vaca

Back from vacation and wondering when the next one is. We first went down to St. Augustine, FL for our daughter-in-laws graduation -well, we stayed in St. Augustine but graduation was an hour south. We drove about 8 hours that day and afterwards when pulling back into St. Augustine, Bernita texted us asking where we were. We were so tired from driving we just parked the car on some random street (which, we were worried we’d forget later) and walked to the first bar we saw which was Scarlett O’Hara’s . A few minutes later her and Ralph walked in and joined us for a drink. The next day the kids came up and visited before we all headed south to a post graduation BBQ for the new graduate. I dreaded this to be honest. I knew that Charlies ex husband would be there and his looney-bin wife. We both vowed to just put on a calm face, be polite and endure for the sake of the kids. Endure or no I was still packing.

The shin-ding went well except for the point of ex and looney heading our way to extend the olive branch of “can’t we all get along”. I was introduced to them both and actually shook Charlie’s ex’s hand. Weird. The looney was going on about inviting us to come down and stay with them during the holidays to be with them and the kids. (Just for reference – the kids are both grown men now – one married, the other in his early 20’s with a steady girl – both living on their own so it’s not like they’re going to be in matching jammies with footies to open presents on Christmas day or anything). Charlie replied that we had the kids up for holidays all the time and politely declined but thanked them all the same.

The next day we drove to Pensacola Beach, FL all the way up I-10 which we both thought would never.end. Finally there I couldn’t believe the traffic on the island. We checked in to our hotel and decided to hoof it across the street to the beach and then hit a little bar there. There was a guy playing guitar, we ordered drinks and were enjoying the atmosphere – until some guy just decided to sit down at our table and start talking. I had to remind myself where I was before reacting. We went with it and his buddy came over and was introduced. I wanted to just say, “We’re together, see the ring?” but I decided that I didn’t want to stir up trouble our first day in P’cola. Finally, they got the hint and left to go horn in on this other table of women adjacent to us.

The next day we woke to construction trucks pulling up on the street in front of our hotel. They had decided that day to repave the road on the island. Greeeeeat. So, we went to the beach and sat until the sun was fully out and then decided to drive down the street (in the one lane they provided) to Peg Leg Pete’s.  When we pulled up there was a line outside that we joined. Turned out the electricity had been out and they delayed opening. The lights flickered on and we went straight to the downstairs bar where they only served cold drinks and fresh oysters. We had the bar to ourselves and our bartender, John, took care of us – even when the electricity went off again and we sat drinking beers throughout the afternoon. We finally closed out and headed back to the hotel with the paving crew just finishing up. We walked across the other direction and went to Flounder’s which, if we lived there we’d be regulars. Our bartender there – Larry, served up a drink of cucumber/lime vodka with soda and sour mix which was a nice change to the Diesel Fuels of the previous night.

We headed to Destin the next day where neither of us had been previously. I’d always heard great things about Destin but never got up that way. As we crossed the bridge and saw the blue/green water on either side with boats lining the harbor we agreed it was gorgeous. We checked into a slightly run-down hotel (I insisted on because it faced the bay) and went to go rent a boat for a few hours. That was probably the highlight of the whole trip. We drove the boat out to this place called Crab Island where everyone was parked. We dropped anchor and jumped in only to be swept back by a strong current. We literally jumped off the front of the boat and seconds later grabbed the ladder at the back of the boat.  We swam and hung out before cruising around and going back in. That night we ended up at AJ’s for drinks and dinner. We definitely go back – just with more money next time because it was an expensive place – probably a good thing we were only there a day/night.

The next day we made it home by early afternoon. The dogs were ecstatic to see us despite long naps with their nanny while we were gone. It was good to be home but not back to work. In fact, I doubt anyone even noticed I was gone until I got back and they said, Oh hey, didn’t you go on vacation? How was that?  But, as my friend Tate says, Better neglect than abuse – I’ll take it.

 

early friday chex mix

It’s a rainy evening here in Georgia.

Not that I’m complaining of the rain – never. We have grass seed in the back that needs to germinate and I desperately do not want a drought this summer. Yes, I’d take rain any day over a dusty summer. I do realize that we’re still in spring and not quite gotten to summer just yet. I am not rushing it, either. I enjoy these lush, spring days (now that I’ve gotten over the high pollen count with two sinus infections). Charlie is feeling a little under the weather today – something she ate last night, perhaps. It was date night tonight and we went to have pho and then straight home. She has fallen asleep in front of the TV watching some documentary about Africa.

Vacation, f*cking vacation.

I want to be on vacation, honestly. I want to see beaches and smell the salt in the air. We leave for Florida the end of next week and it cannot get here soon enough.

Happy hour.

It’s impossible to get everyone together anyhow for this. I feel like I constantly be the communicator, the planner, the organizer. Maybe one HH a month is enough. We got quite a few 3 people over last week for it but this week we have a bunch of maybes and rain. Maybe’s and rain = Meh, forget it.  Sometimes it would be nice to sit in a cozy Irish pub by a fire (Hey, Marley House) so if it’s raining tomorrow we go there – that is, if Charlie’s feeling better.

We have this friend.

