avanta7: (Default)
[Error: unknown template qotd]Anyone who has read my journal knows who my worst boss was. I never thought anyone would top the previous worst boss, but somehow she managed.

Anyway, I'm not going to go into the "worst boss" story in a public post, especially since it's a small world and I still work for the same agency (albeit on the other side of the country), so I will tell you instead about the second-worst boss.

Early 1990s. She was the director of one of the departments in a small Arkansas city. I was her secretary. She threw coffee cups and temper tantrums with regularity. Sometimes the coffee cups were aimed in my general direction. She procrastinated and missed deadlines and somehow it was my fault. She retyped and rewrote the minutes of meetings I had transcribed from the taped records because I wasn't thorough enough. (The concept of bullet point minutes escaped her. She thought we needed a transcript.) She disappeared for hours in the middle of the day. She often came in hours late because she overslept; however, she expressed concern at my devotion to my job because I had begun dating someone and thus made a point of leaving right at 5:00 every afternoon, and every now and then came in ten minutes late on a Monday morning. She criticized the way I kept the payroll records, the way I kept our files, the way I handled her mail...

After nearly two years of this, I put feelers out and one Friday was offered another job. I accepted with the caveat I would give two weeks notice the following week and then report.

That weekend I worried myself sick over giving notice and called in on Monday.

When I came in bright and early Tuesday morning, I found yet another one of her infamous nasty little notes on my desk, this one accusing me of cheating her out of her vacation time because I had coded her pay report with four hours of vacation on the previous Friday. I checked my calendar...yes, that was what she had told me she wanted. I called my new boss and asked her if I could start right away. She said, "Of course!"

I marched myself and the nasty little note upstairs to personnel. I sat down in front of the HR Director, handed her the note, and said: "I quit." She read the note, marched me and the note and herself down the hall to the City Manager's office. I sat down in front of his desk, she handed him the note, and I said: "I quit." I went back downstairs, wrote my resignation letter, put it on her desk, and walked out.

And that was that.

Some six months or so later, the City Manager fired her for insubordination, among other things.

Revenge is pointless, but karma is a bitch.
avanta7: (Robot Overlords)
I have no excuse other than apathy. And an overwhelming all-consuming obsession with watching all my old favorite TV series on Netflix. Which is why I've just finished watching all nine seasons of The X-Files and am about to embark upon an orgy of Stargate: Atlantis and Babylon 5 consumption. I'm getting a lot of knitting done during these marathons, too.

The latest:

  • M*A*S*H rehearsal seems to be going well. My part is soooo small that right now I only need to show up about once or twice a week, and I don't see much of the rest of the show. We open in three weeks, though, so I'll be expected to be a more frequent attendee at rehearsal when we start running the show in its entirety every night. I guess I ought to learn all six of my lines.

  • In other theatre news, auditions for the next show, Night of the Living Dead, will be held on Monday and Tuesday. Brainzzzzzzz......

  • Spouse and I joined a gym. I really like the facility: lots and lots of weight machines, free weights, and treadmills/Lifecycles. It offers a variety of classes like Zumba, yoga, and Pilates, which I expect I'll take advantage of eventually. There's also a workout room just for women. A real plus is a reserved locker -- it's a small extra charge per month, but worth it for the convenience of not lugging my workout gear with me to the office several times a week.

  • The Technical Expert in my office retired and her position is now open. Last week two members of management made a point of stopping at my desk and whispering, "You are going to apply for the TE position, right?" With this kind of interest (and tacit approval) from management? You betcha.

  • Several of the saucepans and skillets we received as wedding presents eight years ago have finally bought the farm, so I'm shopping for a new set of cookware. Unfortunately, right now the budget will not permit me to buy the $1,000 set of Calphalon that I really want, so Target will get my money instead of Williams-Sonoma. I may run over to Tuesday Morning and take a look before ordering from Target.

  • We made the last payment on spouse's pickup this month. Just to watch him choke, I told him that meant next month we needed to buy a new car for me. Heh. In reality, we'll keep both paid-off vehicles for at least another year. But I want a convertible for my 50th birthday.

