Friday, September 27, 2002
Another day, another... um .... envelope of some sort. I dunno. I'm not yet an expert at this whole office thing just yet.
Today someone called in sick so they needed me to answer phones and stuff. They also needed me to do a few projects using such complicated programs as Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel. This was extremely easy yet it amazed my co-workers that I could get it done so quickly. It amazes me that there are people who can't use Microsoft Office. To me that's a skill along the lines of being able to identify shapes or spell the word "baseball".
I can't help but think that there could be a better way to do things. A large portion of my day was spent taking handwritten things that people had scribbled and typing them up in Word (or Excel). Then I would bring it to them printed up. They would then mark up the printout and give it back to me to edit and print out for them yet again. Then after all of this it gets brought to someone else's office to be read and, presumably, tossed away. Now don't get me wrong, I am very appreciative to have the work--and more importantly to get the money--but this doesn't seem to me to be the best way to do this. This seems to just completely disregard what word processors were invented for in the first place. If everyone's got computers on their desks and they're all networked, then why are so many things being printed out?
I've never worked in an office before so I have no idea if this is just common practice. Seems pretty wasteful to me. I'm not like a tree hugger or anything but I do enjoy recycling paper. I just feel enormous amounts of waste when paper is just being thrown out by the ream.
Answering phones isn't that bad but this is the second job I've had where I've been put on the phones within the first week. It's really uncomfortable being asked questions ALL DAY that I just can't answer. Every call is like: "Hello. Uh... maybe? Lemme see if I can find out." Then I have to attempt to track down someone, whose name I don't yet know, and see if I can get an answer to the question.
I still had a lot of free time today so I spent a great deal of it reading a beginners guide to Windows 95. It was amazing. I read the entire book. Their assessment of what Windows 95 should be used for is pretty accurate when the first "lesson" is an explanation of how to get to and play Solitaire.
Some things never change.
Posted by chefelf @ 08:37 PM EST [Link]
Wednesday, September 25, 2002
Today was one of those boring work days. It's so annoying that in the office environment you just have to sit around doing nothing until your shift is up. I don't mind working. If there is work to do I will work and work and work until there's not work left. But if there's nothing to do I get bored after a half an hour.
I kept asking everyone I saw if there was something I should be doing. Everyone just laughed and said, "Yeah right!" So finally I was given the job of cleaning things that weren't dirty. That's an extra added kick in the crotch because you know for a fact that your time and energy is being completely wasted.
We have casual Fridays at the office. One thing that I'll never understand about casual Fridays is that if it is okay to dress down on Fridays then why do we have to go through the trouble of wearing buttoned shirts and ties the other four days of the week? I don't mind wearing a tie and all but I think the whole casual Friday thing is bogus. It should be either all casual or all dressed up. None of this in between bullshit.
Boy, this blog keeps getting less and less funny. I apologize but if you want FUNNY things about someone's daily office adventures then read notmydesk.com! I can only come up with "humor" one day a week. This is just for me to boringly journal my life and lose what little fan base I have.
Posted by chefelf @ 09:54 PM EST [Link]
Monday, September 23, 2002
So I stared my new job today. Everyone there is super nice. It's a bummer though because I have to wear a shirt and tie. I just returned from the store where I spent every last dollar I have on shirts, ties, shoes, socks and pants (those were the only clothing items that I was missing from my wardrobe).
To add insult to injury I just had to iron the clothes that I reluctantly spent my entire bank account on. There couldn't possibly be a chore more boring than ironing. It's the most awful task on the face of the earth and no matter how hard I try I suck at it. No matter what I do to try to make my ironing work my shirts come away looking as bad as or worse than they did before.
After one day of work I have a hard time figuring out what my job is going to be. As far as I can tell it seems like I'm going to be spending seven hours a day doing what it would take a computer from 1985 about fifteen seconds to do. I just alphabetized and organized some stuff. If they had a computer running Dos 3.0 and Lotus 1-2-3 they could have done the same tasks in the blink of an eye.