Who I will name DD for Dreary Debbie? Debbie Downer is too common. Desperate Debbie? Yeah, more like that. The girl puts a whole new meaning into that word desperate. Deeeeesperado…….why don’t you come to your senses…….

-it’s like that, y’all. She’s been chasing a dream with two legs for seven-sevenfucking-YEARS to no avail who treats her like a laundry basket or one that holds magazines. Every once in a while you kick it when you’ve had a frustrating day – that kind of basket. So, when she’s Desperate Debbie basket she gets on Tinder.

No good can come from a DESPERATE women in her mid-40’s being on Tinder.

NO GOOD, PEOPLE. No good…..So, you can just imagine the types of people she’s talking to. The ones who ask for money after the 50th text, no snapchat-asses. These are probably men in their mid-50’s using their 20-something year old nieces pictures to elicit money and sex on the internet. We have lunch with Debbie sometimes on the weekends and she shows us dozens of pictures of ho’s women she’s talking to on the internet. Then she gets all depressed that she’s not meeting someone and in the same breath says she’s going to see the woman who treats her like a basket for dinner. We say, Why, why, why, Debbie? You’re going to be on Tinder when you’re FIDDY (50). You don’t want that to happen. You won’t able to swipe left or right because you’ll have arthritis by then from swiping so much. Stop being desperate, Debbie. Stop.

Even Benji had problems with Tinder. Her Tinder woman went cra-cra, said she didn’t want to see anyone and then dropped off the face of the earth (but, probably not off Tinder). They had planz, too. Like going out of town and to a (teeny-bopper 20ish) concert which didn’t happen. Benji was so depressed that she didn’t go – even after trying to talk her into going and giving the xtra ticket to some hot 20-something and having fun. She stayed at home and moped. I would have gone if I were her.

Work. PMP. What am I doing?

I don’t know. We had a “team” meeting on Tuesday and we were told that they found enough old geezers people to take an early retirement that they wouldn’t have to lay anyone off. This is a relief because I’m still trying to find a way to get a promotion to a different department and it’s proving to be equal to landing a federal job interview. That difficult. I know it’s only been a couple of weeks since I got certified but I hope this PMP thing holds more weight than it is holding so far. Part of me doesn’t know what to do with all this spare time I have now from not having to study. The other part is like, what’s next? The company has all these online training classes on Agile Scrum and if I take 22 of these things and take their test I get their company bronze certification in Agile Scrum (notice I said company – by no means is this the nationwide scrum master cert) so I’m doing it so I can add it to my company resume. I’m going to take six months and keep applying and if I don’t get any interviews then I’m going on to another certification – scrum master, Agile, or even Leed. Something.

So, that’s all I got. I hope you enjoyed the snippets of topics – we’ll call it an early Friday chex mix. Y’all have a great weekend! Cheers!

 

wing central

I know y’all have been wondering where the hell I’ve been lately. I’ve been studying my @ss off for that PMP exam which I retook last Friday and –

I PASSED!

‘Cause I’m P.M.P., I’m dynamite
(P.M.P.) and I’ll win the fight
(P.M.P.) I’m a power load
(P.M.P.) watch me explode’

That’s why I’ve been AWOL the past month. I devoted all my spare time and energy to studying for that thing so I could pass it the second time. Now I’m looking around for my second certification and I really think it’s going to be LEED AP. But, I at least want to take a breather before hitting the books again. Friday after passing the test our friend, Benita came up from Florida to help celebrate. Since she had just passed her Real Estate test we had a lot to celebrate. We started out at The Imperial for happy hour drinks with Benji and a friend. We were all sitting there drinking when Benita wanted to get something for us to nosh on. Other than pizza rolls (which, seemed a bit strange to me – can’t we just get some humus? But no – it wasn’t on the menu) the only thing that looked appetizing THEN was the chicken wings. You know – wings that are small, buffalo flavored that you can pick up with your hands and gnaw on? Like these:

Not these:

Picture half the done-ness. Like, these things were barely done. We all sat there looking at the plate. The wings stuck up looking like some meat crown from Game of Thrones. And, we should have been a wee bit suspicious when we asked the server why there were only three to an order and she put her whole arm up and said, It’s the whoooooole wing, y’all. Pointing to her arm. (The five of us almost lost it laughing but we held it in)

We each reluctantly took one and instead of picking it up with our hands we picked at it with a fork and knife. I mean, if you have to use a knife and fork on a wing then you shouldn’t be eating it. We left three on the plate (thankfully, we talked Benita out of ordering like 20 of these things – Benji is a vegetarian and friend, Liz was only staying for one drink). The server came over and took one look at it and asked what was wrong. We said, Nothing. They’re fine.

No, I know something’s wrong, what’s up?

Well, they’re just not done enough for us…. (what was not said -plus, you left that wingie thing on there that Benita said is where the orgasm on a chicken comes from sticking up like a crown and it just grossed our shit out).

Well, I’ll take it off your bill. No worries.

We breathed a Thanks. Until she came back a bit later with more drinks and said, I just put in another order for you – extra crispy.

No, really we’re fine – give them to someone else.

No, I insist. Oh, here they are. And, she said down yet another crown plate.

