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The Toybox

people for the conservation of limited amounts of indignation

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yet it moves
Work is getting....well, odd. Even for my ideas of odd, it's odd. I've been quiet for a variety of boring reasons, but this is the one that's been kind of pausing me midmotion. It's not that I don't know what to do. Because seriously, everything hit a high level of focus recently.

We had a changing of the guard in program managers--supervisor of supervisors, if you will. Our luck is to have ours housed in our building, so she has a lot of oversight into what we do on a daily basis, a grace I'm sure I should appreciate a lot more than I do. Under the last one, I never knew he was around, which may either say his style was invisible and smooth, or that he didn't pay any attention at all.

I'm going to vent out. I'm so very tired. Christ, I don't think I've been this tired in a damn long time.

One cannot say our current PM is invisible. Every other Saturday is mandatory half workday these days, which, well, sucks. I mean, it sucks in a way that I don't even have words for. I am already there nine hours a day, plus thirty minutes to an hour overtime each day, an hour commute there and an hour commute back home. Today was a required half workday. It's exhausting, but in a weird way. I mean, I understand physical exhaustion, and this isn't that kind. I don't know what it is.

Hiring freezes suck. We don't have enough people for the workload the state expects. We just don't. All the creative scheduling in the world does not negate the fact that the numbers are not going to work. I get Texas has a fucked economy. I can even give you the reason why, thank you OH so much governor. We don't have money. We are short on everything, right down to stuff like office supplies. One clerk is leaving at the end of the month. Another is doing her damnedest to get out. With the one leaving at the end of the month, I'll be the most experienced clerk on front desk, and what does that tell you? We're losing two more workers at the end of teh month, a third is on some kind of quasi-probation. Another clerk just got fired. I really can't explain in words how *hard* it is to get fired. You have to screw up in epic ways and THEN get beyond that by being really insubordinate. That's just fact. It's hard to get fired from the state under normal circumstances, and in our present state of hiring freaksomeness, experience is gold. She was the only one who knew that particular job perfectly. And we don't have anyone skilled at her level to replace her. No one experienced enough. And no one, as far as I can tell, who can train any of us to *be* that good at it. And then there's the fact we don't have *enough* of us to spread around.

This, of course, is when I decide to reapply to college. No, I have no idea if they'll accept me without some depressing restrictions, and on top of that, I have no idea if I can pull it off and carry this job. I mean--let me rephrase that. Sure I could. Concievably, I could schedule my life to do it. I just don't know what exactly I'd be like for the thirty hours I need to graduate and roughly fifty hour work weeks along with it. I'd like my son to recognize me on sight and not have to grope through his memory to figure out who I am when he sees me. I have no clue how to pull off the senior seminar, which thoughtfully meets in the middle of the day, and did I mention it's another hour commute from Austin?

On top of that, they could be hiring again for the job I want. There's no guarantee I'll even be in the running, because, and this is just killer, experience *is* gold and I'm needed where I am now. Like I said, one chick is leaving, one chick is trying to *very very* hard. If they both leave, I'll be the only person on front desk with any clue of what to do and how to do it, and *I* don't know everything yet, or even close. I never had to, other people did, except they aren't going to be there. There's a good chance that even if they wanted to give it to me, the difficulty of finding someone to replace me may actually work against me.

It's not likely, but after talking to a few people, it's possible, and then there's the fact that if I get it, I have to be in training for two or three months for it, and this is giving me a headache, except I don't get headaches like this. My sister is getting married in April and I'm helping to pay for her wedding if it requires me to sell blood and give up lunch for a month or two. And, this is the really insane part, I suddenly thought, this is a great time to try and write an original novel AND finish up some of those pesky WiPs that have been bothering me so much. The scariest part is, I'm writing the novel AND writing Jus Ad Bellum's conclusion as a gift to Katherine. And progress is being made at an alarming rate.

Our new PM scares me. She's a micromanager. She's very exacting. I don't get the feeling she is very forgiving. She has definite ideas about how things should be. That would usually be a plus in my book, except I'm not entirely sure that her ideas are going to work with what we have now. Or they will, but only if she wants to see how many people she can get to quit or transfer in desperation. Everyone is so wire tense and there's this feeling for the first time of fear. All the meetings in the world can't change the fact that we don't know what's going on.

See--the thing is, we don't *know* why that clerk was fired. We just have rumor of what happened that day, security leading her out, and the locks on the door changing, and let me point out, *that* hasn't happened in a decade. We know usual procedure and how hard it is to fire someone, even for good reasons. And we know that right now, our job security is pretty freaking high, simply because we can't afford to lose anyone.

The PM scares me, because I think that if she didn't like something, she might just ignore all that. We don't know what's happening, and no matter what we do, we're not going to know until it's already happened. We're in transition, the entirety of the state itself, everyone, from welfare to health to protective services to God alone knows *how* many agencies--we're all in the middle of probably the biggest change in the way the state runs its services in history, a total consolidation of our services under one big uberagency. My mother's worked here for over two decades, she's helping run the transition to the new computer system, she's part of it, but even she looks worried. I think any time you have to sign non-disclosure agreements before meetings, that something is going odd as hell.

And to top it, we only have a year or so left in this building before we move--somewhere else. We found this out from the guy who is repainting the walls, by the way.