Okay, time to get my Saturday started. Laundry and dishes await, as well as the 2008 X-Files feature release on Blu-Ray, arrived in today's mail just in time to wrap up the Mulder and Scully marathon.
avanta7: (Default)
35 minutes on the phone with the division head. I think the interview went well for the most part, although perhaps I bobbled one or two questions -- I really hate interviews. They make me extremely nervous....Anyway, Mr. Department Head said they expect to make a decision within the next few days, so either I'll get a phone call with a job offer sometime in the next week or so, or I won't.

I'm hoping the phone rings.
avanta7: (Audrey)
I hope you all haven't run out of vibes, because my interview got rescheduled for tomorrow morning, same Bat time, same Bat channel.

No, it wasn't my fault. The department head's assistant called me at 7:30 to say he had an emergency, wouldn't be able to keep the 8:30 appointment, and could we please reschedule? Being the flexible and resilient person that I am (and one who is desperate to get the hell out of Dodge), I said, "No problem, just tell me when and I'll be available."

And so, tomorrow. 8:30 AM Pacific Time. Let's try it again.

And maybe I'll actually get some sleep tonight.....
avanta7: (Something Wicked)
Getting a SECOND interview!

Tomorrow, 8:30 AM, Pacific Time, vibes please....this is for a position on the Quality Review Team in the Seattle Regional office.

avanta7: (Gargoyle)
Computer problems at work. Printer function completely failed sometime after lunch. Then my log on function went kablooey. Spent upwards of an hour on the phone late this afternoon with our local IT guy, then more time in conference call with local IT guy and national IT guy. Conference call was cut short by supervisor on orders from manager because....manager wouldn't authorize the overtime for me to stay on the phone with IT guys and hopefully solve the print problem. So, I got nothing done this afternoon and will get nothing done tomorrow.

In the meantime, supervisor gives me Urgent Matters to fix for clients. Today. What part of "can't log on, can't work" don't you get?

Then I come home to the news that enough stupid scared people voted for Proposition 8 to amend the State constitution and rescind the right for same sex couples to marry. Narrow minded bigots, all of them, including many in my office. They think they're saving society from rampant decadence when what they're really doing is restricting the civil rights of a protected class of people. Who's to say the next target won't be another group of "different" people? Like Latinos? Or Asians? Or foreign-born citizens? Or people with a history of mental illness? First they came for the Communists....
avanta7: (Audrey)
Help meeeee!!!! The coffee maker died!!!! There is NO COFFEE!!!
avanta7: (Gingerbread Dream)
Dear client,

Is it too much to ask that, if you've been in this country long enough to qualify for benefits, you learn to speak English? Or at least bring someone with you who speaks English, especially if the letter I send you specifically requests you do so?


A peeved barely bilingual public servant
avanta7: (Usual Suspects)
[livejournal.com profile] grendel1031 did it. So must I.

1. Go to Career Cruising.
2. Put in Username: nycareers and Password: landmark.
3. Take their "Career Matchmaker" quiz.
4. Post the top twenty results.
5. Put the careers you have seriously considered in bold.
6. Italicize any that are part of your current job/career.

  1. Anthropologist
  2. Historian
  3. Costume Designer

  4. Artist
  5. Political Aide
  6. Special Effects Technician
  7. Website Designer
  8. Land Surveyor
  9. Researcher
  10. Cartographer
  11. ESL Teacher
  12. Judge
  13. Environmental Consultant
  14. Professor
  15. Director of Photography
  16. Writer
  17. Critic
  18. Set Designer
  19. Technical Writer
  20. Archaeologist
    The rest of the list )
avanta7: (Default)
I got up and headed for the office bright and early today (before 7:00 AM) because I was under the apparently mistaken impression we were working overtime today. By 7:15 no one had showed up, so I picked up a non-fat latte at the local Java Shack (had a full "buy 9, get one free" card) and drove back home. I've just spent the past hour perusing the BookCrossing forums.

