Posted in blurbs, etcetera, feelings, work

Now, where did THAT come from?

Earlier this week, I was having lunch at my desk, as I often do. Boss #2 stopped by to contribute some work-related info (which is, of course, the downside in lunching at one’s desk), but as he turned to go, he spied my sandwich. He asked, “Is that ciabatta bread? Did you bake that?” Yes, it was ciabatta bread, but no, I definitely didn’t bake it… and even now, I’m curious as to what inspired that question. While I can cook, I’m far from being a culinary legend, and I consider bread-baking something done by unearthly people like Rachael Ray and Martha Stewart. In any event, I decided to take it as a compliment.

The day after the previous incident, I was at Wal-Mart (looking for more ciabatta bread for which I could take baking credit). A fellow customer gets my attention and queries, “Do you have any idea where I would find anchovy paste?” Something about the phrase “anchovy paste” really turns my stomach, but I rose above it and thought for a moment, trying to be helpful. “Might it be with the canned meats?” The lady responded that she hadn’t thought of that, and off she went. I was left to wrap my head around the fact that I – apparently – I look like someone familiar with disgustingly-named fish products.

Also this week, the water cooler at work would not dispense cold water, so I called our water-cooler-unit supplier. It would be the next day before the service guy could come out, but the office lady suggested that I “unplug it, wait an hour and plug it back in.” So… just so I’m understanding the situation here: I need to reboot the water cooler?! (FYI, I was desperate, so I tried it. Didn’t work.)

Last Sunday at church, everyone was meeting and greeting after the evening service. I stopped to shake hands with our newest deacon. After our hellos, he proceeds, “Now, your husband – does he go to church here?” I admit, that question took me so by surprise that I was completely at a loss for how to respond. Fortunately the pastor’s wife was one step away, and she informed the deacon that I don’t have a husband. Recovering, I agreed: nope, no husband. The deacon was all, “Oh, well, we’ll have to work on that,” and turned to speak to someone else. Was he embarrassed and trying to change the subject? I hope not. I don’t feel insulted; I just wonder what led him to think that I’m married, since he’s been attending church there for several years. I had recently posted a message at Facebook, welcoming my boyfriend to the site, and I tried to recall if that deacon was a friend there… but I don’t think he is, actually. :shrug:

Speaking of Jeff joining Facebook, it’s just another sentence in the story of a guy and a girl… in the age of social media. He joins FB back in April of 2011, finally tells me about it two years later, and then his dad sends me a friend request…? His dad’s a nice guy, and I don’t write anything at FB (or on-line, really, knowing that a FB friend with time on his hands could follow what I’ve posted there and wind up here :waves to FB friends:) that’s not fit for public viewing, so I accepted the request. But nagging thoughts emerged. “Did I take too long to respond to the request?” “Will he critique what I’ve written?” “What happens to our friendship status if Jeff and I break up??” Sigh. I’m not sure I’m cut out for the nuances of modern-day relationships…

In other news, I’m busy, busy, busy, as I keep finding things to do. Now that the growing season is here, yard chores constantly beckon, so I’ll have even less time for my fun computer hobbies. (:frowny face:) Plus, I’ve been trying to get organized around the house, because my severe case of “stuff-itis” is starting to stress me out. And at work, the projects keep piling up, so much so that I’m starting to identify strongly with one of my colleagues; she had accepted a position with more responsibility, and after being asked if she was starting to get caught up, she said with resignation, “I have the feeling I’ll never be caught up on anything ever again.” Sigh, again.

Posted in feelings, work

work wah wahs

After last week ended on such a high note at work – namely getting a compliment from one of the bosses on my performance in a meeting – this week started out in a deep pit, as an error that our team collectively overlooked came to light.

They told me clearly at the start of these projects, “XYZ is your part of the effort.” So I’ve been diligently working on the so-called My Part. Last week’s mistake was in the part of the project that was supposed to come to me already done. I’m not trying to make excuses… or maybe I am, a little bit. I feel so defensive about this because, somehow, it seems like everything that goes wrong is made to be my fault.

