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Monday, March 15, 2004

And thus begins another glorious day at our dreaded job that is a painful hour away from our precious, little, safe, warm home.

Vacation is over and life is back to normal. Aside from having to start getting up before the sun again and dealing with insane traffic that has got to be caused by some jerk at the front of the line who waits until the last minute before darting across 2 lanes to get to his exit, the very jerk that I will never get to meet because I'm always at the back of the line (sorry, had to vent) I am glad to be back on a schedule again.

Amazing how quickly you forget what day it is when you have a week off. Aside from knowing my root canal was on Tuesday (that was my favorite part of my vacation), the rest of the week was a blur that went much too quickly.

By Sunday my tummy had quite enough of vacation. You know, the all too familiar "eat whatever you want because its vacation and it's allowed" thing... Going from chicken, salads, and a strickly veggan weekend at the Ashram straight to Talley Ho burgers, hot wings, fries, Wendys, Sicilian pizza, Chinese buffet, and plenty of beer (and I mean straight to - do not pass go, do not collect $200 dollars... Cram that crap down your throat. Live it up, go crazy, you're on vacation and it's expected... Or something like that... Well that's what everyone said when I told them how horribly guilty I felt.) is enough to make you kinda green.

Anyway, the first day back was beyond a nightmare. Not to put down my assistant, as I am thankful for all his help and for trying, well not quite his hardest, but I realize without his help perhaps I wouldn't have able to go away for a week. But this is my blog and because of him, I have something to write about.

One of the things I do is I put out a publication for my work 3 times a month. There is a first, a second, and a third issue. Unfortunately while I was away, the second and third issues were due and my assistant, who seemed capable, was responsible for them during my absence. Like I said, as much as I appreciate his help, which is what allowed me to be able to go on my vacation in the first place, I gotta ask - where was his head and WHAT WAS HE THINKING...

Okay, breathe.

The second issue seemed to go out without a hitch. The third issue, not so lucky. There are 3 steps in doing an issue. 1 - you receive very valuable "scribble sheets" from the president of the company. These are his thoughts and carefully thought out text of what he is going to advertise. 2 - I take these sheets and retype them nicely in Word to mail and email to the publisher. 3 - I make copies of everything.

On occasion, the president doesn't finish the issue before it needs to be mailed (okay, that's a lie. It happens alot) like what happened with this third issue. My assistant mailed what he had completed, and I was expected to come in today and finish it all up by email. Fine. No problem. EXCEPT, when your assistant THROWS AWAY the scribbles, doesn't make any COPIES of anything he sent, and DIDN'T SAVEEEEE THE WORD DOCUMENT HE TYPED THE ISSUE IN... It makes it veryyy difficult. Veryy difficult. Not to mention, when I have nothing for my president to work with to complete the issue, I end up with a VERYY cranky president.

OH, did I mention my assistant didn't come in today? Did I tell you that part?? Spite, I wonder...

For some reason, I could not reach him at home. I had to wait for his friend who also works there to get back from lunch... tick tick tick... to get his cell number... tick tick tick... to wait for him to call me back... Remember the crankyyy president on my heels...

I finally got him on the phone. He did that pathetic, "Oh I'm soooo sickkkk" garbage with the froggy throat that makes him sound like he's on his death bed. "Don't worry" he said, "I just need my sleep". I'm sure you do, buddy. Did I mention he's 25 and in a rock band... Oh and let's not forget it was a Monday...

Anyway he confirmed that he chucked the scribbles in the trash (cause he just wasn't thinking), made no copies of anything (cause he just wasn't thinking), and forgot to save the Word doc (cause he just, yeah, you get it).

In his defense, I know how rushed it can be when the issue has to get on the UPS truck by a certain time, but when you're going to finish it up the next day anyway, can someone remind me why we're rushing so much we're forgetting to save a Word doc you just spent an entire day typing?

But of course, it may have all happened the way it did because our MCSA made a special appearance and was working on the network, and my assistant would have much rather spent his day pretending to be Jr. MCSA and was really irritated that he had to do the issue.

Meanwhile, back at the president's office - Oh you should have seen his FACE when I told him the scribbles were all gone. Oh you should have SEEN his face when I told him that there were no copies. Oh you should have SEEN HIS FACE when I told him he never saved the typed document.

Then I had a very disturbed upper management guy tell me that the digital camera was left out all weekend where any customer could have walked out with it - I'll let you guess who left it out...

Then I had ANOTHER very disturbed upper management guy tell me that the photo lamps were left on - the very HOT $7 bulbs burning inside - BIG WHOOPS - I'll let you guess how left them on...

Well, to wrap it up, I had to stay late to get the whole thing finished and emailed on time. Leaving late made us hit more traffic than usual on the way home. Getting home late made me have to hurry to get to my kickboxing class - of course the phone rings and it's Uncle Mike wanting to discuss funeral arrangements of Eddy (Earl's step dad), of course I get in the car and FORGET MY PURSE and have to go back because, of course, the CAR IS OUT OF GAS...

The good news is I ate a banana before kickboxing and it made me have a very nice workout. I hate working out when you have no energy. That's the worse.

See that? A banana made my day all better.

But what about poor Earl? How was his first day back? Pretty bad, I'll tell you what. He is the shipping, receiving, and parts manager. He got to come back to a completely disorganized packing department. They seem to have had a little party with the packing chips. And the equipment was supposingly "broken" while he was away, but mysteriously was in working order today.

So Earl received a return from a customer. It was a broken shotgun (5th one in two weeks...) He tried to explain to our general manager that what was returned was not what was on the invoice. The invoice stated it was a completely different rifle.

Well how else should a general manager react to that? Of course, he should get mad at Earl. Right, whatever. This guy felt he needed to get on the defensive because for some reason, he took the whole situation as an attack himself. Obviously, what Earl was trying to explain was that the cracked-in-half shotgun he held in his hand was a completely different rifle than what the invoice stated the customer ordered. Let's not expect any advice or direction on how to handle this matter from a general manager, let's just assume Earl is blaming you and yell at him.

So off he goes, running to the president screaming and cuss'n up storm (remember, Mr. Cranky is having such a good day as it is) like a 4 year old whose ice cream just got taken away by the class bully.

The president may be cranky today, but he isn't stupid. He instantly understood what Earl was trying explain, took his side, and all was well... Oh, except for potty mouth who wouldnt make eye contact with Earl for the rest of the day. Did I mention the general manager is a 60+ year old retired police chief? No apology for Earl, but that's life at this company.

Maybe Earl needs a banana.

So that was our first day back. I wonder what tomorrow will bring!! Can't wait. Better hit the hay so I can be prepared.

Namaste, my friends