30 July 2007

I took today off. I've slept through most of it, although I have done a couple things-went to breakfast with a neighbour, and put dinner in the oven. Oh yeah, I let Mozart blog a bit over on his blog over at www.shecallsmemozart.blogspot.com

The cat's got a pretty good blog:) He's been pretty good company considering that I've worked the last twenty days straight. He's not destroyed anything, or even missed the litter box on purpose, the #1 way for a cat to let you know he or she is not impressed with your misdeeds.

Wot a grreat cat!

As mentioned above, I've worked the last twenty days-straight. So I need to blog off and go clean the science projects out of the fridge, and I should probably firehose the ladies room.


11 July 2007

I am a real person again.

There is a washing machine running in my humble abode. There is a dryer in there, too, waiting for a load of clothes to emerge from the washer-it will have a bit of a wait as I am running at least one and more likely two loads of cleansing bleach through with HOT-HOT-HOT water and no clothes. The washer and dryer, a mis-matched but lovely none the less pair, are after all used and only a fool throws a load of clothing in a used washer and dryer first day out.

Two of my neighbours fetched the set home for me from the secondhand store today, wrestling the appliances in through a pouring rain up the steep steps and across the narrow porch until finally the pair landed in the laundry room.

By God's hand, I was able to leave work early and come home via the Lowes, where I tried to find hoses a bit less deluxe than the $22.00 braided steel hoses I ended up with-turns out there is no such thing as a cheap pair of rubber hoses for a washing machine anymore. Oh well, I have to admit the steel hoses look quite smart really.

$47.00 later I was the proud and excited owner of everything I needed to hook up the washing machine and dryer.

If you doubt God is good, you need only tell yourself he landed me where my neighbour's are good and generous people, amoung them a licensed contractor who kindly hooked up the power cord to the dryer when I realized I was less abled than I thought to figure out where the wires go-how did I ever get my last one hooked up-OH, I know, I had the owner's manual! Rest assured, I've downloaded the one from the washing machine manufacturer's website, the dryer people want me send them three dollars. I'm thinking about it.

The washer, thank-heavens is a no-brainer; the dryer came with fancy ground wires (my Maytag didn't have that!). The neighbour came in, hooked up the dryer, moved the appliances into place, tightened the washer hoses, visited for a few minutes and then departed.

I got busy with the bleach.

I sit here at the keyboard marveling that I am once again a real person-I've a washer and dryer to prove it. I'm not quite sure why a pair of appliances speak to one's validity as a real person, I only know that is the case. I felt adrift, rootless; now I've an anchor busily cleaning itself in the next room. The house feels more like a real home now-how strange to be the owner of a washing machine and dryer again! How lovely to know that I can throw a load in and go about another task as the laundry cleans.

How grand it feels to feel real again; how wonderful, how wonderful.

I was on the Eastern Side, the tornadoes raged and howled all around me; Gator and I emerged from the bathroom to see our immediate environs eerily untouched yet the shed doors across the street hung at unnatural angles and swung drunkenly; tin roofing was everywhere but where it was supposed to be and other great pieces of debris lying about made me think of the old cliche of a giant child's haphazardly discarded toys.

Yet Gator and I and the spot we stood on were completely untouched. Not a scratch on my brand new car nor a leak anywhere in our building-more 'proof' should you truly require it. I care but only a little that my stored goods did mold like you would not believe unless you've been through it your own self. Gator, Fox, 'Bas, and me lived through it, although not together.

At the worst point of the continuous and simultaneous tornadoes ravaging my little corner of Houston County Alabama I was completely sure I was about to die. I used those last minutes to text Fox a farewell message as I knew that even if the calls were not going through, the text would eventually make it's way to my son and he would know however an imperfect mother I had been, I loved him, his son, and spent my last living moments saying good-bye.

And yet.