OMIGOD WILL THESE THINGS EVER GO AWAY? We reluctantly ate another – I pulled off the slimy skin and pulled off some meat with a fork. Enough so that it looked like I consumed something. Benji, who had been watching this whole fiasco thinking, Why I’m a vegetarian suggested we go to the fabulous taco bar and we closed out so fast that our heads spun and the server put the remaining wings in a TOGO box for us and we reluctantly carried them out to the car which later we dumped on the side of the street hoping someone else would appreciate them. The rest of the weekend we kept saying, THE WHOOOOOLE WING, Y’ALL and laughing. Which, is the reason for this picture:

Saturday we took in Ponce City Market and a fabulous Latin-inspired place called El Super Pan (probably the best Cuban sandwich I have ever had and the Yucca fries are to die for).

Benita spent a bit of time at this really cool premium bitters shop called 18.21 Bitters and ended up buying this jalapeno, cilantro bitters that is really good in margaritas for her daughter who is a Mixologist.

Around the corner was the King of Pops frozen alcohol bar which made my mouth water. If it would have been later in the day I would have certainly pulled up a stool and had a drink. Upstairs we played around taking pictures in this store called Citizen Supply.

Later that evening we had tickets to see Sister Hazel at the Variety Playhouse. It was a really great show and we ended up parked right in front of the stage. After the show we stood around hoping to get to the back to get a little memento from the band. Just then this guy who sat in on a few numbers playing a mean guitar came out and we said, Hey, you were great up there – who are you? He (Travis) played with Wild Adriatic and happened to be in town for the 420 festival downtown and Sister Hazel had asked him to play a few numbers with them. Just then Benita happened to score the song list that was taped to the stage and Travis grabbed it and said he’d run it back and have the members with Sister Hazel sign it for us. Amazing! Plus, we got three guitar picks.

The next day, sadly, Benita had to take off for home. I admit I was a little hung over from so much excitement of the weekend. I went in to work on Monday and told my boss first thing that I passed my PMP exam and he had the reaction of like, Oh. That was it – OH. I’m like whatever. I know it’s a big deal even if he doesn’t. Then, we got notified this week that they are going to start layoffs. We’ve had two meetings so far on the subject and no one knows sh*t about it. Of course. What’s it’s all going to come down to is making the managers do the dirty work and identify people to cut from their teams. I only hope that I’m not one of them but I know I’m a female and a minority on his team of male drinking buddies -and, his two favorites Larry and Sherrie. But, you know – there’s really nothing I can do about it so I’m just going to continue putting one foot in front of the other and taking it one day at a time. If I get laid off then perhaps this place wasn’t meant to be for me and that I’ll find something better. Because I have a brand new certification that I can put next to my name now – Lanie Belluz, muthafucken PMP!

I just got to be upbeat and hope for the best and prepare for the worst. That’s all I can do. Tomorrow, we’re having happy hour and a dinner party at the house and inviting friends who we haven’t seen in a while so I’m looking forward to it. The weather should be nice and we can open up the bar shed and play some music, darts and hang.

(And, Sadie says this is her shed and she cards everyone)

 

 

 

 

 

a challenge

This is why I haven’t written in a while because nothing really new is going on. It’s just the same work/study grind over here.

Be careful what you wish for. All this time I wanted a challenging job. One that I would learn something new every day and would challenge me. I have that now – but, I think the universe wasn’t listening very closely – I meant “challenging” vs every day is a challenge.

See the difference? Challenging is stimulating, interesting, and thought-provoking:

