Thursday, September 29

Big, slow and lumbering, like a grand tortoise

Today, I was told that my house was dirty.
Today, I was told that I'm "big," and "slow."
The first nugget was offered as a reason why we've been having some in-house bug issues lately. Not the fact that all people spray to keep bugs out of their houses all the time and my house hasn't been sprayed in more than two years. And not that the winter is coming, or whatever. No, the bugs are because my house is "dirty." So maybe I should spend more time taking care of that, was the suggestion. There was an offer of 'help," but who knows what that means. Honestly, if it's not an offer to pay for a cleaning crew, I'm not interested in your help or opinion.
The second bit of love came from the fruit of my own loins, my own loving daughter, who said it to me as an explanation why I wasn't able to run through the grocery store as quickly as her. "Mom, you need to go on the trail again, because you're too slow. You're big, and you move too slow. That's why you're not as fast as me," said my angel. Thanks for that, kiddo.
I feel like I've hit my limit on honesty for my own good today, you know what I mean? If anyone else has any nifty tidbits for me, just take a number and wait until tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 28

Retirement looks good on you, old friend

I type this right now in my bedroom on my old laptop. Which really is just a shell now, since I've deleted all the files that have been moved to the new computer in the office. The laptop now becomes the official blogging computer, since basically all it has on it at this point are browsers. And with that, it will be cozy and well insulated in my bedroom, right next to the lap desk, which is for blogging, too.
I've deleted all the bookmarks that would encourage anything other than blogging, since my intention really is to limit the amount of computing time I'm spending in bed, and increasing the amount of proper writing I do at my desk in the office. I'll have to take a cotton ball or two of alcohol to the computer keyboard, too, as I'm not convinced that it's not sticky from my kid, and the screen could use a good wiping.
It'll be pristine and happy to have a singular purpose, and to have more room to move around on the inside, minus all the other stuff that used to be on it. I actually think that it'll be happier here in a comfy bed and with a relaxed agenda. It's like I've retired the computer, but still kept it around to do the easy stuff that it and I really enjoy.

A little less octopus on the top, please

Have I really not posted since Friday? These days are going by so quickly.
Working part-time is going along pretty well, to tell you the truth. I'm quite enjoying having the time to do the randoms that I don't feel like have been done in the last 10 months. It's going to take me forever to catch up, I think, but after a while, I may be on solid footing again. Every day, I do one more thing on my list, and with crossing off that one thing, I feel a weight lifted off my shoulders. So, while the hit to the paycheck is bad, the extra time to be me and do my thing will go far for my psyche.
After all, here it is Wednesday, and I'm already feeling calmer and less stressed in my core than I have the last few years. I say years because with even the part-time job, I won't get hassled about not working at all, and I'm still helping bring in some money.
I'd like to spend the extra home time doing something awesome, like writing a book, and I'll kick that into gear next week. I'm giving myself this week to get my sh*t together.

Friday, September 23

At least I didn't get fired

So, I got demoted today.
Apparently, it's been a chronic issue the last several months that I've not been fixing the spellings on names in the articles I've been editing. And when they gave me the huge (one-page long) list of errors that were found in the last issue, I couldn't argue with their assessment of my abilities. I should have been more vigilant about double checking the names in the stories. I should have been a better editor. I double checked the other names, so why not the people? Because honestly, it never occurred to me that someone could write a story about someone, or many someones, and not spell their names correctly. That was the first thing that I was taught in journalism school. "Even Smith can be spelled with a 'y,'" I was told over and over. I couldn't imagine that the people who wrote these articles would get the people wrong. They know them, for heaven's sakes.
Anyway, I got pulled off editorial, and put strictly on social media, news, website and other things that aren't editorial. And I was put on a part-time schedule, so no more early mornings and 5 o'clock departures for me. I would say that they also cut my benefits, but I wasn't getting any, so there. At the end of the day, except for the hit to my ego, I'm kind of getting exactly what I wanted. I have a paycheck coming in (though now it's half), I still get to exercise my brain, and I get to pick up my kid at school on time and spend the afternoons with her.
It's going to be rough facing everyone on Monday, because of said hit to my ego, but a four-hour day will work out just fine for me. I won't have to figure out how to fill my days because I'm not getting enough to do, and I'll not be stuck in an office for eight hours a day. My goal now is to become the best social media and news and website person ever, and I'm going to have some ideas for my next meeting with the boss next week. We're going to tackle that together, because she likes what I'm doing there, and she wants to make more of an impact. I'm on board with that.
At least I didn't get fired.