For example, when I asked a question earlier this week about some work that was passed on to me, the first thing the boss says is, “Well, so-and-so isn’t an expert in this.” Okay, A) neither am I (even close to being) an expert, and they’ve been doing it longer than I, and B) My question wasn’t intended to point out anyone’s “lack of expertise.” I was simply trying to learn what I’m supposed to do. See point A.

And on a teleconference yesterday, the boss said to me specifically, “Is there anything else we can do to help you… understand?” I felt like replying, “Am I somehow conveying that I DON’T understand?” Apparently the boss mistook my listening politely to the others rambling on as a sign that I was not following the conversation. (Note to self, next meeting say “AMEN!” whenever anyone else makes a point.) It seems like, while everyone else is supposed to be so much more experienced – just ask them! – when they make a mistake it gets excused. It also seems as if the advances I make, such as last week’s good meeting, are not as important as my general (and rampant, in their eyes) lack of knowledge.

Compounding my frustration on this is that, except for last week’s compliment and the occasional “good catch” after I bring up a point, I have no idea how my bosses think I’m doing. Despite my griping above, I really do like the work, at least most of the time. I’d like to ask for some feedback, but I’m afraid that if I try to bring up the points I just listed, it’ll sound like whining… which it pretty much is. Sigh.

Or should I say, “Wah”?

Posted in etcetera, work

tripping

I’ve been home for a few weeks, so I’m a bit late in recapping my last two business trips, but … oh well! Work-wise, I feel like I’m slowly learning what I need to do, although the boss is still too busy or distracted (or maybe dismayed?) to offer much feedback at this point. :shrug: I carry on.

Anyway, trip “highlights”:

Trip #3 – (Small Town), Kentucky

  • Finally! A destination we could drive to! (Okay, technically we could drive to any of them, but perhaps a road trip from Alabama to Washington state isn’t the most efficient course of action, hmm?)
  • And since we did drive, I was able to take my biggest suitcase, in addition to not have to worry about how many fluid ounces of liquids I was packing.
  • It snowed six inches the first night we were there and though I’ve been to Nebraska in February, that six inches now ranks as the most snow I’ve seen in Real Life. (Yes, I know that’s not a whole lot. And I like it that way.)
  • Thankfully, the Street Department/Road People kept the roads in working order, so we didn’t miss any days of meetings.
  • Even More Thankfully, we were able to delay our first meetings each day by about an hour. An extra hour of sleep = woo hoo! Especially in my new arch-nemesis, the Eastern Time Zone. :glares in that direction:

Trip #4 – Tucson, Arizona

  • Staring down the multiple hours of the trip to our destination – which included a long car ride – I tried Dramamine before the second leg of our flight. And it worked! No travel sickness = woo hoo.
  • The first day of our meetings, in my efforts to find a copier, I was discovered by a decidedly unfriendly man who demanded to know what I was doing in “his” building. I promptly walked the man and his power trip down to the conference room to talk to the boss.
  • The 70-degree Arizona weather was very, very much appreciated, since it was still *cold* back home.
  • It was my first trip to the desert, and I really found the scenery beautiful. One evening I opted out of a social function and walked around the neighborhood near our hotel.
  • On the drive to the airport, someone commented and someone else agreed that the traveling life might be too tempting for young people… and I wondered if they could tell that I had found one of the guys we met with attractive. 😉

Pictures are posted will be posted as soon as I move the photo gallery away from the ad-infestation that is fotki.com.