Whereas a challenge is  something that by its nature or character serves as a call to battle, contest, special effort, a call to fight, a duel, a demand to explain, justify, etc.
That seems to be where work is at nowadays. It is challenging – very – but with almost no support. You are pretty much left on your own to figure shit out. My manager is never here. He decided to work from home the entire week last week because his kids were on spring break. I just love how everyone who has kids in my group gets this buy of, Oh, I have to work from home because my kids are off.
Everyone on my team works from home except for myself, Shampa (only because they are so lame in never ordering her a laptop when she started) and the twins, of course, because, you know, they go to work to hang out and have FUN!
Yesterday, I was steamed. I work in the same building as construction so when there’s a damage job in my area then come to me about it. Well, we had a huge cable down in my area and they said they needed a job created so they could order the materials and get it fixed. So, I created the job (which, takes a minute to create) and then did a design on it. Mind you – I have not done that much design work and most of the people I work with in the construction office almost don’t know how to open up Microstation let alone lend any help. So, I thought, It can’t be that hard to design something that replaces another. Right? Right.
Well, it was still a pain in the ass but I did it. I mean, it was DONE. Ready to be approved, firmed and sent off to get the order placed. Then- construction started whining about having to order and put up a cable that large when we only have 22 working pairs in it. (engineer speak) Effing whiney ASSES. I’m giving you your cable, beeeotches! Plus, this shit is coming out of my budget NOT YOURS, F*CKERS.
Here’s the large division (as wide as the Mississippi) between construction people and engineers. Construction people think engineers are just lazy a-holes that sit behind a computer all day writing stuff that doesn’t work in the field. Engineers think construction people just want to sleep in their trucks all day and whine about doing work. There’s stereotypes on both sides, sure.
So, these bitches go screaming to my boss about having to put up this large cable, blah, blah, blah. Meanwhile, the boss who came in at 10:00 that day (because remember last week he worked from home), took a long lunch and then parked himself on the phone the rest of the afternoon so I couldn’t talk to him about it – but, he did manage to send me an email saying I should use a 100 pair cable.
OH! (Slapping forehead) why didn’t you tell me! Ok, I’ll do that except – what the HELL do I do with the (math in head) 600-22 = 578 pairs left in the existing cable? Oh, well Lanie – just figure that shit out! Geez. You’re supposed to be an engineer and not bother your boss about these trivial THINGS. Go on, girl – get it done – especially since now there’s some angry woman in cable repairs is emailing you every 15 minutes wanting to know WHERES MY MUTHA-F*CKING CABLE…………………..beeotch?
Ima like, BeeotchyougetyourcableIMWORKINGONIT!
This is a day in the life of an engineer.
So, next it’s like this – you only have 22 working pairs in that effing cable so you need to actually SEE which of dem bitches are workin’. You don NEED the rest of those 578 bitches cuz they don work. OK? Eff them- they out drinking cervezas like your bitch @ss should be right now.
Ok, that makes sense – how do I see which ones – out of 600 – are working?
Oh, that’s EASY. Just go here, click on this, and type a bunch of this shit and run a ADKMCDKC<K Report and it will show you.
A what? Where? How?
Finally, I get the report – 42 pages long of gibberish. I mean, it looked like someone played tic-tac-toe with 42 pages of hieroglyphics that made no sense. Now I know how the Egyptians felt – they actually couldn’t read the shit they put on the walls – someone just told them to run a hieroglyphics report on some rock that wasn’t placed right or some shit. They were engineers, too, you know.
So, I went into my bosses office 3 times to talk to him about this report and he was still on a conference call. Could he have emailed me and said, What’s up? Sure. How about send me an instant message while he’s just staring blankly at his computer screen while he’s listening saying, Hey, still on the phone what you got? But, no.
Finally, I see that the twins are back from their daily field visit romantic excursion and send Sherrie a message Is other twin there? Hoping that Larry can help me because I sure know Sherrie can’t as the only pair she knows is – ok, don’t go there, Lanie.

Sherrie happily tells me that Larry is IN. I then ask if Baxter is off the phone and she replies, Oh he left.

You can IMAGINE what was going through my mind then. It was something like, You KNEW I needed to talk to you and you just took off. (in so many words)
Get my drift?
So, I go into Larry and Sherries office and ask Larry about that report. Larry doesn’t know how to read it but does suggest that instead of putting in a 800 foot cable with a smaller one just to do a jumper and splice here and splice there and blah, blah, blah(yeah, I feel your confusion). So then, another engineer comes in. This guy actually orders the equipment – sans cable that I’m trying to build. Larry hands him the report. He doesn’t know how to read it either. Then, they tell me I should just go to the rundown, dilapidated, zombie-world central office in my area and check the wall to see which pairs are working in that cable. Like it’s going to be this:
HERE’S THE EXISTING CABLE, LANIE (which I’m fighting off zombies trying to write this shit down) and it has 22 PAIRS IN IT AND THEY ARE NUMBERS, 61, 72, 96……up to 600 THE ANSWER IS HERE!
Right. I ain’t driving my bitch ass over to zombie-land-creepy-ass building and LOOK ON THE WALL. FUCK THAT SHIT! I picked up the report and left them to their gossiping over Baxter of all people. No one is any effing help over here. I went home steamed knowing I didn’t get my job done (which, really bothers me because this is my area and I’m responsible for it) and that I was going to have a hundred emails from that bitch in cable repairs – WHERES MY MUTHA-F*CKING CABLE………
Don’t you hate when you’re trying to help and people are yelling at you or not helping you help? I do. Makes me a bit angry.
I come in this morning and SUPRISE the boss isn’t in. Larry’s making the plans for the day with him and Sherrie and I go in and message one of the other engineers that actually know more about this stuff than anyone and offer to bring over donuts if he can look at what I have so far. He said, Come on over.
So, I spent the morning going over random reports and him showing me how to read them, what would be the best design for the current situation and how to proceed. Shit my MANAGER should have been showing me, y’all. I mean, when he said he was a hands off kind of guy I really thought he meant he sat back and let you do your work – which, I’m fine with but I didn’t think it meant stay away and leave me alone, don’t ask me any questions and I don’t want to have to teach you anything.
See where I’m coming from? It’s a CHALLENGE and if I hear from that cable repair woman one.more.time………….

it’s never glamorous or easy

Even for movie stars – it’s never glamorous. There’s photographers sticking their cameras in your face, people calling all the time and constant appointments and engagements.  Just like people think my job is glamorous and that I have it made – it’s not. I spent three hours with developers on Monday getting yelled at because they need service for the subdivision they’re building and I can’t give them any answers except that we’re working on it and it’s a process.

I recently had a recruiter contact me about another job in my field. They engaged me through Linkedin and asked if I’d be interested in this job. I looked up the title of the job on Indeed and found it – I also found it was a recruiting company listing the job.

