Friday, January 25, 2008

Week from Hell if Hell were -10 degrees

Actually, my hell would be -10 degrees. I can take the heat, but this cold is another thing.

Anyway, it's 1:43 on Friday, and thus far this week I have managed to
  • arrange a party for everyone in the Chicago office at Union Station for Monday
  • arrange a press lunch for Monday
  • yell at caterers
  • print out and bind numerous presentations
  • send a last minute email out to all our customers (not as easy as it sounds)
  • cajole accounts payable to cut checks on the same day so I can pay vendors
  • not blow up at frenchie even though he really deserved it
  • not freeze to death

I have not however had a chance to go to the gym or go to yoga. I feel like a big flat slob. Even though I have managed to get out of the office each day by 5 or 5:15, I've been getting in early and am so brain dead by the end of the day, I just fathom going to the gym. Yoga at noon just wasn't doable.

The good news is, my boss is back on Monday. The bad news is his boss and our new CEO is in town for the week and we've got all these meetings going on (none of which I'm going to be involved in) but that means my boss will be all tied up and so people coming and looking for him will continue to turn to me and my other coworkers. Let me tell you, they just don't like it when you say you don't know. Even when you say the helpful, let me find out, they don't like it. They just want to know now.

But whatever, it's almost over for a couple of days. I'm not anticipating having to work much this weekend (never say never though). And while next week will be hectic, I'm hoping not as bad as this week. You see what it's done to my blogging.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Could it get any colder?

I mean seriously? (Is it a bad sign when you start to talk about the weather on your blog?) I am sitting in my brother-in-law's place practically freezing. I have my shawl on (which is basically a big blanket). I've had more coffee than is good for you and I dread going outside to go over to my sister-in-law's to watch the football games. I could just stay here, but Sheppard's pie is over at her house. The only thing Adam has to offer is a can of beans.

We're getting ready to leave in a few minutes so I just wanted to check in, let you know I hadn't frozen yet. Keep warm and go Bears (OK...Packers).

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Saturday Working, Cleveland Working

It's Saturday and I'm working. I'm in Cleveland and I'm working. It's Saturday in Cleveland and I'm working.

Mr. H. and I made a trip to Cleveland to visit his family. (We would see my friend Melissa and her baby Wyatt, but she never calls me back.) Anyway, things at work have been kinda hectic and now that our company is headquartered in Paris and Monday is not a holiday for the rest of the world, AND my boss is officially on holiday the second the Packer's start playing tomorrow night (and not back in the office until January 28), I have been tasked with, wait, let me check the list he left me, more than a dozen things to do. Now all of this doesn't have to be done this weekend. Most of it is stuff that has to happen next week. But I thought I'd get a leg up and do some work today. Also, I ran out of room in my work email box and it wasn't going to let me send any more emails unless I deleted some.

So I hauled myself and my computer and my SecureID fob off to Caribou Coffee (actually I would have gone to Starbucks, but Caribou is closer) so I could log on the the Net and get some work done.

When I walked in it was packed. For some reason this is the place all the Eastern European men (maybe Russian, I'm not sure) who live in Lakewood hang out. I'm not sure why, but they always have. Actually, when I used to live here, I don't ever remember seeing large numbers Eastern European men about. But I've been gone for a long time, so maybe there's some Lakewood/Russia exchange program I don't know about. Anyway, all the tables were taken because these guys sit around and drink coffee and play cards and dominoes. It's quite the atmosphere. But I was in luck. See, Mr. H's family is rather large. He has seven or eight siblings (depending on how you count and what kind of mood he's in) and several step bros/sis's. Well, Jenny, one of the step sis's, was sitting here studying and so I was able to snag a table with her. I felt like I was back in college. Except in college I didn't have a cool laptop that I could wirelessly log on to the Net. I don't think there was wireless back then and Lord knows I barely knew what the Net was in college. There definitely weren't blogs and an over abundance of coffee houses to write your blogs from.

It's nice and cozy here (I'm sitting by the ubiquitous Caribou fireplace) and I managed to (a) do a presentation and (b) delete a bunch of email. It says I'm back down to 82% of my capacity. I was trying for 50% but I'll take what I can get.

Now the Russian's are gone and the kids have invaded (high schoolers and younger), so I might head back to the house where the rest of the H's are hanging.

No worries, I've got more work to do tomorrow or at least Monday, so you'll get another thrilling dispatch from Lakewood, Ohio!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Is my boss trying to tell me something?

On Friday my boss said that I wasn't anal retentive. I don't think he meant this as put down, just an observation. Of course, I totally took that to mean he wanted to me to be more detail oriented. Fine, I can do that.

Then today he gets a pamphlet from SkillPath, you know those people who do the "soft skills" seminars, titled "Dealing Effectively with Unacceptable Employee Behavior" and he says to me, "Someone gave this to me in regards to you." Sure he's laughing when he's saying it, but really, now I'm starting to get worried. I don't do that much blogging while I'm at work. Do I?