And yet standing there awed by the damage and the miracle of my seeming unscathed survival I knew I was not the same person who went into the tub with the dog. I may never be again. I stood there looking around, looking at the dog, the cell phone in my hand finally ringing and thought to myself something truly terrible had happened. Not just to me but to the entire world.

A lot of the choices I made after Hurricane Ivan I made because, I've come to see, of my profound shock.

I've come to believe that for me, Ivan was the final straw.

07 July 2007

OK! I hate to be right, and I love to be wrong.

The co-worker previously mentioned apparently thought about things, and 'the next day' went rather well. And the day after that as well.

So I was wrong about that. Whew, 'coz I actually love my job!

But I was also right about her, she is frustrated with her home situation and is more suited to being a professional working outside the home.

Not that great a problem-we recognize the tremendous asset she is and work with (and sadly, a little around) her skills set. Now there is a big fat hairy DUH!

I just hate that she was so unpleasant, and so willing to make things very difficult when she perceived me as a threat. (GODS! I am so everlastingly tired of being perceived as a threat!) I especially hated the quite counter-productive whispering campaign she started. I am about production-can you say "Job Security"? I know I can!

Tuesday when I went in I demanded...her input. Actually I demanded input of everyone and she ended up being the one who compiled the intel. And, working as a real team we managed to come up with a real solution that worked. I hope we can keep that momentum going, and I truly hope that our boss, who will be returning from holiday on Monday, is not going to throw a monkey wrench into things. I also hope our mutual boss doesn't fire our team boss upon his return from his holiday.

Ahhhh, real life...

Speaking of, I am really hoping to get some boxes unpacked, the kitchen cabinets painted, and the bathroom towel racks up. If I get all that done, I'll be a happy camper.

I should do some laundry, but I am also hoping that by the end of the day, the washer and dryer I found used, and in excellent condition, have been installed and I am happily adding to carbon emissions, blah, blah, blah-trust me PLEASE when I tell you the automatic washer and dryer are one of God's greatest gifts to Mankind!

After one year (minus about 20 days) of hand-washing all of my clothing including towels (a chore chosen after finding out the local laundromat owner refuses to turn the hot water on until all the Hispanics leave town) I know absolutely that the automatic washing machine is NOT a luxury but a real necessity!

I want to be 'green' and I am buying a reel mower, does that make you feel better? I'm even springing for the optional sharpening kit.

Well, that's all from the trenches. Have a great weekend!

04 July 2007

Happy Fourth of July!

I spent all of mine (so far) looking at dog blogs and local rescue sites. I think I may be ready to actually find another dog.


I've been working a lot of overtime; I left work last night so late I was not home until 2100! The cat flung himself at me and wouldn't let me alone until I fell asleep on the sofa.

I thought groggily that I would set the couch on fire with a lit cigarette, so I made myself get up and go to bed about an hour after I got in.

Not the sort of life one brings a dog into. Maybe I'll just donate the cost of dog food and vet care to a local group.

One of my co-workers asked what I'll be doing for the Fourth, when I told him I would be painting the kitchen cabinets he looked as though he felt sorry for me, so I lied and said I would be BBQing with the neighbours, too.

The cabinets are not painted, and all of my kitchenware is still slopped into boxes and stacked everywhere.

I think I might be in trouble-I just don't care anymore about anything because everything I care about goes away. No matter what I do, or how I do it, things just always seem to go south...

I know that sounds extreme, and it isn't really true, although right now it sure feels that way!

I got a promotion with pay-Hurrah! But apparently one of my co-workers who is unfortunately the HR guy's wife has decided that although she's run off three other people and is the root cause of our department being the laughingstock of our company, I am the problem.

She is part time but seems to run the department, to it's detriment because she end runs our boss, spreads gossip about people and then accuses them of spreading things about her, screws up just about everything she touches, and goes off thinking she's saved the day again while we have to clean up her messes...

Tuesday I told her I am not trying to make her look incompetent and the things she is incensed about me enforcing are things that have always been the rules-I didn't make them up!

Tuesday she told me that since I transferred into the department no-one is happy and there is all this brand new squabbling going on.