As a rule – I’ve never really trusted recruiters. They talk a big game but all they’re looking for is their commission if they can place someone in the position their client is advertising. They work for the client or the business that has the slot open not the person who’s looking for a job. I asked the woman to send me a little more info about the position and she did. I turned it down -it was too much of a commute and the knowledge base was stretching it a bit. In short – I wouldn’t feel comfortable in accepting it. Although, a few more years in the position I’m currently in – I could pull it off.

After I turned it down she continued to engage me asking if there were any openings in my group, who my manager was and if she could meet with him and possibly myself. [Like she was the one looking for a job] I was like, WTF, lady? I said that I didn’t feel comfortable with that and to go to the company recruiting website for information on openings within. Like I tell everyone – you have to go to the career website and apply just like everyone else and hope you get lucky enough to score an interview. I mean, I’ve probably put out thousands of applications over the years. You have to put in the work, sweat and tears writing applications, revising your resume, and [if you’re lucky] scheduling interviews. No recruiter ever got me a job.

I had to drop off my laptop at the corporate office yesterday (such an oxymoron since I work for a tech company and my computer is a POS) that happened to be across the street from the JAIL of my previous job. (Let’s call them the D*cks of Transportation). I had texted my buddy over there to meet me for lunch but he wasn’t sure if he could or not so I ate before going down there. Just as I was paying for my parking meter I heard him shout to me across the street. I ended up meeting him while he ate lunch. Just as I thought -4 other of my previous co-workers were there and walked up and hugged my neck – at least my old co-workers were nice (well, some of them but never any upper management). One of them took over one of my former committees and I was asking him how he liked working with the committee head and he groaned and we commiserated. As much as I’m having growing pains where I’m now I SURE wouldn’t go back to that mess. Then, one of the guys asked if there were any positions where I was and said to email him. I wanted to say, WTF, dude? I’m not a recruiter. Here’s my advice go to [company website] dot com backslash careers and apply just like everyone else.

I mean, maybe I missed my calling as everyone else seems to think I can get them a job. I will tell you that I went to a career coach during the time I was laid off. It was very expensive but in hindsight worth every penny. Maybe people should do that – maybe that’s what gives me an edge over them. Honestly, some people I wonder how they got the job they have. I was on the phone with a tech support person for the company later that day and he was talking to me from his home in Pensacola, Fla. I was like, How do I get your job? I said it in jest but he told me that he started out where I am now and just moved into the position. I was like, DAAAMN.

I think most of the time getting a job is 10% what you know, 20% who you know and the rest is just sheer dumb luck.

SO –

-I’ve been putting off telling you but I didn’t pass my test. It was such a pain in the butt, too. When I went in you would have thought I was going to JAIL (my second reference to that this post – maybe too many episodes of Wentworth? Who knows….) I had to put all my stuff in a locker, get patted down, waved with a wand, they had to check my glasses – like I had special SuperWoman glasses that projected all the answers onto the lenses or something. Anyway, after three hours of grinding it out I got my results. FAIL. I was mad, of course. I went home only to find that Charlie was still out at a job grinding it out. I went over there to help her clean up – literally as it had rained earlier and it was a muddy mess. So now I signed up to take it again. I really need to start hitting that pretty hard but I just needed a few days reprieve from it. I know – no one ever said this shit was easy.

 

D-day

Saturday I take my PMP exam.

I want to pass this thing [desperately] the first time and not have to retake it for another $250 but I am prepared to do whatever it takes to get that certification number before my time runs out mid-May.

This week has been very cold, rainy and windy. This was probably a good thing as I’ve needed to stay in and take it easy. Although, tonight Charlie and I are going out for date night since tomorrow night I have to be back to taking it easy as my exam is bright and the next morning. That’s unfortunate as Friday is St. Paddy’s day, too, and Rooster is having a shing-ding at her house. I told Charlie she could go celebrate her Irish roots without me but she refused.

So, what’s new?

I finally got my new construction area to manage at work. The manager I got the area from really screwed it up, too. Monday, I’m meeting with angry developers who have been requesting service for a very long time (well, to them a long time is a week). I know how to manage construction projects – I do. This is my lifeblood so I’ll do fine despite the setbacks. It’s all on me if I screw it up and there’s been quite a few at work who want to be the first in line to tell me that – including the former bitch manager of the area I’ve been assigned. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised people can be so pissy when it comes to doing work. Everyone has work to do so why be pissed off all the time – it just sucks up more time and energy. But, like opinions everyone has assholes – or is that the other way around?

Why can’t there be more 4-leaf clovers and nice people? That’s what I want to know. In the meantime, have a Guinness (I believe if more people had one they would be LESS angry) and happy St. Paddy’s Day!

-believe me, I know!

 

 

 

TGIF

For some reason this week has just really kicked my @ss. It’s Friday and I’m ready for a nice weekend  kickin’ it with Charlie and perhaps Benjii playing darts and having some beers.

I’ve fought a sinus infection all week – that’s part of the reason it’s kicked my butt so bad. Thankfully, my doctor knows that I get these things once in the spring and once in the fall  and called in a prescription over the phone. I’m glad I got to it when I did because it would have put me down a lot harder if I had waited a few days to start the meds.

Charlie put in a rock job for a client this week. She worked really hard on it, too, and it looked fabulous.

img_0657

The client was a little wishy-washy at the end, though. Charlie thinks it was because the client thought the rock was going to be larger than what was placed. (we went over that with the her several times prior to installing it) I thought it was more like buyers remorse on writing the final check for the outstanding invoice amount.