On the way into town, I listened to NPR's Weekend Edition report on the increasingly distant and endlessly functioning Voyager spacecraft. Today is the 30th anniversary of its launch. I remember visiting Vandenberg Air Force Base around that time (I was in high school) and getting a "Fly By Jupiter" pin-on badge to commemorate the project. I may still have that badge somewhere. Anyway, as part of today's radio discussion, bits and pieces of the recordings contained on Voyager's Golden Record were played, and I became all weepy over the lovely optimism this country once expressed toward its space program, its place in the world and the universe at large, and the fabulous fabulous music chosen to represent our planet to whomever or whatever might be lurking in the vast reaches of space.

Spouse is still sleeping. I must go make coffee and let Phoebe in.
avanta7: (TempestTeacup)
Today was my adjudication day at work, which means I had no appointments scheduled and I wasn't taking walk-in interviews. Adjudication days are desk days, when I'm supposed to catch up on all the stuff that has accumulated over the last week. Ha. I've been out sick so much the last several weeks that I feel like I'll never catch up. I made a bit of a dent today, but not nearly enough, between phone calls and other interruptions. I really need a couple of full days with no one bothering me at all. A Saturday or two would be perfect. Unfortunately, we have no overtime authorized, and none foreseeable, and our union contract says we can't work credit hours on Saturdays unless there's overtime available as well. Grr.

Spouse has been under the weather as well, not only with the cold he passed on to me, but with intestinal woes on top of it. He thinks he has a partial obstruction, enough to make him mighty uncomfortable but not enough to warrant hospitalization (the reason he was in the hospital in September 2005). He actually asked me to make him a doctor's appointment next week. I guess the reality of being over 40 and not in the greatest of shape has finally sunk in.

And the final crap for the day: Mom called to provide a Grandma update. My grandmother, age 97, has had chronic age-related leukemia for quite some time, which didn't cause her any problems, really; Mom just watched for excessive bruising and made sure Grandma took her vitamins. However, the leukemia recently flared into a more aggressive form (I don't know all the technical terms -- I just know her white count shot through the roof) and Grandma's doctor put her on chemotherapy. She's been on chemo for several weeks now and it isn't doing any good. Doctor wants to try another type of chemo, something stronger, which he thinks will work better but has more negative side effects. Mom discussed it with her brothers, and with Grandma, and they've decided to stop the treatment and "let nature take its course." Which means my grandmother has less than a year, maybe as little as three months, left to live.

One good thing happened today, though. My Lands End order arrived, and everything fits perfectly.
avanta7: (GirlyGirl)
Ladies, we're in trouble.

My husband has somehow obtained a copy of that most secret and sacred of texts, The Chick Manual. He just announced that he knew what I was doing: following the directions in Chapter 14, the section about driving your husband crazy by buying something you're not really sure you like because it's the last one in the store, and intending to take it back if you find the perfect item somewhere else. (All women do that, right? Right?)

See, I did that the other day at GiantHomeImprovement Store. I bought shelf liner to put in the new bedroom dresser drawers. I didn't really like the shelf paper, but it was the closest thing I'd seen to what I wanted anywhere, and it was the last roll in the store, so I bought it. And kept the receipt because this weekend I'm going to check out the selection in a wallpaper store. Wallpaper will work as a drawer liner. So I told him my plans for tomorrow and that's when he admitted not only his knowledge of the existence of our secret sacred text, but alleges he has his very own copy.

My copy is safely accounted for and very well hidden. You all better check yours. Who knows how and by what nefarious means he obtained his copy.
On a more serious note, today I interviewed a young woman filing for disability for a mental illness. She's very young, not even 21 yet, married with two children, and so very anxious and frightened. She started crying in the middle of the interview and continued crying for the next 30 minutes. It turns out she hasn't been seeking treatment for her condition because she's afraid the state will take her children away. She herself was put in foster care at age 6 because her mother was mentally ill, and she's terrified the same thing will happen to her children. I did my best to reassure her that she was doing the right thing by filing for benefits, and encouraged her to talk to the county mental health unit to get started with therapy and/or medication. I felt so sorry for her: she's frightened out of her mind. I'm virtually certain much of the fear is related to her mental illness but, regardless, it's real to her and she feels it keenly. She's just a baby.
For our potluck at work today, all the food was green. Well, except the hot dogs. Who wants to eat a green hot dog? I made lime jello with pineapple, covered with whipped topping. It was tasty.
avanta7: (Default)
Must. Exercise. Self. Discipline. I have packing to finish and a drive to make. I'll see you all in a few days, unless the hotel has a business center equipped with computers and internet access.


