an overwhelming urge to run away
The strange thing about adulthood is that I have had the urge to flee more once than I ever had when I was younger. At least once a week I fantasize about bailing on my bills, my house, and my career packing some clothes and the pets in the car and living like a nomad. As time passes I am slowly coming to realize that I don’t own anything. All the things own me. And I just need to break free from the suffocatingly stiffiling cage I have locked myself in. I can’t be alone in that.
I spend far too much time in meetings. Most of that time in a quiet state of simmering rage. Being that I handle regulatory I often have to advise on the law. Fun! This would be frustrating for anyone but it’s only compounded by the fact that I am the only woman on the team and I am perceived as being considerably younger (less experienced) than the rest of the team.
Imagine, if you will, sitting every week and reading the FDA food code and translating it into the vernacular. I tell them we need to do XYZ to be compliant. They go into these long yarns about how it was done some other place they worked. Right! Because regulations never change over time. I reiterate the importance of following the code and explain the consequences if we don’t. I’m ignored. Then, lo and behold, it comes to pass that a visiting official writes up the very thing I was expounding upon.
It sucks to be the prophet. Legend has it that Cassandra went insane. I believe that. I often feel the need for medication so I can just stop caring. But I was cursed not only with knowledge but also integrity. Pity us, the ones that persevere when faced with a wall of ignorance and ego. We try. We always try. It’s just that we are never believed.
Know that each time you see a product recalled in the news that there is a quality professional throwing a pile of papers in the air wishing that she could shout “I told you so” at all the useless ass-hats she works with. But we can’t. That would be unprofessional. And I am nothing if not a fucking professional.
Every morning as I leave my house at seven (realistically, it’s closer to 7:30) I see people out on the street jogging. When I get home at 6:30 (closer to 7) the alien dog will drag me through the neighborhood for my daily allotment of fresh air. I see the same people either out running again (why?) or participating in some form of leisure activity.
Where the hell are you people working?
I start hitting the snooze button at 5:30 and drag my sorry ass out of bed by 6. Shower, coffee, feed the beasts, take out trash, attempt to look presentable, and dash out the door. I eat a granola bar in the car. I may or may not get to work by 8. Seriously, I am pretty low maintenance.
So if you are still out jogging at 7:30 that means you have to finish your run, shower (please, I hope you are showering), get dressed, and commute. How do you do that? Does time move differently for you? Or do you have a job that starts later than 8 or 9 AM?
OK, lets explore that possibility. How do you then get home and involved in an activity before I do? Does everyone but me work part-time? Are they all underemployed? There are far too many of them to all be stay at home parents, especially in this economy.
Please, please, please explain how this works. I want to have time to exercise and have fun before collapsing on the sofa.
I lost a peach. It was in my bag when I left the house. I am 99% sure it made it to the car. I made a pit stop to the 24 hour Wal-Mart so I wouldn’t have to stop after work. I get to the office and the peach is gone. I searched the car. No peach.
Aliens came while I was in Wal-Mart and abducted my peach. I imagine them in the mother-ship gathered around the peach that is sitting on a platform under a harsh white light. They stare at it, they probe it. Ponder for a moment the confusion that is inevitable as they, just like humans have, wonder why it is fuzzy. Such a strange object for the humans to carry. They couldn’t possibly divine it’s purpose.
I’ll never get it back because they returned it to the parking lot and by that time I had left. I know there is some really baffled Person of Wal-Mart who got in their car and found a peach. That poor soul has probably been living on processed food for so long they were terrified by the sight of it. They must have thought it was some liberal, pinko plot by the left to indoctrinate them into their godless, tree hugging, gay lifestyle by randomly leaving healthy food in the car. But I miss my peach.
When I first had the idea of Underboob I knew I had to start writing again. Many years of writing technical manuals and regulatory documents had atrophied my creativity. The repercussion of that was me sitting in front of a screen wide-eyed and drooling with a brain on short-circuit. Shit!
So I signed up for a Word a Day in my email. I figured it would refresh my vocabulary and I could use it as a spring-board to revitalize my inspiration. Each day I would open my email and get my word. I would then sit and write about it. There is some wild stream of consciousness stuff in that file! I thought I would share.
I picked Wednesday because it worked as theme (see title). And because I loathe the concept of Hump Day. I tried to make it WTF Wednesday where we all post pictures of the People of Wal-Mart, but it never caught on. If we are going to be here we may as well learn something. So here is the first vocabulary word:
1: feeling or displaying ferocity: cruel, savage
2: deadly, destructive
3: scathingly harsh, vitriolic
4: aggressively self-assertive : belligerent
This sums me up at work. I have little to no patience for ineptitude and paltry excuses for sub par work. I am the one who tells the emperor he is naked. If you can’t or won’t do a task just own up to it and all is well. Try to play games and it’s on! I am scathingly harsh. Or rather, as Truman said “I don’t give them Hell. I give them the truth and they think it’s Hell.” Yep, that’s me. I mean, we are not here in the office for play time. We all have tasks, let’s get them done and get on with it. We don’t need to talk about our feelings, or our family history, or our tale of woe. We just need to get from point A to point B and go our separate ways until next time.
It’s not that I am cold hearted or hell-bent on not socializing. On the contrary, I love having fun at work. I spend so much time here I better be able to have some laughs. But when there is a deadline or a project and all the other players have no sense of urgency or feel that their time is more valuable than mine, or that my project (usually involving government regulatory agencies) isn’t a priority than the truculence emerges.
Most aggravating of all is the manager who thinks that if he fails to perform his share of a task someone else will get frustrated and just do it for him. I am no ones wife, maid, or mother. You sir, are a grown man holding a VP level position. My expectation is that you will outshine lowly middle manager me. If you can’t then I expect the items and tasks completed on schedule, at a minimum. Fail to do so and I will not only let you hang yourself professionally but I will make popcorn and giggle at your twitching legs as they sway in the breeze. Yes, I am savage.