Monday, July 31, 2006

Get this!

I received the following two emails today:

"ok I will out you down and the new contract for Oom's office ok."

Translated: Ok, I will put you down as the new contact for Oom's office, ok?

"it is contracting for equitrust ed needs to sign on the signature Mark Woods is writing a piece"

Translated: It is a contract for EquiTrust. Ed needs to sign it in order to appoint Mark Woods who has some new business to write.

And this from so-called business professionals!

Kiss my grits and grit my teeth!

Bad case of the gripes

Oh, do I have a bad case of the gripes! Ooo, I just wanna gripe everyone's head off! You ever have one of those days when you really want to have a good day and even though you woke up on the wrong side of the bed, you keep thinking to yourself, "Stay positive, don't let little things get to you." Well, it wouldn't work if you worked here, that's for sure!

You ever work for one of those people that need to take psychotripic meds just to get through the day? You ever work for someone who assumes that because they are losing their grip on their life, so are you? You ever work for someone who seems not to notice the amazing things you do on the job everyday, but seems to have a knack for zooming in on irrelevant issues? And then calling you into her office to drill you about it? That is the woman I work for.

Yes, I work for Cruella DeVille. Since she started working here in February, she has been on vacation FIVE TIMES. Five. First, she took a cruise. The next week she went to Mexico. She's taken days off to spend with her daughter. She took a whole week off to watch her daughter come in 27th place in a sailboat race. She went to Florida with friends after hearing that one friend was driving down there and wanted company. That was a two-weeker. Yes, she has taken all this time and more, and she actually had the audacity to ask me exactly how much time I expected to take during Chris's surgery. To be quite precise, I took.....the day of the surgery off, two hours the next morning, and two hours when he was dicharged. That was it! But, people, come on! Where was my loyalty? I really should have been here. After all, Chris is an adult, is he not? What did I need to be there for?

But that is not all. She called me in her office one day to ask me if my daughter had hacked into our system. My ten year old daughter! A snafu caused her name to be autopopulated by MS Office as the author on all documents I edited and saved. It was quite innocent, but that didn't prevent me from being called on the carpet about it.

THEN she called me in her office last week to ask me if everything was ok in my life. The reason? A new employee ordered the wrong mailer card from our lead company and 5,000 went out wrong. Another new employee paid an agent wrong. And then when I got some contracts together for her, I accidentally included two sets of the same paperwork onto the back of each contract. Ok, the first two things had nothing to do with me and the last? An irrelevant mistake. But she seriously wanted to know if everything was ok with me.

Well, guess what? It's not. I'm deeply frustrated. I took over this position from a person that had embroiled an absolute rat's nest of paperwork into his ever-growing pile of incompetance and then threw up his hands and declared it impossible. I reordered the entire department, designed a process that drastically reduced processing time for contracts and facilitated helping agents write business sooner. I'm doing double the volume of licensing than the guy who screwed everything up and to top it all off, he was doing a lot of things wrong. Me? I straightened it out and am not making his mistakes. But...yet I have to listen to her ask me the most ridiculous, inane, irrelevant questions about whether or not I feel overwhelmed. Or if I'm not happy with Chris or if his health situation is overwhelming me.

I'm finding that her little interrogation sessions with me are making my job almost insufferable.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Copping the Insanity

Andrea Yates is not guilty of drowning her five children, despite having systematically coaxed each one into the bathroom only to drown them in the bathtub. Number one was undoubtedly duped. But what about number two? And three and four and five? Did they not scream and cry and beg for their life, seeing their siblings lying still and lifeless in a tub full of water?

Andrea Yates was consumed with delusions about one son growing up to be a homosexual prostitute and the media bugging her home to catch her being a bad mother. Tops on the list? Not home schooling well enough. Hey, wouldn't any concerned parent drown their children after facing such horrific thoughts?

It is not that I don't feel that she is a sick woman. It would take an incredibly sick person to systematically destroy each child born of her womb one by one. And I have experienced first hand the mental distortions extreme religion can bring. Heck, I even got a little distorted myself once upon a time. I can relate to having deeply-rooted fears about the consequences of my rotten parenting. I've imagined the future counseling sessions where my daughters tearfully relate my early-morning rantings as I attempted to pry them out of bed or maybe they'll relate the time I threw their little tea table for no good reason. I can just see the counselor sadly shaking his head and making incriminating notes in the margins of his notepad about how I undermined my children's chances for happiness. And I've imagined my daughters growing up to become tragically involved with men who beat them or exploit them or get them hooked on drugs. I've played through hundreds of scenarios where their lives end in some self-destructive act because of the pain I inflicted on them as a parent. Oh, yeah, I have felt Andrea Yates' pain.

