Monday, October 20, 2008

The Fantastic Foaming Mouth Functionary

I'm going through a rather busy period at work of late and haven't been attending to writing as much as I would like to; I just want to turn my brain off in the evenings and watch my Scrubs boxsets before trudging upstairs to bed and entering a comatose state for several hours.

I've been doing more hours than the 6.57 that is required of me daily ( Yes, my flexitime balance is incredibly healthy, and I'm praying for a chance to use the day off). The work just keeps on coming and I have to stay on top of it, because the clerical officers will have fuck all to do when I pass the boring bits onto them. And, on top of all that, I have a big deadline looming. If program files on my C: drive were actual physical entities, then Arse Race.exe would have six inches of nasty Government dust and other detritus on it.

Well, it's better than no job at all. That's what keeps me motivated to go in every day. I've spent some time signing on at the dole office and actually taking recruitment "consultants" seriously. At one stage I was even been tempted to work at a call centre with a bad reputation, for minimum wage, just to get off the dole queue. (It was when I realised at the interview that bonuses were paid in pizza that I said "G'luck, I'm off to sign on" and turned to the door.)

That's also what motivates me to do my job well, or at least, to the best of my ability. I put my head down and try to see the task through to its conclusion. Apart from the swearing, mood swings and threatening to rip the arms off clerical officers and beat them to death with the wet end, I like to think I set a good example. Especially when I'm busy as I get my head down and render myself oblivious to what's going on around me. Not an easy task given the open plan layout and the volume of shite-talk from all corners. I don't deal with interruptions too well.

I don't deal very well with being assigned additional tasks when I'm clearly under pressure either. For instance:

Boss: Err... Govstooge?
Me: Whu... what??
Boss: Could you do something with this? (Hands me a file)
Me: Whatever. Add it to the pile, I'll get round to it some time this century.
Boss: Well, it's just that I'd like something on it this evening.
Me: (Gesticulating at the piles of paper in front of me) Maybe it's best to get someone else to do it. I'm up the walls here. Hey! You know what would be really quick?
Boss: What?
Me: If you did it yourself?

Seriously, I don't advocate talking to superior officers in that fashion as a matter of course. But when you KNOW that the boss has been on the phone to their partner or their mother all morning, or trying to get on the Joe Duffy show to whinge about medical cards or surfing the internet and using Alt_Tab not quite quickly enough for you not to see the EBay page open when you go to their desk with something - when you've been working your hole off, it brings out a vicious streak. On certain days it's as close to apoplexy as a healthy young person such as myself is likely to get.

When my deadline is up, and it will be soon (and yes, I'm on track), I'm going to rest on my laurels for ooh, I don't know, a couple of days, take some flexi time off and get a headstart on Christmas shopping so I can beat the rush and avoid further stress.

No, I won't do the shopping online at work. I've more principles than that (sniffs haughtily). Besides, a few of the clerical officers can see my monitor. Ordering Nazi memorabilia for Uncle Joe within their line of sight may not be big or clever.

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