Tuesday, February 21, 2012

One two (thump)

Ouch, well that hurt. Two massive in-work punches in the one day. The (thump) is me falling.

The first punch came when I was told by theBoss I could no longer bother our new building person with safety issues. Future emails from me now had to go through her. Said building person blew up to her about me for tasking him to do stuff, and that anyway all the stuff I pointed out was fine (it wasn't; obvious trip hazards to even a child; "Who put dat dere? They has poo heads"). He then had the gall to point at the large pile of stuffed boxes of my crap next to my work station (stacked neatly against the wall and not in a traffic-area) and apparently accused me of hypocrisy for not having squared it away. Me having been moved there just the day before. Oh, and I can't lift anything heavier than two kilos or bend past 90 degrees ("Why he think you can move boxes when you has bad leg? Him damaged in face or somethin'? Dere a hole dere?"). 

The irony is of course we all do annual safety training, well an online thing with a quiz at the end, where we put our hands on our hearts and promise to be safe and point out safety issues. But of course only a fraction of people give a shit enough to actually do so. I am one of those people. Perhaps it may have something to do with being wracked with fucking pain and mobility impaired? Call me crazy but I like a trip-hazard free workplace... ("You not crazy! Dat other man be a poo head! And it dribble out dat face hole too.").

I know I told the world to laugh in the face of what ails ya. But it's hard sometimes. The worst is that horrid sick feeling of fear you get when you hear someone is fucked off at you. Then there's the feelings of hurt—I had actually liked him until that point—and feeling wounded and hard done by.

A quick aside. Today some seeming able-bodied c___ up the corridor used my disabled toilet. The one with the plastic moulded harry high booster so I am not too bendy when trying to go. I had an IBS attack, went to my toilet, and it was locked. He was using it. Some people get changed in there. He didn't, he simply used for non-changing purposes. But I did say he was seeming able-bodied. I suppose he could actually have a disability? Maybe he needs the grab bar to lower himself? Perhaps I should give him the benefit of the doubt? Okay, I might. Though if I ever see him come out of it I will ask him what the matter is with him. Since, you know, he's using it and all.

Aside over. Punch two. So fresh from being told to send OH&S issues through my boss in future so they may be ignored and not acted upon by the sad man, I get told off my my boss+, with boss++ CC'ed in.

Okay, so confession. Sometimes I send out non-work related emails to colleagues. Why? A morale thing, I suppose. Then there's my considering such things to be practice for my lotto-dream career of being an actual person writing for a living. Plus, I also think I am hilarious.

I recently became aware of a cafe near our work that's buried deep within a rival office complex. So I sent out a lunch-time email, actually written during my allotted lunch-period, where I waxed lyrical about how awesome the cafe was with its delicious-looking reasonably priced bain-marie food and a nice sit-down outside area. I threw in some wiki links, some laughing about the time I got sucked into going to not one but two Amway pitches (the cafe name sounds a little like a pyramid scheme), and said that as the cafe sold drinks and mags that you wouldn't need to stalk Black Thunder any more (1).

Then I get the email from the boss+ telling me that I have apparently violated policy for promoting a commercial entity to others and please cease and desist any such urges to do so in the future. It's a somewhat amusing telling-off considering one person sends around four meg-sized cupcake promotion emails on a regular basis. Also when we'd moved to the building last year the first thing we all did was share info on places in the area. 

Ah, but what could I do? All I could say was 'Okay, noted' and leave it at that, a great well of hurt blossoming within once more. Part of me suspects it may have just been a manager stamp of authority—managers do these things sometimes to remind you they're a manager. Part of me suspects the building person complained to her and she saw this as a means to whack me on the nose. 

At any rate I have to now still work with people right now I am angry with and my feelings are hurt. Later I went and had a haircut, so as to prevent future sweat-in-the-ears-trickling, and it was all I could do not to blub. I guess the other part is I feel pretty self-righteous about it all. I didn't do anything morally or ethically wrong. In fact, in the first punch, what I did was moral and ethical (the pointing out of hazards). In the second I was just being me, trying to write more and be entertaining whilst informative, and the response was being e-told to shut the fuck up and my boss++ included in the traffic. 