Sometimes it just works like that in your work and life. You’re plugging along thinking you’re doing great and next thing you know your manager, boss, client or even co-worker tells you you’re doing sh*tty.

Sometimes it’s true and you don’t realize it but often times it’s their stuff just projecting onto you. I try to take it in stride, I do. I try to learn from my mistakes and not let others tear me down or do that to myself. If you remember my corporate image and saved by zero posts you know I haven’t been exactly thrilled with that aspect of my life lately. Along with studying for my PMP I’ve been applying for different roles within the company. This morning, I had my first “virtual” interview. And —

–I blew that, too.

At least I feel like I did. My computer decided to take a dive right before the interview and I had to use the call in meeting method. Brittany and Kelisha on the other end did not like that, I thought. But, maybe I’ll actually make the second round from them not seeing my ugly mug. Who knows if this thing is a fit or if it will go any further. But, it’s Friday and I’m bound and determined to brush myself off, keeping studying and get the FREAKING PMP cert and move on!

It’s getting to be almost that time to tip a beer at the Irish pub so cheers everyone and have a great weekend – you know I’m gonna!

 

 

 

 

 

corporate image

I’ve been working at our other office down by the airport this week. After the whole snafu a few weeks back I went to my boss and asked him if I should consider going down there and working with another co-worker who was handing over their wire center to me and he agreed that it was a good idea.

Talk about leading the cows around the barn to show them food.

When I was hired he said he was a hands off kind of guy. At the time I took that to mean that he’s not in to micromanaging. That was fine with me as my former manager was a micromanager. What I didn’t expect that to mean was days going by without any communication/interaction whatsoever. I used to be the one to keep him in the loop about everything I was doing but now I’m not. Once I told him I was going to work down there temporarily for a while and got his response of Ok, let’s see how it goes, I was done. I know how it’s going to go. It’s going to go a lot better than working up there in that construction office where I can go a whole day and no one even knows I’m there. I went back there to work on Wednesday this past week and no one even knew I was there until one point Larry and another co-worker, Don (who works in yet another office building) burst in.

Don was telling Larry that he needed to get his filing cabinets out of there soon. Larry told him not to take my wall. I had lined them up to block out Carmine coming in every 5 minutes back in the day when Larry and Sherry were in there. I was sitting there looking at both of them like, I really don’t care what you do, and said so.

Then, Don starts asking me what’s going on with the half-built cubical walls. I said that I didn’t know. Then, he asked where they came from. I again said that I didn’t know. Larry was like, Don’t get me started on that. Which was funny because aside from helping Baxter from putting one of them together one day he basically gets to run around with Sherry all day and do nothing.

Don was rambling on about something else and Larry said, I’m gonna come see you. I shrugged like, Whatever. I wanted to say, What about? They finally left and I spent the rest of the day in there working and no one else came in. No idea where Patricia was – I got asked that, too, and I said my standard, I don’t know. Even if I did I’m not telling any of those people shit.

When I work in the south office I work next to three of the women I originally started working with in our old office – before we had to move out and we all got tossed to the wind. There’s way more interaction there and I actually get asked out to lunch and to the field to look at shit. So, I’m going to try to stay down here as much as possible because I’m just so over the b.s. at the other office. I guess I need to go ahead and take charge of my professional development and push on through or else I’ll be sitting in that stupid construction office waiting for things to happen that never will.

Speaking of professional development, I went to this free seminar by Brandie Mitchell on how to package the product of you. There was some great information there and it was held in one of the company’s corporate offices. I’m trying to get out and network more with other people in the organization of where I work and this was a good opportunity.

Some of the things I took away from it were this: People will pay you more for what you know than what you do.

  • Build a platform that packages your message of who you are and what you do.
  • Become a signature in the way you do things.
  • Make a list of things you do best and skills you use in each of them.
  • Identify the most important lessons you have learned in life.
  • What do others ask you to help them with?
  • What types of customers do you enjoy working with?
  • List your achievements and accomplishments.
  • Create an action plan for 90 days, 6 months, 12 months.

Those are some of the things I took away from the event. I already have an action plan in place. In 90 days I want to be PMP certified and then continue to make contacts and build a network. By 12 months I’d really like to be in a different place at work. Whether that means running a wire center successfully or something altogether different. My vision is to be more corporate and be in that kind of an environment. I feel that’s where my heart is taking me these days. Whether my customer is a contractor or a corporate manager – it doesn’t matter – they both want to build something. The customers I enjoy working with are the ones who enjoy building something that helps others and I think I’ve answered at least one of the questions above.

 

Athens, Drive-by Truckers, Random men and vomiting adolescents

It’s a lot to cram into one post, I know.

The more I go to Athens, Georgia the older I feel.  I think the next time – if there ever is one – I’m going to feel like I should practically be in a nursing home. Maybe that’s a good reason to not have anymore next times in Athens. But, hey, we had a good time – I’m glad we went- but like eating pizza (like today) it was good but I don’t want to eat it again for a very long time. That’s Athens for you.