Everything is vaguely scaring me, but--I can't actually stop any of this. There's this drive to get things done, put all the ducks in order, that if I don't do it *right now*, I won't, and the sad part is, it's true. I won't. I can and probably will procrastinate myself into my grave if I don't do it when I feel it. It's completely the wrong time to--well, make any kind of decision, really, but my application goes out tomorrow and my fafsa sometime this month or next, and my resumee needs polishing up, and for that matter, I should invest in some heavy dose advil. I finally stopped the ephedrine that was making it possible to get through the day since the Ambien wasn't putting me to hard sleep at night. Not voluntariy precisely. I ran out. Of both, even. But I haven't bought more since I ran out last week, and with any kind of decent luck, that circumstance will continue.

I also had a pleasant surprise with my GPA, as I thought it was considerably lower than it actually is while rifling through my transcripts, and I did the math three times. Apparently, should I graduate, I can go to graduate school. You know, if I can fit it in there anywhere.

And to think, I complain about being bored.

The weird part is, I'm excited. I suppose it's the hysterical kind, but I am. It's intensely frightening to have this much of my life like this, because it feels like it's more than just my life in transition. It's almost, and I hate to put it this way because it's terribly self-indulgent and way too thoughtful for me, but it's like I want to see how much pressure I'm capable of taking. Everything's usually so easy, and now it's not.

Heh. Now you can see why I've been avoiding LJ. This sort of introspection is bad for digestion. I'm going to go write endless porn and enjoy this feeling of completely false invincibility and surprise.

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Find a way, start back to school. Take one course a semester/quarter. It will seem like forever when you're doing it -- and it will be -- and then it will be over. And then you can go to graduate school if you want to -- but you will never have to think about the no degree thing again.
It will be hell. It will be worth it.

I agree on that. I think I may try for nine hours per semester, though, to get my loans back into grace. With the few lower level classes, I can pull it off, I think. The upper level political science may be more tricky.

But yeah. I don't want this hanging over my head anymore. It's gone well beyond my ego at this point--it's something I have to do or I can't look myself in the mirror anymore. I can't even get exactly why, but it's there.

(Deleted comment)

Re: Let us gather around the fire and tell sad tales of kings and...

Whoa *doggies*.

That paycheck thing was seriously below the belt. I can't even *imagine* how they screwed that up.

It's all about getting money and preparing for the next phase in my life I'm going to fucking well enjoy, even if I have to work overtime to do it.

That's--yes, that's the feeling. Like all this is building toward something else. It should scare me, but it doesn't anymore.

Wow. That was a long response, and more about work than I've ever gone into in my own LJ.

Hey, I enjoyed hearing about it. I know it's not true, but sometiems it feels like everyone is just peachy in their job sitch, and I feel like such a whiner to get freaked out by all of this.

LOL. BTW, speaking of Jus Ad Bellum, I found the final version of that graphic for it I did for you eons ago. It made me grin to think of good times in the X-Men movie fandom. Ifyou don't have it anymore, I'll send it to you just for the stroll down memory lane. :)

Do I have the final version? It's up on my webpage, if you want to check. And hell yes, if i don't have it, I *want* it. My new monitor actually allows me to *see* it properly, and it's amazing. I don't know if I ever emphasized that enough, but it *is* amazing. I love looking at it.

*grins* Good times in X-Men fandom, yes. I miss it sometimes. The cool people, at least.

*blinks* Woh. I have the overwhelming urge to feed you camomile tea until you slow down.

*blinks* Then again, I'm one of those "move any slower and I'd go backwards" people, so I've got no idea what I'm talking about.

It just... sounds like everything's on the go for you. Best wishes on the college app, and applying for the new job (if you do that). Fingers crossed the new boss's boss won't continue to be so unreasonable, although really, if that's her personality, and you guys are in the middle of changing anyway, she might keep putting pressure on for it to be done her way.

Just, babe, keep an eye on your health while you're pushing your mind to do as much as it can, 'kay? Well, that, and write porn for me. *bg*

*blinks* Woh. I have the overwhelming urge to feed you camomile tea until you slow down.

*laughs* I feel like that. I don't know how long this feeling will last, but it's like, I can do anything right now. It's not normal for me to be so sure, but I am. At least, that this is something I have to do.

Just, babe, keep an eye on your health while you're pushing your mind to do as much as it can, 'kay? Well, that, and write porn for me. *bg*

I'm thinking *crossover* porny thoughts. It's terrifying. And fun as hell. *g*

I'm thinking *crossover* porny thoughts. It's terrifying. And fun as hell. *g*

Okay, I have to ask. Which fandoms/characters?

Crossovers are my not-so-secret weakness. *g*

You have my empathy. (I feel your pain!) But you're probably right about needing to get the changes going. Being me, I'm going, "School! Novel! School! Novel!" She's my sister, my daughter, my sister...

The job sounds relatively horrifying, but the serious long-term stuff, that's the stuff you do to enhance your life. What I mean is, however much of your heart's blood you're pouring into the job, you have to keep back a few gallons for Jenn.

From afar, I pat you on the back and offer you a drink with a little umbrella. May your grand plan grow ever grander.

Hey there,

I generally keep to lurking, but you are so *dead on* in your description of the job, it really hit home. I started training today for a new job, after leaving the worst one I've ever had. The *only* good thing that happened is that it motivated me into going to grad school. Now I'm going to be a bank teller, make less money, and wait to see if I got in.

I think your writing on this topic has struck a lot of chords--the emotions, the moment-to-moment....you have my best thoughts with you.

I second those who said to take care of yourself, as well :)


PS--*engage fangirl mode* You're going to finish Jus Ad Bellum??? Yay!! *disengage*

The scariest part is, I'm writing the novel AND writing Jus Ad Bellum's conclusion as a gift to Katherine.

Oooh! *dies*

This makes me so insanely happy! And you're going to post it and everything. Right?

*lights more candles*

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