next week to just unearth all the crap that has been going for good or for bad because however clichéd it may sound this year is about turning over a new leaf. This time I mean it. I’m not sure how much longer I will (or can bearably) remain in the job I have. I just know that if there is any possible way that I can, I have to quit silently suffering and start working the squeaky wheel angle.

What’s the saying? “The squeaky wheel gets the worm”?

Something like that…

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Public Restroom Etiquette

Here’s something that bothers me. Like, R E A L L Y bothers me. I can’t speak for other places of business but I know that at my work we have 2 communal restrooms that the entire 1st floor shares, one for men, one for women. That’s not the bothersome part. I don’t even know what goes on in the men’s room and you know what? I don’t care to. Boys can be smelly and gross outside of a bathroom so I can only imagine just how smelly and gross they are within those walls. [full-body shudder] I can only speak for the ladies room and what kills, I mean K-I-L-Ls me is that of the 8 stalls in this shared restroom, at most 4 are ever occupied yet there is always, AL-WAYS that person who decides that a standard stall is just not good enough for their precious ass cheeks and they pick the handicapped stall.

Now, if ALL other stalls were full I could understand this practice. If you were trying to avoid going into a stall directly next to another person, I could *kind of* get with that too because I also can’t stand when someone comes into a restroom all but empty save for you and then goes into the stall RIGHT. NEXT. TO. YOURS. I can’t help but wonder: WHY? Do you enjoy the close quartered cacophony of a colleague pissing or (by god say it ain’t so) SHIT-ting within close proximity? Yeah? Well, you are weird. AND gross. But the bone I have to pick isn’t really with this person right now. The person I’m talking about picks the handicapped stall out of all available stalls even though they are clearly not someone who requires the accommodations that the handicapped stall affords. This person is just plain SELFISH.

Oh, I said it. Sel-fish.

I’m not saying I’ve never used the handicapped stall. I have. I’m not proud but I’ve seen the error of my ways. There are obvious advantages to the pick. Well, really only one that I can think of: it’s larger. There you go. Is that what all the fuss is over? Personally, I rank privacy (think single occupancy restrooms) over having an abundance of (mostly extraneous) space and I can more than deal with the perfectly reasonable space allotted for my presence in a standard restroom stall. Based on the stall picking practice at my job, I am in the minority.

So I ask: Is the big stall really worth potentially inconveniencing and disrupting the basic human act of one needing to use the appropriate bathroom accommodations in public? Is it really too much to ask for those folks who do not require handicapped facilities to stay the eff out of that stall unless absolutely necessary? Because I really don’t think it is. I think doing anything less is rude and selfish and completely inconsiderate and have I mentioned SELFISH? Well that’s because it is.

While we are on the subject of etiquette a’ la commode (sounds like ice cream! except it’s not):

1. Please wash your hands. I don’t care if you don’t wash them when you use your bathroom at home. That’s fine. You know why? Because I’M NOT THERE. Do you know how many illnesses I have picked up since choosing (unwisely I might add) to work in an office environment? Well I don’t really know either but it’s a fucking lot I tell you. A. LOT. People are disgusting and disease travels quickly ESPECIALLY when filth mongers choose NOT to wash their hands after wiping their “areas” and then go touch on knobs and handles all of which I try to avoid anyway because as I said before: people are disgusting.

2. People should really refrain from carrying on a conversation with someone while they are on the pot. Is that what you came in here for? If you answered: Yes, then you really need to get out more because most people who go into the bathroom are going in to do just that. No one likes talking while shit or piss is coming out of their bodies. It’s gross and awkward.

That is all.

Carry on…

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