Saturday, Benjii came over to dog sit and we left for Athens. The rain had let up and it turned out to be a nice drive out stopping at Charlie’s favorite store – Northern Tool and Equipment – on the way. Yes, she found about 10k worth of stuff she wants from there. (Who said anything about a way to a woman’s heart is through her stomach – with Charlie it’s a new compressor for her power washer or a Sthl tree saw). Once we pulled in to Athens we found our hotel right away. Her bro had booked us into the Georgia Gameday Center – which, turned out to be a one bedroom condo. It was PHAT! That was the nicest part of the trip was the condo we stayed. Once we checked in and took pictures of the room we left to go have a drink. I had texted my friends Stacy and Nikki when we pulled in to ask where a good place for a drink and a bite to eat and one of the places they suggested was Trappeze Pub.  We pulled up some stools and ordered a couple of Unknown Pregame beers (yes, everything in this town has something to do with some game somewhere – it just so happened there were a bunch of folk from Kentucky in town because of the UGA/Kentucky basketball game – all that way to watch basketball…….must not be much going on in Kentucky……ok,  shut up, Lanie)

After drinking our PRE-UGA/Kentucky gameday beer (to go with our hotel named Gameday, of course) we decided to go get PRE-game tacos. We started walking up Clayton street and finally found Bulldog tacos – kidding – Taqueria Tsunami where we had some great tacos and I had some great margaritas. One thing about Athens is that the drinks are good and cheap. Well margaritas were $6 each with fresh lime juice and not that sickly sweet limeaid mixer they typically use in margaritas. After a satisfying dinner we headed for the hotel to freshen up before going to the 40 Watt Club. For some reason we decided after the hotel to go ahead and get in line at the venue an hour before the show. I don’t know why we thought that was a good idea because when they let us in an hour before the show (8) there was hardly anyone in there anyway. While we were in line outside waiting to get in we started talking to the guys in line in front of us. One guy was in a wheelchair and had driven down from (scary coincidence) Indiana (where I’m from) and had been to the Truckers show Thursday and Friday, too. We said that he must really like them and he said he’d seen them like (I heard 17, Charlie heard 70- not sure which one I believe but you get the gist) times.

You really don’t want to know what I’m thinking at this point.

Another guy in front of us said he was from our neighborhood – we couldn’t believe that – right up the street from where we live. I was starting to think it was all a strange coincidence and was really hoping we could go inside soon because I was starting to tire of the conversation outside. I was thinking, I really am tired of talking to random men. I hope to get away from talking to random men – 

WRONG. Such was the story of our LIFE that night.

Once we went inside both those random men melted away into the crowd. We stood at the bar and ordered drinks. The bartender was very nice and we struck up a conversation with him and I was starting to realize that Charlie and I were probably only 2 of 5 women in the whole club. I started looking around and it was like we just got dropped off into Portland Oregon with long bearded men wearing grungy trucker hats, nerdy glasses and flannel shirts that were almost too short to tuck in. It was the hippy log splitting crowd – although I bet most of those men’s hands were as soft as my own. So, the warm up band, Hernies (and after listening to them I’m sure it was short for Screaming Hernias) wasn’t coming on until 9. We had several drinks in the meantime and Hernia -er – Hernies didn’t actually come on until 9:30. More grungy men filed in and a really drunk guy stationed himself next to us at the bar. This guy was probably the only non-grunge guy in there. Any minute he looked like he was either going to fall over or puke. Charlie and I moved away but at some point still couldn’t escape this guys hands. At one point he ran his arm down Charlie’s back and she just turned and looked at him and moved off. I said, “Let’s move down more.” Then, some other random man came over to talk to us – named Steve. Steve spied my tshirt with a motorcycle on it and asked if we rode.

I have learned most times when people as if you ride it’s just a segue into them telling you their whole life history of riding and showing you 1,000 pictures of their motorcycle on their iPhone before you even have a chance to say what you ride. Which happened. I was hoping to put Steve in between myself and the drunk, hand-sy guy next to me as I switched places with Charlie and now I was getting fondled. No such luck because after showing us the 945th pic of his Harley he hugged us and took off. Next, we started a conversation this some really big guy who looked like  Grizzly Adams in a Green Bay hat. I was thinking, If this doesn’t scare this drunk guy off then I don’t know what will. He did disappear momentarily but was back by the time Grizzly was gone. Next, we started hearing this sound from the stage. It was a loud, wambah, wambah, wambah that went on FOREVER. I was like, Is anyone finally going to sing around here, or are we going to be trapped here all night with the drunk pervert  and looking at 1,000 more Harley pictures? 

I shouted to Charlie over the WAMBAH, WAMBAH, WAMBAH  that we were probably going to have to move as I didn’t know how much longer I was going to take this guy touching me without putting my boot in his @ss. We slid down the bar further and another random guy came up and started shouting to us. His name was Jeff. We probably shouted at him the longest. The opening band finally started singing over the WAMBAH and they sounded like the Beatles on an acid trip. I had necessarily switched to the hard stuff and ordered another Jack and Coke wishing I’d worn earplugs – especially after talking to another random guy who said he came up from Valdosta, Georgia and followed the Truckers, loves them and that they are really Eff-ing loud. But, from the screaming coming from the stage I wondered if he meant the warm up band instead. By the time the Truckers did come on stage we were drunk immersed in a conversation with Jeff who had managed to scare off the drunk guy for us and was hugging us both and I had decided he was the lessor of the several random guy evils. Or maybe I was just deaf and drunk by then and didn’t care. By the time we left the club our ears were ringing and I was ready to be away from random men and go meet our friends, Stacy and Nikki.