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Seriously?

In a Tribune article about the girl in Buffalo Grove who has filed suit challenging the Constitutionality of the Silent Reflection and Student Prayer Act, I read this: Despite a 1961 U.S. Supreme Court decision striking down a religious test for Maryland public officials, Arkansas, Tennessee and North Carolina bar atheists from holding public office, and Arkansas prohibits atheists from testifying in court.

I know I probably shouldn't be surprised, but I am. That sentence stopped me cold. I don't even know what to say. It's amazing to me that people can be so ignorant, that a country founded on the belief of religious freedom would do this. Apparently religious freedom means you must have a religion, we just don't care which one it is (unless it's something weird like Islam). I could go on, but I won't. I just wanted to share this so you could all share my pain too.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Things I Now Get

Last night Mr. H. and I watched Aliens (well, we watched some of it until I started to fall asleep because I prefer to be watching TV while getting drowsy - and then once my eyelids are a droopin', Mr. H. turns off the TV cause he can't fall asleep with it on. Ah, such are the compromises of married life). Anyway, during the half hour we watched two phrases were uttered that I have often wondered the meaning of - "five by five" and "assholes and elbows."

Now if you're a Buffy fan, this whole "five by five" thing will have bothered you for a while. You kinda gather from the show that it means something like OK but the way Faith uses it, you're never really sure. Well, according to Wikipedia, it means that things are clear, understood or going the way planned. They reference the scene in Aliens that we were watching, so it's good to know I'm not the only one that this causes some trouble to.

Now the "assholes and elbows" phrase I kinda figured out too, gathering that it meant something like "get to work." Unfortunately no Wikipedia entry on this one. A general Google search turned up several links that say it means to go quickly or do something quickly. Possibly deriving from Vietnam era Marines meaning if someone is running away all you'll see is assholes and elbows. For some reason, as I was drifting off to sleep, I thought that if someone was scrubbing the floor, all you'd see were assholes and elbows. No wonder I have weird dreams.

Now you'll be prepared for your next vocabulary quiz.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Rare Saturday Sighting

I know, I usually don't post on Saturday. But keeping with my resolutions, I was just updating my checkbook, making sure that AT&T gets the money they so desperately need, and I figured I'd check in. Mr. H. and I have so far (a) had coffee (b) played The Godfather on the Wii (well he played, I just commented on how un-nice it was that he was extorting money from people he doesn't know. However, it was fun to watch him make his character cause you can do this whole face thing that lets you change the way your character looks, so his guy pretty much looks like an Italian version of him, which got me to wondering if this is what the FBI uses now instead of artists because it's so much easier, that's bad for the artists I guess. What do you do when you're a profile artist who's replaced by a computer program?) (c) shaved (again, that was Mr. H.) (d) put in a Peapod order for tomorrow and (e) discussed what we are going to do for the rest of the day. So far we've decided to (a) go to Best Buy so we can decide what to spend our gift card from my dad on (thanks Dad - your official Thank You Note is in the mail) (b) drop off some old clothes at the Salvation Army (c) go to Target for some new clothes. That's it. That's our Saturday in a nut shell. We may go out tonight with the sis and her husband, but that hasn't been decided on yet. This is why I don't normally blog on Saturday. See you tomorrow.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Resolutions

I've got a lot for this year, so I'll just launch into them:
  1. Stop paying attention to celebrities (already broken this one cause I just couldn't turn my eyes away from the latest Britney fiasco)
  2. Pay bills and balance checkbook promptly to avoid two-hour long fortnightly drudgery
  3. Continue on good exercise and eating program that I began last year
  4. Don't spend money on things I don't need (this includes coffee, meals out and shoes)
  5. Hang out with friends willing to treat for coffee, meals and shoes
  6. Watch less TV, play more video games
Feel free to let me know any of your resolutions.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Looking for a distraction

I'm looking for something that will get me though the rest of the day. i want to be able to just go home and curl up on the couch and watch tv or read a book, maybe knit. No, knitting takes to much brain power. i think my brain is fried after this merger and the holidays and such. Getting back into a routine is difficult when you have major holidays in the middle of the week. I just want it to be Friday. But it's not Friday. It's 2:42 on Thursday afternoon. I have, in addition to fielding annoying phone calls from people at work who want me to send them the logo or the word template or something they could easily find on our Intranet if they just took a moment and LOOKED for it, I have read the newspaper, looked at blogs and looked at the entries for Abbie Hoffman and D.B. Cooper on Wikipedia. It has been a less than productive day, though I can say I have accomplished a few things. I have, however, not figured out how to make time go faster when I want it to or slow it down when I need to. If someone could work on those things for me, I'd be very grateful.

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