I can't believe how uncomputerized this whole place is. It's amazing. My boss asked me today if I knew how to use Excel. When I told him I did his eyes lit up and a giant crescent moon smile appeared on his face. "Come see me first thing tomorrow morning," he said. "Have I got a job for you!"
I can't wait. Part of me hopes that he is so impressed by my Excel skills that he will set me up with a workstation and have me doing Microsoft Office related tasks for the next two months. Actually all of me wishes that. That would be sweet.
Posted by chefelf @ 07:50 PM EST [Link]
Thursday, September 19, 2002
Well I've been pretty consistent this week. I've written in my blog and biked over 20 miles a day every day this week! Surely I can't keep this up forever! I start my new job on Monday so this won't last long. The thing that will suffer the most is my cycling seeing that daylight will only exist for the span of time I am at work.
So now I am wondering what this new job will entail. I was told that I'd be moving boxes and lugging around the giant antiquated computers that this company seems to still be quite fond of. If I am wearing a suit and a tie that seems like I won't be doing a lot of physical grunt work but rather office grunt work.
This makes me excited. To me the ideal job would be for some people to give me long laundry list of computer related tasks to do and for me to do them. "I can't figure out how to do a mail merge in Word! You do it!" Yeah baby, that would be a cakewalk! I could use Microsoft Office all day long. It would be a cakewalk filled with all kinds of marvelous and wonderful cakes!
Jen is coming to visit this weekend and we're going to waterfire. For once I'll be able to enjoy waterfire with a girl rather than as a third wheel. Ah, romance.
It was fun to just put a random IM at the end of yesterday's post so I'm going to do it again.
lulublacksheep: hows it going?
Chefelf: okay i suppose
Chefelf: how's it going with you?
lulublacksheep: it is going well
lulublacksheep: i am being positive
lulublacksheep: about the future and the world around me
Chefelf: good. i see you have found the reverser message board
lulublacksheep: and im listening to the tourettes
Chefelf: good for you
Chefelf: very good for you
lulublacksheep: guess who showed me where it was?
lulublacksheep: just go ahead and guess
Chefelf: i'm sure he is filled with nothing but regret now
lulublacksheep: who knows
lulublacksheep: im not his keeper
Chefelf: no you're not, rory... and dammit i don't expect you to be!
lulublacksheep: whoa, man, whoa. im sorry
lulublacksheep: you know what i was failing to do?
lulublacksheep: examine my assumptions/bias
Chefelf: no... i't';s me that's sorry... you know how i get, though... i' m very emotional about this sort of thing
lulublacksheep: i know man, but really; i wasn't thinking critically
Chefelf: it's okay, buddy.... still friends?
lulublacksheep: of course, buddy. you know i wouldn't jeopordise our friendship over something like that!
lulublacksheep: whatever happens we should always be friends buddy
Posted by chefelf @ 06:07 PM EST [Link]
Wednesday, September 18, 2002
I got a job. It was bound to happen eventually; after four months of searching I finally have a source of income, albeit temporary income. It's a temp job. I will temporarily working for the a company that is going to be very busy for a short time. I have no idea what I will be doing but I know that I will be wearing a tie while doing it (so I guess I won't be lugging boxes around).
After all the applications I filled out and all the resumes I sent out hoping to get a job as a web designer I finally get a job in a completely unrelated field. It would be a lot more of a relief if this meant that my job hunt was over; however, since this job only lasts until the end of November my job hunt must continue with the same intensity I have previously exhibited.
Well I decided that I would IM my old pal Chris Livingston of notmydesk.com and tell him to news to see what his take on the situation would be. It was as could be expected:
tempfella: hey there!
Chefelf: guess what? (you'll be so proud/disgusted)
tempfella: um, what
Chefelf: i just got my very first temp job!!
tempfella: congrats/i'm deeply sorry
Chefelf: haha... thanks
Chefelf: any words of advice that you can give me before my first day?
tempfella: don't do it?