Sep. 28th, 2005 07:12 am
avanta7: (Default)
I'm enjoying this leadership course a lot, and gathering some useful information. We've covered some things I already knew, like "active listening" skills. A couple of the assessments have surprised me. I know more about management skills than I thought I knew. It's the experience and confidence I'm lacking. Time will cure that.

I'm one of the carpool drivers, so I'm off to gather my chicks.
avanta7: (Leonardo)
Four interviews in less than four hours this morning. They just wouldn't stop coming in! The letter I send says "Please call before you come in so we can schedule a time." Hah. This morning, one showed up at 9:15 and waited for 45 minutes while I took care of my 9:00 appointment. I had no sooner brought the walk-in back to my desk when another showed, and then another. No lunch for me until nearly 1:00 p.m. And while all this is going on, my extension never stopped ringing. The same woman must have called me every five minutes for nearly three hours -- I had umpteen hangups on my voice mail. When I finally was able to pick up the phone, she said "I've been calling and calling! Don't you answer your phone?" Not when I'm busy, lady, get over it. That's why God invented voicemail.

Ah, the joys of being a public servant. (Insert obligatory "I'm grateful for my job because I can pay the bills" statement here.)

By the way, I received my ten-year service pin and certificate last week. The certificate is now proudly displayed on my desk and the pin resides in my jewelry box. Amazing. I never imagined I'd work for the same employer this many years. *beam*
avanta7: (Default)
Television Without Pity has become my favorite time-waster in the past few days. The people who recap the episodes are hilarious!

BTW, if anyone out there knows anything at all about Sherman, Texas, please comment. There's a vacancy in that town, and while the Chamber website gives all kinds of wonderful info, you know it's all more than slightly biased toward making Sherman look like Paradise. So, gimme the dirt, if there is any.
avanta7: (Leonardo)
The car had a flat yesterday. Spouse came to my office and changed the tire (yes, I am perfectly capable of changing my own tire; however, not when I'm wearing a skirt and heels) and pronounced the flat irreparable. The sidewall is cracked. Joy. So this morning I get to buy tires. Two of them, because one of the front tires is nearly bald. I so love spending time in the waiting room at automotive places. Well, at least I can get a little reading done, and release a book or two.

My boss had me sit in on an interview yesterday. He's interviewing for a new hire and needed a third person for a panel interview. Yep, if you want to get hired by my agency, you get grilled by three people in your interview. He said it was "development" for me as well, since he knows I want to move up. Luckily, he provided a list of standard questions because I was clueless. [grin] After the interview, I had to write an evaluation of the prospect. A little scary. I thought she did well, though, and wrote something vaguely coherent and positive on the eval sheet.

And now, off to the tire store. Whee.
avanta7: (Default)
I was up before the dawn....

At least it felt that way. Off to work now. In my office casual Friday means jeans. Yay.
avanta7: (CartoonAngela)
I actually cleared my desk this afternoon, so I went to "da boss" and asked if it was okay to take Friday (tomorrow) off and start my vacation early. "Okay," says he.

I am a woman of leisure for the next 17 days.

(gloating? no, not I!)

I rock!

Apr. 6th, 2005 06:20 pm
avanta7: (Leonardo)
And I told my boss so, too. And he told his boss. [grin]

I spent the vast majority of my time today doing manual computations on a recent Special Disability Workload case. These are cases where the individual had been receiving SSI only and we later discovered he had sufficient work credits to draw Social Security as well. Some of these cases date back many years. The case I did today went back to 1976. Yes. I did 30 years' worth of manual comps today.

I rock.

(my brain hurts)

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