Oh well, that's just how it rolls in the public service, or broader workforce. Sometimes you end up working with or for people that don't understand you, don't support you, or don't value your contribution. Sometimes you work with really supportive people that look out for you and have your best interests at heart. I suppose in the end it's just a matter of luck. 

However it was nice that a number of people wrote back to me laughing about something I wrote, or gently ribbing me ('you're that old?!'), or even talking about the time they got suckered into going to an Amway pitch and that one of their Amway-afflicted friends had aspirational art work up on his walls; aspirational in the sense they were pics of shit he planned to buy, like a race-car, when his Amway money started rolling in. 

See, Mikey. Some people do appreciate you (big hugs).

When I got home the rest of the trio were in the bathroom engaged in post-gardening cleansing. theBoy had set up a small activity centre in the shower of non-slip mats on the floor, a little red plastic chair he could sit on, various plastic cups (some with sprinkle holes), and the two-litre empty honey bottle container that, when he fills with water, causes him to sing "filling up the honey bottle, filling up the honey bottle". He was gleefully still showering when I rolled in.

Then theWife went and got me comfort foods. What a good egg. 

Tomorrow will suck. It's the weekly meeting. Both punch-throwers will be there. I plan to sit and stew and barely contribute. Ha! Take that!

Now to fight the urge to have those imaginary conversations where you scream bile in their faces and eviscerate them utterly through force of argument and clever wordplay. 'Cos if I do I tend to get all worked up and next thing I know I am yelling for real at imaginary people.

Fuck I hate this horrid work shit.

UPDATE: I just ruined Storyverse time by drifting off and having several angry imaginary conversations. I have to actively suppress the desire to rant like a mofo. Poor theWife already copped a half-hour same-info-provided-several-times rant from myself. Hate it! It just fucking colours everything ... if I let it. theBoy just ran in to let me know that Synybatbat, who routinely puts up billboards across from theBoy's house saying theBoy is a monster, had been informed that theWife is now a monster for some imagined slight. See, that's the shit you go to work for. Not all that other bullshit. That's just to get by. I have to remember, as always, this is just a job. It is not me. Even if their critiquing of OCD me (the person that sends OH&S themed missives) and writing me is actually critiquing me as me, they're just two people in a big building with lots more people. People who seem to actually like me. So, nyar.

(1) The 104.7 promotions vehicle that parks in various places around town for a half-hour or so to give away promotional material, Who Weekly mags and icy cold cans of coke.


  1. I suspect your boss+ used to (or does) sell Amway. Don't mess with the cult, man!

    Sucks about the OH&S guy especially, because it's his friggin job to keep the corridor free of obstructions! Did your supervisor at least agree that it was a problem? Makes me frustrated. :(

    I hope tomorrow is a better day.

  2. Thanks man ... oh and I self-censored on Amway - just said it was a pyramid scheme ... though in retrospect it was fairly obvious. And they have the same thinness of skin as a Scientologist. The oh&s stuff in my current building is in my opinion handled poorly. But all I can do is keep doing what I do - just through the boss. It is funny it's both my core work personas - OCD man and the class clown - both got slapped down...

  3. Harsh. :(

  4. GametesRhyme6:43 PM

    sorry to hear that you had a less than spectacular day.. unfortunately what happens in the workplace can affect you outside of the workplace, and even in a new workplace.

    I have found because of a particularly bad experience with a former boss (this boss was nasty, manipulative, a liar, and would make up things to go after you with), I find even in my new workplace that I get anxious and nervous when the new boss wants to meet with me to talk about work stuff.. it is hard to remember that it is only a job - coz even still you want to do it to the best of your ability..

    as an aside, putting through the ohs reports to your boss it's possible that your boss may even tell the ohs rep that he/she needs to act on some of them.

  5. Aw man, I feel for you. That's horrid when shit like that happens. Because it's such an abnormal thing. Scratch an average punter and they're decent. But 10 per cent of people in this world are total jerkwads and 1 percent are psychopathic. You're bound to run into them now and then. Casso had a similar experience and had to pull strings to escape (yay! and she fell into a job that was better-linked to her true calling).

