2003-08-18 - 1:25 p.m.
Have a pre-album-release listen to new Bowie tracks. I always get a bit nervous before he releases a new album; you never know if you'll get the outstanding Earthling or the ultra-obnoxious Black Tie, White Noise. Heathen, which is most current until the newbie is set free, is amazing.
2003-08-18 - 9:25 a.m.
Like pretty much every other employed person, there are things I dislike about my job. There are plenty of good things - I have great bennies, I work for an educational institution - but on occasion that good stuff is overwhelmed by the need to run screaming out of the building if just one more person talks to me about the goddamn coffee. You see, I'm the coffee maven. No shit, it's in my job description. I can't believe that at this level they pay me to collect $4.00 a month from each person who uses the machine, but they do. Further, they pay me to hit Costco or Smart and Final and pick up bags of 500 eentsy red stirrers and more cholesterol-laden fake creamer. It gets even funnier when you realize that I don't drink office coffee. It's disgusting. It tastes like someone's compost pile from 1977. I stick to Peet's whenever possible.
Maybe I could handle coordinating "cleanup signups" and the like if it weren't for my physical location in the office. I sit in a dinky space, wheeling out of the cube twenty times daily to access my records(!) because there isn't room to turn around, facing forward into the aisle and looking at the coffee maker all day. Two things about this - one, everybody assumes that because I face the aisle, I want to chat. Let me put this as politely as I can. Darling co-workers, I no more want to converse with you between meetings than I want to put a carving knife into my temple and stir. Even if we get along like squirrels playing grab-ass on an oak tree, don't interrupt me when I'm focused. Okay? We clear?
The second reason it makes me nuts to face this direction is that everybody assumes I'm fascinated by the machine. If it works correctly, they turn to me with the paper cup held aloft, grinning like Napoleon returning from exile. "Mmm," they crow. If I don't at least nod in recognition, they repeat with emphasis. "I said, mmm." Uh, yeah, I heard you. Did you want me to clap?
If the machine fails them in some way, the reaction is immediate. There's panic on their faces when they shriek out, "Chocolate! The machine's out of mochas!" If they react this way to a simple cup of caffeine, I have to wonder what a real crisis is like. Jesus, what if they spill said liquid? Will I need to get them a paper bag so they don't hyperventilate?
I recognize that there's always something in every job. I don't have to deal with customers, I'm not anybody's secretary. But my god, shut up about the coffee already! Don't hire someone like me to do database management, event planning, executive recruitment and coffee club! It's utterly ridiculous. If we can't negotiate a change to my position description, I'm never, ever putting more chocolate in the machine. So there.
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