But here's the distinction: I honestly believe that there is hope as long as they are alive. As long as they are alive, I have a chance to do it right today. I can't take back the mistakes I've made in the past, but I can admit when I had been wrong and make an honest effort to do better. And I can show them that I love them, I can make better choices as a parent, and I can hopefully make a difference in their life.

With life, there is always hope. With death, the question of whether we could have ever worked it out is done. Finis. Exterminated. I feel for Andrea Yates and for her five children and for her husband and all the family and friends who will never be able to explore the possibilities for making a good life for those children.

But even as my heart goes out to Andrea, a part of me holds back. In my heart, it is perhaps too much of a leap for me to completely absolve her. But one thing is for sure: as long as she lives, so does the hope that somehow in some way, her life can count for more than the media hype of a juicy story. If anything can be drawn from the deaths of those children, it would be a better understanding of the devastating effects of postpartum depression and the desperate need these mothers have for professional intervention (not religious persecution).

Five innocent children died, but hopefully more will live because of what she has done. And countless loved ones will be spared the devastating grief and guilt and horror of living with the aftermath. No, I can't completely absolve Andrea Yates, but I can hope for a better tomorrow for the millions of women and children who are at risk, and hope that their lives, too, will go on.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Whoah, Nellie!

Alright, everyone, in lieu of actually coming up with something cunning and witty to say, I have devised instead something meant to spark *your* intellect! You know how some people say things that they think makes them look smart when in fact they've misused the word and they look like a pretentious ass?

Oh, yeah. Gotta love it!

Here's a great example: My marketing manager was upbraiding a co-worker for not responding to an agent's inquiry properly.

Manager: "Geeez, Shawn," she said, "He's going to think you totally disked him!"
Me: "Did you just say disked????"
Her: "Yeah. Disked."
Me: "You mean like with a K? As in like a rubber disk?"
Her: "That isn't right?"

Ok, maybe she wasn't trying to sound smart, but in her snooty-patooty way she was trying to show she could hang and use the lingo from the streets but just ended up looking like she just crawled from under her pressed-coal rock. A wetback. Or is it greenback? Anyway, she's also the one who gave me the inspiration for the "Holy Macro" title to my blog posting a while back. Apparently she's not up on her fish.

So, do you have a good one? Share it with my readers and to the commentor with the best story gets a autographed picture of your's truly!!! Now, hey, who wouldn't want that, right!?!?

By the way, did I spell "whoah" right? It does have that "ah" combo, right? to exist without the little red squiggly lines that tell me I've typo-ed again, cuz we all know I wouldn't misspell a word, n'est ce pas?!?!?!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

The future of this blog is threatened

As my readers have pointed out, my blog has become more of a "Chris-Watch" than the political and social commentary it started out to be. Part of the reason for that is of course my overwhelming love for Chris, and the entrenched involvement he has in every aspect of my life. Not to mention which, we've had some rather alarming developments lately.

In light of all this, my thoughts keep going back to the role that this blog has played and continues to play in my life. To be quite honest, I've seriously considered discontinuing this blog altogether. Once upon a time, I had a plethora of time on my hands to contemplate the world around me and devise clever and witty commentaries meant to spawn some serious thinking in my readers' minds - whether they agreed with me or not. As a matter of fact, I would often take a controversial stance just to provoke people into more clearly defining what it was they actually believed regarding the issue. That was fun. I enjoyed it.

Then, of course, I figured out how to post pictures to my blog like my good brudda, Chill Daddy. Then my thoughts about my blog began to evolve a little more. It became a way of keeping family members updated on life's carryings-on. However, as life got more and more busy, I found I wasn't even doing that.

And so the question of my blog's future hangs in the balance.

I'm not writing everyday because I simply don't have time. Plus, if I take time from my busy life to write, I want it to have meaning and purpose - especially purpose - and I'm not sure I have a clearly defined purpose for writing at this time in my life other than just a certain vain fulfillment I get in putting my words out into the world which frankly doesn't qualify as meaningful. I still think that using my blog to post pictures to keep my family updated is a good idea, but blogger is not the best medium for posting pictures. There are other on-line services that do a much better job.

So, I'm in a quandry. And my blog-world silence speaks volumes about that quandry.