    I always, always have the dreads when going to a with-a-boss discussion. And I always, always will. But then I am feeling crap most of the time and the unfortunate subtext that gets pumped out is that if I feel crap then I am crap and other people, ipsofuckingfacto, likewise think that.

    Hopefully though on the safety front things will get better. Yesterday I saw a large brown roll of packing / wrapping paper stored next to the wall ... in front of the emergency exit. So I went to the lads that owned it and said 'hey guys, we need to move this in case some OH&S Nazi comes along and makes you do it' with me actually being said OH&S Nazi but just in a volunteer capacity. They got a little pissy about it - 'it's not in the way!'. I didn't want to further add to it all by then saying 'also can you pick it up because I can't lift stuff' so I picked it up, after feebly attempting to roll it first, then slotted it out of the way next to the dead photocopier (across from which is the shredder and thus narrowing the passage to well less than a metre). So I did this and went back to my desk.

    Then punch one comes bounding along, deliriously joyful and says 'and how heavy was that Mikey?' in a big gotcha joy burst. I simply told him it was a hazard and that I had to move it. I also noted that he expected me to move all those boxes that were next to my desk. He lied and said he meant my boss should have done it. Then he had the fucking gall to say they cared about me and that I should ask for assistance. When just the previous day he'd had a screaming tanty about my seeking assistance in removing obvious fucking trip hazards about the place.

    The fact I had to MOVE that fucking paper roll that had been there so long there were fucking cobwebs on it is a testimony to how utterly shit house the job they are doing is. In of course my opinion. And I say that as a person with OCD and who has been a volunteer safety (slash) first aid (slash) warden almost all of my public service career.

    Anyway /rant on that. Today's meeting wasn't horrid, punch two was away, anyway, and I didn't go angry clam. I actually perked up a bit and was still me. Being me is awesome!

  6. GametesRhyme9:04 AM

    I agree - you are an awesome person! otherwise I wouldn't read here regularly and comment as often as I do!

    (Tangent - I should have explained, I perform research type functions, and need to work closely with new boss, so meetings are semi-regular. Whenever new boss asks to meet, my first thought is "OMG new boss is going to sack me", when instead the meeting is about the next phase of work that needs to be done to finish a project. Old boss on the otherhand was the 1% psychopathic/sociopathic type who is just plain nasty. [Tangentally tangential, as an aside, new boss is pretty awesome, rather than send an underling to get you, new boss will walk to where your office pod is located and personally ask to meet.. new boss is a lot better than icky old boss.])

  7. Hooray for being awesome!

    But that is awesome you have a nice boss now. It can make such a fucking difference. The irony is in all of this your nasty boss then nice boss experience is it seems pretty much how the ALP caucus felt with Rudd then Gillard...

    PS Area man demands you start a blog. Unless of course you already have an e-outlet for that stuff...

  8. GametesRhyme10:09 AM

    I admit to starting a blog a while back, however the sticktoitness needed to do this was not my forte (I'm easily distr... ooooooo shiny awesome person has a blog, I must go to there and read!)

  9. The fact I've stuck at doing this blog for nearly seven years is astonishing to me. But I know why now. It's catharsis. Blogging makes me feel better. I know I am never going to succeed as a professional writer but at least here I am writing. I get to vent. I get to be creative. I get to journal stuff. And it's free to me. Now and then I will see those 'how much is the site worth?' sites. The value for this blog based on potential ad revenue ... ? $600 or so. So clearly I'm not in it for the cash. But I tell you I think blogging in part saved me. Because it gave me an outlet and helped me not just sit in a morose funk of self-loathing. Which, as irony would have it, is the name of my fourth self-titled album...

  10. Just caught up with the rest of this conversation. You are awesome, Mikey, and don't you forget it. Aslo, don't say you *know* you're never going to succeed as a professional writer. Sure, the odds are very small (it's a big marketplace and hard to break into) but there is still a chance. You've gotta believe, man! *plays power cords on the air guitar*

  11. Aw, you're awesome. Best. Writin' Bud. Evah!


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