Chefelf: if only that were financially possible, my friend
tempfella: well, then do it as badly as possible
tempfella: without getting caught
Chefelf: what is the best way to steal things? backpack? underwear? hollowed out melon?
tempfella: balance them on your head
tempfella: totally unexpected
Chefelf: will do!
Chefelf: i feel like i couldn't do this without the two years of reading your site and the sage advice you've given me right now. i think i'm ready
tempfella: make me proud
Chefelf: i will chris. that's all i want out of this job
God, I hope this doesn't suck. I guess having money for a change is worth any amount of suck that can possibly be dished out.
Posted by chefelf @ 05:10 PM EST [Link]
Tuesday, September 17, 2002
I figure that having nothing to say shouldn't keep me from writing in this blog more often--besides I can always find something to complain about! Like not finding a job. I've sent over 30 resumes and applications in between Thursday and today and I've heard back from no one, not even to tell me no. Whoever said "breaking up is hard to do" clearly never tried to get a job in this failing economy.
My bank has been very supportive by charging me $2300.00 for an Ebay auction gone bad. A month and a half ago someone tried to buy something from me and used fraudulent credit card information. My bank chose this past Friday to charge my account the money and then some insufficient fund charges. Then they credited my account $2300.00 on Monday when they figured that they had squeezed enough of their morally blind charges out of me.
The Jehovah's Witnesses just stopped by. I've been going through an ongoing struggle with them for some time now. I lack the backbone to tell these very nice--if incredibly ignorant--people that I do not wish to include religion in my life. Besides, their flyers generally give me something funny to think about and possibly write articles about.
There reaches a point where all the things going on in your life, even if terrible, become almost too funny to bare. You just have to laugh when things are going comically wrong. And I only found out today that it's all Adam's fault! We would all live forever and there would be no suffering if he hadn't disobeyed God. Fuckin' Adam!
Posted by chefelf @ 12:57 PM EST [Link]
Monday, September 16, 2002
I went for my first bike ride in ten days this afternoon. A general feeling of sickness and dread has kept me off the bike for that long. I really didn't want to go at all. Finally I decided that the smartest thing to do would be to force myself to go.
From the moment my feet touched the pedals I felt good. It was good just to be outside in the woods and feeling the wind in my face. The sky was promising rain all day but I didn't care, I just needed to ride.
No more than thirty seconds after returning to my car it began to downpour. The type of pouring rain that comes in sideways and everything. It seems that luck was on my side today.
When I returned home my roommate's Bowflex had arrived and I signed for it. How exciting!
Posted by chefelf @ 05:17 PM EST [Link]
Sunday, September 15, 2002
So I've been sick. There's something wrong with my stomach and the doctor doesn't exactly know what it is. It could just be stress from me never paying my bills and having no income and being unable to get a job but that's just a hypothetical guess at best!
My doctor gave me some medicine (that does nothing) and told me to avoid the following foods:
- Fried or Fatty Foods
- Heavy Seasonings and Spicy Foods
- Orange and Tomato Juices
- Alcoholic Beverages
- Coffee and Tea
- Peppermint or spearmint
The list seems small if you're just glancing at it but if you read it you will find that that those few things are actually giant sweeping categories of food rather than single food items. This has made for a very bland week. I find some of the conditions of this new diet to be unacceptable. Coffee and tea? It's got to be one or the other. Giving up both would destroy me. Peppermint and spearmint is also an unacceptable term to this new way of living. How the hell am I supposed to freshen my breath if not with some form of mint?
The worst part of this entire thing is that it only seems to flare up when I do anything fun, like visit my girlfriend. There are several thousand hours a month where it doesn't bother me at all and I'm just sitting here at home playing Mario Sunshine.
Yes, I have a girlfriend. She's delightful.
Posted by chefelf @ 05:53 PM EST [Link]