Wednesday, September 21

California sun can be painful, too

So when I was out in California a few weeks ago, I spent the good portion of an afternoon sitting in the sun because it wasn’t hot enough to broil me for the first time all summer. I neglected to administer any sunscreen, and was really pretty cocky about it, celebrating that the sun was nicer in California than in Arizona. Well, doesn’t the toppling of that idea just suck right out loud?
My chest got red and crispy, and while it wasn’t painful at all, it certainly was tight and red enough to keep me aware of it. I lotioned it as is prudent, and went about my business. It peeled the littlest bit last week, and I figured I was on my way to having a healthy chest of skin again. Over the last few days, it was still a bit bumpy, which I attributed to the peeling skin. So last night, I loofahed. Let me tell you, that was a bad idea. It felt okay in the process of the loofah, but the after effects have been troubling. My skin, and the bumps, hurt when I got out of the shower. I was in "skin pain," which isn’t horrible, but is enough to make you feel it. The actual skin was red again, and made me feel like it was being peeled away.
So I went downstairs and asked the doctor. His question, “Was there any liquid from the bumps? Did they break open and ooze?” No idea, as I was in the shower, but the question was enough to make me wonder for sure. “Second-degree burn would make you ooze, and if you broke open those bumps, that is what would be hurting you,” he said in explanation. I’m inclined to agree, even if the bumps weren’t as bad as so many burns you see on the internet or wherever. I suppose I should have gone to bed with a layer of Neosporin on my chest last night, but I just lotioned and rolled with the irritation. Believe it or not, it continues to hurt this afternoon.
Moral of the story: California sun is NOT nicer than Arizona sun.

Monday, September 19

Finally, another ITEM! list

ITEM!: Well, I'm still employed. It wasn't as awkward at work today as I was afraid it would be, and I got through the day well enough. I'm a bit concerned about tomorrow, because I don't have as much on my plate as today, but we'll see how the day shakes out.
ITEM!: Of paramount importance is the arrival of my new computer tomorrow. It should get here some time "before 8 p.m.," which is super vague, but I'm eager to get it in my house and hooked up. I foresee an entire evening at the desk tomorrow night, and I'm not mad about it. I'm intrigued as to how my antiquated stuff on this computer will translate into the newer and awesomer operating system. Hopefully, there will be little to no problems, but with my luck lately, one never knows, does one?
ITEM!: Sydney's fall school pictures came home with her this afternoon, and it's a pretty great photo. She looks startled, in fact, very, very alert. But her weird smile is making me smile, so I'm a huge fan of it. She doesn't like it at all, so we may have an impasse when it comes to sharing these photos with family and friends, but maybe my enthusiasm will improve her mood about it.
ITEM!: I have two books at the library, and only one to-be-read at home. I started reading the home book today, and hope to get through it quickly, as one of the library books is going to be a good read. I'm a bit frustrated though with the amount of books I have on my personal queue that the library doesn't have. I remember four right off the top of my head, and I didn't even get through my entire list yesterday. I'll assume there's a way to request books be ordered, yes? I will investigate that tomorrow maybe.

Sunday, September 18

Gearing up for unemployment maybe/maybe not

So, work has been really weird lately, in that I may or may not get fired this week. Turns out that my direct, direct supervisor has thrown me under the bus on a few occasions, and the direct supervisor has a bad memory and misplaces things. At any rate, I'll probably be having a meeting with the big boss/owner this week, in which she may or may not have already decided about firing me, and I may or may not have a job at the end of the week. Or the end of tomorrow. Who knows.
But at least I can say that I stood up for myself in the impromptu rebellion on Friday, and I'm okay with that. I can stand up for myself in whatever meeting comes this week, too. Still, that may lead to the firing. Really, I don't want to get fired. I like the people I'm working with (some of them), and the work itself is sharpening my skills and brain (sometimes), and it's super nice to have a paycheck (some little money). The truth is, with the exception of a couple bumps in the road lately, I'm okay with working there for a while longer. If they're okay with that, we can have an agreement.
I've never had such a weird and bizarrely passive aggressive working environment before, though. And one that seems to avoid direct communication as much as possible. Like, if you have a question or comment, ask your question or speak your comment. Honestly, I may not be cut out for this particular environment, but I can adapt, as I have over the last 10 months, and I'll make the most out of my place there. But again, that depends on the big boss this week.

Saturday, September 17

Are you ready for some football?

This year, as football season rolled around, I didn't have a second thought at all about keeping my NFL Sunday Ticket. Last year, you may remember, I decided that I would be perfectly happy living without my Patriots every Sunday. And I did okay the first week, because they were on TV. The second weekend was definitely not the case, and I had ordered my Ticket a mere 10 minutes before kickoff. I was a wreck, all shaking and sweating for the fact of not watching them. I needed to be able to see my team play.
This year, I remembered that feeling very well, and didn't even think of putting myself through it again. Last week, my team was on Sunday Night Football, and that was great. But tomorrow, they'll be playing the Dolphins in Foxboro, and no one outside of the New England area will have it on their regular network channels. I, however, will be watching it, on my cool Ticket channel. And that makes me happy, and calm, and ready to cheer them on.
My avatar this month (yes, a few weeks late) is in celebration of football.