WRONG.

We no more walked out  of the club and texted our friends to meet up with them when another random Steve came up and started walking with us. I was like, Really? WTF! I felt like that poor cat that always ran from Pepe Le Pew. We told him we were headed out to meet some friends and he said he was walking that way anyway. Honestly, if he hadn’t been so young I would have been worried. By this time there were several people out walking around – in fact, it was getting Marti Gras-ish and we witnessed our first public puking of the night before ducking behind a car and ditching that guy. When we walked into the club to meet our friends I’d never seen so many young drunk kids in my life. Stacy came up and shouted that the friend of theirs that had rented out the place for her birthday had been rushed to the hospital an hour earlier from alcohol poisoning. She pointed to the girls gf who was continuing to party on in her place. Once Charlie and I stole a tshirt off the wall for a memento we excused ourselves and said we had to get back.

Walking back to the hotel there were even more people out  – skimpy dressed, young women and men and yet more of them vomiting in the gutters. It was a total drunk fest. I hadn’t seen anything like this since – well, the last UGA game I went to in 1995. And, yet again we bumped into Steve and before he could say anything we just started running to the hotel because we’d had enough. I kept thinking we were running away from young, drunk zombies who were going to eat our faces off. We made it to our nice room, split our subway sandwich and passed out.

The next day we were going to go out to eat breakfast somewhere but we were both ready to get the hell out of dodge. We came back and ate pizza with the dogs  – which, was fine with me. It was a fun weekend but I don’t think we’ll be going to Athens again anytime soon.

 

saved by zero

“Maybe someday, saved by zero,
I’ll be more together.
Stretched by fewer thoughts that leave me.
Chasing after my dreams; disown me, loaded with danger.
So maybe I’ll win. (Saved by zero.)
Maybe I’ll win. (Saved by zero.)
Holding onto words that teach me.
I will conquer space around me.
So maybe I’ll win. (Saved by zero.)
Maybe I’ll win. (Saved by zero.)
Maybe I’ll win. (Saved by zero.)
Maybe I’ll win. (Saved by zero.)
Saved by, saved by, saved by zero.
Saved by, saved by, saved by zero.
Saved by, saved by, saved by zero”

This is how I feel lately with studying for my exam, work, my career in general. I admit, ever since my review I’ve been a bit pissed disenchanted. You know? I thought my last job had the most un-helping-ist people I’ve ever come across but I’ve changed my mind. It seems like no one wants to do any teamwork or work with anyone else but themselves -and there’s only a few who will help or answer questions (but, they sit in different locations which is another topic of frustration).

I’m studying Project Management Methodology that employs the basis of working as cohesive team or I should say “a team based approach” to management of a project and am not experiencing this at all in my current role. I really thought when I accepted this role that I would be managing projects and an area. In fact, that was what I was hired to do. I’m supposedly getting an area of responsibility and am in fact, meeting with the existing manager of this area to go over things on Monday. I’m ecstatic about this although, I had to push my boss to get the ball rolling on this or else I’d still be sitting here doing training classes online until the cows came home. The sooner I can do this the better.

So, that’s what I’ve been frustrated about. Also, there’s a couple of other things I’ve been upset about. One, my Friday telework day was taken away because my boss thinks that I need to be in the office with support staff to ask questions of and help. That’s totally fine with me except – it’s Friday and I’m the only one in the office. The wonder twins have gone off to their “field” work – in fact, I haven’t even seen them. My boss and Patricia are working from home. It’s just little-ol’ me here in the office. Next, I’m frustrated that I asked to go out in the field with Larry of the twins and we set it up and everything and he blew me off – probably because he only wanted to be with Sherry out in the field and he doesn’t want me tagging along. And, last I’m frustrated because I think Carmine said something to my boss about my being on the phone one day with Charlie. He told me in my review that someone said they overheard something about my being on the phone with a landscape client. I told him that I must have been on the phone with my partner who runs the business full time asking me a question was all and that I promise that I don’t talk to clients during normal work hours.

That Eff-ing pissed me off to no end!

First, Patricia is on the phone ALL DAY talking to her husband, her mamma, her cousin – anyone who will listen to her talk. She even had her husband stop by the office the other day and hang out with her all afternoon. But, did I say anything? NO. I see Carmine in the parking lot talking on her phone – probably arguing with her ex husband about who’s going to pick up the kids but did I say anything? NO. I mind my own business. But, you know? IT’S SO UNFAIR. I get penalized and all these other people just go off and do whatever the hell they want all the time and no one ever says anything to them about it.

[Breathe Lanie]

So, those are my FRUSTRATIONS. And, I thank you all for listening and reading this and being my audience because I just had to get this out. Now back to our regularly scheduled program. What do y’all have planned this weekend? We’re going to Athens like I said in the V-DAY post and, thank you, Goddess because it will be nice to get out of town and breathe different air. It’s been a week or two!

Have a great weekend, y’all!