Posted in work

I’ll fly away

Last week I took the second business trip of my new career — the second of many, I’m told. Since that’s pretty much all that’s going on in my life, I’ll recap the highlights… hmm, let me put that in quotes… “highlights” of the trips:

Trip #1 – Seattle, Washington

  • After my longest flight so far, then riding to the hotel in a vehicle with atrocious New Car Smell, I had more than a little travel sickness for the rest of my first day there. (Apologies to the Hampton Inn for what I did in your lobby trashcan…)
  • During meetings about the project, I met about thirty new people and had considerable trouble keeping their names straight. (Does no one wear name tags anymore??)
  • There’s a lot of… waiting… involved at these meetings. That may be the hardest part. (Thank you, Tom Petty.)
  • Actually, the hardest part is being new and having to learn what the heck everyone is talking about. Until then, I try to listen, look thoughtful, and not say anything to embarrass the boss.
  • One of the guys on one of our teams is very cute and nice. He’s also very taken which should go without saying because those are typically the guys I find attractive!

Trip #2 – Augusta, Georgia

  • I was thrilled to be closer to home.
  • However, my room overlooked a noisy four-lane highway, and I got little sleep the whole three nights we were there.
  • On the bright side, my room had a Jacuzzi tub, and yes, I *did* make time to soak in it all three nights we were there. I credit that tub with helping me keep my sanity, because…
  • From something the boss said during our pre-meeting meeting, I concluded that he wasn’t impressed with my report from the first trip. I found the thought that he was writing me off after one experience very, very frustrating, and I was stressed about it for the better part of the trip.
  • Then the first day of meetings started with a walk in the cold (albeit light) rain from building to building looking for the correct conference room.
  • I think I’m catching on to learning new people. I was in charge of recording attendees’ names in the meeting minutes and that helped me put names with faces.
  • A nice part of these trips is going out for dinner with our team of five to eight people. I’m pretty quiet – as usual – but there tend to be some good conversationalists in the group.
  • On the trip home, the boss said – without prompting from me, because I was afraid to ask – that it seems I’m catching on to what I need to be doing. That really helped put my mind at ease. I mean, I know I’ve got much to learn; I just want to feel I’m at least moving in the right direction!

Jeff said that some people he works with are impressed with my new traveling job, and my first thought was, “Obviously, they’ve never traveled like that, or they wouldn’t be impressed at all.” It’s true that traveling is taking some adjusting to, but I’m trying to make the best of it. I just remind myself that I could stay at home all the time – and still be unemployed.

Posted in etcetera, work

now that’s a delayed response

Two days ago I received a rejection from a job application. Since I’ve been at my new job for two months now, I knew that the company’s response was at least that old.

Curiosity got the better of me, and I looked up in my notes exactly when I had applied: August 7th. So this rejection is about four(!) months(!) past due. Thanks, Camber, for (finally) deigning to give me an answer, but you know, I kinda already figured out that I was not the candidate selected for that esteemed Administrative Assistant position.

But seriously, thanks for the reminder that job-hunting is beyond frustrating, and that I’m so, so blessed to have actually found a job.

Posted in websites, work

a website oversight

Work is going well! Mostly, I’ve been reading to get familiar with the business, their software, etc. and that can make for a long day, but it’s a necessary first step. Happily, I realized yesterday that all of the reading *is* serving its purpose, as I do feel more familiar with the material.

In other news, this week I was finally able to check one of my (twenty or so) old email accounts. It had – I exaggerate not – over 4000 emails. Of course, 3996 of them were spam. Of the four valid ones, one was a test email I’d recently sent, which is actually what inspired me to do the work to check that account. But the other three non-spams were warnings from TheFanlistings.org. Apparently my MacGyver fanlisting was on the troubles list, and since I didn’t respond to their two warnings, they wrote to say that it was removed from the network. And this happened back in October of 2007. Oops!

I would’ve sworn I checked the TFL.org site not long ago to be sure my three sites were still listed. I guess I checked the two I thought were more likely to have been removed. Oops again.

This is not a tragedy. I think of the MacGyver site primarily as a fan website, and the bulk of its traffic is from people who are looking for MacGyver information. Still, I am embarrassed at this oversight, and after checking to see that there isn’t a new Mac fan listing, I applied for mine to be it again.

And if they say no, the new layout was made in such a way that it’ll be very easy to remove the fanlisting related links from the menu.