Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Getting Equilibrium Back

Sallie and I just have not had normal schedules for most the summer. With Lacy and Rob being in town, working second jobs, working crazy schedules at those jobs, and Matt being in town this week, we just haven't had a normal.

Sometimes that abnormal is more abnormal, like this weekend for instance.

Matt came into town on business and Wilco happened to be playing in Columbia at the same time. We all decided against our better judgement to take the Sunday drive to Columbia for Rock n' Roll.

I actually volunteered to drive everyone back since I didn't work until 11:30. Of course, my new job wants me to start my new shift after I already volunteered. Oh well, I'll soldier through.

Well, flash forward to the weekend of the show.

Matt needs a ride from the airport.

I made plans with friends I had to blow off a bunch in recent months.

Lacy leaves town, we volunteered to take care of the cats. 

So while I do host duties to my buddies, Sallie runs out to Lambert. She gets back, works her second job for a bit, I send my buddies home.

We all head out to O'fallon to spend the night. I mow the lawn in the dark because their lawn mower is as complicated as firing a rocket into space. We all hang out and eventually pass out.

Wake up semi-early. We have to play the "one shower, four people" game to get everyone clean. We get on the road too late for Mcdonald's breakfast, but too early to really want anything heavy to eat. We grab what we can from DQ, drive the 95 minutes to Columbia, and settle in at Flatbranch for lunch and beers.

Wilco gets on, we rock out for a solid 4 hours, and by the end of the show, my back and leg are just wrecked. I drive home for everyone. We have to take our buddy back to O'fallon so he can get his car, then take Matt to his hotel room, and finally get home around 1:45 am. After a quick shower, I finally hit the pillow at about 2:15.

Alarm goes off at 8:30 am. I have to be signed in by 9. I don't feel human.

Not only is my schedule all out of whack, but my body is incredibly sore, and after eating travel food for a few days, my stomach hurt.

Basically, its like a body hangover I'm still feeling on Tuesday. I still haven't quite got back to myself. I don't know if its getting used to the new schedule, the four hours of training I'm doing a day, or a combination of everything.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Old Writing

On and off for the past year I've been trying to transfer all my old lyrics, stories, and poems in digital form. Today, I was working quite a long time on transcribing and I found myself knee deep in high school writings.

It makes me feel great I've come such a long way since then. I see the potential, but seriously, I was a depressed teenager. 

Pretty much every poem is an emo-kid story about someone not liking me or me being alone with terrible rhyme schemes and sometimes set to skater punk guitar chords. I'd say somewhere around 50% of the poems contain some form of the line, "And a tear rolls down my cheek." Its something I probably wouldn't have noticed without reading all the poems back to back. 

I wish I could go back in time and punch myself in the stomach, really give me a reason to cry.

Then, I had to date some of the poems by what stuff I doodled in the margin. Like this shining example below.

It was a poem about love and growing up. Which means it was after high-school because everything in high-school was about heartbreak and being too young. 

This was a doodle of a girl I liked at community college and we briefly dated, that means, this poem was from the fall of 2003-Spring of 2004. However, I didn't have a class with her in 2004, so Fall of 2003 it is. 

Anyway, its a weird trip down memory lane. I can remember the moment I was inspired to write some of it, I can pinpoint the event that caused me to write some of it, and sometimes I surprise myself with a line or two I still think were very strong. 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

The New Job

So after several frustrating months of being really unhappy in my position, I finally was offered another job and accepted it.

I'll be writing the technical documents, fixes, and procedures for the guys on the phone. I'll still have to take some calls myself, from what I've been told, that's because the business channel didn't think we needed to have a knowledge management team and the only way to protect those positions was to take calls. But I'll be taking 20 hours or less of calls a week.

So in true technical documentation form, I will provide a bulleted list of what is better.

  • I got to choose my shift. Instead of having a late shift where I can never hang out or do anything, I'm going to be working 9-5:30.
  • Some flex time. Can't do this all the time, but if I get caught late a few nights or have something important to do, there's some flex time available.
  • A little bit of a raise. This was a lateral move with potential to move up, but my boss still came through and got me a raise.
  • I only have to use one request off calendar. I know this sounds like nothing, but because the help desk is so phone oriented, I had to request off on the help desk calendar, the HR calendar, and if the day wasn't open for me to ask off, I would need to log into a third app and get on a waiting list. At the end of the year, all three of those systems had to add up to the same amount of PTO, otherwise, I would get audited. 
  • This is a team I wanted to join when I was first hired on at AG Edwards. There haven't been any openings through all the various corporate takeovers. So in a way, I'm where I wanted to be.

I needed to get out of my old position. I was stuck in a situation where I was resolving issues higher level and higher paid people are, but there was no room for me to move up.

Plus, the team I was working with was poisonous. There were a lot of people that were butt hurt when Wachovia bought AG Edwards and Wells Fargo bought Wachovia, and lives as they knew them where scrambled. There were a lot of people that were demoted during this, held back, and laid off. So there was just a lot of negativity I had to deal with, not only from co-workers, but from my customers all the time. It was making my life seem really bleak and dark at times.

So I'm jumping right into the new position starting Monday, and I hope its everything I wanted it to be.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


It's weird to think that an event so momentous as September 11th, 2001 will one day just be an event in a history book.

Already, on Facebook and on the news, I'm seeing maybe only half the amount of posts I saw a few years ago. More and more, that event is getting locked into history.

Soon, there will be high-school kids that weren't even alive when it happened looking at the pictures of the burning towers in a history book, if they even get to the "modern" era of history. (I rarely got past World War 2 in American history classes)

I recently watched the entire series of a show called "Rescue Me," which is about a FDNY firehouse dealing with a post 911 world. Several of the main characters were at Ground Zero and lost a bunch of their buddies and its about them dealing with the guilt of surviving and the sadness of losing so many guys they cared about.

As the seasons went on and the show got further away from 2001, the fire fighters had to deal with a public that was quickly forgetting how many people gave their lives being firefighters and police officers. More new recruits come in, wide eyed with thoughts of glory and heroism in their minds, but the vets know there was no glory. The only heroes are the ones that died that day. Everyone else is a broken husk waiting for the fire to take them.

I don't have anything to really say beyond that. I just thought its going to seem really strange the further we get away from this how it'll seem like less of a life changing experience and more of an event.