Tuesday I told her if she wanted a meeting we would have one with our bosses and someone from corporate.

Tuesday, I am reasonably certain, she decided I'm going to be fired.

Meanwhile, I figured out the spreadsheet they have been having such trouble with and was told two thirds of the way through that I had approval to go ahead with the rest of the project because the management and accounting had been following my progress with the analysis on the shared software and could see I knew what I was doing...

Which is not going to endear me any further to the 'ladies' I work with since they couldn't figure it out and are responsible for making some serious mistakes that have cost our company thousands and thousands of dollars.

Nope, not the sort of life to bring a dog into. I think the cat and I may be homeless if the Drama Princess gets her way. I don't think that I have unfortunately amassed quite a lot of evidence of her, er, well, incompetence, is going to help, either.

And my patience has worn dangerously thin, as in if her little best friend who is now unfortunately my boss pushes me too far I may just have to tell her to go to hell.

See, the HR guy's wife thinks she should have my job, our boss' job, and maybe all the jobs in our department. She used to work full-time for another company, has some things going on at home that preclude her working full-time, and is going through menopause at the same time. She managed to drive the guy who was our boss to transfer to another department, three vault managers in a row to transfer or quit, and is now working on me.

She spent the last couple of days our boss was in town whispering-no, really, I'm not making it up, they were whispering, and cramming things into file drawers, and arranging to have my email diverted to my old boss. Then she spent Friday, Monday and Tuesday undermining me with my old boss, who is just nice enough to fall in with her until it hits the fan, which it almost did and I was able to stave off until she got him all fired up again, and he went upstairs and made us all look even more like fools. Which unfortunately right now only Accounting and I know about, but word wil get around...She worked on him all day Tuesday and by the time he left he was looking at me as though I am the enemy; wait till he finds out how stupid she made him look-why the hell do I bother??

She might just manage it, too, getting me fired. She needs to be transferred somewhere she can't do any damage, she needs to get a different job, she needs a damn attitude adjustment, because what really pisses her off is that I am older and look better, have a job she wants, and that our boss was thrilled by the work I was doing.

Actually, any of our team has a job she'd like to have-she wants to be working full time and have the respect she thinks she deserves. Did I mention she is a Southern Belle, too? The worst kind, the claw her way to the social top kind, who thinks her parent's friendship with the Archbishop and her New Orleans college education entitles her to be the ONLY Drama Princess. She refuses to understand there is no room for Drama Princess' in adult life and she is perfectly willing to be a real bitch about anyone she perceives as getting in her way. That kind of Princess Southern Belle, come on, you know at least one.

She wants our boss' job, she wants my job, she wants the vault manager job, and I know that poor kid who just got the job has no clue that she is going to shred him. He thinks she is his friend and won't speak to me while she is around.

Hmmmmm, that might be interesting to watch. I hope I get to keep my job at least long enough to see what happens. But I kinda doubt it. She is going to be thoroughly pissed when she finds out I managed to do the spreadsheet she and the department boss have not been able to figure out even with a bullet list. A bullet list they hid just before the boss went on her vacation last week thinking that when I couldn't do the spreadsheet they would be vindicated.

Nope, sorry. I found the bullet list that I didn't even know existed that my boss had stuffed in to the file drawer under the previous week material that I wanted to look at in hopes of figuring out the way to start the spreadsheet.

After about a half hour of studying I sat down to the spreadsheet. I got it done in a bit too many hours, but I got it done. And it's right, and I understand it, and I felt pretty good about it until I thought about the reaction I'll be facing tomorrow.

What is upsetting is that I wasn't telling anyone that she was incompetent, her work was.

02 July 2007

In memory of Gator, will you please go to dogsayeview.blogspot.com and click on the purple link? The dog mom there is giving a very generous amount of money to dog rescue services for everyone who clicks the purple link, posts a comment at her blog, and mentions the blog on theirs.

Jeez I miss him!